Excerpts from an article at Spiegel Online, explaining how Germany provides Israel with nuclear-weapon-capable submarines.
Deep in their interiors, on decks 2 and 3, the submarines contain a secret that even in Israel is only known to a few insiders: nuclear warheads, small enough to be mounted on a cruise missile, but explosive enough to execute a nuclear strike that would cause devastating results. This secret is considered one of the best kept in modern military history. Anyone who speaks openly about it in Israel runs the risk of being sentenced to a lengthy prison term.
Foreign journalists have never boarded one of the combat vessels before. In an unaccustomed display of openness, senior politicians and military officials with the Jewish state were, however, now willing to talk about the importance of German-Israeli military cooperation and Germany's role, albeit usually under the condition of anonymity. "In the end, it's very simple," says Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak. "Germany is helping to defend Israel's security. The Germans can be proud of the fact that they have secured the existence of the State of Israel for many years to come."
In Germany, the government's military assistance for Israel's submarine program has been controversial for about 25 years... Merkel insists on secrecy and doesn't want the details of the deal to be made public. To this day, the German government is sticking to its position that it does not know anything about an Israeli nuclear weapons program...
At the same time, the nuclear arsenal causes countries like Iran, Syria and Saudi Arabia to regard Israel's nuclear capacity with fear and envy and consider building their own nuclear weapons.
These excerpts come from the first part of a six-part series, all available at Spiegel Online.