Saturday, October 8, 2016

Battle of Latakia

The Battle of Latakia occurred on the night of October 6, 1973, the first day of the Yom Kippur War. The naval engagement takes it s name from Syria’s chief seaport on the Mediterranean Sea. It was fought between Israel and Syrian missile boats, the first battle between missile-firing ships in naval history.

Syrian had a reasonably strong navy, including several missile boats. These were considered the greatest danger to opposing forces.

The Egyptian and Syrian attack against Israel on October 6, 1973, caught Israel forces by surprise. Israel Navy missile boats (Saar and Reshef-class missile boats) put to sea that very evening to carry out a long-planned attack against units of the Syrian Navy.

Syrian missile boats engaged the attackers, in the first naval battle in history between missile-firing-ships, the Israelis defeated the incoming Syrian fire-and-forget Styx missiles.

The Israelis used jamming systems to confuse the Syrian’s Styx missiles and fired chaff (airborne debris) designed to set the missiles off prematurely (the missiles would hit the chaff instead of the Israel shisp and would blow up while still a safe distance away).

Israelis using their radar-guided Gabriel ship-to-ship missiles to destroy one Osa and two Komar class missile boats and a minesweeper. No Israel vessels were lost. The Syrian Navy then remained in port for the rest of the war.
Battle of Latakia
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