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Mar-19-2010 14:52printcommentsVideo

Israel's Deadly 1967 Attack on the U.S.S. Ship Liberty

An event shrouded in mystery in 1967 left more than three dozen American sailors dead and many unanswered questions.

Unloading the dead photo courtesy: Israeli flag courtesy:
Unloading the dead photo courtesy:
Israeli flag courtesy:

(SALEM, Ore.) - An amazingly large number of educated and intelligent people that I converse with have never heard of the Israeli attack on the U.S.S. Liberty that caused the deaths of 34 U.S. Navy sailors and injuries to 171.

When I first wrote this in 2006, many of our readers were shocked to learn that in 1967, during Israel's Six-Day War with Egypt, Israeli fighters repeatedly attacked a U.S. Navy ship from the air for 25 minutes and then by torpedo boats for 40 minutes.

That, after circling the ship 13 times in daylight over a nine hour period to establish her identity. This is probably, of all things, the worst act Israel ever took directly against the United States. It certainly is not the only incident where the Israeli military killed an American, that has happened many times, but a full on military attack is a different story.

For years, hundreds of Americans knew about the attack and they knew that it was kept under wraps until more recent years. And as I said, most people still don't know about it.

Why the secrecy? How and why could this have happened? We are after all, allies. It isn't like it was a random shot, it was friendly fire on steroids.

This is the ship the Israelis say the U.S.S. Liberty was mistaken for; an Egyptian horse carrier named El Quseir, The Liberty is shown
at right, her crew said the ship's American flag was flying high when the Israeli jet attacked

This incident has remained a matter of controversy ever since that fateful day. The Israeli government insists the attack was a tragic accident, while survivors and many top US officials say it was planned and deliberate.

Emblem of the U.S.S. Liberty

Officially, the United States says only that Israel's motive for attack could not be determined. Secretary of State Dean Rusk, in office at the time, called the attack deliberate.

The official excuse is still withheld from the American public at the request of the Government of Israel. That sounds sneaky, and we fight fire with fire around here. While we can't bring you the report in its entirety, this is an official U.S. synopsis called the Salans Report:

I have no problem with the bully state of Israel on most days, well, maybe that isn't true. OK, it isn't... I can't stand to think of the history of the occupation of the place. It isn't so much what happened, but it is the obvious ignorance that goes with it. History is a sad thing when the oppressed become the oppressors.

In 1947, with the help of the British Secret Service and other western government sponsored groups, the founder of the Jewish state forced the Palestinians from their homes; places where they were born.

Then twenty years later, they blasted the heck out of a U.S. Navy ship and killed a lot of the guys who were aboard, while injuring scores of others. We should have this in the back of our minds as we go through our lives here in the States, and things need to be laid out the way they really happened.

I cannot do this story any real justice, anyone who is interested should visit this site, where you can spend hours reading about the attack on the U.S.S. Liberty:

This story was originally published on 13 September 2006, but for some reason it mysteriously stopped showing up as of yesterday. It happens to be a story that is referenced frequently in our archives and contains many interesting comments, some from the survivors of the Liberty attack itself.

What happened?

Gee, I am not sure what happened, but I suspect that people can manipulate things to mess with ranking. It happened to us once before, when we published the story about Israel's possession of illegal nuclear weapons. Well fortunately today that would not have the effect that it did then. We diversify our product and make sure that stories like this show up in multiple online locations, and you boys from Mossad can't get them all, you just can't do it. Google's motto is "do no evil" and I refuse to believe that we would be savaged by Google, perhaps someone within Google, but not Google itself.

Since the original story disappeared from Google's lineup, we'll make it easy for people to access it: Sep-13-2006: The Day Israel Attacked the United States - Tim King Read the comments from actual survivors.

WATCH THE DOCUMENTARY: "USS Liberty: Dead in the Water"

Produced by the BBC, Dead in the Water uses startling new evidence to reveal the truth behind the seemingly inexplicable attack. The film combines dramatic reconstruction of the events, with new access to former officers in the US and Israeli armed forces and intelligence services who have decided to give their own versions of events. Interviews include President Lyndon Johnson's Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, former head of the Israeli navy Admiral Shlomo Errell and members of the USS Liberty crew.


Tim King is a former U.S. Marine with twenty years of experience on the west coast as a television news producer, photojournalist, reporter and assignment editor. In addition to his role as a war correspondent, this Los Angeles native serves as's Executive News Editor. Tim spent the winter of 2006/07 covering the war in Afghanistan, and he was in Iraq over the summer of 2008, reporting from the war while embedded with both the U.S. Army and the Marines.

Tim holds numerous awards for reporting, photography, writing and editing, including the Oregon AP Award for Spot News Photographer of the Year (2004), first place Electronic Media Award in Spot News, Las Vegas, (1998), Oregon AP Cooperation Award (1991); and several others including the 2005 Red Cross Good Neighborhood Award for reporting. Serving the community in very real terms, is the nation's only truly independent high traffic news Website. You can send Tim an email at this address:

Comments Leave a comment on this story.

