The Day in the Gulf

* WITHDRAWAL OFFER: President Saddam Hussein of Iraq ordered his forces to withdraw from Kuwait, Baghdad Radio reported. It said the order was made in accordance with a Soviet peace proposal--a proposal that the allies had rejected before the start of the ground offensive.

* U.S. REACTION: The White House reacted icily to the Baghdad Radio dispatch. White House Press Secretary Marlin Fitzwater said: “We’ve heard the radio reports. There’s been no contact with our government. No authoritative contact with the U.N. that we’re aware of, so that really we don’t consider there being anything to respond to. The war goes on.”

* SCUD KILLS 27 GIs: The Iraqis scored a direct hit with a Scud missile on a U.S. barracks near Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. The missile demolished the building housing American soldiers. The U.S. military said at least 27 troops were killed and 98 injured. Baghdad Radio hailed the attack, saying the missile struck “the coward traitors who . . . turn Arab youth into shields of flesh.”

* THE GROUND ASSAULT: U.S. Marines and paratroopers, backed by air attacks, continued to press toward the Kuwaiti capital, much of which was reported in flames. U.S. losses were “extremely light” in ground action: four Americans killed and 21 wounded, the U.S. command said. It also said 270 Iraqi tanks were destroyed in the operation’s first two days. Twenty-five thousand Iraqi POWs were reported taken in the two days of battle.


* BUSH’S VIEW: President Bush said allied forces were advancing decisively but cautioned that “there are battles yet to come and casualties to be borne.” He telephoned praise for early victories to Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, the Desert Storm commander.