Iraq was bombed for 43 consecutive days during the 1991 Gulf War. The coalition flew over 100,000 sorties, dropping 88,500 tons of bombs, and widely destroying military and civilian infrastructure. So when Iraq captured Americans and journalists a few months later, what did they do to them? They released them.
April 16, 1991 | From Reuters
An American and a French journalist, missing and feared dead in Iraq for almost three weeks, are alive and on their way to Amman, Jordan, from Baghdad, CBS News reported Monday. CBS News broadcast a brief interview with Frank Smyth, 29, and Alain Buu, 30, who were released from an Iraqi prison. Both men said they were fine, but they did not give full details of what happened to them after their capture by Iraqi troops while covering the Kurdish uprising in northern Iraq.
March 19, 1991 | JOHN M. GLIONNA, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Two Marine Corps fliers who spent 48 days as Iraqi prisoners of war, most of the time handcuffed and blindfolded in prisons in and around Baghdad, returned to their home base to a hero’s welcome Monday. Shortly before dusk, the Air Force Lear jet that had carried Lt. Col. Clifford Acree and Chief Warrant Officer Guy L. Hunter Jr. from Washington touched down on a wind-swept Pendleton runway as hundreds of family members, friends, well-wishers and fellow Marines shouted their names and waved American flags and yellow balloons.
The two men were forced to eject from their damaged OV-10 Bronco reconnaissance plane on Jan. 18 and parachuted to the Kuwaiti desert, where they were seized by patrolling Iraqi soldiers.