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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    there is no real the desire to change the status quo. The Government have attempted to have the discussion without major engagement.


    I disagree, while range is increasing numbers are decreasing. And Russian military aircraft have to get past a lot of countries to get to the approaches to the European mainland currently.

    i don’t even think we are “non-aligned”, we are members of the EU (including the CFSP), PfP etc. The West’s interests are ours.


    I tried to have a debate on IMO on likely Irish defence scenarios a while back.

    To me the seizure of Shannon by a major Power (not necessarily Russian) is the most likely State actor “conventional” threat that we face on land (after crime, terrorism and cyber). It is the most likely threat so that is what we should orient towards.

    I hadn’t thought of the little green men but it equally valid.
    Number of years back 80s I think, Our old Congo foe the Belgium's caught a Irish priest red handed with detonators for supply to your own terrorist. For some reason the Belgium's wanted rid of him fast, so they stuck him in the back of a C130 with a number of troops (Think in case of a British intercept ) With the intension of dumping him back here. We did not have the ability to detect or stop them doing it.
    Not sure what happened in the end.?
    Last edited by sofa; 21st March 2018 at 21:51.

  2. #27
    Commander in Chief apod's Avatar
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    I am Irish and living in South Tipperary
    My bad.There is another member here who goes by a very similar user name.
    In proffering an opinion on why people are averse to military spending I was not necessarily agreeing with it - did a straw poll at break and again people see no merit in it. People believe, rightly or wrongly that the US and UK will look after our interests from an external threat to our borders.
    Good to know you don't agree with it as that point of view is a disgrace. Military capability does not come for free.It requires investment.A fact the lefties refuse to accept.We can spend as much as we like on everything else but it is all for naught if you don't have security.Foreign direct investment depends on it, and as we know FDI is the largest creator of jobs here. As for the US and UK looking after our interests.(Why should they?)Go back and ask your buddies how many of them had a problem with our sovereignty being surrendered to Germany etc during the crash.If they had no problem with that but are adverse to Ireland being able to defend itself then they are Hypocrites of the highest order.
    Lt. Gen. Gerry McMahon argued many years ago for an honest neutrality or formal alignment such as NATO. I think he was right but that I see as different from further EU integration. join NATO but not a federal superstate.
    What is actually wrong with being part of a federal system? If it brought about better management of our health system for example I dare say nobody would have a crib.
    As someone who tried, but failed at medical, for the cadets many years ago I can't believe how far the DF has come in certain areas and would encourage that. The tax payer as a whole don't seem to agree.
    So.Have you any Military experience?? If not what is the basis of your knowledge on what the state should or should not be doing with regards Defence?
    Infantry Corps - An Lámh Comhrac


    "Let us be clear about three facts:First of all.All battles and all wars are won in the end by the Infantryman.Secondly the Infantryman bears the brunt of the fighting,his casualties are heavier and he suffers greater extremes of fatigue and discomfort than the other arms.Thirdly,the art of the Infantryman is less stereotyped and harder to acquire than that of any other arm".
    -- Field Marshall Earl Wavell.1948

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  4. #28
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    "i don’t even think we are “non-aligned”, we are members of the EU (including the CFSP), PfP etc. The West’s interests are ours. "

    28th Amendment ... We are not, sadly.

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  6. #29
    Corporal irishrgr's Avatar
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    This article sums it up perfectly, especially the "we're naive" part, no real foundation or understanding of the strategic realities of the world. I agree with the other posters who argue the public wouldn't care to see defense spending increased. The usual "sure we're neutral" and "ah sure the neighbours'll look after us" are typical of what I call "small thinking". Neutrality doesn't really mean anything any more and it hasn't since the early 20th century. And as for the neighbours, no, they'll look after THEIR interests, not our. Yes, we'd be supported if it suits a neighbour, but if it doesn't, oh well. As another example, the British invaded and occupied Iceland during WWII. Iceland declared neutrality at the outset of WWII, and the "good guys" sailed right on in. And of further note, the Brits handed the occupation off to the Canadians, who then passed it on to the Americans. SO much for neutrality, right?

