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Israel Gets Two More German Submarines.

By AFP

Israel has taken delivery of two German Dolphin-class submarines ordered fo= ur years ago, a military spokesman said on Tuesday. The submarines, called = U212s, can launch cruise missiles carrying nuclear warheads, although when = it confirmed the sale in 2006 the German government said the two vessels we= re not equipped to carry nuclear weapons.

Including the two new ones, Israel has five German submarines -- the most e= xpensive weapon platforms in Israel's arsenal. Germany, which believes it h= as a historic responsibility to help Israel because of the mass murder of J= ews in World War II, donated the first two submarines after the 1991 Gulf W= ar. It split the cost of the third with the Jewish state.

According to Jane's Defense Weekly, the U212s are designed for a crew of 35= , have a range of 4,500 kilometers (2,810 miles) and can launch cruise miss= iles carrying nuclear warheads.

Israeli media have written that the Dolphin submarine could be key in any a= ttack on arch-foe Iran's controversial nuclear sites. An Israeli submarine = recently used the Suez Canal for the first time in June, escorted by Egypti= an navy vessels, in what Israeli media said was intended as a message to Ir= an.

Widely considered the Middle East's sole if undeclared nuclear power, Israe= l suspects Iran of trying to develop atomic weapons under the guise of a ci= vilian nuclear program, a charge Tehran denies.

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Publication:Israel Faxx
Date:Sep 30, 2009
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