US Gulf War commander Schwarzkopf dies

Norman Schwarzkopf, the burly US general who led coalition forces during the 1991 Gulf War, which liberated Kuwait from Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, has died.

The 78-year-old Schwarzkopf, a Vietnam war veteran, died in Tampa, Florida, where he retired after his last military posting as commander-in-chief of US Central Command, an official said. The cause of death was not immediately known.

After Iraq invaded Kuwait in 1990, Schwarzkopf, popularly known as 'Stormin' Norman', commanded more than 5,40,000 US troops and 2,00,000 allied forces during the 'Operation Desert Storm'. The six-week-long war liberated Kuwait from Hussein's army in 1991. In 1988, Schwarzkopf was appointed commander of the US Central Command.

President Barack Obama said Schwarzkopf stood tall for his country. "Our prayers are with the Schwarzkopf family, who tonight can know that his legacy will endure in a nation that is more secure because of his patriotic service," Obama said.

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