    At this point, Irelands best bet would be to start greater integration into the EU, embrace compatible intel, cyber, ADA radars nested with the Europeans and generally act like a grown up and stop moaning on about neutrality. The opportunity to join NATO and have meaningful defense is past, politically and fiscally it's a non starter, there is no public support ergo no money. And while jets and weapons are sexy, Ireland needs to start with the foundations.

    https://www.rte.ie/news/ireland/2018...ty-assessment/

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  8. #30
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    The debate should not be just about do we join NATO but what role can we play and do we need to play in EU Defence.

    Within the EU27, there are 5 other non-aligned countries and this should be seen as a major asset to the EU and it ability to operate in certain situations independent from NATO. While we should continue to support the PfP it must be recognised that by many NATO is seen as being just a US puppet. This can lead to some limitation on how the EU can use any military forces. An example would be if ever a multi-nation peace-keeping forces was to be deployed to eastern Ukraine. If this force contained units from NATO members it would not take long for Russia to cry foul, that NATO was deploying to its borders even if these forces were not under NATO command. An force on non-aligned EU troops would gain more acceptance. As luck would have it we have a long military partnership with the larger of these nations both through UN operations and EU Battlegroups: Sweden, Finland and Austria.

    But we have to act fast, both Sweden and Finland have already committed to increasing their defence co-operation and this is only likely to accelerate. Being able to build upon our involvement in the Un and the EU Battlegroups we could give a much clearer focus to the role we play in the defence of the EU. Like it or not it is our membership of the EU that has made the country what it is today. It was only after 1973 that we began to develop as a truly independent nation, and one that is accepted as an equal in a "Union" of nations.

    We need to move our defence horizon away from just "standing on the beach looking inland" to looking at what can cause us harm. There is the direct terrorist threat but also the damage large numbers of the victims of war can do to the EU. The crisis of 2015 has been very damaging to the EU and the shared ideals it once had. Preventing humanitarian crisis in areas such as the Middle East and Africa has a direct affect on the security of this nation even if most decide to ignore this. Being able to provide security for people in their homeland is essential for the stability of the EU and our well being.

    Looking towards the UN, it is dearly in need of reform with the biggest need being the removal of the permanent members of the security council and their associated veto. This makes it more and more difficult for the UN to be the force for world peace that was envisioned back in 1945 in San Francisco. But looking at our contribution we need to recognise that the majority of the UN troops come from poor countries. That the contribution in term of troop numbers is going to be dominated by countries such as the Philippines, Bangladesh, Nepal and other large population countries with little money for training or equipment. Therefore if we are to play a part we need to be providing the higher end military capability.

    What it all means is that we need to look away from a "tradition" force design to provide only defence once an enemy has landed on our shores to one that can be integrated into larger PSO and Peace-keeping operations.

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  10. #31
    Moderator DeV's Avatar
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    I agree to a point but like the UN the mandate is then directed by States that (generally) don’t have skin in the game.

  11. #32
    Private 3* The Connaught Ranger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by irishrgr View Post
    This article sums it up perfectly, especially the "we're naive" part, no real foundation or understanding of the strategic realities of the world. I agree with the other posters who argue the public wouldn't care to see defense spending increased. The usual "sure we're neutral" and "ah sure the neighbours'll look after us" are typical of what I call "small thinking". Neutrality doesn't really mean anything any more and it hasn't since the early 20th century. And as for the neighbours, no, they'll look after THEIR interests, not our. Yes, we'd be supported if it suits a neighbour, but if it doesn't, oh well. As another example, the British invaded and occupied Iceland during WWII. Iceland declared neutrality at the outset of WWII, and the "good guys" sailed right on in. And of further note, the Brits handed the occupation off to the Canadians, who then passed it on to the Americans. SO much for neutrality, right?
    Our neutrality in WWII was based on the fact that the partition of the island meant there was a real chance of civil unrest within the state if Ireland openly joined on the allied side. We all know how neutral we actually were during WWII. A fact commemorated by the first tree planting at the Áras when the British PM planted a tree there in 1946, thanking the state for its assistance to Britain. The fact neutrality has morphed into something totally different over time reflects how society has interpreted Dev's (the other one) decision 78 years on. While unfounded in the understanding of our neutral history, most people like our neutral stance and here on this forum you are speaking to the converted.

