Pueblo Surrender

Robert A. Liston, Author M. Evans and Company $18.95 (294p) ISBN 978-0-87131-554-0
Liston argues that the 1968 seizure of the U.S.S. Pueblo was part of a National Security Agency-run operation, in which the ship and its unsuspecting crew were offered as bait. The centerpiece of the plot, according to his scenario, was a rigged code-machine placed aboard the ship for the North Koreans to ``capture'' and use, leading to the breaking of Communist-bloc military codes. Liston, a novelist and jounalist, doesn't claim to have proven his case, but the documentation and material obtained in interviews render his theory shockingly plausible. The book carefully reconstructs the ship's seizure, and the Chinese and Soviet military involvement in its aftermath. Liston's primary focus, however, is directed toward the NSA, which he compares to the Soviet KGB in its ability ``to manipulate the actions of our civilian and military leaders.'' ( Pueblo 's commanding officer, Command Lloyd Bucher, is presented as an honorable dupe.) From the agency's viewpoint, the operation was a brilliant success, maintains the author, helping prevent U.S. defeat in the Tet Offensive, causing the Soviets to abandon a military adventure in Red China and opening the way for a Beijing-Washington rapprochement. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 11/03/1988
Release date: 11/01/1988
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 294 pages - 978-1-59077-326-0
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