1991 -- Following the end of DESERT STORM in March, Shiite Muslims in southern Iraq rebel, but are defeated by Iraq's elite Republican Guard. This is followed by a Kurdish insurrection that is also defeated. The United States, Great Britain and France create a safe haven for the Kurds north of the 36th parallel and ban Iraqi planes from the area.

1992 -- In August, the United Nations establishes a no-fly zone along the 32nd parallel after Iraq launches renewed attacks against Shiite Muslims. The United States and its allies begin patrolling the no-fly zone, operations which continue today. In December, the U.S. planes intercept and shoot down an Iraqi MIG-25 that violates the no-fly zone.

1993 -- In January, the United States accuses Saddam Hussein of moving missiles into southern Iraq. Iraq refuses to remove the missiles. Allied planes and ships attack the missile sites and a nuclear facility near Baghdad. In June, following the discovery of a plot to assassinate former President George Bush, U.S. ships fire 24 cruise missiles at intelligence headquarters in Baghdad.

1994 -- Saddam Hussein moves Iraqi troops to the Kuwaiti border. The forces withdraw after the United States deploys a carrier group, warplanes and 54,000 troops to the Persian Gulf region.

1996 -- In August, Saddam Hussein sends forces into northern Iraq and captures city of Irbil, a key city inside the Kurdish haven established above the 36th parallel in 1991. The following month, U.S. ships and airplanes attack military targets in Iraq to punish the Iraqi military and President Clinton extends the southern no-fly zone to just south of Baghdad.

1997 -- In October, a protracted confrontation with Saddam Hussein begins after Iraq accuses U.S. members of the U.N. inspection teams of being spies and expels the majority of U.S. participants. The U.N. Security Council threatens renewed economic sanctions. The confrontation continues into November as Iraq expels the remaining six U.S. inspectors and the United Nations withdraws other inspectors in protest. Inspectors are readmitted after the United States and Great Britain again begin a military build-up in the Gulf. However, later in November, Iraq announces it will not allow inspectors access to sites designated as "palaces and official residences." U.N. officials protest, having long suspected that such sites were being used to conceal possible weapons of mass destruction.

1998 -- The tensions that began in October 1997 continue. In February, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan works out an agreement with Iraq that resumes weapons inspections. In turn, Iraq receives promises the United Nations will consider removing its economic sanctions. Inspections continue into August, when Iraq cuts ties with weapons inspectors, claiming it has seen no U.N. move toward lifting sanctions.

The Final Days

October 31 -- Iraq cuts off all work by U.N. monitors. The United States and Great Britain warn of possible military strikes to force compliance. A renewed military build-up in the Persian Gulf begins.

November 5 -- The U.N. Security Council condemns Iraq for violating agreements signed after the end of the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

November 11 -- The United Nations withdraws most of its staff from Iraq.

November 14 -- With B-52 bombers in the air and within about 20 minutes of attack, Saddam Hussein agrees to allow U.N. monitors back in. The bombers are recalled before an attack occurs. Weapons inspectors return to Iraq a few days later.

December 8 -- Chief U.N. weapons inspector Richard Butler reports that Iraq is still impeding inspections. U.N. teams begin departing Iraq.

December 15 -- A formal U.N. report accuses Iraq of a repeated pattern of obstructing weapons inspections by not allowing access to records and inspections sites, and by moving equipment records and equipment from one to site another.

December 16 -- The United States and Great Britain begin a massive air campaign against key military targets in Iraq.