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In February 2003, Secretary of State Colin Powell presented evidence to the United Nations Security Council that Iraq had biological weapons and argues in favor of military action. Powell later admitted he had presented what turned out to be an inaccurate case to the UN on Iraqi weapons, and the intelligence he was relying on was, in some cases, "deliberately misleading."
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In an operation dubbed "Shock and Awe," smoke billowed from a presidential palace compound in Baghdad during air strikes on March 21, 2003. Large explosions shook Baghdad during a night of blistering air strikes, as U.S. and British ground forces advancing across southern Iraq battled for hours for control of a strategic airfield.
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Combat camera video shows undated footage of U.S. Army soldier Jessica Lynch on a stretcher during her rescue from Iraq. The video was shown as part of a media briefing at Camp As Sayliyah on April 2, 2003. Lynch was severely injured and then kidnapped when her convoy was ambushed on March 23, 2003, by Iraqi forces during the Battle of Nasiriyah.
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In a now infamous moment, Bush told a cheering crew aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln on May 1, 2003, that U.S. forces had brought about a "turning of the tide" against terrorism. Underneath a banner reading “Mission Accomplished,” the president said the conflict with Iraq marked the beginning of “a new era” in waging war.