USS Liberty Survivor of Six-Day War’s RX for PTS and RE: Anti-Semitism and White Nationalism #ReportHate

USS Liberty Survivor of Six-Day War’s RX for PTS and RE: Anti-Semitism and White Nationalism #ReportHate
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A Semite is a member of any of the peoples who speak or spoke a Semitic language, in particular Jews and Arabs.

True Anti-Semitism is a prejudice against or hostility towards the Jewish people rooted in fear that breeds hatred.

The true enemy of the Jewish people is Zionism, which is an ideology of supremacy akin to American white nationalism.

By Eileen Fleming

The Southern Poverty Law Center/SPLC bills itself as “the premier U.S. non-profit organization monitoring the activities of domestic hate groups and other extremists – including the Ku Klux Clan, neo-Confederates, neo-Nazi movement, racist skinheads, black separatists, antigovernment militias, Christian Identity adherents and others.”

The SPLC defines Christian Identity as “a unique anti-Semitic and racist theology that rose to a position of commanding influence on the racist right in the 1980s. ‘Christian’ in name only, the movement’s relationship with evangelicals and fundamentalists has generally been hostile due to the latter’s belief that the return of Jews to Israel is essential to the fulfillment of end-time prophecy.”

The SPLC currently tracks more than 1,600 extremist groups operating across America, which “espouse separatist ideologies that focus on alleged inferiority of nonwhites.”

A recent email conversation with Don Pageler, U.S. Navy survivor of the Six Day War and his friend and research partner Dr. Bob Kamansky on the topic of ideologies of supremacy in particular Anti-Semitism in relation to 50 years of Post Traumatic Stress due to the USA Government Cover-up of Israel’s attack on the USS Liberty, resulted in this article.

As an online seeker of truth and justice to end Israel’s occupation of Palestine, USA collusion in Israel’s nuclear weapons and to end 50 years of USA Government Cover-up of Israel’s June 8 1967 attack on the USS LIBERTY, experience has taught me the power of a single word.

As the granddaughter of a German Jew and American of good conscience, I alert groups of people who do not know me during conversations about Israel, Palestine or the USS Liberty, that if I catch even a whiff of Anti-Semitism I will/must speak up as a matter of conscience.

The only people who have ever made an issue with such a statement have been anti-Semites, and so I asked Dr. Bob and Don Pageler how do they respond to true anti-Semitism?

Don Pageler wrote:

Anti-Semitic is the most misused word I know of.  I let the person using it be responsible for it.  Some will call me that because I was on the Liberty and speak about it.  However I want to try to not give anyone a valid reason to hang that label on me.  Prejudice is one of the detrimental traits of the human being, regardless of what side of the argument one is on.  I work hard on trying not to focus on the negative side of others…

Around 2011 Ernie [Gallo, President of USS Liberty Veterans Association] called me.  He said there was a Jewish retired oral surgeon who lived about 40 miles from me.  I called Dr. Bob and we met at the Nixon Library and started our research in the Nixon/Israeli files.  We then found a lot of other stuff at CIA, NSA, Naval Intelligence, Army Intelligence, NARA, etc.  We have received thousands of pages of declassified documents.  The ones most directly related to the Liberty I had in a notebook at the reunion (file attached).  We meet anywhere from 1 to 4 times a week at either Dr. Bob’s house or the Nixon Library, which is about half way between us.  There are so many stories to tell about our research I can not began to tell them here…

US Army Medical and Dental Corps Captain Robert Kamansky, trained to be a military surgeon and dentist.

Dr. Bob was on active duty during the 1973 Yom Kippur War and today the patriotic American actively seeks the truth in pursuit of justice for the USS Liberty crew through research which is uncovering declassified information leading to more inquiry.

Dr. Bob’s Russian Jewish kin escaped the Russian Pogroms.

A pogrom is a violent riot aimed at the massacre or persecution of an ethnic or religious group, particularly a riot aimed at the massacre or persecution of Jews.

During WW II, Dr. Bob’s wife’s parents were in Auschwitz and Mauthausen concentration camps.

Dr. Bob speaks up about all the holocausts throughout history, his personal experiences of racism from fundamentalist Jews, and RESEARCH:

Such as uncovering this TOP SECRET memo from Kissinger to LBJ regarding organizing “some Jewish Community protests against the State Department’s attitude on the Middle east situation” and Israel’s “nuclear issue.”

