James Bamford: Nearly as bizarre as the attack itself was
the reaction of the American government to the incident.
A foreign nation had butchered American servicemen,
sending thirty-four to their graves... A virtually
unarmed American naval ship in international waters was
shot at, strafed with rockets, torpedoed, set on
fire...then left to sink as crazed gunners shot up the
life rafts. The foreign nation then says, sorry about
that, and offers an explanation so outrageous that it is
insulting, and the American government accepts it, sweeps
the whole affair under a rug, then classifies as top
secret nearly all details concerning it.