    Quote Originally Posted by At this point, Irelands best bet would be to start greater integration into the EU, embrace compatible intel, cyber, ADA radars nested with the Europeans and generally act like a grown up and stop moaning on about neutrality. The opportunity to join NATO and have meaningful defense is past, politically and fiscally it's a non starter, there is no public support ergo no money. And while jets and weapons are sexy, Ireland needs to start with the foundations.

    [url
    https://www.rte.ie/news/ireland/2018/0325/949976-ireland-security-assessment/[/url]
    Based on what exactly? What tells us we'd be safer as an integrated part of the EU, or any other country, for that matter? It's our EU integration which makes us a target. We are certainly better off in a big trading bloc but that's a different thing. Ambivalence to Ireland originates from our colonial past, and not any neutrality. As a colony that became free we have respect, from other colonies especially, and are seen as not being a threat, but as we become so closely identified with the EU that is changing. The threat to Ireland comes more from being in the EU as an integrated member more than anything else. Also in real terms, no other state will invade us. So the threat is from terror and we nee dnot be in a federal Europe to pool Intel.

  12. #33
    Private 3* The Connaught Ranger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    Like it or not it is our membership of the EU that has made the country what it is today. It was only after 1973 that we began to develop as a truly independent nation, and one that is accepted as an equal in a "Union" of nations.
    We were an equal and it was the EEC, and later EC, that helped make this country what it is, not the EU - the names and timing matter. As an EU member we had to take on debt, at unfavorable terms, that wasn't out debt, and cripple ourselves. We worked through it, not the EU. Had we kept our currency we would not have had a bubble, and could have sorted competitiveness ourselves, in an instant. trade made this country and the devaluation of 1993 drove our economy more than any EEC/EC/EU intervention.

    [QUOTE=Preventing humanitarian crisis in areas such as the Middle East and Africa has a direct affect on the security of this nation even if most decide to ignore this. Being able to provide security for people in their homeland is essential for the stability of the EU and our well being.[/QUOTE]

    Humanitarian crises do create the terrorist of tomorrow, but those are not what make you the target. The transgressor, or perceived transgressor or cause, of the issue is the target and it is our involvement in a quasi superstate that causes this nation to be a target.

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  14. #34
    Commander in Chief apod's Avatar
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    While unfounded in the understanding of our neutral history, most people like our neutral stance and here on this forum you are speaking to the converted.
    Most people are utter hypocrites so. They love the idea of being neutral but will leave our defence up to foreign powers because they don't want to have to pay for it.

    Based on what exactly? What tells us we'd be safer as an integrated part of the EU, or any other country, for that matter?
    You ever hear of strength in numbers? NO country can afford to go it alone defence wise these days lest you are China or the U.S. You have said in a previous post that should we be attacked others will defend us. If you are not a member of a "gang" so to speak the gang won't defend you when the other gang comes to kick your ass.A prime example of closer EU integration is Irelands membership of the Atlas Network of EU police special intervention units, and the benefits of such membership including our ability to call of EU assistance in times of national crisis. Of course you probably think that is a bad thing though

    It's our EU integration which makes us a target.
    No.What make us a target,at least for Jihadis,is the fact that we are white,western and mostly christian. Simple as.Nothing to do with the EU.As for other nations we are a potential target because of our strategic importance in terms of geography.

