WASHINGTON (Jun. 28)
The two combat craft that will represent Israel’s Navy at the Bicentennial Maritime Review in New York harbor on July 4 are the missile-boats Yaffo and Tarshish, the Israeli Embassy announced today. The vessels, presently enroute to New York, were designed and built in Israel and are of the “Reshef” class, armed with six Israel-made “Gabriel” surface-to-surface missiles, two 76 mm, and two 20 mm. guns. They also carry depth charges. They will be guests of the U.S. Navy.
The Yaffo was launched in April, 1975 and the Tarshish in October, 1974, the Embassy said. They are modeled after the Saar IV “Cherbourg” class missile boats built for Israel in France in the late 1960s. They are powered by four Maybach diesel engines, of 2,670 i.h.p., each which will provide a sea speed of 32 knots, 36.8 land miles per hour.
According to an Embassy release, ships of this class have made the passage from Haifa to Sharm el-Sheikh via Gibraltar and the Cape of Good Hope–a distance of about 12,500 nautical miles. Some of them saw service in the Yom Kippur War.
The Yaffo and Tarshish will be in New York July 4-6 and will remain in American waters for special events in New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, the Embassy said. Uri Ben Ari, Consul General of Israel in New York and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations announced today that they will hold a special reception to honor the Israeli naval participants in the Bicentennial event at the Essex House July 6. The two vessels were dispatched from Haifa last week.