In a Washington Post survey, 85 percent of Americans expressed "a great deal" or "quite a lot" of confidence in the U.S. military, the highest such support in at least two decades of polling on the question. In addition, 69 percent of those surveyed said the performance of U.S. weapons in the Persian Gulf War had increased their faith in American technology and 83 percent said the arms had been worth the investment.

The chief of the U.S. team sent to help fight the 50-mile-long Persian Gulf oil slick said that certain wind conditions could produce a "very high risk" that the spill would penetrate protective barriers and contaminate Saudi Arabia's key water desalination plants.

Iraqi President Saddam Hussein has a special security unit of about 15,000 men to protect him from either allied attack or assassination by his senior military commanders, according to Iraqi exiles and British sources.

After two consecutive nights of rocket attacks on Israeli-controlled territory in southern Lebanon and an attempted incursion into Israel from Jordan, Israeli officials said they believe the Palestine Liberation Organization has begun a proxy battle for Iraq against Israel. The officials said that Saddam, frustrated by the relative ineffectiveness of his Scud missile attacks on Israel, instructed the PLO to harass Israel's northern and western frontiers to goad Israel into entering the war.