Gaza Pier Operations Suspended Indefinitely After It Breaks Apart By Heavy Seas

The US-constructed pier off Gaza is officially done – for the time being at least. It is out of commission indefinitely after a series of problems and setbacks, the latest being inclement weather and heavy seas which have literally broken it apart.

The damage from heavy seas has been enough to suspend its operations indefinitely, bringing to an end the short-lived American-led effort to establish a maritime humanitarian aid corridor to reach Gazans.

The pier was “damaged and sections of the pier need rebuilding and repairing,” Pentagon deputy press secretary Sabrina Singh confirmed Tuesday. The vital causeway portion was completely broken off and will have to be transferred and repaired at the Israeli port of Ashdod.

“The pier will be removed from its location on the Gaza coast over the next 48 hours and taken to the Israeli port of Ashdod,” Singh explained, indicating further that the repairs will take at least a week. Aid trucks were only able to roll off of it with maritime-delivered aid over a period of a handful of days before it broke.

This comes a few days after the last disaster involving a section of the pier having broken off and drifting ashore an Israeli beach, which also saw at least two US naval support vessels get beached as well in a somewhat embarrassing moment for the costly project.

As of Tuesday, the Pentagon said the vessels were still stranded. “I believe most of our soldiers were able to remain on the vessels and still are currently on them,” Singh said during the press briefing. “And … within the next 24 or 48 hours, the Israeli Navy will be helping push those vessels back and hopefully they’ll be fully operational by then.”

CNN has described that the pier can only safely sustain operations in waves that don’t go over three feet and so long as winds are less than 15 miles per hour. In essence conditions have to be ideal for aid to move from the sea to land.

Because of this, even if the pier is repaired within a week, it might be weeks more before an attempt can be made to move it back to its docking position. CNN writes that “Heavier sea conditions delayed the deployment of the pier for several weeks, as the system sat docked in the Israeli port of Ashdod waiting for favorable conditions.”

This is a $350 million project which has already long been beset by controversy. Critics have pointed out the grim irony and contradictions which abound in that the Biden administration has very publicly criticized the way that Israel’s military is waging war in Gaza (and especially the high civilian death toll) while simultaneously Washington is funding the same war effort, ultimately to the tune of billions.


Zero Hedge

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