Oct 8, 2010

Future of the Israeli Navy

or live beyond their financial means ...


273 km (170 mi), + a part of the Sea of Galilée lake (166 square kilometers (64 sq mi)) + a part of the Dead Sea (810 km2 (310 sq mi))

Personnal Strenght (max): 11 800+

Regular sailors: +/- 5500; Conscript: +/- 2500; Naval Commandos: +/- 300; Coast Guards : +/- 50 ; Reserve/Mobilisation: +/- 3500.

3 Corvettes (up to 5 by 2016)

Up to 2 german corvettes
The Israeli Navy were currently under final negociation with Germany for the purchase of 2 newer missiles corvettes, maybe for a 1st deliverie around 2015 ?. The 2 main possible designs were:
- a improved MEKO A-200 (with a mini Aegis)
- or the more advanced MEKO CSL ?
(in any case, the final design retained will be probably carried a small AAW weapons systems, likely a Israeli indigenous radar).

3 Eilat class (Sa’ar 5)

(Eilat, Lahav, Hanit). 1200 tons, 85 meters. Highly advanced warships for their times (early 1990’s), but suffered from serious topweight problems. Commissioned by 1994/1995, with probable 30+ year service life expected, to be retired by late 2020’s.

10 Fast Missiles attack crafts (something new from something old)

8 Hetz (sa’ar 4,5)
The 2 first ships (Romach, Keshet) commissioned by 1981/1982, a third ship (Hetz) commissioned by 1991, a another group of 3 ships (Kidon, Tarshish, Taffo) delivered by 1994/1998 and a last group of 2 ships (Herev, Sufa) commissioned by 2002/2003. +/- 480 tons, 61 meters very effective ships, but some of these ships suffered from topweight problems. To be progressively retired through mid 2010’s/mid 2030’s.

2 Reshef (Sa’ar 4)
(Nitzachon, Atzmaut). 450 tons, 58 meters. Commissioned by 1978/1979, now ageing unit, likely to be retired trough 2010’s.

In fact, it become clear that all these medium fast missiles attack crafts were well designed for coastal ops again "medium-end" threats (small/medium "arabs navy"...).

+/- 30 Mid shore Patrol boats (THE REAL WORKHORSE OF THE ISRAELI FLEET !!!)
+/- 15 Dabur class
40+ tons, 19+ meters. 34 originally built by 1973/1977, now around 15 active. Likely to be retired through 2010’s. and replaced by the newer Shaldag/Dvora Mk III serie’s.

Up to 12 Super Dvora Mk III class

12 Ordered, under deliveries.

4 Super Dvora Mk II class
60 tons, 25 meters, Commissioned by 1996. To be retired trough 2020’s.

+/- 9 Dvora Mk I class
45 tons, 21 meters, 9 originally built by 1988, now 9 active. To be retired by early 2020’s.

5 Shaldag Mk II class
24+ meters, 5 ordered.

2 Nashshol class
(Stingray Interceptor 2000 design), 3 originally built by 1997/1998, 2 still active.

4 Tzir’
Uncertain data.

In fact, it become clear that all these small crafts were well designed for coastal ops again "low-end" threats (terrorist & so).

Inshore Patrol boats
Likely some RHIB for special forces, ect…

Up to 5 Submarines
3 Dolphin class
(Dolphin, Livyathan, Tekumah). German design (derived from type 212). Well know to be each able to carry 3 or 4 nuclear capable cruise-missiles. Commissioned by 1999/2000. With probable +/- 30 year of service, to be retired by late 2020’s.

2 Improved Dolphin
(not yet named). Currently under construction in german shipyards, to be commissioned around late 2010/early 2012.

Up to 4 furthers SSK ?
Currently, Germany has reconsidered providing funding for a sixth submarine for the Israeli navy. (due to the financial situation). Few israeli officials have repeatedly announced that the Israeli Navy had a future requirement of up to 9 submarines !. But this figure (probably announced to impress Iran…) seems too large & unrealistic for the Israeli finance (and real ops needs).

Unmanned crafts
Rafael Protector USV
The Israeli is well known to be one of the first navy of the world to operate USV craft.

2 Amphibious
1 Ashdod (LCT)
1 LCM (US type)

Auxiliary Ships
3 Cargo ships
(Keshet, Nir, Nahariya). Two of these has ex german type T45 auxiliary ships.

