Is Pakistan arming Israel against Hamas?

Rashmi Talwar

AMRITSAR 18TH November 2023—            

Is Pakistan supplying weapons to Israel even as pro-Palestinian rallies are taking place in its streets? If reports are to be believed a third-world South Asian country championing the Palestinian cause and vociferously condemning Israel for years could be supplying weapons to Israel.

Israel has sworn a violent takeover of Gaza through the elimination of Hamas from the face of Earth. Israel followed this declaration, with non-stop bombardment of Gaza since the 7th of October’s horrendous attack by Hamas on its soil. Hamas- a designated terrorist wing of Palestine is known to have laid around 500 Km of secret tunnels to carry out offensives against Israel.

An open intelligence source, that became viral on social networking sites -Twitter now ‘X’ claims that Pakistan is the South Asian supplier supplying the 155mm shells to the state of Israel. This claim by the ‘X’ handle made public, is not possible to verify. Incidentally, I55mm shells are the same ones that Israel is using in its unrelenting offensive against Hamas near the Gaza Strip.

These shells emerge in many countries that are using military equipment supplied by the USA.

Experts say the 155mm artillery provides a good balance between range and warhead size and Pakistan Ordinance Factory produces these shells in bulk.

It is no secret that Israel has been sourcing weapons to bombard Hamas in Gaza from many countries. The USA has been Israel’s staunchest ally and biggest supplier of weapons. These arms are being used by Israel against Hamas/ Palestine. However, the question remains how Pakistani arms are reaching Israel given that Pakistan is a theological staunch Muslim state that was born after a bloody partition from India on the sole agenda of being a separate country for the Muslims community.

The ‘X’ account making the claim has given four graphic maps showing the exact route that is taken by Pakistan arms to reach Israel. The first one was a British Air Force RRR6664/5 flight that flew from Bahrain to Nur Khan Base, in Pakistan’s garrison town of Rawalpindi, and then from Bahrain, it left for Duqm city in Oman to Cyprus’s Allied Base and from there on the weapons were exported to the state of Israel.

This is not the first time that Pakistan‘s name has cropped up for supplying 155mm shells to many other countries. Ukraine too is using these very shells in its war with Russia. Pakistan is known to have supplied this very model of shells to Ukrainian troops even as Pakistan is known to have conducted mock war drills with Russia.

Pakistan is completely in denial about these allegations. These particular 155 shells have been critical for Ukraine on the Russian war-front. The shells have been critical in the war in Ukraine. They are used in Howitzer a system that uses precision guided system. At one point they had been firing where 7000 to 9000 shells a day. These shells helped Ukraine to strike targets up to 24 to 32 Km away. It is being reported that at the moment Ukraine has been facing a depletion of its Pakistan-made shells while the war is still going on. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy specifically referred to the 155mm shells that were used in the Southern offensive as having a slowdown because of a short supply of these from America. And when the Americans had a shortfall in their ammunition stock they started sourcing these shells from different countries including South Korea and Pakistan and now it is reportedly being said that America is giving these shells to Israel for them to be used against Palestinians and Hamas.

Incidentally, most of Pakistan’s artillery is Soviet based which serves as the more uniform format of artillery in Central Asia and the countries of the Middle East.

Pertinently Israel’s military equipment is mostly US-based and the 155mm shells are a mandatory part of its ammunition stockpile.

This report by an intelligence source was reportedly leaked hours after the arrival of Britain’s Army’s chief of the General Staff Sir Patrick Sander, who arrived in Pakistan as a part of the UK’s commitment to maintain good defense relations with Pakistan. So far both countries are yet to collect and connect their heads at a denial or acceptance of these reports about Pakistan’s supply of 155 mm shells.

Having a shortage of these shells US is procuring these shells from Pakistan and South Korea and passing them on to its allies i.e. Ukraine and Israel.

The shell can turn deadly and can be packed with highly explosive material is the reason why the 155 mm shell in a Howitzer round is so crucial and lethal in its use.

The intelligence source has given a graphic description of the route taken from Pakistan to send supplies for Israel which shows the routes, the Equipment listed as C17(ZZ176), Aircraft: Boeing-C-174 Globemaster- III At Barometric Altitude 27,000ft with Ground Speed: 471 kts and Track 46degree.

The graphic seems to be taken from the flight LED screen on Saturday -11th November at 11.33 UTC.

Two of the four graphics are dated 11th November, one is dated 13th November and another on 14th November from Duqm to Cairo.