    Ambivalence to Ireland originates from our colonial past, and not any neutrality. As a colony that became free we have respect, from other colonies especially, and are seen as not being a threat, but as we become so closely identified with the EU that is changing.
    What ambivalance? What experience are you basing that on? I can tell you from experience that there are parts of the world where the don't care if you are Irish they will still shoot you just the same.MOst of those people couldn't tell if we were in the EU or not BTW.
    The threat to Ireland comes more from being in the EU as an integrated member more than anything else. Also in real terms, no other state will invade us. So the threat is from terror and we need not be in a federal Europe to pool Intel.
    The threat to Ireland comes from other nations which have strategic interests here.And you would be surprised who does.We can't deal with those threats alone and if the worst happens we need to be able to call on our allies to help.We won't get that help by being Isolationist ostriches.As for no state invading us.Get real.If it suited Putin in the morning to invade and do a flanking move around the U.K and France,Germany etc he would just invade.The DF would give him a hard time but we couldn't hold out without assistance. If we cry "Neutral" when others need help than why would help come our way in time of need??


    Humanitarian crises do create the terrorist of tomorrow, but those are not what make you the target. The transgressor, or perceived transgressor or cause, of the issue is the target and it is our involvement in a quasi superstate that causes this nation to be a target.
    If you had ever served in the Middle east you would know how naive that statement is.As I said above. WHITE,WESTERN,CHRISTIAN. IE an Infidel or kaffir.
    Infantry Corps - An Lámh Comhrac


    "Let us be clear about three facts:First of all.All battles and all wars are won in the end by the Infantryman.Secondly the Infantryman bears the brunt of the fighting,his casualties are heavier and he suffers greater extremes of fatigue and discomfort than the other arms.Thirdly,the art of the Infantryman is less stereotyped and harder to acquire than that of any other arm".
    -- Field Marshall Earl Wavell.1948

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  16. #35
    Commander in Chief apod's Avatar
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    Infantry Corps - An Lámh Comhrac


    "Let us be clear about three facts:First of all.All battles and all wars are won in the end by the Infantryman.Secondly the Infantryman bears the brunt of the fighting,his casualties are heavier and he suffers greater extremes of fatigue and discomfort than the other arms.Thirdly,the art of the Infantryman is less stereotyped and harder to acquire than that of any other arm".
    -- Field Marshall Earl Wavell.1948

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  18. #36
    Moderator DeV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by apod View Post
    Most people are utter hypocrites so. They love the idea of being neutral but will leave our defence up to foreign powers because they don't want to have to pay for it.


    You ever hear of strength in numbers? NO country can afford to go it alone defence wise these days lest you are China or the U.S. You have said in a previous post that should we be attacked others will defend us. If you are not a member of a "gang" so to speak the gang won't defend you when the other gang comes to kick your ass.A prime example of closer EU integration is Irelands membership of the Atlas Network of EU police special intervention units, and the benefits of such membership including our ability to call of EU assistance in times of national crisis. Of course you probably think that is a bad thing though


    No.What make us a target,at least for Jihadis,is the fact that we are white,western and mostly christian. Simple as.Nothing to do with the EU.As for other nations we are a potential target because of our strategic importance in terms of geography.


    What ambivalance? What experience are you basing that on? I can tell you from experience that there are parts of the world where the don't care if you are Irish they will still shoot you just the same.MOst of those people couldn't tell if we were in the EU or not BTW.

    The threat to Ireland comes from other nations which have strategic interests here.And you would be surprised who does.We can't deal with those threats alone and if the worst happens we need to be able to call on our allies to help.We won't get that help by being Isolationist ostriches.As for no state invading us.Get real.If it suited Putin in the morning to invade and do a flanking move around the U.K and France,Germany etc he would just invade.The DF would give him a hard time but we couldn't hold out without assistance. If we cry "Neutral" when others need help than why would help come our way in time of need??



    If you had ever served in the Middle east you would know how naive that statement is.As I said above. WHITE,WESTERN,CHRISTIAN. IE an Infidel or kaffir.
    The only thing I would add to that would be if Putin did something like that in the morning there would be likely to be a NATO response even if we said no.

  19. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    The only thing I would add to that would be if Putin did something like that in the morning there would be likely to be a NATO response even if we said no.
    there would, but it would the response that NATO decides is in NATO's interests. it could be anything from Hypersanctions, both on Russia and the effected location in Ireland, to flattening the West Coast. the point being that Ireland wouldn't get a say, and its interests wouldn't be particularly considered in the decision making process.

    thats the problem with not being in the gang...

