Will The U.S. Go To War With Iraq? That was the question in September 2002, when U.S. President George W. Bush appeared before world leaders. Bush demanded that Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein destroy his weapons of mass destruction--or else. So what happened? The Iraq War began six months later, on March 19, 2003. Why did the war begin? Why have troops been there for so long? Read on to follow the war in Iraq as it unfolded--and as Scholastic's magazines reported it.