Anti-Imperialism/Foreign Policy

Rot in Hell, Norman Schwarzkopf, Mass Murderer and War Criminal


 Norman Schwarzkopf death: U.S. Army Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf gives a thumbs up sign to the crowd along the beach at Kuwait City on March 12, 1991. IMAGE
AP 11 min ago By Lolita C. Baldor

“Stormin’ Norman” Schwarzkopf commanded the U.S.-led international coalition in Desert Storm. He was 78.

WASHINGTON — Retired Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, who topped an illustrious military career by commanding the U.S.-led international coalition that drove Saddam Hussein’s forces out of Kuwait in 1991 but kept a low public profile in controversies over the second Gulf War against Iraq, died Thursday. He was 78.

Schwarzkopf died in Tampa, Florida, where he had lived in retirement, according to a U.S. official, who was not authorized to release the information publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

A much-decorated combat soldier in Vietnam, Schwarzkopf was known popularly as “Stormin’ Norman” for a notoriously explosive temper.

He served in his last military assignment in Tampa as commander-in-chief of U.S. Central Command, the headquarters responsible for U.S. military and security concerns in nearly 20 countries from the eastern Mediterranean and Africa to Pakistan.

Schwarzkopf became “CINC-Centcom” in 1988 and when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait three years later to punish it for allegedly stealing Iraqi oil reserves, he commanded Operation Desert Storm, the coalition of some 30 countries organized by then-President George H.W. Bush that succeeded in driving the Iraqis out.

At the peak of his postwar national celebrity, Schwarzkopf — a self-proclaimed political independent — rejected suggestions that he run for office, and remained far more private than other generals, although he did serve briefly as a military commentator for NBC.

Photos: Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf through the years

While focused primarily in his later years on charitable enterprises, he campaigned for President George W. Bush in 2000 but was ambivalent about the 2003 invasion of Iraq, saying he doubted victory would be as easy as the White House and Pentagon predicted. In early 2003 he told the Washington Post the outcome was an unknown:

“What is postwar Iraq going to look like, with the Kurds and the Sunnis and the Shiites? That’s a huge question, to my mind. It really should be part of the overall campaign plan,” he said.

Initially Schwarzkopf had endorsed the invasion, saying he was convinced that former Secretary of State Colin Powell had given the United Nations powerful evidence of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. After that proved false, he said decisions to go to war should depend on what U.N. weapons inspectors found.

He seldom spoke up during the conflict, but in late 2004, he sharply criticized then-Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and the Pentagon for mistakes that included inadequate training for Army reservists sent to Iraq and for erroneous judgments about Iraq.

“In the final analysis I think we are behind schedule. … I don’t think we counted on it turning into jihad (holy war),” he said in an NBC interview.

Schwarzkopf was born Aug. 24, 1934, in Trenton, New Jersey, where his father, Col. H. Norman Schwarzkopf Jr., founder and commander of the New Jersey State Police, was then leading the investigation of the Lindbergh kidnap case, which ended with the arrest and 1936 execution of German-born carpenter Richard Hauptmann for stealing and murdering the famed aviator’s infant son.

The elder Schwarzkopf was named Herbert, but when the son was asked what his “H” stood for, he would reply, “H.” Although reputed to be short-tempered with aides and subordinates, he was a friendly, talkative and even jovial figure who didn’t like “Stormin’ Norman” and preferred to be known as “the Bear,” a sobriquet given him by troops.

He also was outspoken at times, including when he described Gen. William Westmoreland, the U.S. commander in Vietnam, as “a horse’s ass” in an Associated Press interview.

As a teenager Norman accompanied his father to Iran, where the elder Schwarzkopf trained the country’s national police force and was an adviser to Reza Pahlavi, the young Shah of Iran.

Young Norman studied there and in Switzerland, Germany and Italy, then followed in his father’s footsteps to West Point, graduating in 1956 with an engineering degree. After stints in the U.S. and abroad, he earned a master’s degree in engineering at the University of Southern California and later taught missile engineering at West Point.

In 1966 he volunteered for Vietnam and served two tours, first as a U.S. adviser to South Vietnamese paratroops and later as a battalion commander in the U.S. Army’s Americal Division. He earned three Silver Stars for valor — including one for saving troops from a minefield — plus a Bronze Star, a Purple Heart and three Distinguished Service Medals.

While many career officers left military service embittered by Vietnam, Schwarzkopf was among those who opted to stay and help rebuild the tattered Army into a potent, modernized all-volunteer force.

After Saddam invaded Kuwait in August 1990, Schwarzkopf played a key diplomatic role by helping to persuade Saudi Arabia’s King Fahd to allow U.S. and other foreign troops to deploy on Saudi territory as a staging area for the war to come.

On Jan. 17, 1991, a five-month buildup called Desert Shield became Operation Desert Storm as allied aircraft attacked Iraqi bases and Baghdad government facilities. The six-week aerial campaign climaxed with a massive ground offensive on Feb. 24-28, routing the Iraqis from Kuwait in 100 hours before U.S. officials called a halt.

Schwarzkopf said afterward he agreed with Bush’s decision to stop the war rather than drive to Baghdad to capture Saddam, as his mission had been only to oust the Iraqis from Kuwait.

