2. The significance of the Navy's role in Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM is clear. Forward deployed naval forces provided protection for early introduction of land-based ground and air assets, and may well have deterred further aggression by Iraq. Maritime superiority and unchallenged control of the sea enabled the safe and timely delivery of equipment, supplies and spare parts necessary to support the allied campaign. Interdiction of Iraqi seaborne trade, an ongoing operation, cut enemy resupply, dampened their will to fight and significantly impacted Iraq's economic health. More than 90% of material to support the campaign was delivered by sealift, and the majority of medical assets in the early months were provided by Navy. The presence of Middle East Force ships deterred Iraqi mine laying in the southern Persian Gulf. Naval aviation complemented allied air operations, added flexibility to the air campaign and deterred reintroduction of Iraqi aircraft from Iran into the conflict. Tomahawk cruise missiles took out heavily defended targets in Iraq and significantly degraded enemy air defenses.
I have written numerous articles reporting on the use of banknotes as a powerful tool of psychological operations (PSYOP). Banknotes have always been a popular medium for propaganda messages since they immediately attract the eye and finders will almost always pick them up off the ground. It is a way for the propagandist to be sure that his message will be read. In addition, banknote propaganda can be easily hidden in a wallet to be read or used at a later and more convenient time. The United States PSYOP effort in Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm made great use of banknote propaganda. Currency propaganda has not been used in such numbers since World War II.
Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm
We should also mention that as the 4th PSYOP Group geared up for Operation Desert Storm it required manpower from its various battalions and detachments deployed in South America, Europe and Asia. A call went out to identify and rapidly reassign experienced PSYOP officers and those with special skills from around the world to the 4th POG. Eventually, forty PSYOP officers who called themselves the "Lost Boys" were identified and assigned to the battle against Saddam Hussein.
VII Corps in Operation DESERT STORM
The booklet says:
1991 - Persian Gulf - Operation Desert Storm
The first PSYOP teams deployed to on 7 August. On 10 August the PSYOP planning cell was in CENTCOM HQ. On 11 August CENTCOM set forth the National and PSYOP objectives, themes to be stressed and avoided, military actions, target audiences and PSYOP products. By 17 August a Desert Shield PSYOP Strategic Plan was finalized. We should point out that it took months for the plan to be approved by everyone up the chain of command and required General Schwarzkopf to get personally involved. The Post-Operational Analysis of Psychological Operations During Desert Shield/Storm adds: