Timeline of the War in Iraq
October 11, 2002: Congress votes to give President Bush authority to attack Iraq if Saddam Hussein refuses to give up weapons of mass destruction.
November 13, 2002: After a four-year absence, Iraq allows the return of UN weapons inspectors.
March 19, 2003: The Iraq war begins with air strikes attempting to kill Saddam Hussein.
April 9, 2003: Hussein’s rule collapses as the U.S. military enters Baghdad. The Americans are initially welcomed.
May 1, 2003: President George W. Bush speaks to service-members aboard the U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln, speaking in front of a banner declaring “Mission Accomplished”
May 2003: The Coalition Provisional Authority is established to rule Iraq on an interim basis.
August 19, 2003: A suicide bomber destroys the UN compound in Baghdad, killing 17 people, including Sergio Vieria de Mello, the UN secretary general’s personal representative in Iraq. American soldiers retrieve his body.
December 13, 2003: Saddam Hussein is captured by U.S. special forces.
April 2004: Pictures of abuse at Abu Ghraib prison are revealed.
June 28, 2004: The United States transfers formal sovereignty to a re-constituted Iraqi government.
September 7, 2004: American military deaths in Iraq surpass 1,000. The Pentagon acknowledges insurgents control important parts of central Iraq.
November 7, 2004: Between 10,000 and 15,000 American soldiers and Marines, along with Iraqi forces, begin a major campaign to take the city of Falluja from insurgents.
January 30, 2005: Iraq’s first free elections are held.
October 19, 2005: Saddam Hussein’s trial begins
October 26, 2005: America’s death toll in the Iraq War passes 2,000.
December 15, 2005: Iraq holds its first Parliamentary election
February 22, 2006: Insurgents destroy the Askariya Shrine in Samarra, one of Iraq’s most revered Shiite shrines. The bombing sets off intense violence between Shiites and Sunnis.
April 22, 2006: Nuri Kamal al-Maliki is nominated to be Prime Minister
November 8, 2006: Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld resigns.
December 30, 2006: Saddam Hussein is hanged.
December 31, 2006: American military deaths in Iraq surpass 3,000
January 10, 2007: President George W. Bush announces plans for a surge of 20,000 additional troops to quell sectarian violence.
June 10, 2007: American commanders begin arming Sunni Arab groups who promise to fight militants linked with Al-Qaeda.
August 29, 2007: Radical Shiite cleric Moktada al-Sadr announces he will suspend attacks on American forces for six months.
January 2008: Major Marty attends an event in Long Island to mark the 20th anniversary of his graduation from medical school. At an Osteopathic Medical Conference the next day he meets Joe Guerriero, who is recruiting for the National Guard.
February 2008: After talking things over with his wife Joan, Major Marty decides to join the Massachusetts National Guard. The application is a beast, particularly since it involved wage deferments and pension waivers.
March 23, 2008: U.S. Military deaths in Iraq surpass 4,000 since the March 2003 invasion.
September 1, 2008: Responsibility for security in Anbar Province, once home to a fierce Sunni insurgency, is handed over to Iraqi control.
November 17, 2008: The Iraqi Parliament ratifies a “Status of Forces Agreement” with the United States. The pact calls for U.S. forces to pull out of most Iraqi cities by the summer of 2009, and sets the end of 2011 as the date for all troops to leave the country.
December 2008: Major Marty is informed that his application has been approved and that he will be commissioned as a major. He signs a three-year enlistment.
January 2009: Major Marty attends his first drill at Hanscom Air Force Base in Massachusetts.
June 30, 2009: U.S. Troops withdraw from Iraqi cities. Vice President Joseph Biden travels to Baghdad to thank American servicemen. Marty’s son Eric is sent to Iraq to help prepare for the visit.
November 2009: Major Marty completes his 25 day Officer Basic Leadership Class at Fort Sam Houston, Texas
March 7, 2010: Parliamentary elections are held in Iraq. Negotiations to form a new Iraqi government from these election results are still ongoing.
August 31, 2010: President Barack Obama declares an end to the combat mission in Iraq. The mission’s name changes from “Operation Iraqi Freedom” to “Operation New Dawn.” Troop levels fall below 50,000.
September 2010: In anticipation of his upcoming deployment, Major Marty returns for Fort Sam House for a five day "Tactical Combat Medical Class."
October 13, 2010: Major Marty is called up for 120 days of active duty. He is assigned to the Troop Medical Clinic at Forward Operating Base Adder in Tallil, Ira