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  21. #38
    Moderator DeV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ropebag View Post
    there would, but it would the response that NATO decides is in NATO's interests. it could be anything from Hypersanctions, both on Russia and the effected location in Ireland, to flattening the West Coast. the point being that Ireland wouldn't get a say, and its interests wouldn't be particularly considered in the decision making process.

    thats the problem with not being in the gang...
    Absolutely but that would also be a argument for a militant armed neutrality.

    No point in us asking NATO for air support to get little green men out of Shannon for them to be replaced by RAF Regiment (or whoever)


    Traditionally IMHO the reason for neutrality was, among other things:
    - show we were independent
    - to keep costs down
    - to keep the army in check
    - to stop the UK thinking we might invite the Germans in (major threat to the UK)
    - not give the UK an excuse to invade
    - not give the Germans an excuse to attack


    Can we be a neutral in the modern world I don’t know?

    In the world of non-State actors, terrorism, transnational crime, the cyber arena (non traditional security threats), I would say you can’t really be (depending on the nature of the non-State actor), it is a direct threat to our way of life, our society, our values, our economy.

    In the world of traditional threats, I would say you can. Although we wouldn’t say it (or even do it) Ireland may think of itself as an honest broker. The only issue is you need to defend that neutrality
    Last edited by DeV; 4th April 2018 at 21:20.

  22. #39
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    Probably also worth remembering that our Neutrality during the 2nd World was was not unusual in the early stages. Don't forget the USA remained neutral until December 1941, at which stage the British had already endured Dunkirk, The Battle of Britain, and was deeply involved in fighting in North Africa, with some minor victories along the way.
    As an Irish American, who had been actively supported by Irish Americans in the founding days of the nation, Dev was advised that Neutrality was the way to go. Henry Ford, who provided ireland with its first production line car factory was one of many powerful figures in the US who wanted the US to stay out of the war. Even after Pearl Harbor it was unclear initially if the US public would support the US entry into war. Powerful Irish American people, such as Joe Kennedy, remained strongly and vocally opposed. (Ironically both Ford and Kennedy were publicly anti-semitic, so their lack of concern for the welfare of european jews may have influenced their continued opposition to the war effort.)
    So Dev kept ireland neutral because at the beginning of the conflict, everyone else was too. Until they were attacked.
    German 1: Private Schnutz, I have bad news for you.
    German 2: Private? I am a general!
    German 1: That is the bad news.

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  24. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by irishrgr View Post
    As another example, the British invaded and occupied Iceland during WWII. Iceland declared neutrality at the outset of WWII, and the "good guys" sailed right on in.
    Not only Iceland. There's a reason that the British were in the immediate neighbourhood to land in neutral Norway right after the German invasion - they were on their own way to do the same thing themselves. All this apart from Churchill's frequent enthusiasms for the excuse to invade Éire and re-run the WOI.

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  26. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by ropebag View Post
    thats the problem with not being in the gang...
    It's not at all a new observation - it goes back to De Valera and before! - but a small country 'in the gang' gets told what to do, and doesn't get any say about what the gang's up to. Witness the bank crisis here, not so long ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Connaught Ranger View Post
    The fact neutrality has morphed into something totally different over time reflects how society has interpreted Dev's (the other one) decision 78 years on. While unfounded in the understanding of our neutral history, most people like our neutral stance and here on this forum you are speaking to the converted.
    And Dev pursing a policy which would have been quite recognisable to Connolly, twenty-five years before.

