USS Liberty Makes History at American Legion Convention

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 21, 2017 Contact: Bryce Lockwood
USS Liberty Veterans Association
Phone: 417-848-3858
Email: [email protected] Contact: Ernie Gallo
USS Liberty Veterans Association
Phone: 386-446-4855
Attack Investigation Resolution Reaches Historic Milestone In a historic move, the American Legion national convention in Reno, Nevada seems poised to pass a resolution calling for the first full investigation of Israel’s 1967 attack on the USS Liberty. The Liberty was a U.S. Navy electronics ship operating in international waters in the eastern Mediterranean when it was attacked by Israeli forces, killing 34 and injuring at least 174. The ship’s commander received the Congressional Medal of Honor and the crew is one of the most decorated for a single engagement in U.S. Navy history. The resolution has made it past two hurdles, the Foreign Relations Subcommittee and the National Security Committee, and will now go to a full floor vote later this week, where attendees normally approve resolutions. The resolution was introduced in the Foreign Relations Subcommittee with the recommendation of “Rejection” by national Legion officials. An Iowa delegate, however, moved to approve it and was seconded. A show of hands was requested and the vote was 27-11 for approval. In the full National Security Committee meeting, a motion was made and seconded for approval. The voice vote exhibited overwhelming support. A motion was made to withdraw the resolution, but was ruled out of order. A similar resolution adopted in 1967 was rescinded without “individual review” at the national convention in 1984. In the intervening years the Liberty survivors have been prohibited from having a booth at the convention and other similar resolutions have been quashed. For instance in 2012, the Department of Michigan adopted a resolution calling for an investigation only to have it killed in committee at the national convention that year. Legionnaires were thus denied the opportunity to debate and vote on the issue. By contrast, in 2013, the Veterans of Foreign Wars adopted a resolution at their national convention calling for the attack to be investigated. The claim is sometimes incorrectly made that the attack has already been investigated. However, a one-week-long Naval inquiry was only tasked with investigating crew performance during the attack, and Congress has never investigated the attack as reported in the July 1997 issue of The American Legion Magazine. (For more information go to or see the resolution documents at or ###