Israel Subs Ready To Strike In Iran Nuclear Showdown

By Yossi Melman

On Sunday Admiral Avraham Botzer, a former commander of the Israeli navy, died at age 83 after a long illness. Botzer was a commander of the Navy after the Israeli victory in June 1967 in the Six Day War. On his watch, Israeli intelligence, in a joint operation with the Navy, smuggled missile boats out from a French port–boats France had refused to supply to Israel though Israel had paid for them. Based on the stolen boats, Israeli designed its homemade missile boats which played a major role in the October 1973 Yom Kippur War.

iran nuclear showdown, nuclear proliferation, israel spy, spies against armageddonAfter Botzer retired, he became a chief proponent and advocate of turning the small Israeli Navy into a strategic force. He called upon the Ministry of Defense to build a new and modern submarine fleet. And indeed, since 1991 Israel has acquired  four Dolphin-class submarines built in the German shipyards at Kiel. Two more are under construction in the German shipyards.

The submarines are custom-made to accommodate Israeli special needs. They include the capacity to launch Israeli-made Popeye missiles from the torpedo launching holes. The German government has financed 70 percent of the cost which is estimated for all the six vehicles at $3 billion. The missiles can carry nuclear warheads.

The submarines will take part in the future in any Israeli military strike against Iran if it happens. They also enable Israel to have a second nuclear strike capability. The strengthening and upgrading the of the Israeli Navy is an indication that Israel prepares itself for a rainy day. If Iran’s nuclear ambitions are not stopped and they acquire nuclear weapons, the cold war model of “balance of terror” may prevail in the tense relations between Israel and Iran.

Being a staunch believer in the need for Israel to be military self sufficient and strong did not prevent Admiral Botzer from being an active member of the “Council for Peace and Security,” an organization of former intelligence and military chiefs who advocate  peace and reconciliation with the Palestinians—and are ready to concede the occupied West Bank and the Golan Heights in return for comprehensive peace treaties with Palestine and  Syria.

June 6, 2012

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