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10 Bizarre Conspiracy Theories Of The First Gulf War

by David Tormsen
fact checked by Jamie Frater

Every major conflict and war in modern history has stirred up more than a few conspiracy theories, from wild theories of Nazi UFOs to suspicions of Nixon’s nixing the Vietnam War peace process. The war to defend Kuwait against Iraqi aggression is no exception, with tales of coalition super weapons and extraterrestrial interlopers over Baghdad.

10 Silent Sound Spread Spectrum


According to a 1998 Nexus article, the US military used a mind-control system based on “silent sound.” This technology altered and entrained brainwaves to manipulate the brain’s electroencephalographic (EEG) patterns and artificially implant negative emotional states—fear, anxiety, despair, and hopelessness—directly into the minds of those affected. The theory claims that the hundreds of Iraqi troops who rushed to surrender to coalition troops were evidence that the US military must have used psychoacoustic frequencies to impel them to surrender en masse.

When Saddam Hussein’s military command-and-control system was destroyed, the Iraqis were forced to use commercial FM radio stations to carry encoded commands. US PsyOps forces set up a portable FM transmitter in the ghost town of Al Khafji, overpowering the Iraqi signals to broadcast religious and patriotic music as well as “vague, confusing, and contradictory military orders and information.” These FM transmissions in addition to Arabic-speaking coalition special forces with megaphones are said to have deployed the psychoacoustic weapon against the Iraqis.

The alleged mind-altering technology, Silent Sound Spread Spectrum (SSSS), is described as a “silent communications system in which non-aural carriers in the very low or very high audio-frequency range, or in the adjacent ultrasonic frequency spectrum, are amplitude-modulated with the desired intelligence and propagated acoustically or vibrationally for inducement into the brain.” According to the theory, the Gulf War was a trial run for the wider implementation of a global mind-control system.

9 Saddam’s UFO

Rumors emerged in the early 2000s that the Second Gulf War may have actually been fought because the United States knew Saddam Hussein was in possession of a crashed UFO and was desperate to prevent him from reverse engineering its technology. The UFO is said to have come down during Desert Storm in the First Gulf War, but some theorize that it fell from the sky as recently as December 1998. It is speculated to have been the same craft that allegedly appeared in a CNN video in which a UFO can be seen over Baghdad, maneuvering to avoid a stream of tracer anti-aircraft fire.

Some even said that aliens were living as Saddam Hussein’s guests in one of his summer residences, the Qalaat-e-Julundi fortress, an impenetrable defensive structure on a hill surrounded with vertical precipices. The fortress once belonged to the royal family but was turned into one of Hussein’s summer residences. According to a source named Mohammed Hajj al-Amdar, to help the Iraqis guard the fortress, the aliens genetically altered desert scorpions to grow to the size of cows. He describes the creatures:

They are wonderful watchdogs: they blend in with the desert, swiftly and silently move on their warm-blooded prey for a decisive attack. Luckless intruders hear just some strange sound from behind stones, then a pincer crushes their necks, another pincer crushes their legs; then the victims is slammed to the ground and beaten with a barbed tail six or seven times. Death comes almost immediately.

8 UFO Attack On The USS Wisconsin Battle Group


According to conspiracy theorist John Kettler, a UFO got more than it bargained for when it began to buzz the USS Wisconsin battle group of warships, attacking naval troops psionically with a high-pitched shrieking sound. Kettler’s theory was that the naval sonar used by the US Navy to search for Iranian submarines was annoying a nearby alien underwater base. The UFO was originally an unidentified submerged object (USO) clocked at 152 knots by sonar before emerging to harass the battle group.

The Navy began to open fire with their heavy guns, chosen over missiles to give the crew a morale boost. The 5″ and 40 mm guns initially had little effect, but the UFO eventually dropped to 150 meters (500 ft), bringing it into the range of the largest guns in the fleet, which hit and destroyed the craft.

Offworld sources” are said to have confirmed the UFO as Reptoid in origin, while “highly sensitive terrestrial sources” claim that the object was destroyed due to a combination of cumulative damage to the hull, the effects of the powerful shells going off within the craft, and the probable destruction of the propulsion system.

7 Revelation 9 And The Invasion Of Kuwait

7bibleNote: In this entry, quotations from the Bible are given with Jah’s parenthetical notes and emphasis included.

Jah, self-described “source of all of the information that every single Living Soul on this Planet needs,” claims Revelation 9 predicted the invasion of Kuwait by Iraqi forces:

“And the 5th. angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth and to HIM (the star or small beam of light is a PERSON – a Being of Light) was given the key to ‘the bottomless pit’; and there arose a SMOKE out of the pit, like (as) the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air (sky) were darkened because of (by reason of) the SMOKE of the pit.” Could anything fit that description better than the sky over Kuwait once Saddam had set fire to 1000 oil-wells? The sky was pitch-black at mid-day.

