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SA submarine outwits Nato force
Louis Oelofse | Atlantic Ocean
04 September 2007 06:16
A lone South African submarine left some Nato commanders with red faces on Tuesday as it "sank" all the ships of the Nato Maritime Group engaged in exercises with the South African Navy off the Cape coast.
The S101 -- or the SAS Manthatisi -- not only evaded detection by a joint Nato and South African Navy search party consisting of several ships combing the search area with radar and sonar, it also "sank" all the ships taking part in the fleet.
At several times during the exercise -- which lasted throughout Monday night and Tuesday morning -- a red square lit up the screens where the surface ships thought the submarine was. But it remained elusive.
This gave Defence Minister Mosiuoa Lekota something to brag about when he landed on the SAS Amatola on Tuesday to speak to the media
"To be able to frustrate detection by Nato nations is no mean achievement; it speaks of the excellence of the equipment we acquired for this purpose," Lekota said.
And while this left one of the world's strongest military alliances frustrated, it was also a sign that the group had a capable partner in Africa, Lekota said.