How Much Do You Know About the War in Iraq?


By: Robin Tyler

6 Min Quiz

Image: Rockfinder/E+/Getty Images

About This Quiz

After 9/11, American President George Bush was determined to hunt down Osama bin Laden.

This led to the invasion of Iraq in 2001. Intelligence also pointed to the fact that another member of the Bush administration coined the term "Axis of Evil," claiming Iraq was housing weapons of mass destruction that could be used by terrorists against the West in another attack.

Together with a number of forces from other countries, including Britain, Poland and Australia, US forces invaded Iraq to remove Saddam Hussein from power and search for these weapons of mass destruction. 

And it didn't take long for the Coalition forces to crush the opposition, with Baghdad falling relatively quickly. 

Iraqi forces, however, quickly went underground, leading to a new form of warfare and hit and run tactics, something that was far harder to deal with.

And those weapons of mass destruction? Well, they were never found. Who knows, they may still be hidden out there somewhere.

So let's get to the point. In this quiz, we are going to test your knowledge of the Iraq War. Let's see how much you really know about the conflict, the ins and outs of a most difficult war. 

Are you ready?

Good luck, trooper!

On what day did the Iraq War officially start?

The Iraq war officially started on March 20, 2003.


Name the US president who ordered the invasion.

After the 9/11 attacks on New York, George Bush was hell bent on destroying any terrorist threat in the Middle East. First came the invasion of Afghanistan looking for Osama bin Laden and then, Coalition forces invaded Iraq.


Ultimately, what were Coalition forces looking for in Iraq when they invaded?

The Iraq War was all about finding and destroying a cache of weapons of mass destruction that was said to be in the country.


Who was the Iraqi leader at the time of the invasion?

Saddam Hussein was the leader of Iraq at the time of the Iraq War. He had been the leader in the country since 1979.


The leader of the US and Coalition forces during the early stages of the Iraq War was ______?

General Tommy Franks was in command of the Coalition forces that invaded Iraq on March 20, 2003.


How much did it cost to deploy a member of the US military on the ground during the Iraq War?

Wow! That's an incredible amount of money just for one person.


The conflict started with a bombing campaign against which Iraqi city?

Baghdad air defenses were targeted before the main attack in a bombing campaign by the multi-national force.


How many Iraqis died as a result of the war from 2003 to 2011?

The toll on ordinary Iraqis during the war was massive. Around 500,000 died during the eight years of Coalition occupation.


To drive a war machine takes lots of gas, oil and other logistics. How many barrels of oil did US forces use during the conflict?

It takes a lot of oil to keep a war machine moving. Just imagine how much that costs at around $100 a barrel!


Iraq is a hot place, and air conditioning was a priority in Army barracks, command positions and other areas. How much did that cost the US government each year?

$20 billion! That's just astronomical! But that's what it cost.


Up until 2008, how many ordinary Iraqis were displaced by the war?

Sadly, war always has an effect on the innocent. The Iraq War displaced over 2.3 million Iraqis, many of them children.


Name the US vice president at the start of the war.

Dick Cheney was the vice president at the start of the Iraq War. He also led Halliburton, a company that received many contracts in Iraq.


Saddam Hussein evaded capture for almost nine months. Where was he eventually caught?

Saddam Hussein managed to evade capture but eventually, was found. He had been staying on a sheep farm in a narrow hole beneath a mud shack consisting of two rooms.


Morocco offered to help the Coalition forces by sending 2,000 of which animal?

Yes, 2,000 monkeys. These trained primates could be used to clear mines. Luckily, the US said no.


Identify the elite unit deployed by Saddam Hussein to protect Baghdad.

The Republican Guard were loyal to Saddam Hussein and his ruling party. They were the best equipped of all the Iraqi units but were decimated in aerial attacks by Coalition air units.


On what date did Baghdad fall to Coalition forces?

It didn't take long from the start of the invasion for the Coalition forces to capture Baghdad.


Despite the fact that Coalition forces effectively controlled Iraq, enemy forces went underground and employed a new style of warfare. What was it called?

Iraq forces ditched their uniforms and slipped back into civilization, using guerrilla warfare against Coalition forces.


Any idea as to the name of the infamous prison near Baghdad where persons of interest were kept by Coalition forces?

Abu Ghraib near Baghdad was somewhat controversial, especially after leaks showed how some prisoners were humiliated.


What was the main battle tank used by the US forces during the Iraq war?

The M1A1 Abrams was the main US battle tank during the conflict. By March 2005, around 80 had been lost to enemy fire, although 63 were repaired.


Speaking from the USS Abraham Lincoln in the Persian Gulf, President George Bush declared an end to hostilities on what day?

It had taken a little over a month for George Bush to declare the Iraq War won. In reality, it was only just beginning.


What is an I.E.D.?

The guerilla tactics now employed by the Iraqi forces that had now gone underground saw them using explosive devices, set at road sides to ambush American vehicle convoys. These caused huge problems for Coalition forces.


Name the main battle tank of the Iraq forces. Although older, it remained a difficult opponent.

The T-72 was a Soviet era tank but a formidable opponent.


After his capture, Saddam Hussein was tried and sentenced to death. When was this carried out?

Saddam Hussein was executed by hanging on December 30, 2006. Later, videos of the execution surfaced online showing Saddam fighting with guards to the last.


How many soldiers from the US armed forces were killed during the eight years of the war?

Sadly, 4,483 US service personnel lost their lives during the war. A further 33,183 were wounded.


According to Reuters, by 2013, the Iraqi War had cost the American taxpayer ________?

That's a staggering amount, but war is a costly business for some.


The United Kingdom was led by who at the beginning of the Iraq war?

Tony Blair insisted that the United Kingdom formed part of the Coalition forces on the pretense that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction that he would use against the West.


Can you name the US service woman rescued in a daring mission early in the war?

Jessica Lynch was captured after her the 507th Maintenance Company was ambushed on March 23, 2003. She was rescued by Special Forces on April 1, becoming the first female soldier to be rescued in combat and the first American since World War II.


How many Coalition troops were deployed to the Gulf region during the Iraq War?

Over 300,000 troops were deployed, with the bulk coming from the United States and Britain.


Of these 300,000 troops, what percentage were American?

85% of the troops were from the United States military, around 255,000 in fact.


True or False. Saddam Hussein had an extensive bunker system under Baghdad which included a swimming pool and other amenities.

The bunker system that the Coalition forces found was incredible. Filled with amenities such as a swimming pool, a nursery, a gourmet kitchen, these bunkers were 90 meters underground and could withstand a bombing attack.


What was the name given to the military operation by Coalition forces in Iraq?

Coalition forces took part in Operation Iraqi Freedom, although they were also looking for apparent weapons of mass destruction.


After Saddam Hussein was ousted, two factions within Iraq started battling each other for power. One was the Shia faction, what was the other?

The battle between the Shia and Sunni factions in Iraq effectively plunged the country into civil war.


British forces also had specific name for their participation in the Iraq war. What was it called?

Operation Telic started in 2003 but by 2009, most British forces had already left Iraq. Over 141,000 served during those six years, with 178 losing their lives.


Who was appointed the first Prime Minister of Iraq after Saddam Hussein was ousted?

Nouri al-Maliki was appointed the Prime Minister of Iraq on April 21, 2006. He stepped down in 2014.


During the Iraq War, which group of Iraqis to the north of the country supported the Coalition forces?

The Kurds were a group of Iraqis who were terrorized under Saddam Hussein. In some instances, Hussein used chemical weapons in attacks on Kurd villages.


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