All comments and messages are approved by people and self promotional links or unacceptable comments are denied.

Joe B. April 22, 2010 11:23 am (Pacific time)

Al-Ahram, the main Egyptian newspaper, published an article on 7 June 1967 stating that a U.S. Ship just arrived in the area to support Israel. Talk about open source intelligence. Israel knew maybe not from the U.S. but from OPEN SOURCE (newspaper) that an American ship is patroling near the shore of Sinia. Erell Shlomo (Israeli officer on one of the MTBs) Said that they recognized that it was an American ship after the attack. He sent a message to HQ. The Israeli papers said the Liberty was not flying the American flag. One can only conclude that Israeli Navy HQ had fabricated the "No flag" story.

fred rubble March 22, 2010 4:24 pm (Pacific time)

are israles stupid, or cunning?

Robert March 21, 2010 10:52 am (Pacific time)

The Israelis had been advised by the US Navy that there were no US vessels in the region. The US Navy did not want to engage the Soviet Fleet which was supporting arab aggression.  The NSA however sent a spy ship to monitor Israeli troop movements. The information gathered was forwarded to the French, who were allied with Syria, which was one of the 5 arab nations that attacked Israel in 1967.  This issue is brought up periodically to paint a disparaging picture of Israel.  This was an unfortunate accident. Flying false flags is the oldest trick in Naval tactics. Does anyone remember the 256 US Marines Massacred in Beirut? Reparations have never been paid, and no apology was ever issued. the act was intentional and not accidental.  This is nothing but anti-semitism wearing the mask of anti-israelism

Editor: No nation attacked Israel, Israel is 100% behind the launch of the 1967 Six Day War.  Just remember you are talking about Americans here.  OK, here is how it works in the comment section; call us anti-Semites one more time and your comment will instantly be flushed.  We have run an entire series explaining how criticizing Israel is not anti-Semitic.  It isn't anti-Israeli either because our writers are not out to slam groups at large.  We are critical about Israel's policies which clearly amount to genocide.  I lost a friend in the Beirut bombing; the people who attacked the barracks were not supported by American money and America's claimed ally.  Americans trusted Israel that day, it was a mistake. 

John Gidusko March 20, 2010 8:48 pm (Pacific time)

You are right smack on target, Tim, many thanks for your support. Am an ex-crew member of the Liberty, have posted a web site:
The survivors all have bloody heads from beating against the brick wall of the government cover-up. Many think the government was even involved with Israel on this dastardly event in history.
Good wishes and keep up the good work!

lakeite March 20, 2010 6:54 pm (Pacific time)

I just wonder how you feel about 'the other' Semites?

Keith March 20, 2010 8:36 am (Pacific time)

Joe this was a war crime! There were also Jewish-American citizens who got U.S. draft deferments (multiple reasons, but usually for student waivers) and served in the Israeli military, several who were involved in this war crime and returned to the states. Several of these treasonous criminals when faced with exposure in their respective communities, and regardless of the lack of action by the then administration, got the heck out of the states. My best info from people directly involved in this crime theorize that Israel was killing Egyptian POW's because of the quick moving war and their lack of securing large numbers of POWs, and thought that the USS LIBERTY (an intelligence gathering ship) may have secured evidence of that crime. Over the years when this subject has been an educational topic in our schools and universities, considerable pressure has come down to see that it is not taught, or sanitized in favor of Israel. Go to the website listed in the above article and see all the evidence you need. It is urgent that we track down these murderers, just like the Jews track down WWII nazi's. What is laughable is that Israel talks of compensating for this act, hey where do you think that money comes from? As long as just one of these muderers draws breath, it is an insult to the crew of this ship and to America. All funds and military supplies to Israel needs to stop, now!

Osotan; March 20, 2010 3:16 am (Pacific time)

Joe, I think the 9/11 catastrophy was like the USS Liberty attack as well, just a tragic accident too. Nothing intentional about firing missiles at a ship from israeli jet aircraft, launching rockets, firing artillery and machine gunning a ship with israeli naval vessels, a ship which just happened to be an un-armed American Naval observation vessel flying our colors in broad g-damned daylight.,nothing at all. And we know l.b.j. to be a stalwart pillar of integrity don't we? But that too could be chalked up as a tragic accident. You wanna buy some licorice pistols?

Joe March 19, 2010 5:54 pm (Pacific time)

Why is the Liberty incident so popular among anti-Israel conspiracy theorists? The reasons are clear. If Israel knowingly attacked and killed Americans, the views of radical critics of the country are confirmed with graphic clarity. These views include: a) the belief that Israel will turn against the U.S. whenever it suits its interests; b) the belief that Israel's control over the American political and military structure is so great that it can openly kill Americans because it knows that officials at every level will work together to cover up the crime; and c) the belief that Israel is a terrorist state. I believe this was a tragic accident

Tim King: Careful, you are talking about the integrity of my brother Americans Joe; they say the American flags were flying at both ends of the U.S.S. Liberty.  Israel's lame excuse is the only conspiracy theory on this.  Israel likes to absorb American resources and rub it in our face.

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