1 Tug
a 78 tons tugs.

Israeli Coast Guards (+/- 50)

4 Small patrol crafts

Naval Aviation
+/- 2 Aircrafts: 2 C-130
+/- 26 Helico:
(ASW use): 7 AS-565SA Panther, 2 SA-366 G Dauphin.
(SAR use): 17 Bel 212.

In resume:
The Israeli navy, to counter the Hezbollah/Syrian/Iranian threats, is trying to master at all costs the high seas (submarines, AAW corvettes). But it is very clear that these very expensive vessels can be paid ONLY by the financial US/German aid…. The REAL solution (and future) depends very probably from naval intelligence/cyber-wars (as usual) and smaller units.

Next fleet review/edito :
Future of the Mexican Navy or (if news events…) Future of the Royal Navy (chapter 2: THE DAY AFTER).

PS: I'm working on a mega/giga review of the Russian fleet, but this review (likely in 2 very big parts) is currently on standby (it can happen this November?).

As usual, It may be that in my opinion, I forgot programs ? (or made few mistakes ?, especially in smaller crafts !), then said it ! Feel free to comment and give your opinion !


  1. I was thinking the other day that it's nice to have consistency within one's unit types, but since the Greeks are trying to find a nice home for 4 type 214s AND the Israelis would like at least 2 more Dolphin-like Subs, why not make these ends 'meet' and agree to provide some of these units to the INS. It will be difficult to find that many buyers for these units and it would nicely advance the Israeli timeline.

    The main issues from the Israeli side is that these units would need to be the lack of the larger torpedo tubes for Israeli Cruise missiles...and that the Hellenic shipyards are now owned by Abu Dhabi MAR.

  2. Hi CBD,
    Interesting option (and political issue)...

  3. The Australian submarine community seems to be expressing some interest in those four Greek subs. Some senior submariners are advocating the scrapping of some the Collins class boats and shopping for available European boats (which I assume means those four Greek boats).

  4. It's difficult to admire a 'hoodlum' nations military when murdering civilians is about the extent of Jewish 'war training.'

    IAFjets have naver fought another fighter, Merkava tanks that have never fought another tank - so what pride can a military feel murdering innocent civilians with legal (flechette shells) or 'illegal' (white phosphorus, DIME (tungsten based), MK-77 napalm and those nasty cluster bombs like the Jews dropped on the civilians of Lebanon in 2006.

    Die! Die! Die Israel and let's see what dead radioactive contaminated Jewish racist meat smells like rotting in the desert.

    The Colonel, USAF (Ret'd)
    162nd Fighter Intercepter Sqd.
    David-Monthan AFB, Arizona.
    F-104C, F-15E, F-16 qualified
    Call name: 'CowBoy'
    22 MIG's, 9 air medals
    6233 hrs logged

  5. @ anonymous

    Your comment, I think, goes beyond the naval field (ie. too hotly political)

    Of course that Israeli forces kill innocent people sometimes
    But on the other side, and it is not easy to live in a city threatened by rockets or die by taking a bus blasted by a kamikaze ...

    the two sides have the right ... to live in peace ...

    Return to the naval side please...

  6. ^ ah ok you probably had a decent argument there until that last sentence ruined all your credibility there mate.

    anywho that aside how much are the Greeks looking to sell their subs for?

  7. Anonymous,
    I would suggest you keep your vile rabid racist and disgusting comments off this website. I'm sure there are other sites on which your hatred of Israel would be welcomed, please stick to them.
    All sides in the middle east dispute are guilty of comitting shamefull acts but we don't want this site turning into a voice for political hatred.

  8. Michael, please do not assume that "all sides" are the same, and there are no moral or ethical differences between Israel on the one hand, and Hamas, Hezbullah or the PLO. You don't know much about the middle east and Israel if you think that there is moral equivalency all-round. Just let me know when next you here of deliberate, intending military Israel targeting of Arab civilians, as aim and policy.

    Also, we now have 5 subs at sea, and number six on on scedule for hand-over. Our navy is looking at up to four frigates, Incheon-class from south Korea. No final public decision announced that I know of.

  9. I am a different "anonymous", and thought I'd point out that those "22 Migs" he mentions in his "resume" are also a lie. Either that or the U.S. is trying to keep his "ace" ability secret and someone else is the Guiness World Record Holder with 18 jet aircraft kills. P.S. The record holder is an Israeli pilot, so through your racist rant, you accidently paid homage to a REAL hero.