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Old 05-03-2021, 09:51 AM
lordroel lordroel is offline
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Default Blocking the Suez, Twilight style

So we all heard several weeks ago the story about the container ship that block the Suez Canal for a while, now i was wondering, what if this happen during the war would A a blocking using one ore 2 ships be effective ore B dropping one ore two small nukes on the canal and last, who would benefit the most of a blocked Suez Canal, the Americans ore the soviets.
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Old 05-03-2021, 11:50 AM
unipus unipus is offline
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Presumably the Soviets would prefer it shut, as their Navy would have limited capability to access it anyway and it's of far more utility in supporting the west.

Of course that assumes a lot about the political picture. Are Egypt and other ME nations very Soviet-friendly at the time, or have they turned their eyes West? How are they going to feel about its destruction?

Regardless, having now seen how long a simple mistake can close it for, I think it's safe to assume that in a global war the continued survival of the Suez could be measured in days at most, and it doesn't take a nuke. Eventually it won't even be remotely feasible to reopen it at all.
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Old 05-03-2021, 12:35 PM
lordroel lordroel is offline
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Originally Posted by unipus View Post
Presumably the Soviets would prefer it shut, as their Navy would have limited capability to access it anyway and it's of far more utility in supporting the west.

Of course that assumes a lot about the political picture. Are Egypt and other ME nations very Soviet-friendly at the time, or have they turned their eyes West? How are they going to feel about its destruction?
Even if Egypt is Soviet friendly, if Egypt refuse to close the Suez Canal for America and their allies, i see the Soviets closing it for them, the hard way (blocking ore nuking) ore maybe a softer way by mining the canal if that is possible.
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Old 05-03-2021, 12:41 PM
unipus unipus is offline
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Nuking it seems unnecessary; all you need to do is sink a ship in it. That can be a ship that's already there or one moved there, perhaps loaded with charges, for that purpose. The St. Nazaire raid comes to mind.
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Old 05-03-2021, 12:50 PM
Olefin Olefin is offline
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Itís in the East Africa Kenya Sourcebook - V2.2 canon - Soviet nuclear strike on Dec 6 1997 on the refineries at Suez block the southern end of the Canal with the wrecks of multiple ships and tankers
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Old 05-03-2021, 12:52 PM
lordroel lordroel is offline
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Itís in the East Africa Kenya Sourcebook - V2.2 canon - Soviet nuclear strike on Dec 6 1997 on the refineries at Suez block the southern end of the Canal with the wrecks of multiple ships and tankers
Thanks Olefin, so the Suez is out of action and will be for a long time i assume.
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Old 05-04-2021, 06:09 PM
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Raellus Raellus is offline
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Who would benefit the most of a blocked Suez Canal, the Americans ore the soviets.
I would have to say the Soviets. A lot of the USSR's international trade took place within the East Bloc (a captive audience, if you will). It had internal lines of communication to Eastern Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, so maritime trade was less important to the USSR than it was to the capitalistic, increasingly globalized western economy. The USSR also had a weaker navy, which wouldn't have been able to secure the Mediterranean and/or Indian Ocean shipping lanes and protect its international shipping anyway. It would surely want to deny access to those same shipping lanes to its enemies.

The US, on the other hand, would rely heavily on the Suez Canal for logistical support of the RDF in Iran. It would be in the Soviet's strategic interest to cut off that support as quickly and completely as possible. Rendering the Suez impassible would go a long way to accomplishing that.

I can't see the Soviets allowing the Suez canal to remain operational for any length of time, for a host of strategic reasons. How could they close it? Perhaps they started with conventional means by sinking a large merchant vessel- a la the Ever Given- in the channel and then mining the entrances at either end (likely using submarines to do so). A Spetznaz team or two with limpet mines and ATGWs could also wreak havoc on ships trying to transit the canal. Perhaps the Soviets held off on nuking the canal, in the hopes that they would be a position to capture it some day. Failing that, I can see the Soviets deploying strategic nuclear weapons to render it impassable. I'm not sure how one would do that with nuclear weapons, but I imagine a large yield ground strike (or several) offset a bit from the channel could conceivably displace a large among of earth, depositing it in the channel, thereby effectively obstructing it. It would also mean crews tasked with clearing the channel would have to deal with radioactivity. There's probably a better way to do it, but that's all this armchair strategist could come up with.

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Last edited by Raellus; 05-04-2021 at 06:49 PM.
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