“What I Saw That Day” by Phillip F. Tourney – Liberty Publications, PO Box 27, Careywood, ID 83809 – ISBN# 978-1-4507-1554-6 – pp 222
The subtitle of this book is, “…Israel’s June 8th, 1967 Holocaust of U.S. Servicemen Aboard the USS LIBERTY and Its Aftermath.” The title sets the tone of this book and is prologue to the unrelenting condemnation of both Israel’s and the Unites States Government’s complicity in, and conspiracy to cover up, the attack on USS LIBERTY (AGTR-5).
The author was a General Service crewman on the Liberty and was not part of the Naval Security Group Detachment onboard. His job as deck hand and damage control provides a unique perspective on the attack and the damage inflicted on the ship and its crew. He also describes, in minute detail, the work of shoring up the horrendous damage in order to keep the ship seaworthy. Additionally, he describes in gory detail, the injuries and deaths of his fellow shipmates and the horrible task of cleaning up the mess.
This book offers valuable insight into the attack and the aftermath and allows the reader to see and understand “What I Saw That Day” but the greater portion of the book deals with conspiracy, in all its many forms. And there are many forms! Charged with conspiracy are the governments of Israel and the United States, two Presidents of the United States are named; the Navy, the Naval Security Group, the media, friends, family, shipmates, and even some members of the Liberty Veterans Association (LVA) all stand accused.
This is not an easy read for it was written by an angry man who claims to have been abused, accused, and badly used in his 44-year search for justice. However, for those of us who have a continuing interest in the story of USS LIBERTY, it will be a welcome addition to the library.
Phil’s w ife Lisa had emailed some comments: (Email:)
from USS Liberty Newsletter #429 (4/15/11) by John Gidusko