Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Tonkin Gulf Incident Didn't Happen

Photo: 1st Cav, I-Corps helicopter assault, Vietnam, Dec.1967

The Gulf of Tonkin Incident was the trigger that got the US fully involved in the Vietnam War. According to the official version, two separate attacks were made on two American destroyers, the USS Maddox and the USS Turner Joy on the nights of August 2nd and 4th, 1964 in the Gulf of Tonkin, several miles off the coast of North Vietnam.

The Maddox and Turner Joy reported multiple radar contacts with North Vietnamese P-4 torpedo boats during both reported incidents. Overall, about a dozen N.V. P-4s and some 20+ torpedoes were deployed against the American destroyers. After maneuvering and firing weapons for about two hours on 4 August, the Turner Joy and Maddox disengaged. The aircraft carrier, USS Ticonderoga, launched aircraft and attacked the retreating P-4s, reporting one craft sunk and another heavily damaged. The Maddox reported minor damage from one bullet strike.

The only problem was that nothing actually happened on either night. The attacks on the US warships didn't happen. The truth has been suspected for many years and only now has the National Security Agency (NSA) released the full report that confirms that nearly 100% of the action was fabricated through data misinterpretation, over-eagerness, a desire to please the boss, wishful thinking, and a world-class leap to conclusions.

The NSA is charged with much of the codebreaking and eavesdropping work of the US surveillance agencies. The report, "Spartans in Darkness: American SIGINT and the Indochina War, 1945-1975", written by Robert J. Hanyok details the NSA's signals intelligence from the first cable intercept in 1945 between Ho Chi Minh and Joseph Stalin to the final evacuation of US spies from Saigon.

The Spartan report was released after a "mandatory declassification" request, according to a statement by the Federation of American Scientists (FAS). Hanyok "demonstrates that not only is it not true, as (then US) secretary of defense Robert McNamara told Congress, that the evidence of an attack was 'unimpeachable,' but that to the contrary, a review of the classified signals intelligence proves that 'no attack happened that night,' " the FAS said.

As with all wars, the other side is also guilty of subversion and fakery. Spartan reveals that the North Vietnamese penetrated US communications systems and were able to monitor US comm-traffic from within the system. The communist intel guys were able to tap into Allied radio networks and more than a few times called in "Allied artillery or air strikes on American units." Steven Aftergood, FAS director of the project on government secrecy said, "That's something I have never heard before."

Yahoo News/AFP
Federation of American Scientists -

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

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