Laleh Khalili has written on the causes and effects of Ever Given blocking the Suez Canal for Washington Post‘s Monkey Cage blog
By Laleh KhaliliMarch 26, 2021 at 6:46 p.m. UTC
On the morning of March 23, a gargantuan freighter laden with containers, heading north to the Mediterranean, ran aground in the Suez Canal. The weather was blustery, with sandy gusts blowing across the canal. A strong gust and the hydrodynamics of shallow waters pushed the merchant vessel Ever Given into the east bank of the canal.
It was immediately clear that the bulbous nose at the prow of the ship had lodged in the canal’s bank, and the 1,300-foot body of the ship lay diagonally across the waterway, blocking traffic. Ironically, as my new book explains, the most dramatic leaps in ship sizes were precipitated by Suez Canal politics in the 1950s and 1960s. Decades later, it’s the vast size of the ship that makes refloating it so difficult.
By Friday, more than 160 ships were anchored in the Mediterranean and the Red seas. Egyptian officials appeared confident the canal could reopen within days, while salvage engineers cautioned that freeing the stuck ship might take weeks. Oil prices jumped up by a few dollars on Wednesday; and insurance claims on freight delays have begun to trickle in.
To read more, please go to https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/03/26/big-ships-were-created-avoid-relying-suez-canal-ironically-big-ship-is-now-blocking-it/
This post originally appeared as “Big ships were created to avoid relying on the Suez Canal. Ironically, a big ship is now blocking it” in The Monkey Cage at The Washington Post on 26 March 2021.