  28. #43
    Moderator DeV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmití View Post
    Probably also worth remembering that our Neutrality during the 2nd World was was not unusual in the early stages. Don't forget the USA remained neutral until December 1941, at which stage the British had already endured Dunkirk, The Battle of Britain, and was deeply involved in fighting in North Africa, with some minor victories along the way.
    As an Irish American, who had been actively supported by Irish Americans in the founding days of the nation, Dev was advised that Neutrality was the way to go. Henry Ford, who provided ireland with its first production line car factory was one of many powerful figures in the US who wanted the US to stay out of the war. Even after Pearl Harbor it was unclear initially if the US public would support the US entry into war. Powerful Irish American people, such as Joe Kennedy, remained strongly and vocally opposed. (Ironically both Ford and Kennedy were publicly anti-semitic, so their lack of concern for the welfare of european jews may have influenced their continued opposition to the war effort.)
    So Dev kept ireland neutral because at the beginning of the conflict, everyone else was too. Until they were attacked.
    disliked in error

    Quote Originally Posted by DaithiDub View Post
    It's not at all a new observation - it goes back to De Valera and before! - but a small country 'in the gang' gets told what to do, and doesn't get any say about what the gang's up to. .
    true

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    ropebag do you think that, in a way, our non-aligned military status is probably more useful to NATO planners, than our membership would be?

    As already pointed out, it doesn't make any difference to the likes of ISIS and other extremist groups, but, they're not representative of every adversary or group active in an AO.

    When our troops go abroad, say to Kosovo, they're not NATO - so they don't have the same baggage, but they're serving the same goal.

    Is that better than having NATO troops who happen to be Irish, when in reality we're going to contribute very little to collective defence?

    Given that the UK, US and NATO as a whole will do whatever it takes to protect their interests if they come under threat, is a formalised peacetime mutual defence arrangement with a small country and its tiny military, really worth the bother?

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  31. #45
    Moderator DeV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pym View Post
    ropebag do you think that, in a way, our non-aligned military status is probably more useful to NATO planners, than our membership would be?

    When our troops go abroad, say to Kosovo, they're not NATO - so they don't have the same baggage, but they're serving the same goal.

    Is that better than having NATO troops who happen to be Irish, when in reality we're going to contribute very little to collective defence?
    not 100% sure what your saying

    Irish troops serving with IFOR, SFOR, KFOR and ISAF were on NATO Ops, placed under NATO command (probably with national cavets (that even NATO countries had)), they were awarded NATO medals. The man on the street in Bosnia, Kosovo or Afghanistan more than likely doesn’t no where Ireland is (never mind the fact that we aren’t in NATO).

    Given that the UK, US and NATO as a whole will do whatever it takes to protect their interests if they come under threat, is a formalised peacetime mutual defence arrangement with a small country and its tiny military, really worth the bother?
    not 100% sure what you mean

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  33. #46
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    Great debate all, Dev, I agree with your point of "can be we neutral anymore". That's my assertion, the traditional definition of neutrality in the 21st century is largely irrelevant when the threat is trans-national, non government actors. Regardless of where you are in the world and what your status is, the bad actors simply see westerners (infidels or whatever as pointed out above), not "Irish peacekeepers". The people with the guns and IED's don't go "hold on, don't fire, sure it's just the Irish, they're not colonials", I would suggest they don't really care at that point.

    As regards Joining a "gang", yes, the big guys in the gang will always have more of a say, be it NATO or the EU (in it's various forms) or whatever. I suggest being a member of the alliance is better than not. If you are in the club, at least you have some degree of influence and say in matters as opposed to shouting from the outside. And yes, membership comes with dues, be it monetary or some degree of rules. However, as a small country (like other small countries in Europe), I see more good being on board than not. Shared intel, customs & policing are of much more use to Ireland than buying into the Eurofighter. A conventional attack is relatively unlikely despite the slight warming of tensions between the West and Russia (my opinion), the asymmetric threat is more real.

    Whatever got us to this point, WWII, War of Independence, fine, noted, now lets move on. Declan Powers article was a good analysis, talking about the issue is fairly spot on, although I'm still opposed to the triple lock, it's silly. It's letting the UN security council dictate our foreign policy, the Dail should decide on Irish military deployments, no one else.

    Good debate, wish it was going on in Dail Eireann, it would show the national leadership is at least thinking about security issues.

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  35. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by pym View Post
    ropebag do you think that, in a way, our non-aligned military status is probably more useful to NATO planners, than our membership would be?

