This Day in History: , The War in Iraq Begins.
March 19, 2003.
In a televised address to the American people, U.S. President George W.
Bush announced the beginning of a war that would end up lasting eight years.
48 hours earlier, the U.S. had issued an ultimatum to Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein to leave his country.
As justification for the war, Bush cited the existence of weapons of mass destruction and the country's support of terrorist groups.
The Hussein regime was toppled within just a few weeks, but insurgents continued a bloody guerrilla war against coalition forces.
In 2006, U.S. soldiers captured Saddam Hussein while he was hiding in a hole not far from his hometown.
He was tried, found guilty and executed for crimes against the Iraqi people.
On December 15, 2011, the U.S. military declared the end of its mission in Iraq.
Despite an extended investigation, U.N.
Inspectors found no evidence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq