Under extensive guard, the Israeli freighter "Etrog" took on a cargo of 24 MI09 self-propelled Howitzers at the port of Cleveland, Ohio, yesterday (July 8).
SV Ship by dock
SV Israeli flag on mast
SV Howitzers by dock
LV Howitzers being loaded on to ship (5 shots)
SV Coastguard guarding ship
LV Man on ship with binoculars
GV Howitzers being loaded onto ship (3 shots)
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Background: Under extensive guard, the Israeli freighter "Etrog" took on a cargo of 24 MI09 self-propelled Howitzers at the port of Cleveland, Ohio, yesterday (July 8).
In Washington, a Pentagon spokesman said the shipment was being made under an agreement made last year for United States Military sales to Israel, an agreement made last year, but he declined to say where the Howitzers were being taken.
The howitzers, which fire 155 millimetre shells and carry 50-calibre machine guns in combat, were built at the Cleveland Army automotive tank plant by a subsidiary of General Motors. They were reportedly delivered to a warehouse at the lakefront dock on Monday (July 6).
America's military sales to Israel are usually kept under tight security, but despite coast guard patrols around the "Etrog", cameramen and reporters were allowed to watch the loading from a distance.
The shipment of the 25-ton vehicles, which travel at a top speed of 35 miles (approx 56 kms) an hour with a cruising range of 220 miles (approx. 350 kms) will be one of the last as production of the M109 ended last month.