    As already pointed out, it doesn't make any difference to the likes of ISIS and other extremist groups, but, they're not representative of every adversary or group active in an AO.

    When our troops go abroad, say to Kosovo, they're not NATO - so they don't have the same baggage, but they're serving the same goal.

    Is that better than having NATO troops who happen to be Irish, when in reality we're going to contribute very little to collective defence?

    Given that the UK, US and NATO as a whole will do whatever it takes to protect their interests if they come under threat, is a formalised peacetime mutual defence arrangement with a small country and its tiny military, really worth the bother?
    i don't think the 'non-NATOness' of Irish troops on NATO-led ops has any effect, simply because i think that if any of the local actors were even aware of it, they would consider it to be an argument about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin - European country, member of a NATO-led organisation, using NATO standards, member of the EU, trains with NATO members, whos' closest economic, political, diplomatic and defence partners are all in NATO: expecting anyone involved in conflict or failed state, outside the Foreign Policy Wonks, to either grasp - or care about - the difference seems to me to be somewhat optomistic.

    the advantage to NATO of Irish membership would, perhaps bizaarely, be the same advantage that Ireland would get - Ireland being covered by the collective defence agreement. think of it, from NATO's perspective, as finally nailing shut the back door that has always had a wonky latch and no lock... Ireland not being a NATO member has always left the westen flank feeling a bit vunerable, with the ambiguity of Irelands position being seen as an unwelcome opportunity for those wishing NATO ill to potentially exploit.

    no one believes that were Ireland to join NATO that it would contribute meaningful military force to the collective capability - but then niether does Iceland, or Luxemburg. contribution of geography means far more than any military contribution..

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  37. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    not 100% sure what your saying

    Irish troops serving with IFOR, SFOR, KFOR and ISAF were on NATO Ops, placed under NATO command (probably with national cavets (that even NATO countries had)), they were awarded NATO medals. The man on the street in Bosnia, Kosovo or Afghanistan more than likely doesn’t no where Ireland is (never mind the fact that we aren’t in NATO).

    not 100% sure what you mean
    Basically I was wondering if the presence of non-NATO troops on a deployment was of value to a NATO led operation - giving it some kind of extra legitimacy or whatever.

    It's not an argument I'm convinced of!

    The other point was that we'd become defacto NATO members if a large conflict broke out and the UK was under direct threat. The alternative would be getting a few 1000lb digs and being effectively occupied.

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    Irishrgr, I’m not necessarily arguing for us joining NATO by the way.

    The Government has made an attempt to get it discussed. We published our first ever Green Paper on Defence a few years ago - the public don’t care, there is probably no one saying yes and plenty of people who would say no (and not just PANA, Greens, Sinn Fein etc). The only people that care are the no’s.

    The worst bit is that the parties pushing the “neutrality” agenda are completely uneducated with regard to the responsibility that goes with neutrality. It is also possible that it is in Government’s interests not to say that either.

    What would joining NATO mean? Increase in defence expenditure, a NATO air policing mission, overseas exercises and deployments (eg Estonia (and in the past Afghanistan)), etc

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  41. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by pym View Post
    Basically I was wondering if the presence of non-NATO troops on a deployment was of value to a NATO led operation - giving it some kind of extra legitimacy or whatever.

    It's not an argument I'm convinced of!

    The other point was that we'd become defacto NATO members if a large conflict broke out and the UK was under direct threat. The alternative would be getting a few 1000lb digs and being effectively occupied.
    Yes and no I think

    Look at the NATO missions, broad spectrum of troops from all over the world. A coalition of the willing if you will, it aids legitimacy. Of course if you are looking at going up against that mission it probably doesn’t matter to you who they are, NATO/EU/UN/other or what country they are from the USA, China or Argentina.

    Major war time - I wouldn’t necessarily that we would be de facto members. But if either side wanted some key facilities (there would be zero point in occupying the whole country) they will just seize them.
    Last edited by DeV; 5th April 2018 at 11:13.

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