Mullen warns against USS Liberty redux
Mon, 04 Aug 2008 23:06:57
By Press TV
TV" -- - The top
American military officer has warned Israel against
orchestrating 'USS Liberty Part II' to provoke a US-led war
In early July, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral
Mike Mullen visited Israel to discuss the Iranian nuclear
program with his Israeli counterpart, Lieutenant General Gabi
Ashkenazi, and other Israeli officials.
During the talks, Adm. Mullen cautioned that the
Israeli attack on the USS
Liberty in 1967 is
the type of incident that should be 'avoided in any future
military actions' in the Middle East, the Jerusalem Post
The USS Liberty, a $40m state-of-the-art surveillance ship, was
'inadvertently' attacked by Israeli fighter jets and torpedo
boats in international waters north of the northern Sinai
The attack, which lasted at least
40 minutes, claimed the lives of 34 American soldiers and
wounded at least 170 crewmembers.
Liberty was attacked by Israel in 1967.
Although there are many conspiracy theories as to why Israel
committed such a 'mistake' against its closest ally, former US
seamen who served on Liberty claim authorities are guilty of a
American Free Press quoted Adm. Mullen as saying that it
is very 'important' at this time that 'history not repeat
itself', referring to increasing speculation that Israel might
stage another such scenario to push the US into a war with Iran.
Israel, the sole possessor of a nuclear arsenal in the Middle
East, accuses Iran, a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty
(NPT), of pursuing a nuclear weapons program and threatens to
take military action against the country should Tehran continue
While Washington echelons are said to agree with the views of
Tel Aviv on Tehran, the release of a Dec. 3 National
Intelligence Estimate (NIE) has rapidly weakened the prospects
of the US participating in an attack on Iran.
This is while, according to US and Israeli intelligence
services, an Israeli strike would only 'cripple' the Iranian
nuclear drive and not destroy it.
Israel is reportedly lobbying the Bush administration to launch
a joint attack on Iran before President George W. Bush leaves
office in January 2009.
In an Aug. 2 interview with the USS Liberty radio show,
former army intelligence officer and CIA analyst Ray McGovern
claimed Israel is planning a scenario similar to that of the 67
"It is obviously something bigger. The name of the game is to
'decapitate the Iranian nuclear program' whether it is aimed at
a weapon or not," said McGovern.
The war threats and speculation come despite the UN nuclear
watchdog declaring that Iran is enriching uranium to 3 percent,
a rate consistent with electricity generation.
The most recent International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report
conceded that there is no link between the use of nuclear
material and the 'alleged studies' of weaponization attributed
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