He also points to John’s description of fantastic locusts and scorpions as an interpretation of the helicopter gunships and armored vehicles used by coalition forces during the war. Consider verses 7–9 of Revelation 9:

7. And the shapes of the LOCUSTS were like unto (similar to) horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were (what looked similar to) crowns like gold, and their faces were like the faces of men.

8. And they had hair like the hair of women, and their teeth were like the teeth of lions.

9. And they had breast-plates (armour), that looked like breast-plates of iron
(metal); and the sound of their wings was like the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle.

John’s description is, according to Jah, merely his interpretation of the appearance and clattering sound of helicopter gunships. References to scorpions refer to British Scorpion tanks. Jah believes the First Gulf War was the fifth of seven “woes” that will befall humanity, the last being a global conflagration.

6 US Force’s UFO Sightings


A number of alleged UFO sightings during the war have been reported online. A soldier known as William C. claimed to have been attached to a communications unit encamped in a circle formation near the Euphrates River when they were suddenly buzzed by a green, glowing UFO. They radioed the base about possible military or commercial flights in the area but received a negative response. When the UFO hit the horizon, it vanished in an intense burst of green light. The next day, 200 Iraqi soldiers surrendered.

Meanwhile, a former paratrooper serving in Operation Provide Comfort reported being part of a mass UFO sighting while in the Iraqi city of Zahku. While satellite spotting, he noticed a UFO flying erratically through the sky. He alerted a comrade, who confirmed that the object was indeed acting very strangely but shrugged it off: “R&D is at it again or it’s a damn flying saucer. Either way, I don’t really care because it doesn’t have anything to do with my mission.”

5 Operations Black Cat And Black Dog


Online conspiracy theorist David Guyatt claims to have heard a fantastic story from a furtive source known only as “B.” The source had approached Guyatt over an earlier report about a top secret CIA operation known as “Black Cat,” in which a black US B-52 bomber was launched from Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska, flew to the Persian Gulf, and delivered a payload of an extremely toxic substance called VX nerve agent on elements of the Republican Guard in Southern Iraq. This was apparently a revenge attack for a Scud missile attack with sarin gas that the Iraqis had launched at Israel. A second operation launched a C-130 Hercules with one or two massive bombs in order to burn any trace of the chemical weapon.

“B” claimed there was a second operation known as “Black Dog” that occurred on February 25, 1991, in which an aircraft launched from a US Navy carrier in the Red Sea delivered a payload of biological weapons targeted at an Iraqi weapons plant. The bacteria was delivered by an aerosol system, causing targets to drown in their own internal fluids. Other sources claim the biological weapon had a lifespan of only 48 hours, was incommunicable to others, and didn’t even have a name—only a batch number.

There are even reports that a US Navy S3A Viking aircraft carrying a mixture of chemical and biological weapons crash-landed in Iraq. Whether this is the same mission as Black Dog or a similar one is unknown. During the ground war, French and US forces supposedly hurried to clear the area of Iraqi forces in order to recover the aircraft and prevent the secret mission from becoming public knowledge.

4 Saudi Saucer Crash


According to an anonymous author, a supposed senior Russian official named Colonel Gregor Petrokov reported that the US Air Force used an F-16 to shoot down a UFO over Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Storm. Petrokov claims five nations are trying to cover up the UFO crash that occurred in a barren desert region northeast of Riyadh, the Saudi capital city. “The Americans won’t admit it was a UFO their plane shot down, but the debris was not from any known aircraft,” he says. “The Saudis with me were so frightened that they asked American, British, and French investigators to come to the crash site immediately.”

Petrokov claimed to have been a member of a small Russian team that visited the site:

The craft was circular and made of a material I’ve never seen before. About a third of it seemed to be missing, possibly blown away by the American missiles. The Saudis wouldn’t let us touch anything, but we saw instruments, machinery, and other things that completely baffled us. It seemed to be a relatively small craft, maybe 15 feet across. There were three chairs, probably for crew members, but they were so small they seemed to have been made for children. Evidently space aliens are only about three feet tall. Most amazing, though, is the fact that there were no bodies at the crash site, nor did there appear to be an engine in the craft.

The UFO is said to have appeared without warning in the path of four F-16s heading toward Baghdad, one of which downed the craft with a direct missile attack. No survivors were discovered, and Russians were hustled out of there as soon as the Americans arrived. “There were things they didn’t want us to see more, I think, than the fact that the craft was circular, that there were no survivors, and that it was made of a foreign substance.”

3 Baathist Commandos With Alien Weapons

3laser gun

One conspiracy theory website claims US Army munitions experts at the Detroit Arsenal in Warren, Michigan, investigated a mysterious weapon firing a yellow molten metal projectile the size of a pencil eraser. This weapon was apparently used by Iraqi insurgents to knock out an M1 Abrams main battle tank in Baghdad. The projectile is said to have penetrated the tank’s armored skirting and hull and disabled vital equipment, but the crew survived.

