In reference to the letters of Bernard L. Winter, Elmer Mevert and Robert E. Ford, as well as to all others who regard an informant a "rat" and, generally, a despicable person, they should be pleased with the proliferation of this view.
As a police detective, I am familiar with many incidents in which citizens of equally notable stature stood by and saw nothing, did nothing, and said nothing as robberies, assaults and murders took place in front of them. They stood tall as they proclaimed, "I'm not a rat!"
Then there are the other notable anti-rats who stood by or participated in the theft of millions of dollars from our military supply system as they told the few honest auditors what would happen to them if they "ratted."
Then one wonders how many of their kind might have alerted authorities to the Navy espionage group, but would rather see their country sold out than be called a "rat."