During my 2005 interviews with Mordechai Vanunu, Israel’s nuclear whistleblower he told me that President Kennedy tried to get Israel to open the Dimona to inspectors, but “When Johnson became president, he made an agreement with Israel that two senators would come every year to inspect. Before the senators would visit, the Israelis would build a wall to block the underground elevators and stairways. From 1963 to ’69, the senators came, but they never knew about the wall that hid the rest of the Dimona from them.”

Regarding 50 years of Post Traumatic Stress due to LBJ’s Cover-up which has persisted through every Administration and Congress since 1967, due to FEAR of being called Anti-Semitic, Pageler responded he treats himself through positive actions:

For years I lived in extreme guilt, which almost destroyed me, both physically and emotionally.  Being told to never talk about it by the government almost killed me.  Fortunately I found the Vet Center and a wonderful woman (Eva) who helped me believe in myself.  Punishing others will not change what happened. We cannot find peace through prejudice and hate.

This American contends prejudice breeds hate and closes hearts and minds, and when people do not speak up against racism, bigotry or injustice, it is because they themselves are fear-filled or else agree with the prejudice.

Excerpted from Don Pageler’s Post Traumatic Stress USS Liberty Story:

The USS Liberty was attacked without warning by Israeli defense forces. She was armed with only 4 – 50 caliber machine guns good for repelling boarders. When the Mirage fighters left the Liberty they had inflicted 820+ rocket and cannon holes and over 3000 machine gun hits. Mystere bombers dropping napalm followed them. While the crew of the Liberty tried to fight the fires the Israeli’s brought out 3 torpedo boats that fired 5 torpedoes at the Liberty. One hit left a 40-foot hole in the starboard side.

The Liberty was attacked at 2pm. At between 2;05 and 2:09 the Liberty transmitted a distress call. The Saratoga scrambled plains to come to her aid within 15 to 20 minutes of receiving the distress call.

Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara recalled the flight. Adm Geis sent a second flight from both the Saratoga and the America 90 minutes later.

McNamara also recalled these flights. Geis then challenged his order by asking him to authenticate his message.

President Lyndon Johnson told Geis to recall the planes. “I do not care if everyone dies; I am not going to embarrass my allies.”

I remember Doctor Keipfer told me to lie down next to a man he was going to operate on. They stuck a needle in me and ran a tube to my shipmate for a transfusion. Later that day or the next I remember helping take the body bags of the 9 killed topside to the refrigerator.

The attack lasted between 1 hour and 15 minutes and 2and a half hours (depending on what you call the end). The Liberty saw no Americans until the following morning. Nine sailors died during the air attack and 25 in the torpedoed spaces (where I worked). 174 of my shipmates were wounded including my self. We then sailed the ship 1,000 miles for 6 days and put her in dry-dock in Malta. We recovered the bodies from the torpedoed spaces and civilians repaired the ship for return to Little Creek, Virginia.

Of my duties on the way to Malta two things stand out. I stood duty in the passageway on the starboard side of the torpedoed spaces. I was given a little one-battery flashlight, which put out very little light. The room smelled of fuel oil. I was told to watch the K shoring to make sure none of it gave way.

The other duty I remember was down in shaft alley where the drive shaft runs from the engine room back to the screw. If we exceeded 5 knots the ship began to shake. I was told to watch to see if any cracks developed in the ship. If we started taking on water I was told to use the headphones and tell the bridge to order abandon ship. I thought, that’s fine for everyone else but I will be stuck here in the bottom of the ship.

The torpedo hit where I worked in the research spaces (commonly called the spook shack). When we reached Malta and put the ship in dry-dock, having the top-secret crypto security clearance, I was one of the first to go down to the torpedoed spaces to cleanup.

Within the first 15 to 20 minutes, I picked up a piece of equipment. Under it was an arm. I knew whose arm it was. Although it had been soaked in salt water for a week, Phil Tiedke was a body builder and I could tell by the muscle structure it was his. It was like having an out of body experience. One of me said, “You have to find the rest of the pieces of his body and make sure they all get in the same body bag.”

Another one of me was saying, “They are all blown apart, just put it in a bag and get on with it.”

