Black, yellow, and red block text on white background, gold border around edge. Shield symbol in the middle filled with American flag print, penny inlaid face-up in middle of shield
Item #6540001 GuardfrogDesigns@yahoo.com 2006 / 240
On March 19, 2003 President George W. Bush announced the beginning of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The invasion commenced on March 20, 2003, ostensibly to pre-empt Iraqi weapons of mass destruction deployment and remove Saddam Hussain from power. The capital, Baghdad, fell on April 9, 2003. President Bush declared the end of major combat operations on May 1 with his “Mission Accomplished” speech which later would be criticized as premature. Iraqi elections and a referendum to approve a constitution were held in January and December of 2005. From 2004-2006 Iraq deteriorated to almost reaching the point of a full scale civil war. In 2006 a National Intelligence Estimate asserted that the Iraq war had increased Islamic radicalism and worsened the terror threat. In January of 2007 Bush announced new initiatives including the “surge” of 21,500 more troops to Iraq which was opposed by many in the Senate and the House. On July 31, 2008, Bush stated that due to increased stability in Iraq because of what he saw as a success of the 2007 troop surge they would withdraw the additional American forces.