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Profile: Norman Schwarzkopf


Positions that Norman Schwarzkopf has held:

  • Commander in Chief of US Central Command
  • Commander of Operations of Desert Shield and Desert Storm




Quote, August 18, 2002

   “In the Gulf War we had an international force and troops from many nations. We would be lacking if we went it alone at this time. ... It is not going to be an easy battle but it would be much more effective if we didn't have to do it alone.” [Times, 8/19/02]

Associated Events




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Norman Schwarzkopf actively participated in the following events:


1925-1979      Plans to use force against Iran

       1925-1979 The Pahlavi Dynasty in Iran. 1925- Reza Khan elected shah, ending the Qajar dynasty and founding the new Pahlavi dynasty., Iran

1941- In August, two months after the German invasion of the USSR, British and Soviet forces occupy Iran. American troops later entered Iran to handle the delivery of war supplies to the USSR. The prize was Iran's oil fields. Britain occupied Iran in World War II to protect a supply route to its ally, the Soviet Union, and to prevent the oil from falling into the hands of the Nazis. It retained control over Iran's oil after the war through the Anglo-Iranian Oil Company.

1941 September, shah abdicated in favor of his son Muhammad Reza Shah Pahlavi.

1951- Iran's Parliament voted to nationalize the oil industry, and legislators backing the law elected its leading advocate, Dr. Muhammad Mosaddeq, as prime minister. Iran rebels against the British oil company (BP) that were perceived to be exploiting its resources and people. Britain responded with threats and sanctions. Fearing retaliation from the Soviet Union on behalf of Iran, Washington dispatched Kermit Roosevelt, a grandson of Theodore Roosevelt, who created a complex plot that included bribing people and staging riots to create the impression Mosaddeq was inept. The conspiracy was code-named TP-AJAX by the CIA. According to the New York Times Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf father was closely involved with the coup. New York Times, 8/20/1953 Democracy Now 8/25/2003 Schwarzkopf bio, Iran

1952- Openly opposed by the shah, Mosaddeq was ousted in 1952 but quickly regained power. The shah fled Iran but returned when monarchist elements forced Mosaddeq from office in August, 1953

1953- The 1953 Coup of Iran is the first successful overthrow of a foreign government by the CIA.

Mosaddeq was replaced by the pro-American Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, who became the unchallenged dictator. Shah Pahlavi was credited with modernizing Iran's industry and improving land redistribution but became unpopular due to the decline in civil liberties and public resentment over wide-spread systematic torture of dissidents coupled with his close relationship with the U.S and British governments. Iran Chamber Society, 1953 coup, Mosaddeq, Iran

1954- Iran allowed an international consortium of British, American, French, and Dutch oil companies to operate its oil facilities, with profits shared equally between Iran and the consortium.

1957- Internal opposition within the country was regularly purged by the Shah's secret police force (SAVAK), created in that year., SAVAK

1963- Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini is imprisoned by the shah and finally exiled to Turkey from Iran. BBC, 2/1/79

1973- Short of the end of the 25-year 1954 agreement with the international oil-producing consortium, the shah established the NIOC's full control over all aspects of Iran's oil industry, and the consortium agreed (May, 1973), Iran history Foundation for Iranian Studies pdf

1978- Khomeini calls for the abdication of the shah. Martial law was declared in September for all major cities. As governmental controls faltered, the shah fled Iran on Jan. 16, 1979. Khomeini returned and led religious revolutionaries to the final overthrow of the shah's government on Feb. 11. The Shah would die in exile in July of 1980, in Egypt. BBC, 2/1/79

[, Iran]
People and organizations involved: Norman Schwarzkopf


Summer 2002-2003      Complete Iraq timeline

       Current and former top US military brass dispute White House claims that Iraq poses an immediate threat to the US and that it must be dealt with militarily. In late July 2002, The Washington Post reports that “top generals and admirals in the military establishment, including members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff” believe that Saddam Hussein's regime “poses no immediate threat and that the United States should continue its policy of containment rather than invade Iraq to force a change of leadership in Baghdad.” The report says that the military officials' positions are based “in part on intelligence assessments of the state of Hussein's nuclear, chemical and biological weapons programs and his missile delivery capabilities.” The newspaper says that there are several reasons why these dissident officers disagree with their civilian bosses. They worry that if Saddam Hussein is removed, Iraq could “split up, ... potentially leading to chaos and the creation of new anti-American regimes and terrorist sanctuaries in the region.” It is also possible, they say, that an invasion of Iraq could provoke Saddam Hussein into using whatever weapons of mass destruction he may have. And even if the invasion is successful, the aftermath could see “mass instability, requiring tens of thousands of US troops to maintain peace, prop up a post-Saddam government, and prevent the fragmentation of Iraq,” the military brass warns. Their position is that the US should continue its policy of containment, specifically sanctions and the enforcement of the US- and British- imposed “no-fly” zones. [The Washington Post, 7/28/02] Responding to the dissenting opinions of these military officials, Richard Perle, current chairman of the Defense Policy Board, says that the decision of whether or not to attack Iraq is “a political judgment that these guys aren't competent to make.” [The Washington Post, 7/28/02] A few days later, The Washington Post publishes another story along similar lines, reporting, “Much of the senior uniformed military, with the notable exception of some top Air Force and Marine generals, opposes going to war anytime soon, a stance that is provoking frustration among civilian officials in the Pentagon and in the White House.” Notably the division has created “an unusual alliance between the State Department and the uniformed side of the Pentagon, elements of the government that more often seem to oppose each other in foreign policy debates.” [The Washington Post, 8/1/02 Sources: Unnamed senior military officials] The extent of the generals' disagreement is quite significant, reports the Post, which quotes one proponent of invading Iraq expressing his/her concern that the brass' opinion could ultimately dissuade Bush from taking military action. “You can't force things onto people who don't want to do it, and the three- and four-star Army generals don't want to do it. I think this will go back and forth, and back and forth, until it's time for Bush to run for reelection,” the source says. [The Washington Post, 8/1/02 Sources: Unnamed US official] During the next several months, several former military officials speak out against the Bush administration's military plans, including Wesley Clark, Joseph P. Hoar, John M. Shalikashvili, Tony McPeak, Gen James L Jones, Norman Schwarzkopf, Anthony Zinni, Henry H. Shelton and Thomas G. McInerney. In mid-January 2003, Time magazine reports that according to its sources, “as many as 1 in 3 senior officers questions the wisdom of a preemptive war with Iraq.” They complain that “the US military is already stretched across the globe, the war against Osama bin Laden is unfinished, and ... a long postwar occupation looks inevitable.” [Time, 1/19/03]
People and organizations involved: Norman Schwarzkopf, James L Jones, Anthony Zinni, Thomas G. McInerney, Henry H. Shelton, Tony McPeak, Richard Perle, John M. Shalikashvili, Kim Holmes, Joseph Hoar, Wesley Clark  Additional Info 

August 18, 2002      Complete Iraq timeline

       Retired General Norman Schwarzkopf, who commanded allied forces during the Gulf War, warns against invading Iraq without the support of allies. He explains: “In the Gulf War we had an international force and troops from many nations. We would be lacking if we went it alone at this time.... It is not going to be an easy battle but it would be much more effective if we didn't have to do it alone.” [Times, 8/19/02]
People and organizations involved: Norman Schwarzkopf

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