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    Vietnam War: An Important Piece of Historical Evidence Regarding the "Gulf of Tonkin" Incident. On August 2, 1964, the American Navy's destroyer U.S.S. Maddox was attacked by the North Vietnamese Navy while gathering intelligence off the North Vietnamese Coast. Allegedly a second attack took place on the 4th, on the Maddox as well as an accompanying destroyer, the U.S.S. Turner Joy. These attacks prompted retaliatory strikes against North Vietnam from the aircraft carriers, Ticonderoga and Constellation, and it was in this heated atmosphere that Congress passed on August 7, the "Tonkin Gulf Resolution", which authorized the President to use military force as he saw fit against the Vietnamese Communists. This formed the basis for the dramatic escalation of American involvement in the Vietnam War.

    Offered here is the original communication log which recorded 3 ½ hours of ship to shore radio communication describing the live action as it occurred, sent to the Naval Communication Station in the Philippines from the two U.S. Naval vessels. After recording what appears to be prolonged, fierce action ("torpedo attack...torps fired...missed...I am planning to ram one of them now...under attack again another torpedo fired at us...just fired 4 depth casualties to us yet lack of illumination a problem...etc"), the log bizarrely concludes: "On close review of action makes many reported contacts and torpedoes fired appear doubtful. Freak weather effects on radar and over eager sonar men may have accounted for many reports." The report is signed by D.A. Morrison, one of the radiomen on duty, and is clearly the original copy. A crucial piece of evidence that may indicate that an over-reaction formed part of the basis for the "Tonkin Gulf Resolution" escalation of the war.

    One page, both sides, 8" x 13", dated August 4, 1964. Fine condition with creases from folding into eighths. A unique piece of American history.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2006
    12th-13th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 6
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 551

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