INT: You were saying.

JS: I was saying that this decision that was made on Sunday morning in Washington to let 'em off the hook in order to (inaudible) was not a popular one with lots of people (inaudible) Maxwell Taylor, our new Ambassador in Saigon, said, we missed our chance. Here we are trying to set this Vietnamese War up to where we had an opportunity to justifiably use force against theair power. A Premier (inaudible) his name was, who was the premier of South Vietnam, he was on the horn and furthermore, Johnson had William Colby (ina) yeah, William Bundy, since May trying to construct a document that would be used as a resolution of Congress should we have an opportunity to exercise power over such a raid as we had just experienced. So all the people in that part of the State Department, so I have the idea that L. B. Johnson had to be in a funk, because he thought he'd done a good thing and he'd been hammered, OK, that I think is the only way to explain some future events. I was up there late in the afternoon of Tuesday, the other action L. B. Johnson had taken besides sending this message, was to continue the... he declared that we will continue the Desoto patrol, but he put a second ship in with 'em and this ship was newer than the Maddox and particularly had a modern sound gear in it. It was the Turner Joy was its name and so now where we used to have one destroyer out there, we had two. And we were curious about how they were going to react after this raid and we would shadow the ships, that's what we'd do and I left about sunset and nothing was going on. They were heading out to the middle of the bay - the Gulf - that's another thing that became kind of standard practice, we didn't hurry the destroyers around the beach any more, when it got dark, we'd take 'em out thirty or forty miles out in the middle of the Tonkin Gulf. And all that was going on and there was a second thing that was really kind of different, it was the weather was making out. There were low clouds, distant lightening, strange things to see at sea and I landed back at the Taiko (unintelligible), I think everybody was having supper when I landed and I walked up the deck and I noticed the lightening at sea, very strange. And the humidity was building. I went up and I wasn't scheduled to fly any more, but after I ate a meal in my flight gear, I went down to the ready room where we had - and now it's dark - we had two airplanes on the catapults with pilots in them and they were on five minute alert. Now this had been standard for years out there, the summer was unusual, but this was routine and there were two others in the ready room that were going up and relieve those pilots, seldom did those things ever get (unintelligible), but it was (unintelligible). I noticed that the ranks... that the experience level of both teams was not what I would have preferred as commanding officer, they were capable junior pilots, but we needed a little more maturity than those, but I didn't want to make a fuss, I just said to myself, I'll talk to the ops boss about this tomorrow, because (unintelligible) pilots, but I think it was about five of eight I heard planes turning up on the flight deck. It wasn't mine, they were prop planes, now that that attack had taken place on Sunday, on this night and I think most nights, we also had others on condition and we had two guys in A4s back of the catapults and then we had two A1s, propeller driven Korean War vintage planes that carry a lot of bombs (unintelligible) and those two A... these I thought were first engine shacks, which the mechanics would do at night up there, but about six o three I think it was... or eight o three, I heard one of them making a free deck launch off the angle. So we're launching airplanes and so I was, what the hell's going on? And right then the door opened and the CIC officer, he's kind of the operations department king pin with all the facts of what's going on, he said, are you guys ready to

INT: (Inaudible)

JS: Never saw anything but the two destroyers and their gun fire. And occasionally the airplanes that I knew where they were... I'd see Wes once in a while and these ADs got out there about the time they opened gun fire. And they were down and they would have lights on and I could see them, but there was nothing in the water. There were no wakes... Huh?

INT: (Inaudible)

JS: I'm saying this condition existed throughout the time I was there, which was about an hour and thirty five minutes at that altitude and hoping I could find something. I went out there to exercise my skills and I couldn't and there was... people would say, my voice call was Batter Up 101, the boats would say, Batter Up 101, I've got a target at zero nine zero, ten miles I'm going to open up. I said, Roger, I'll watch your fire and then I'll spray the area after you lift your barrage and I'd go down there and there was nothing. I was out there, I wasn't waiting for orders, I took it upon myself to get out there where they thought the boat was and try to kill it if they didn't. But it was fruitless and as time went on, one guy said, I look back on it, I think it was the Joy said, I think I got a PT boat trailing me. I said, I have you in sight, I'll fly up from behind and I'll take care of him if I see him. And there was nothing there. I decided I'd expend the Zoonies, because they were too good any way and I had, you know, I'm flying this thing with the armor panel down here and I pulled the trigger and grrr, what came off but the two... I missed it by one notch, my two side winders came off. Now they seek a heat source and I was right behind this destroyer with a hot stack and I said, boy if this thing goes (unintelligible) it might, this is going to be the biggest mix up we've ever had, but then it went black and thank God those things went in the water. And then I looked down and I said, boy you're about to fly in the water and I said, I'll get salt spray on my wind shield, I mean, I was that low. And I said, watch out, you're gonna get in trouble. The carrier Constellation was in port in Hong Kong when up north of us, when we had the activity of Sunday and on the basis of that Sunday first event, they were ordered back to sea to come down and join the Taikon (unintelligible). They were coming over the horizon, that dark night, and they launched airplanes at ten o'clock our time, which meant they got to where I was about ten thirty and I knew these pilots, because when we'd been flying in Laos, we were flying of the Taikon roller, I knew their voices and one was Al Alvarez, who was shot down the fifth. And he said, what's going on? I said, we're in a real mix up down here and I've got planes above two thousand, I'm below and we got two ADs down here too and I said, there... don't believe everything you hear on the radio, because people are very excited and they're saying things... and they're seeing things, people were seeing... One fellow said there was a search light plane on him, the captain of a ship (unintelligible) at the time. He took it... he started claiming boats sunk. He would find a target, the target he would shoot, the target would disappear and he would take credit for sinking a boat. Now listen, because he had these defused shells that were influenced, in other words if they came near something they would explode, but think, if they hit a PT boat, there would have to be fire, there wouldn't be enough fragments to damage, it wouldn't just disappear, there'd have to be a fire, there'd have to be fireworks and sparks. So anyway, I had never seen such a thing. I was down to Bengo and I said good-bye to everybody and I left there about twenty minutes of eleven and I got back to the ship with barely enough fuel to get aboard, I played it that way. I remember the captain said, Jim, we were talking first names, he said, I'm about to run on the rocks, he was going out East and not the Seychelles but the Parachelles (unintelligible) and he said, and I'm going to give you one pass and if you don't catch it, I'm going to launch a tanker and you're going to have to come around again. I didn't want to do that, but I caught the wire forward and I went down the ready room, it was dark, it was late, everybody else had gone to bed it seemed, and I went in there and here were these guys sitti