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Item Number
Record Number
Interview with Frederick Frick
Jeff Gardner
Interview Date
08 January 1996
Captain Frederick Frick Collection
Media Type
Oral History
01:58:57 hr/min/sec
(USN) Captain Frick was present aboard the USS Maddox during the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin incident. He served as a Lieutenant, Junior Grade and acted as Division Operations Officer. His duty station put Frick on the bridge, in CIC (Command Information Center) and the radio room. In his lengthy interview, Frick recounts his experience during the North Vietnamese attack on 2 August and the controversial events of 4 August in the Gulf of Tonkin. Frick discusses the role of the ships involved in the incident, orders received by the Maddox and speculates on the significance of the incident. The interview also involves the consequences of 34A ops (operations by the South Vietnamese Navy and Marines against North Vietnamese shore defenses, logistically supported by the US) and rebuts the accounts of others that claim the events of 4 August did not include an attack by the North Vietnamese Navy. Finally, Frick describes the effects the Tonkin incident had on his commanding officer's career and comments on the "Rules of Engagement."
Interview with Frederick Frick,  08 January 1996, Captain Frederick Frick Collection, The Vietnam Center and Archive, Texas Tech University. Accessed 28 Nov. 2015. <>.
Pub. Credit Line
OH0055, Captain Frederick Frick Collection, The Vietnam Center and Archive, Texas Tech University
Added: 13 Dec 2001[Updated: 11 Feb 2008]

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