make a donation


Letter to Washington Report on Middle East Affairs: Obsession with USS Liberty incident

August 18, 2005

The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs is a very slick and well-edited monthly that fervently promotes the Arab/Palestinian cause and heaps scorn on Israel and on American Jews. FLAME is a particular bête noir of theirs and they mention our organization in their columns in almost every issue. FLAME President Gerardo Joffe has frequently written them and they have quite often published his letters.

One of the publication’s obsessions is the 1967 Israeli attack on the USS LIBERTY. They have an article about this Israeli “perfidy” in almost every issue. In the current (August) issue, they have once again (not just one, but two) articles on this topic.

Dear Editor:

I have just received the August issue of your magazine. As always, it is professionally done and very well edited.

But I am surprised and must take exception to what can only be described as your "obsession" with the attack on the USS LIBERTY, which took place in 1967 -- 38 years ago!

You seem to have an article on this deplorable accident in every issue of your publication. The August issue features a "twofer" -- articles by

both Mr. Findley and by Ms. Hanley.
I wonder why you refuse to accept that this was an unfortunate accident in the middle of a raging war. This has been proven conclusively by congressional investigation and by in-depth books and articles written about it.

It appears that you keep using this hoary incident as something on which to hang your editorial hatred of Israel.

There are so many other pertinent things that you could mention, such as:

• the Arabs' murderous attack on the Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics;

• the countless attacks by Jihadists in which hundreds and thousands of Jews, Israelis, and others all over the world have lost their lives;

• the Arab attack on the Marines barrack in Beirut, in which hundreds of American service persons died;

• the 1997 bombing by Arabs of the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia, in which 23 Americans were killed;

• the attack by Iraqi forces (in peacetime) on the USS STARK in the Persian Gulf, which killed almost exactly as many Navy personnel as were killed in the USS LIBERTY incident;

• the attack by Arabs on the USS COLE, with the loss of many American servicemen;

• And, of course, last but certainly not least, the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center, in which over 3,000 Americans lost their lives -- followed by the deadly attacks on Spanish trains and the London subway system.

All those were deliberate attacks by Arabs against American assets and personnel. And then there are the regrettable and unavoidable accidents of war (and sometimes peace) such as:

• the tragic incident, not too many years ago, in which, in peacetime, trigger-happy personnel of the USS VINCENNES (an American warship) shot down a civilian commercial Iranian airliner, killing over 200 innocent people;

• the accidental bombing, as a result of intelligence error, by which our pilots bombed the Chinese embassy in Belgrade and by the hundreds of other civilians whom U.S. forces killed by intelligence error in the "Kosovo action".

But none of that seems to be of any importance to you -- the USS LIBERTY seems to consume you totally. And nowhere do you mention that Israel, though innocent, paid heavy compensation to the U.S. government and to the victims of this incident.

I hope I live that long, but I would not be surprised if in 50 years from now, you would still editorialize about the "perfidious act of the Israelis" in attacking the USS LIBERTY.

On a somewhat lighter note, in Mr. Kilgore's article, "U.S. Gets Tough on

Israeli Arms Sales to China," he describes the Lavi fighter plane as "US-designed and paid for". Mr. Kilgore is in serious error. The Lavi was totally designed in Israel, though there was indeed some U.S. financial contribution.


Gerardo Joffe
President, FLAME

Return to top of page>>


Our Ads and Positions
| Donate | Our Letters to Editors | Our Acquisition Letters
FLAME’s Purpose | Subscribe to Hotline Alerts | FLAME Hotline Back Issues | Home

©2005 FLAME. All rights reserved. | Site Credits | Contact Us