Lockwood, like McGovern, feels there is no doubt whatsoever that the attack was no accident.
"It was deliberate," Lockwood told Truthout. He went on to explain why he thinks Moshe Dayan, who was appointed as Israel's Defense Minister in 1967, ordered the attack.
"I only learned recently, via a document released by the CIA, that Dayan ordered the attack, despite objections from his staff members," Lockwood explained, "Our ship had the capability of monitoring virtually everything ... all communications. The Israelis had nuclear capability, and it was extremely important to the Johnson administration that the Israelis not use the nuclear option. We could monitor all of this, even when it was done by the Israelis. The Israelis wanted unbridled use of the nuclear option, and they didn't want us to know about it ... that's why they attacked us."
Another reason why Lockwood is so certain that the attack was deliberate is because he watched Joe Meadors hoist three US flags up a pole in an attempt to insure the Israeli pilots knew they were firing on a US ship.
"The Israelis claim they didn't see a US flag, but they shot down two, and Joe raised three of them, since they kept firing on them," Lockwood explained, "They riddled the third with bullet holes, but it stayed up."
In addition, writing in his memoirs, Richard Helms, the director of Central Intelligence at the time of the attack, explained that the CIA undertook a "final" investigation after more evidence became available, and he offered the following information concerning the CIA's final finding:
"Israeli authorities subsequently apologized for the incident, but few in Washington could believe that the ship had not been identified as an American naval vessel. Later, an interim intelligence memorandum concluded the attack was a mistake and not made in malice against the US.... I had no role in the board of inquiry that followed, or the board's finding that there could be no doubt that the Israelis knew exactly what they were doing in attacking the Liberty. I have yet to understand why it was felt necessary to attack this ship or who ordered the attack."
Meadors' and Lockwood's struggle to find justice spans decades, and there doesn't appear to be an end in sight.
Meadors is measured in his explanation of how he perceives the politics behind the lack of an investigation. "Politicians feel the Israeli lobby is so powerful, that if they do anything about this it will cost them votes. Nobody thinks it was a mistake, everybody knows it was deliberate. But they won't investigate it because they feel it would damage the relationship between the US and Israel."
"I'm disgusted with our country and our representatives," Lockwood concluded, "My country doesn't give a damn about me or the people on the Liberty. I'm terribly disappointed in the way our country has dealt with us."
While both Meadors and Lockwood urge people to contact their Congressional representatives and demand an investigation, Meadors is moving ahead with looking for an attorney who will help the USS Liberty Veterans group to which he belongs determine if they have a course of action through federal courts.
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