Arab paranoia and conspiracy theories may be comical, but the Hamas maritime threat is no laughing matter.
By Pesach Benson, United With Israel
Hamas said that a group of its frogmen commandos were chased off the Gaza coast by a “killer Zionist dolphin.” According to the Jerusalem Post, the claim first appeared in Al-Quds, a Hamas-run newspaper.
The reports didn’t specify when the incident occurred or what exactly the frogmen were doing.
The Gaza terror organization also posted a video on Monday saying one of its frogmen commandos was killed by an IDF dolphin during the May, 2021 Gaza conflict.
The U.S. Navy is known for training bottlenose dolphins to locate and mark undersea mines. Bottlenose dolphins have a highly evolved sense of hearing.
By making clicking sounds and listening to the echoes, they can locate prey, avoid predators and navigate obstacles, a skill known as echolocation.
They were first used during the Vietnam War and were also deployed in the Persian Gulf during the First and Second Gulf Wars.
It’s not clear if the Israeli Navy trains dolphins. The U.S. Navy denies rumors that it trains dolphins to kill, saying it’s impossible to train them to be combative.
In 2015, Hamas also said it captured a dolphin it claimed was carrying Israeli spying equipment.
Conspiracy theories about mysterious Zionist animals abound. Birds tagged with Israeli leg bands have sparked rumors and fueled conspiracy theories in Sudan, Turkey and Saudi Arabia. In 2011, Hezbollah killed an endangered Bonelli’s eagle that an Israeli ornithologist tagged to track its movement.
Egyptians often attribute shark attacks in the Red Sea to the Mossad and on several occasions, PA President Mahmoud Abbas has accused Israel of releasing wild boars to damage Palestinian agriculture.
And in 2018, an adviser to Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei claimed that Israel and other nations used lizards and chameleons to spy on nuclear facilities.
Hamas’ Maritime Threat
While Arab paranoia is somewhat comical, the Hamas maritime threat is no laughing matter.
During the 11-day conflict in May 2021, Hamas claimed it had drone submarines carrying explosives and capable of navigating themselves to maritime targets before blowing up. Israel destroyed one shortly after its launch. It’s believed that Iran is assisting Hamas in developing small drone ships and submarines while providing the terror group with military-grade underwater gear.
During the Gaza conflict of 2014, four Hamas frogman infiltrated Israel from the sea about one mile up the coast from the border. They were quickly spotted and killed by a tank shell. Automatic weapons, explosives and grenades were found on their bodies.
With the Israeli Navy enforcing a blockade on Gaza, Hamas frogmen are also reportedly key figures in smuggling Iranian weapons into the Strip.