The Day in the Gulf

BUSH HALTS ATTACK: What was called the largest U.S. tank battle since World War II was halted when President Bush ordered the allies to hold their fire. The battle pitted the U.S. Army’s VII Corps against Iraq’s Republican Guard about 50 miles west of Basra in southeastern Iraq. It involved as many as 800 U.S. tanks and armored vehicles and up to 300 Iraqi tanks.

KUWAIT CITY RETAKEN: Kuwait city was liberated. Kuwaiti Radio said allied troops were entering the Kuwait capital in a “majestic parade.” Kuwait’s international airport also was retaken by the allies after an armor battle, a Pentagon source said. Defense Secretary Dick Cheney said the allies were on the verge of “complete and total victory” in freeing Kuwait and destroying Iraq’s offensive military capability.

ANOTHER IRAQI OFFER: Iraq’s U.N. ambassador said he has been authorized to tell the Security Council that Iraq is prepared to accept all 12 resolutions the council adopted after Iraq invaded Kuwait last August. U.S. officials called for further clarifications.

SCHWARZKOPF BRIEFING: Reviewing the war, the U.S. commander, Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, said allied strategy relied on two feints that apparently took the Iraqis by surprise. One was the threat of an amphibious assault on the Kuwaiti coast, designed to force the Iraqis to concentrate their forces along the coast--which they did. The other was a last-minute shift of vast numbers of allied soldiers from east to west, allowing them to drive deep into Iraq.


ALLIED TOLLS: An American warplane mistakenly fired on two British infantry vehicles, killing nine soldiers, the British military reported. The French reported the deaths of seven American soldiers operating under French command. Allied combat deaths in the war totaled at least 126.