About 30 percent of the 700,000 men and women who served in U.S. forces in the Gulf War still suffer an array of serious symptoms whose causes are not fully understood.
Depleted uranium (DU) was used in the Gulf War for the first time on the battlefield, in tank kinetic energy penetrators and 20-30mm cannon ordnance.
Many returning coalition soldiers reported illnesses following their participation in the Gulf War, a phenomenon known as Gulf War illness, and much more often incorrectly called Gulf War syndrome.
Major Michael Donnelly, a former USAF officer who served during the Gulf War, helped publicize the syndrome and advocated for veterans' rights in this regard.
Increases in the rate of birth defects for children born to Gulf War veterans have been reported.
The Gulf War was a heavily televised war.