Of the two days I spent down there cleaning up that is all I remember. I went on liberty for a day or two and was flown back to Norfolk. When I arrived in Norfolk I was debriefed. I was told, “You have the highest security clearance anyone can get in this country. Never speak about this to anyone including your family.”

Two days later I was home in Kansas on 30 days leave wondering, what the hell happened to me?

After my release from active duty in March of 1970, I returned to Kansas and achieved a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration from the University of Kansas. In 1985 I began to loose my vision. I could no longer see the center strip in the road while driving. An optometrist looked in my eyes and said I had a physical problem, not and eye problem. He referred me to a doctor who came in looking as white as a sheet after running his tests. He told me I should have died a long time ago.

One of my major organs should have popped. My blood pressure was 240/145. He said it had been that way for a long time to the damage to the eyes. Luckily I was having strokes in the retina of my eyes, instead of my heart or brain, where it could have killed me.

After that I started having nightmares. Late in that year I drove off the San Diego Freeway on my way home to Orange County from work at Hughes Aircraft Co. in El Segundo balling like a baby. I cried for 10 minutes before I realized I was thinking about the Liberty. My doctor put me on heavy blood pressure medication. For a year and a half, it only came down to 140 to 180/100 to 140.

During that year and a half my 20-year marriage dissolved. In February of 1987 I found out about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) while watching a Simon & Simon episode….

Within a month of being able to talk about the Liberty both blood pressure numbers dropped 30 points. In the late 1990’s I came down with Type II diabetes. While my doctor says stress is not the cause, he believes stress has contributed greatly to the severity of the disease. I have included a medical study to this fact.

I attended group therapy from April 1987 to March 1990. During that time I had to confront many issues. One night in-group a Marine from Viet Nam looked at me and said, “You guys got screwed as bad if not worse than anyone I knew in Viet Nam. You have every right to be as angry as you can be. But it is your anger. What are you going to do about it?”

It took me over 4 years to answer that question. I would never write congress. I am not stupid. I have a college degree. I knew they would not do anything about it. Finally I realized the way I was going to get rid of my anger by giving it to congress. I wrote every California and Kansas congressman and senator a 3-page letter with 30 pages of documentation. They all passed the buck back to my local congressman, Dana Rohrabacher.

He asked me to come in and see him. He looked at me and said, “I have read everything you have written and all the material you sent me. There is no way I believe this was a mistake on the part of the Israeli’s. But I have to tell you, congress will not touch this until after there is peace in the Middle East.”

This man that fancies himself a supporter of Veterans had to face me and say you’re right – we’re not going to do anything about it…

I believe it was the fall of 2003 my wife (Eva) and I stayed at a Best Western in Taos, New Mexico. While walking down the hall my wife noticed a man looking at my Liberty tee shirt. She said, “Are you interested in that shirt?”

I heard her and turned to look at him. He had a sheepish look on his face and said, “I have to tell you, I was an officer in the Israeli Army in 1967 when you were attacked.”

I was so impressed that he had the courage to say anything to my face that we asked him and his wife to meet us in the bar for a drink. I showed him my notebook of the slide show I had created (51 pages, 11 word charts and 100+ photos).

When I finished he looked at me and said, “I never could understand why the US government spent so much time covering this up. When the 6-day war was over Mosha Dyan briefed the entire officer cadre in the Israeli forces. When he came to the Liberty he made no bones about it. He said we tried to take out the Liberty because we did not want them to find out what our plans were.”

Don Pageler at the Western Museum of Flight

Near the end of We Americans and the USS LIBERTY Pageler concludes that all he can do is share his story and leave it up to the listener to do something.


Please SIGN and SHARE Petition to Congress: Investigate the Attack on the USS Liberty



Eileen Fleming is TADN’s volunteer Health Reporter and Senior Non-Arab Correspondent 

Fleming produced the UNCENSORED “30 Minutes with Vanunu” Mordechai, Israel’s nuclear whistleblower

Contact her HERE 




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Eileen Fleming

Senior Non-Arab Correspondent for TADN at The Arab Daily News
Senior Non-Arab Correspondent for The Arab Daily News
Producer "30 Minutes with Vanunu" who founded in response to her first of 8 trips to both sides of The Wall in Palestine Israel.
In 2012, Eileen ran for US House of Representatives District 5, in Fl.
Read her FREE eBooks and more at:
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