Apparently, market rumors are claiming “Zarzi aliens” allied with Saddam gave the weapons to Baathist commandos to fight the Americans. Saddam’s son Uday had apparently wanted to attack the Americans directly with “weapons of the Drona Parva,” part of the Hindu epic Mahabharata that describes powerful energy weapons. The aliens turned him down but handed out a handful of less powerful weapons to help reduce the Anglo-American coalition’s advantage in armor and aircraft.

The weapon is called a “degaton gun” and fires projectiles using electromagnetic energy. One source describes the weapons as “what you Americans call a sawed-off shotgun, but with a pistol grip. The muzzle is very wide and resembles a vacuum cleaner. An odd-looking ‘box’ of electronics bulges out just above the trigger. There is a laser sighting system built right into the front of the electronic box.” Iraqi troops are reported to have witnessed similar guns in the hands of the aliens firing lightning bolts, but the aliens wouldn’t let Saddam have them because they didn’t trust him.

2 CNN’s Fake News Broadcast

CNN Fake Newscast Best Quality

CNN reporter Charles Jaco was famous for his live news reports during the First Gulf War, but online conspiracy theorists accuse him of taking part in faked broadcasts. Jaco claims to have broadcast live from the roof of a Saudi Arabian hotel, but conspiracy theorists claim it was merely a set mocked up with fake palm trees and a blue wall in a studio. They point to videos where Jaco is giving solemn briefings of events and compare them with later videos that appear to show Jaco clowning around with the crew in what appears to be a television studio. They claim sounds of sirens and missiles in the background were merely sound effects and that “the acting was terrible as Charles Jaco wore a gas mask, and his fellow correspondent Carl Rochelle wore a helmet.”

One theorist wrote:

That video is such garbage. It’s like a kids’ show, made-up BS. Monty Python-esque. Yes, it was staged, of course it was. And that’s a confirmation from a been-there-done-that American war veteran who, on that very day, had family members at peril for their lives from rocket attacks on their homes in Israel, who were actually wearing gas masks and sealing off portions of their homes to create safe environments.

Jaco didn’t take this lying down, sending an email to one blogger explaining that the blue plywood background was erected as a guard against sand and wind storms and that the horseplay was a way of letting off steam while reporting under the pressure of potential Scud missile attacks. He demanded the videos be removed from YouTube and LiveLeak, but as is typical when dealing with conspiracy theorists, he was adding fuel to the fire. The blogger was unrepentant. However, online debunkers discussing the issue on Metabunk seem to have compiled enough photographic evidence to lay the claims of faked broadcasts to rest.

1 Gulf War Syndrome


Veterans of the First Gulf War are famous for suffering from a number of chronic and unexplained medical symptoms including fatigue, headaches, joint pain, indigestion, insomnia, dizziness, respiratory disorders, and memory problems. There have been a number of studies that have attempted to explain the phenomenon, which is difficult to understand due to the wildly varying expressions of the disease. The US Department of Veteran’s Affairs does provide disability compensation to those affected if they can show they have suffered from “presumptive” illnesses like chronic fatigue syndrome or fibromyalgia after their service in the Gulf War theaters.

Conspiracy theorists have a variety of explanations for the mystery illnesses. Some blame aspartame, the synthetic sweetener sometimes known as NutraSweet. It is said to create an excitotoxin called aspartate, which is said to damage DNA and harm neurons. Some link Gulf War syndrome with Lou Gehrig’s disease, which damages motor neurons. The diet soda that the military hands out on a regular basis is apparently what caused the syndrome. One theorist calling himself Dr. Blaylock called diet soda “the most powerful government approved toxic soup imaginable.”

Others blame the secret deployment of chemical and biological weapons by coalition forces. Former Royal Air Force Corporal Richie Turnbull claimed to have been affected by chemical weapons, specifically sarin gas, in a missile attack on the base where he was stationed. According to Turnbull, the attack was authorized not by Saddam, but by Britain’s Ministry of Defence and the US Department of Defense. Others do blame the Iraqis but claim the biochemical weapons were supplied to Iraq through Jordan in the 1980s and that coalition troops were given vaccines to guard against anthrax, botulism, and bubonic plague. These were allegedly highly experimental and delivered via HIV gene envelopes.

According to conspiracy theorist David Guyatt, the complex array of symptoms attributed to Gulf War syndrome is the result of multiple causes: exposure to a variety of biological and chemical weapons and the unforeseen consequences of testing vaccines on coalition troops.

David Tormsen was grown in a petri dish by Saddam Hussein. Email him at [email protected].

fact checked by Jamie Frater