But in a desert tent meeting with vanquished Iraqi generals, he allowed a key concession on Iraq’s use of helicopters, which later backfired by enabling Saddam to crack down more easily on rebellious Shiites and Kurds.

While he later avoided the public second-guessing by academics and think tank experts over the ambiguous outcome of Gulf War I and its impact on Gulf War II, he told the Washington Post in 2003, “You can’t help but… with 20/20 hindsight, go back and say, ‘Look, had we done something different, we probably wouldn’t be facing what we are facing today.'”

After retiring from the Army in 1992, Schwarzkopf wrote a best-selling autobiography, “It Doesn’t Take A Hero.” Of his Gulf war role, he said, “I like to say I’m not a hero. I was lucky enough to lead a very successful war.” He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II and honored with decorations from France, Britain, Belgium, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain.

Schwarzkopf was a national spokesman for prostate cancer awareness and for Recovery of the Grizzly Bear, served on the Nature Conservancy board of governors and was active in various charities for chronically ill children.

“I may have made my reputation as a general in the Army and I’m very proud of that,” he once told the AP. “But I’ve always felt that I was more than one-dimensional. I’d like to think I’m a caring human being. … It’s nice to feel that you have a purpose.”

Schwarzkopf and his wife, Brenda, had three children: Cynthia, Jessica and Christian.


6 replies »

  1. I am confused. The review of Schwarzkopf’s life was very good and generally paints him as a soldier who did his duty to his country. So I thank Lolita C. Baldor for that. But the title of this article here at Attackthesystem says
    “Rot in Hell, Norman Schwarzkopf, Mass Murderer and War Criminal”
    Why print a generally positive review of a man’s life then wish him to rot in hell??? Does that make any sense?? Not to me.
    Westmoreland and Zumwalt were assholes and Bush Jr. and Cheney ARE mass murderers and war criminals, but Schwarzkopf was not. Saddam Hussein was.

  2. Storman Norman was a hero to many of us. The loss of lives under his command was far less than any other officer in his position. If the politicians would sit the hell down and shut the “F” up. Our soldiers would end these stupid wars alot faster, with alot less death.

    • The loss of life was far less because the Iraqi Army was no match for the American army; it was like fighting a 3-year-old.


    United States War Plans Against Iraq

    9. Sometime after the termination of the Iraq-Iran War in the Summer of 1988, the Pentagon proceeded to revise its outstanding war plans for U.S. military intervention into the Persian Gulf region in order to destroy Iraq. Defendant Schwarzkopf was put in charge of this revision. For example, in early 1990, Defendant Schwarzkopf informed the Senate Armed Services Committee of this new military strategy in the Gulf allegedly designed to protect U.S. access to and control over Gulf oil in the event of regional conflicts. In October 1990, Defendant Powell referred to the new military plan developed in 1989. After the war, Defendant Schwarzkopf referred to eighteen months of planning for the campaign.

    10. Sometime in late 1989 or early 1990, the Pentagon’s war plan for destroying Iraq and stealing Persian Gulf oil fields was put into motion. At that time, Defendant Schwarzkopf was named the Commander of the so-called U.S. Central Command – which was the renamed version of the Rapid Deployment Force – for the purpose of carrying out the war plan that he had personally developed and supervised. During January of 1990, massive quantities of United States weapons, equipment, and supplies were sent to Saudi Arabia in order to prepare for the war against Iraq.

    11. Pursuant to this war plan, Defendant Webster and the CIA assisted and directed Kuwait in its actions of violating OPEC oil production agreements to undercut the price of oil for the purpose of debilitating Iraq’s economy; in extracting excessive and illegal amounts of oil from pools it shared with Iraq; in demanding immediate repayment of loans Kuwait had made to Iraq during the Iraq-Iran War; and in breaking off negotiations with Iraq over these disputes. The Defendants intended to provoke Iraq into aggressive military actions against Kuwait that they knew could be used to justify U.S. military intervention into the Persian Gulf for the purpose of destroying Iraq and taking over Arab oil fields.

    The U.S. “Green Light” to Invade Kuwait

  4. Any time you put a lacky’s willingness to “play ball” above his true character/honor you end up with demons the like of Eisenhower, Schwarzkopf, McCain et al. These are usually inept blowhards “playing ball” with the status quo to curry favor/promotions etc., morality and honor be damned. You have the very same problem even in our law enforcement agencies. the swine violate constitutional/human rights of their own citizens to gain that promotion etc.

    Eisenhower, called “the terrible Swedish Jew” by his west point class mates murdered +/- 2,000,000 POWS AFTER the war and abandoned thousands of our captured troops.

    McCain, no, not the paper “hero” in office, his equally treacherous daddy, the Admiral who played a key role in covering up the intentional attack/murder of U.S. servicemen, (by Israel), aboard the USS Liberty.

    Schwarzkopf? Well, let’s just say if filth like this is the best the U.S. can offer, we’re heading for the abyss much faster than even I assumed;

    But, bottom line, if it gives a culture made up of mostly vicious fools the “warm and fuzzies” to mess themselves and call demons saints? Carry on.

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