Rebuilding Kuwait’s Forces Following the Gulf War
Kuwait began to rebuild its air force and army during Desert Shield, and Kuwaiti land and air units played a significant role in Desert Storm and Kuwait's liberation. The Gulf War has also forced Kuwait to drastically rethink its defense plans and force structure, and to recognize a number of major challenges that will shape its future strategic position. In early 1996, Kuwait had a total force of only 16,600 actives, including 1,600 foreign personnel, 1,000 men in the central staff and 600 Emiri Guards. The quality of Kuwait's manpower intake into enlisted ranks has also improved since the Iraqi build up on Kuwait's border. Kuwait faces problems in re-equipping its forces that are almost as serious as its manpower problems. It must make up for its wartime losses, increase its holdings of major equipment, and to obtain superior technology as a partial compensation for Iraqi or Iranian military superiority.