US Marines Corps (USMC) Marines from the 1st Battalion, 7th Marines (1/7), Charlie Company, Twentynine Palms, California (CA), cover each other with 5.56 mm M16A2 assault rifles as they prepare to enter one of Saddam Hussein’s palaces in Baghdad as they takeover the complex during Operation IRAQI FREEDOM.
The Iraq War began in 2003 with the invasion of Iraq by a United States-led coalition that toppled the government of Saddam Hussein. The conflict continued for much- of the next decade as an insurgency emerged to oppose the occupying forces and the post-invasion Iraqi government. An estimated 151,000 to 600,000 or more Iraqis were killed in the first years of conflict. The invasion occurred under the administration of US President George W. Bush following the September 11 terror attacks.