History 492/692: The US-Iraq Wars

(Studies in Diplomatic History)
Fall 2004

Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 1:25-2:15

Hardin 232

Prof. Edwin E. Moise

Prof. Edwin E. Moise
Office: Hardin 102
Office phones: 656-5369, 656-3153
Home phone: 654-7087
e-mail: eemoise@clemson.edu

Messages can be left in my mailbox in Hardin 124, or in the box on my office door.

Office Hours

    Monday     10:10-11:00, 2:30-3:20
    Tuesday    11:00-12:15
    Wednesday  10:10-11:00, 2:30-3:20
    Thursday   11:00-12:15
    Friday     10:10-11:00 

Course Objectives

We will start with the background of Arab civilization and the history of 20th century Iraq. The main body of the course will be devoted to the two wars the United States has fought in Iraq: the first in 1991, and the second beginning in 2003 and lasting up to the present. Military and political factors, and the role of the media, will all be considered. Since combat is still occurring and seems unlikely to end during this semester, discussion of current events will be highly relevant, and will occur frequently in class.

What goes into your grade

Your grade in the course will be based mainly on the written work I have assigned. You cannot do extra papers for extra credit. You can improve your grade a bit by participating in class discussion. The best way to pick up extra points is to argue against me in class; If you can point out to me that I have made a mistake you get two points extra in the gradebook. If you present a good clear argument that I am wrong about something, with evidence, then your grade may be boosted even if you do not succeed in convincing me.

I do not emphasize trivial factual details in this course. On tests and quizzes I will not ask you to name the Foreign Minister of Iraq, or to give the exact date of the Battle of Khafji. There are some facts you need to know, but they are more important things than dates and names.

The most important single part of your grade will be the course paper. You can write it on whatever topic you please, within the limits of the subject matter of this course. Most of the papers should be about eight to ten pages long typed double spaced (graduate students: fifteen to twenty pages). Longer papers acceptable.

For more detailed guidelines on the term paper, see Writing a Term Paper in Military History.

The paper is due Wednesday, December 1. It is late if I have not gotten it before I go home that day (definitely not before 4:30 PM, maybe later than that). There will be a five point penalty if it is handed in on December 2 or 3. The penalty will be fifteen points if it is not turned in by the time I go home on Friday, December 3.

You can have a pretty free choice of topics for this paper, within the limits of the subject matter of this course. You must come in and talk to me about your paper, and discuss the sources you will be using. It is not enough to say to me as we are walking out of the classroom one morning "Professor Moise, is it OK if I write about the Scuds?" You will need to talk things over with me for fifteen minutes or maybe half an hour, not just a few seconds. After we have talked, you must give me a written statement of your topic, with a list of the main sources you plan to use. There will be a five point penalty if you have not given this to me by October 11, and an additional five points if it is not in by October 18. If it still is not in by October 25, I will either give you yet another five-point penalty, or else simply hand you a sheet of paper telling you what topic you must write on, and what sources you must use.

If you bring in a preliminary draft of your paper ten days or so before it is due, I will read it and then tell you what needs changing. You can then go home and re-write it. This will almost certainly improve the grades of the few students who bother to take advantage of this offer, so don't be one of the lazy majority who don't start work on the paper until a week before it is due, and then have no time for re-writing.

The paper is worth 150 points. The other written work will be:     --Three (four for graduate students) newspaper research exercises, worth 40 points each.     --The midterm test (70 points) and the final exam (120 points), which will be mostly essay questions.     This adds up to 460 points for the course (500 for graduate students). The basic grade scale is that 90% (414 points) is the bottom of the A's, 80% (368 points) is the bottom of the B's, and so on. Sometimes I alter the scale in the students' favor, never against them. Thus 414 points is a guaranteed A-; 410 points might be an A-, if I end up scaling grades.

Academic Integrity Policy

Academic integrity requires that we not try to pass other people's work off as our own. The ways students have gotten into problems of academic dishonesty in courses like this, in past years, have been:

1) Large portions of a term paper copied from a book or web site, without any indication that the material was copied. Typically this involves both large amounts of material quoted word-for-word, without quotation marks, and also a serious shortage of source notes pointing to the book from which the material came. Often there are misleading source notes claiming the material came from some source other than the one from which it was actually copied word-for-word. These false source notes are especially strong evidence of academic dishonesty.

2) Whole term paper obtained from some source (a commercial term paper service, or the Internet, or the collection of term papers that one of the fraternities used to have, and may still have).

3) One student copies another student's 40-point newspaper research exercise, maybe changing a few words and substituting synonyms, but leaving the two papers still so similar that it is obvious the resemblance could not be coincidence. I would be likely to bring charges both against the student who copied and the student who allowed his or her paper to be copied.

