Its ruling dynasty, the al-Sabah family, had concluded a protectorate agreement in 1899 that assigned responsibility for its foreign affairs to the United Kingdom.
The UK drew the border between the two countries in 1922, making Iraq virtually landlocked.
Iraq launched Scud missiles against coalition military targets in Saudi Arabia and against Israel.
The Gulf War (2 August 1990 – 28 February 1991), codenamed Operation Desert Shield (2 August 1990 – 17 January 1991) for operations leading to the buildup of troops and defense of Saudi Arabia and Operation Desert Storm (17 January 1991 – 28 February 1991) in its combat phase, was a war waged by coalition forces from 35 nations led by the United States against Iraq in response to Iraq's invasion and annexation of Kuwait.Ostensibly, this was because of improvement in the regime's record, although former US Assistant Defense Secretary Noel Koch later stated: "No one had any doubts about [the Iraqis'] continued involvement in terrorism ...The real reason was to help them succeed in the war against Iran." With Iraq's newfound success in the war, and the Iranian rebuff of a peace offer in July, arms sales to Iraq reached a record spike in 1982.In March 1982, Iran began a successful counteroffensive (Operation Undeniable Victory), and the US increased its support for Iraq to prevent Iran from forcing a surrender.In a US bid to open full diplomatic relations with Iraq, the country was removed from the US list of State Sponsors of Terrorism.