By Joe MeadorsDamaged USS Liberty / US Navy photo Caption bar formerly at top read: :Photo # NH 97478 Damage to USS Liberty, June 1967 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Navy Seals are coming out of the woodwork claiming to be the one who fired the shot that killed Osama bin Laden. Those who wrote books about the assault on bin Laden’s compound are being investigated by the US government for everything from revealing classified information all the way to treason.
If the US government is in the business of investigating those who reveal classified information why have USS Liberty survivors been ignored for the past 47 years?
Perhaps it’s because our facts are so highly classified that the US government cannot even acknowledge they exist and that prosecuting us for revealing them would confirm that the US government acknowledges that the facts exist and are true.
But its not only the facts that the US government doesn’t acknowledge. They refuse to honor 34 Americans who were Killed in Action during the attack on our ship. We hold an annual memorial service in Washington, DC. The Department of Defense and Navy Department are always invited to attend. They always ignore the invitation.
Out of guilt?
They’re afraid of us.
Afraid that by attending they will have to answer our questions face to face, on the record and while cameras are recording their answer.
What classified information are we publicly detailing that has the US government running so scared that they refuse to be seen publicly with us?
We were attacked by unmarked aircraft and our radios were jammed on US Navy tactical frequencies. These two facts strongly suggest the attack on the USS Liberty was not the mistaken attack on a 40-year-old rusted-out Egyptian horse carrier that bore no relationship to our ship.
Our life rafts were deliberately machine gunned in the water by the attacking Israeli torpedo boats. This information is so sensitive that when Lloyd Painter testified during the US Navy Court of Inquiry to this fact his testimony was removed from the record and does not appear anywhere in the Report of the Court.
Israeli torpedo boats set their torpedoes to run at a depth that would have them pass underneath the el Quseir without striking the ship.
After one of their torpedoes struck the USS Liberty and killed 25 crewmen the Israeli torpedo boats slowly circled the torpedoed and burning ship while firing from close range at USS Liberty crewmen who were trapped topside or who ventured topside to fight the fires and help their wounded shipmates.
After the torpedo boat attack, Israeli helicopters arrived on the scene intent on disgorging heavily armed assault troops who were clearly visible in their open doors onto the USS Liberty’s decks.
Two flights of rescue aircraft launched from Sixth Fleet aircraft carriers were both recalled before they arrived over the Liberty. In all likelihood they would have arrived in time to drive off the torpedo boats and would have saved the lives of 25 crewmen killed by the torpedo.
These are facts that point directly to the conclusion that the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty was deliberate and upon a ship that was known to be American at the time the attack began.
These are facts that the US government has declared to be so secret that even the victims of the USS Liberty discussing them publicly cannot be prosecuted out of fear that doing so would give them the weight of US government acknowledgement and acceptance.
These are facts we will continue talking about publicly at every opportunity.
These are facts we are willing to be investigated by the US government for revealing.
If only the US government wasn’t scared of the publicity such an investigation would unleash.
(Joe Meadors is a USS Liberty survivor. He also was a participant in the Freedom Flotilla I and II attempts to break the siege on Gaza. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
- The USS Liberty Document Archive Is Now Up and Running - March 16, 2020
- The Attack on the USS Liberty is NOT a “Conspiracy Theory” - November 20, 2019
- USS Liberty: Why Investigate the Attack on a US Navy Ship? - November 5, 2019