There are some ways in which it is perfectly all right for students to help each other. If two students want to study together getting ready for a test, great. Only after I have handed out the questions does help on a test become improper. But if two people work together on a newspaper research exercise, and turn in papers that are very similar because each has been getting a lot of help from the other in writing it, both will be in deep trouble. If one of your fellow students asks to look at your paper, to get a better idea of how the assignment was to be done, please say no. They should come to me to ask for further explanations of the assignment, rather than looking at a completed paper to give them their clues. If too papers are so similar it is obvious the author of one must have seen the other, I will file charges.

Policy on late work

If you do not do written work on time, then with any reasonable excuse you will be able to make it up. However, you will be marked off for lateness. You will be marked off even if your excuse is very, very good. You can avoid a penalty only if I have told you before the work was due that you would be able to do it late without penalty. Research exercises will not usually be accepted at all (you just get an F) if they are more than seven days late.

Attendance policy

You are allowed up to six cuts INCLUDING EXCUSED ABSENCES. You lose two points for every unexcused absense after that. I would advise you not to take even five. I am going to be saying quite a few things in lectures that are not in the reading. Even if you are very careful about doing all the assigned reading, you will have trouble answering the questions on my tests if you have not been at the lectures.

If I am Late

If I have not gotten to class by five minutes after it was supposed to begin, I would be grateful if a student would go bang on my office door and see whether I am there. If I still have not arrived by ten minutes after the time the class was supposed to begin, you can give up on me and leave.

Assigned Reading

Most of the reading for this course will come from the Internet or the Library. Note that Clemson University has paid a hefty fee to allow everyone browsing the Internet through the Clemson computer system to use LexisNexis.

There are two books students should buy. (It is possible, though unlikely, that a third book will be added; I will consult students about this during the first class, on August 18.)

Course Outline

The following course outline is tentative. It may be, and probably will be, modified somewhat by class request. Each day, items marked >>> are required reading. Note that where the topic listed for a particular day's class is a particular period in the history of Iraq, I will probably be commenting in class that day about what relevant things were happening in other countries during that period.

Aug 18: Introduction to the course.

Aug 20: The background of Arab civilization, and of Iraq
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 3-19

Aug 23: From British rule to the Iraqi monarchy, 1920-1936
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 21-49

August 25: The later years of the Monarchy, 1937-1958
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 49-80

Aug 27: The Qasim Era, 1958-1963
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 81-112

Aug 30: Transition, 1963-1968
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 113-138

Sep 1: The Ba'th Party in Power, 1968-1979
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 139-176

September 3: Saddam Husain and The Iran-Iraq War
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 177-216

Sep 6: U.S. Policy
    >>> Schwarzkopf, It Doesn't Take a Hero, pp. 311-336

Sept 8: Iraq invades Kuwait, August 1990
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 217-233
    >>> Schwarzkopf, It Doesn't Take a Hero, pp. 337-346

Sept 10: The United States Reacts
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 233-235
    >>> Schwarzkopf, It Doesn't Take a Hero, pp. 346-380

Sept 13, 15: Preparing for War
    >>> Schwarzkopf, It Doesn't Take a Hero, pp. 381-472

September 17: The argument over the war.

Sept 20, 22: The Air War and the Battle of Khafji
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 235-237
    >>> Schwarzkopf, It Doesn't Take a Hero, pp. 473-501

September 24, 27: The Ground War
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 237-239
    >>> Schwarzkopf, It Doesn't Take a Hero, pp. 501-547

September 28: Summary discussion of the war


October 4: Cease-fire and Aftermath
    >>> Schwarzkopf, It Doesn't Take a Hero, pp. 548-74, 578-85
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 239-241

October 6: Suppressing rebellion in Iraq
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 241-265

October 8, 11: Iraq under international sanctions, and the hunt for weapons of mass destruction.
    >>> Marr, Modern History of Iraq, pp. 265-303

From this point onward, assigned reading, which will be added to this syllabus later, will be almost entirely on the Internet.

October 13, 15: September 11, Afghanistan, and the "War on Terror"
    At the time of the September 11 attacks, Al Qaeda was based mostly in Afghanistan. The government of Afghanistan, and most of the country, were controlled by the Taliban, which was allied with Al Qaeda. But there was a coalition of warlords called the Northern Alliance fighting against the Taliban. The United States joined with the Northern Alliance in attacking the Taliban and Al Qaeda forces in Afghanistan.
    >>> James Dao and Thom Shanker, "Special Forces, On the Ground, Aid the Rebels", in The New York Times, October 31, 2001, on LexisNexis.
    >>> Jon Lee Anderson, "The Surrender: Double agents, defectors, disaffected Taliban, and a motley army battle for Kunduz.", in The New Yorker, December 10, 2001, on LexisNexis.
    >>> Eric Schmitt and Thom Shanker, "Afghans' Retreat Forced Americans to Lead a Battle", in The New York Times, March 10, 2002, on LexisNexis.

