41st President. Typed note signed (TNS) “George B” AS PRESIDENT, 6.5×4.5, January 24, 1991, on The President notecard, to his fishing buddy Bob Boilard in Maine, in full:
Thanks, my good friend, for the support and encouragement you always give me. You are thoughtful to call yesterday, and I am grateful.
Love to Maddy. Hope all is well.
Accompanied by White House envelope.
This letter dates to just one-week into the 42-day Operation Desert Storm.
On November 29, 1990, the U.N. Security Council authorized the use of “all necessary means” of force against Iraq if it did not withdraw from Kuwait by the following January 15. Hussein defied the Security Council, and early on the morning of January 17, 1991 the Persian Gulf War began with a massive U.S.-led air offensive known as Operation Desert Storm. The U.S. was accompanied by troops sent by NATO allies as well as Egypt and several other Arab nations. The coalition effort benefited from the latest military technology, including Stealth bombers, Cruise missiles, so-called “Smart” bombs with laser-guidance systems and infrared night-bombing equipment. The Iraqi air force was either destroyed early on or opted out of combat under the relentless attack.
After 42 days of relentless attacks by the allied coalition in the air and on the ground, President Bush declared a cease-fire on February 28; by that time, most Iraqi forces in Kuwait had either surrendered or fled. Though the Persian Gulf War was initially considered an unqualified success for the international coalition, simmering conflict in the troubled region led to a second Gulf War–known as the Iraq War–that began in 2003.