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Israeli sub went through the Suez Canal 7, July 2009

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Egypt, Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.
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Here’s the best analysis that I’ve seen so far on the intriguing incident of one of Israel’s new Dolphin submarines going through the Suez Canal in Egypt. Here’s the crux:

The reason they were never sent through the canal before this, at least according to the conventional wisdom in defense circles, was that Israel did not want Egyptian or other observers getting a good look at the exterior of one of their most modern subs, the German-built Dolphins. There are rumors they carry Harpoon and perhaps Israeli ship-to-shore missiles that could carry nuclear warheads. And the Suez Canal is narrow and shallow, with three major cities along it full of people of all natonalities, so a sub passing through it is visible to the world.

So, up to now, Israel never sent its Dolphins through the Suez Canal. This time it did, presumably as a signal to Iran. That’s the real story here, not the fact that the sub won’t be based in Eilat: the Gulf of Aqaba is a narrow, easily closed waterway, and not where you’d want to bottle up one of your few state of the art subs, which may be your second-strike capability.

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