"I was never satisfied with the Israeli explanation. . . . Through diplomatic channels we refused to accept their explanations. I didn't believe them then, and I don't believe them to this day. The attack was outrageous " |
-- US Secretary of State Dean Rusk
"...the board of inquiry (concluded) that the Israelis knew exactly what they were doing in attacking the Liberty."
-- CIA Director Richard Helms
"I can tell you for an absolute certainty (from intercepted communications) that the Israelis knew they were attacking an American ship."
-- NSA Deputy Director Oliver Kirby
"That the Liberty could have been mistaken for the Egyptian supply ship El Quseir is unbelievable"
-- Special Assistant to the President Clark Clifford, in his report to President Lyndon Johnson
"The highest officials of the [Johnson] administration, including the President, believed it 'inconceivable' that Israel's 'skilled' defense forces could have committed such a gross error."
-- Lyndon Johnson's biographer Robert Dallek in Flawed Giant, Oxford University Press, 1998, pp. 430-31)
"The evidence was clear. Both Admiral Kidd and I believed with certainty that this attack...was a deliberate effort to sink an American ship and murder its entire crew.... It was our shared belief. . .that the attack. . .could not possibly have been an accident.... I am certain that the Israeli pilots [and] their superiors. . .were well aware that the ship was American."
-- Captain Ward Boston, JAGC, US Navy (retired), senior legal counsel to the US Navy Court of Inquiry
That the attack was deliberate "just wasn't a disputed issue" within the National Security Agency
-- Former NSA Director retired Army Lieutenant General William Odom on 3 March 2003 in an interview for Naval Institute Proceedings