The Attack On The USS Liberty

by Al Benson Jr.

This is one of those “forbidden” topics all the politically correct bend over backwards to ignore. We are all supposed to pretend it never happened. Books have been written about it by men who were crew members on the Liberty. They are routinely (and always have been) ignored by the mainstream “news” media. What’s more, they have been ignored by Christians who should know better, but because they subscribe to a skewed theology, in most cases they don’t.

There was an article about this on on June 10th, written by Ray McGovern, originally written for  In it Mr. McGovern noted: “On June 8, 1967, during the Six-Day War, the Israeli military attacked the USS Liberty, an American spy ship which had been monitoring Israeli transmissions about the conflict. Intercepted Israeli communications indicated that the goal was to sink the Liberty and leave no survivors.” This from our “ally”–so called, in the Middle East.

McGovern noted that Terry Halbardier  “…slid over the Liberty’s napalm-glazed deck to jury-rig an antenna and get an SOS off to the Sixth Fleet. The Israelis intercepted the SOS and broke off the attack immediately. In effect, Halbardier prevented the massacre of all 294 onboard. Still, the infamy of the attack on the Liberty was two-fold. First, the Liberty, a virtually defenseless intelligence collection platform prominently flying an American flag in international waters, came under deliberate attack by Israeli aircraft and three 60-ton Israeli torpedo boats off the coast of the Sinai on a cloudless June afternoon during the six-day Israeli-Arab War. Second, President Lyndon Johnson called back carrier aircraft dispatched to defend the Liberty lest Israel be embarrassed, the start of an unconscionable cover-up, including top Navy brass, that persists to this day.”

There is a message here for those, even among Christians, who are willing to listen. And it is this–If you are the nation of Israel you can do whatever you want to whomever you want, even to the point of killing American military people and it will all be overlooked because, after all, Israel is our “biggest ally” in the Middle East. That fable excuses anything they want to do.

I ran into a Christian doctor once, several years ago now, who, when this subject happened to be brought up, tried to  tell me that it was all  an unfortunate “accident” that Israel fired on the Liberty. When I took the trouble to correct him on that point, explaining that it was no accident, he almost became unhinged. He stridently informed me that we, as Christians, have to support the state of Israel, no matter what they decide to do  or the manner they decide to do it in. That was, he said, the duty of Christians–support the State of Israel–no matter what! He upbraided me for daring to question anything Israel decided to do, I assume, even to the point of killing Americans.

Well, he convinced me–convinced me he was so in error theologically that I never went back to him again. But he proved something to me that I had become convinced of over a period of years–that there is a whole branch of the Christian community that, whether they even realize it or not, puts their loyalty to the Nation of Israel over their loyalty to Jesus Christ. I realize that some will be ticked off at me for saying that, even some of my own relatives, but that’s how it seems to work out.

If you doubt me, get a copy of the Scofield Reference Bible and read Scofield’s notes regarding the nation of Israel. And after you’ve done that, find a copy of Joseph Canfield’s informative book The Incredible Scofield and His Book. It was published by Ross House Books in Vallecito, California  and the last edition I am aware of was published in 2004. You might check Amazon to see if they have it.

Joe Canfield is now deceased. He lived into his early 90s. I knew Joe personally. He spent seven years researching all the material he had in that book. He traveled across the country hunting down documentation for this book, back in the days before the internet. Joe knew whereof he wrote.

You won’t truly understand where all of the “Israel first” stuff we get in so many churches today originally came from until you read Joe’s book and then check out the notes in the Scofield Bible in light of what Joe has written about them. This is an area that, in our day, we need much more discernment in than many Christians seem to possess.

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