Dolphin submarine 311.
(photo credit: reuters)
Germany will underwrite a third of the cost of Israel’s sixth Dolphin-class
submarine, Der Spiegel reported overnight Sunday.
According to the
report, Germany will contribute 135 million euros to the deal, which will
provide Israel with an impressive boost to its strategic submarine fleet,
reported to be capable of firing cruise missiles with nuclear
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German Defense Minister Tomas de Maiziere met in Israel last
week with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak and
discussed details of the deal. Der Spiegel said that the subsidy was being
offered to Israel as part of reparations for the Holocaust.
Talks on the
deal for the sub stalled last year after the Germans declined to underwrite it,
as they had done with previous such purchases. The vessel will cost between
$500m. and $700m. The submarines are considered Israel’s most sophisticated and
Israel already has three Dolphin- class subs; another
two are under construction in Germany with expected delivery dates of 2012 and
Germany donated Israel’s first two submarines after the First Gulf
War and, according to the German press, split the cost of the third with
The new submarines – called the U212 – will be fitted with a new
German technology in which the propulsion system allows for silent cruising and
longer stays underwater.