At 11:28pmET, U.S. cable news networks broke into coverage as the final U.S. combat troops crossed from Iraq into Kuwait, creating a lasting image for the end to the 8-and-a-half-year war, which was officially declared over on Thursday. CNN/U.S. and CNNI simulcast coverage with Hala Gorani and Don Lemon co-anchoring. Michael Holmes reported from Kuwait, Arwa Damon from Baghdad and Martin Savidge, who traveled the 5-and-a-half hours with the American convoy, reported by phone (and later, around 12:27amET, via livestream from inside an MRAP vehicle) after crossing into Kuwait. CNN/U.S. stayed live until MidnightET (CNNI until 12:30amET) and included interviews with soldiers at Camp Virginia, Kuwait.
On Fox News Geraldo Rivera and Greg Palkot reported live from Kuwait, with the final MRAP truck crossing over at 11:38pmET / 7:38am along the Kuwait/Iraq border. “I have tears in my eyes, so emotional,” said Rivera, who is on his 11th trip to the region. Fox News wrapped coverage at 11:46pm.
MSNBC produced a 4-minute special report with Richard Engel live in Kuwait. Engel too, traveled with the U.S. convoy. “So much has transpired when they crossed this berm in 2003 going North,” said Engel. “They were on their way to topple a dictator. Now they are crossing this berm again. The dictator has been toppled and the troops are going home.”