A great American, in a final public statement
made just weeks before his death, urges that the truth finally be
revealed about the attack that killed 34 crew members and wounded 172
others aboard the USS Liberty in 1967
US betrayal went
hand-in-hand with Israel’s attack on USS Liberty during 1967 war
by Admiral Thomas Moorer (USN, Ret.)
(Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from 1970 to 1974)
Admiral Thomas H. Moorer (1912-2004, RIP)
Thursday, February 5th, this great patriot passed away, just four days
shy of his 92nd birthday. It was also less than a month after the
following column of his appeared in the Houston Chronicle on
January 9, 2004 (it subsequently has disappeared, despite its obvious
importance--more about that at the bottom of this page). We posted the
column as a Latest News and Analysis feature on January 15th (the
Chronicle link will be changed to this page), but felt that
Admiral Moore's comments are of such great importance that they
deserve to be preserved in the form of a Featured Story, to be more
readily seen near the top of our homepage and so the title will later
be prominently displayed in our archives. After his column, we have
assembled numerous links concerning the USS Liberty and Admiral Moorer.
This page is meant to serve in some small way as a memorial to them
never seen a President -- I don't care who he is -- stand up to [Israel] ... They always get what they want. The Israelis know what is
going on all the time. I got to the point where I wouldn't write
anything down. If the American people understood what a grip these
people have got on our government, they would rise up in arms."
Moorer, 1984, quoted by Richard Curtiss in
A Changing Image: American Perceptions of the Arab-Israeli Dispute
After State Department officials and
historians assembled in Washington, D.C., last week to discuss the
1967 war in the Middle East, I am compelled to speak out about one of
U.S. history's most shocking cover-ups. On June 8, 1967, Israel attacked
our proud naval ship -- the USS Liberty --killing 34 American servicemen
and wounding 172.
Those men were then betrayed and left to die by our own government.
U.S. military rescue aircraft were recalled, not once, but twice,
through direct intervention by the Johnson administration.
Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara's (photo, right) cancellation of
the Navy's attempt to rescue the Liberty, which I personally confirmed
from the commanders of the aircraft carriers America and Saratoga, was
the most disgraceful act I witnessed in my entire military career.
To add insult to injury, Congress, to this day, has failed to hold
formal hearings on Israel's attack on this American ship. No official
investigation of Israel's attack has ever permitted the testimony of the
surviving crew members.
A 1967 investigation by the Navy, upon which all other reports are
based, has now been fully discredited as a cover-up by its senior
Capt. Ward Boston, in a sworn affidavit, recently revealed that the
court was ordered by the White House to cover up the incident and find
that Israel's attack was "a case of mistaken identity."
What our investigation uncovered
Some distinguished colleagues and I formed
an independent commission to investigate the attack on the USS Liberty.
After an exhaustive review of previous reports, naval and other military
records, including eyewitness testimony from survivors, we recently
presented our findings on Capitol Hill. They include:
Israeli reconnaissance aircraft closely
studied the Liberty during an eight-hour period prior to the attack,
one flying within 200 feet of the ship.
Weather reports confirm the day was
clear with unlimited visibility.
The Liberty was a clearly marked
American ship in international waters, flying an American flag and
carrying large U.S. Navy hull letters and numbers on its bow.
Despite claims by Israeli intelligence that they confused the Liberty
with a small Egyptian transport, the Liberty was conspicuously different
from any vessel in the Egyptian navy. It was the most sophisticated
intelligence ship in the world in 1967. With its massive radio antennae,
including a large satellite dish, it looked like a large lobster and was
one of the most easily identifiable ships afloat.
Israel attempted to
prevent the Liberty's radio operators from sending a call for help by
jamming American emergency radio channels.
Israeli torpedo boats
machine-gunned lifeboats at close range that had been lowered to
rescue the most seriously wounded.
As a result, our
commission concluded that:
There is compelling
evidence that Israel's attack was a deliberate attempt to destroy an
American ship and kill her entire crew.
In attacking the USS
Liberty, Israel committed acts of murder against U.S. servicemen and
an act of war against the United States.
The White House
knowingly covered up the facts of this attack from the American
The truth continues to be concealed to
the present day in what can only be termed a national disgrace. What was
Israel's motive in launching this attack? Congress must address this
question with full cooperation from the National Security Agency, the
Central Intelligence Agency and the military intelligence services.
The men of the USS Liberty represented the United States. They were
attacked for two hours, causing 70 percent of American casualties, and
the eventual loss of our best intelligence ship. These sailors and
Marines were entitled to our best defense. We gave them no defense.
Did our government put Israel's interests ahead of our own? If so,
why? Does our government continue to subordinate American interests to
Israeli interests? These are important questions that should be
investigated by an independent, fully empowered commission of the
The American people deserve to know the truth about this attack. We
must finally shed some light on one of the blackest pages in American
naval history. It is a duty we owe not only to the brave men of the USS
Liberty, but to every man and woman who is asked to wear the uniform of
the United States.
Admiral Moorer was joined in the independent
commission of inquiry by Gen. Ray Davis (recently deceased); Rear Adm.
Merlin Staring; former Judge Advocate General of the Navy and Ambassador
The USS Liberty
US Naval history--USS Liberty
US Naval photos of USS Liberty attack by Israeli forces, 8 June 1967
The USS Liberty--A perspective of one of the rescuers
Israeli attack on USS Liberty - Wikipedia
USS Liberty Memorial
LBJ , Israel & the USS Liberty Massacre
The cover-up of the 1967 Israeli attack on the USS Liberty
Tempers flare on spy-ship sinking
State Department official calls attack an act of gross negligence
Liberty ” Smearing Backfires : Pro - Israeli Cristol overreaches
'The USS Liberty': America's Most Shameful Secret
The Attack on the USS Liberty
The USS Liberty Bombshell
USS Liberty--Israeli pilot speaks up
History News Network--USS Liberty: Historians Debate
The USS Liberty: still covered up after 35 years
USS Liberty: Did Israel commit one war crime to hide another?
Admiral Thomas Moorer
Admiral Moorer Remembered by Military Colleagues
The passing of a military giant
Former Joint Chiefs of Staff Boss Dies
Adm. Thomas H. Moorer, 91, WWII hero, led Joint Chiefs
Adm. Moorer set standards in Navy
Moorer's Fight for the Panama Canal
Adm. Moorer’s Last Warning
Bio from website of Alabama school named
Admirals Moorer and C.A. "Mark" Hill warn against national security
Operation Tailwind -Admiral Moorer Vindicated
Real News 24/7: Admiral Moorer's comments were originally
published in the Houston Chronicle, 9 Jan 2004 as
"Betrayal behind Israeli attack on U.S. ship."
The title used above comes from a Lebanese publication,
Star. Curiously (or, perhaps, not curiously), the column's
now dead, despite having gone up only a month ago. It is not even found
in the archive or as a link appended to his obituary, but has been
pitched into the Chronicle's memory hole (as in information
black hole). Did the powers-that-be at the Chronicle decide
that this was too hot to retain or were they forced to get rid of it by
its parent company, the Hearst Corporation? And what part did the
government and the pro-Israeli lobby have in its banishment? Whatever
the answers to these questions, important as they are, the fact remains
the same no matter that the same shameful act deprives Americans
of access to an important opinion they're unlikely to find elsewhere.
Fortunately, though, some websites were able to save this before it
vanished forever. We have posted it both as a tribute to the memory of a
true American hero and as an important document in the fight to restore