October 18: The Bush adminstration decides to disarm Iraq: 2002
    >>> Steven R. Weisman, "A Long, Winding Road to a Diplomatic Dead End", in The New York Times, March 17, 2003, on LexisNexis.

October 20: Presenting the case to the world: early 2003
    >>> In President Bush's State of the Union address, January 28, 2003, read the section on Iraq, in the second half of the speech.
    >>> Colin Powell, Speech to the United Nations Security Council, February 5, 2003

October 22, 25: The last stages of the argument over the war. The U.S. fails to get a second resolution from the U.N. Security Council.
    >>> The Financial Times, London, February 17, 2003, "Washington shrugs off protests as war preparations continue"
    >>> John H. Kelly, in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, February 17, 2003, "Decades of evidence back use of force against Saddam"
    >>> Denver Post Editorial, February 18, 2003 "Receiving the message"
    >>> Jesse Jackson, "Rising Tide Against War", The Gazette (Montreal), February 18, 2003, p. A23.
    >>> New York Times Editorial, February 18, 2003, "Reuniting the Security Council"

    >>> "Cheney says French offer of new deadline stalling to delay military action against Iraq," Associated Press, March 16, 2003
    >>> Susan Sachs, Arab Nations Brace for an Upheaval From a War in Iraq, New York Times, March 16, 2003
    >>> Speech by President Bush, March 17, 2003

October 27: The war begins: March 19-20, 2003; Air attack.
    >>> Department of Defense News Briefing, March 21, 2003, Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld and CJCS General Richard Myers.
    >>> Department of Defense News Briefing, March 22, 2003.
    >>> Jon Lee Anderson, "Ill Winds: Tomakawks, Bunker Busters, and Dust Storms Afflict the Iraqi Capital", The New Yorker, April 7, 2003, pp. 38- .
    --- (Optional, but you might find it interesting): Jon Lee Anderson, "The Bombing of Baghdad: The View from the Banks of the Tigris", The New Yorker, March 31, 2003, pp. 80- .

October 29: Ground war in southern Iraq
    >>> Bernard Weintraub, "Army Reports Iraq is Moving Toxic Arms to Its Troops", The New York Times, March 28, 2003, p. 6.
    >>> John Kifner, "Constant Iraqi Attacks are Holding Up the Allied Forces Trying to Reach Baghdad", The New York Times, March 27, 2003, p. 5.


November 3: Northern and Western Iraq
    >>> Eric Schmitt and David Rohde, "With Smaller Operation Than First Planned, U.S. Opens Northern Front", The New York Times, March 27, 2003, p. 6.

November 5: Approaching Baghdad
    >>> Dexter Filkins, "Onward Toward the Tigris, With Iraq's Capital in Mind", The New York Times, April 2, 2003, p. 6.
    >>> Dexter Filkins, "Marines Cruising to Baghdad", The New York Times, April 4, 2003, p. 1.

November 8: The fall of Baghdad
    >>> "Update on Journalists Caught in Crossfire", CENTCOM press release, April 8, 2003.

November 10: The occupation gets organized
    >>> William Langewiesche, "Welcome to the Green Zone", Atlantic Monthly, November 2004.

November 12: Resistance revives

November 15: Reconstruction in an environment of ongoing guerrilla warfare

November 17: Hunting for weapons of mass destruction, and arguing over the merits of the war
    >>> James Risen and Judith Miller, "No Illicit Arms Found in Iraq, U.S. Inspector Tells Congress", New York Times, October 3, 2003.
    >>> David E. Sanger and James Risen, "President Says Report on Arms Vindicates War", New York Times, October 4, 2003.

November 19: Resistance: Fallujah
    >>> Jeffrey Gettleman, "The Re-Baathification of Falluja", New York Times, June 20, 2004.

November 22: Resistance: the Mahdi Army


November 29: The handover of sovereignty
    >>> Dexter Filkins, "New Government is Formed in Iraq as Attacks Go On", New York Times, June 2, 2004, p. 1.
    >>> Steven R. Weisman, "U.S. Has Leverage, But Wants to Show Iraqis Are in Charge", New York Times, June 29, 2004, p. 1.

December 1: Combat after the handover of sovereignty


December 3: Politics after the handover of sovereignty


Other Links



Map of Pakistan and Afghanistan:
Revised November 4, 2004