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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    Ireland’s defence spending is lowest in Europe at 0.3% of GDP

    By Sean O’Riordan
    The Department of Defence added that each country pursues a defence policy that reflects its particular requirements and there can be significant differences in the proportion of funding that differing states allocate to defence.

    “While there is always the potential to invest additional resources in defence, this must be considered against other social, economic and environmental priorities”

    The department said that there are a range of other international comparator measures which would place Ireland higher compared to other countries, including total defence expenditure, the percentage of overall government expenditure, and expenditure on a per capita basis.


    To use a phase made popular earlier this year "I call BS!!" (What is also often left out is that 25% of our defence budget is to cover Pensions)
    Clear, if we compare spend per capita or overall expenditure to a small Third World country we come out on top. But we have to be compared to our peers and that is other small/medium First World nations.

    Taking % GDP is a means to be able to fairly compare, if the economy is doing bad the GDP and spend goes down, if it is doing good GDP climes and so doe expenditure in absolute term. All the time the % stays the same, back in the late 80's we had still is a slight recession but our spend was 1.3%, a whole 1% more than today!

    So lets look at some other indicators:
    Firstly defence as % of total government budget
    Top: Estonia 6.0%
    Bottom: Luxembourg 1.0%
    Ireland: 1.1%
    Denmark: 2.3%
    Finland: 2.3%
    Sweden: 2.6%
    EU Avg: 2.6%

    Next the Bonn International Center for Conversion (BICC) GMI Index.
    The Global Militarization Index (GMI) depicts the relative weight and importance of the military apparatus of one state in relation to its society as a whole.
    Here we are on place 117 in the world, Israel being number 1.
    Ireland: 493pts
    Denmark: 642pts
    Finland: 718pts
    Sweden: 523pts

    One of the key sub-indicators in the GMI is the Military Expenditure Index Score: comparison of military expenditure with its gross domestic product (GDP) and its health expenditure (as share of its GDP);
    Ireland: 4.32
    Denmark: 4.42
    Finland: 4.96
    Sweden: 4.86

    We could go on with more comparisons but as we all know you can tell whatever story you want by selecting what to show and what not. But the general view is that no matter what index you use we are the bottom for defence. And what is more annoying is the DoD defending it with BS rather than being honest and saying the "outside some photo ops for politicos we do not give a flying f..k about funding defence"
    In light of this level of Defence funding (lets be honest here 0.3% is not exactly a gold medal performance) and in light of the fact that the US (Trump) are out to turn the screws on the Europe viz trade and sharing the Defence burden, could the EU in turn start playing hardball with some countries such as Ireland when it comes to expectations of the required collective security within Europe?

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anzac View Post
    In light of this level of Defence funding (lets be honest here 0.3% is not exactly a gold medal performance) and in light of the fact that the US (Trump) are out to turn the screws on the Europe viz trade and sharing the Defence burden, could the EU in turn start playing hardball with some countries such as Ireland when it comes to expectations of the required collective security within Europe?
    Think we still have an opt out that says they can't make us increase spending, but I wouldn't be surprised if there was something.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparky42 View Post
    Think we still have an opt out that says they can't make us increase spending, but I wouldn't be surprised if there was something.
    I doubt there's a specific mechanism, but if you don't share the burden you can't expect other states to go into bat for you on the the things that matter to Ireland that don't matter that much to, say, Germany, France or Poland.

    If BREXIT was beginning in a couple of years into a Trump presidency it would have been interesting to see how much emphasis the EU side placed on the issues surrounding the Irish border...

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  5. #29
    Space Lord of Terra morpheus's Avatar
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    I for one wish that they WOULD make us pay for it. at least id be happier about how my tax euros were being spent
    "He is an enemy officer taken in battle and entitled to fair treatment."
    "No, sir. He's a sergeant, and they don't deserve no respect at all, sir. I should know. They're cunning and artful, if they're any good. I wouldn't mind if he was an officer, sir. But sergeants are clever."

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  7. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by morpheus View Post
    I for one wish that they WOULD make us pay for it. at least id be happier about how my tax euros were being spent
    You mean to say you have a problem with your tax money going to support Jacinta, her 5 kids(one of whom has a "learning disability") by 4 fathers, her 4 bed social house and her annual holiday in Malaga?
    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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  9. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmití View Post
    You mean to say you have a problem with your tax money going to support Jacinta, her 5 kids(one of whom has a "learning disability") by 4 fathers, her 4 bed social house and her annual holiday in Malaga?
    And one of the Daaas liven with her.

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  11. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by sofa View Post
    And one of the Daaas liven with her.
    Dey are gettin married in Vegas next summer cos if dey get married here de social will take de bleedin house off her....
    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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  13. #33
    Moderator DeV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anzac View Post
    In light of this level of Defence funding (lets be honest here 0.3% is not exactly a gold medal performance) and in light of the fact that the US (Trump) are out to turn the screws on the Europe viz trade and sharing the Defence burden, could the EU in turn start playing hardball with some countries such as Ireland when it comes to expectations of the required collective security within Europe?
    There is no collective security mechanism within the EU (and NATO doesn’t guarantee a military response to an attack either)

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    There is no collective security mechanism within the EU (and NATO doesn’t guarantee a military response to an attack either)
    I realise that DeV but I am speculating about playing hardball if patience runs out whilst the wider security situation of the EU deteriorates. Geo-politically 2018 feels very different to when the Lisbon Treaty was ratified what may it be like in another decade?

    There are obligations under Article 42(7) TEU and if the so called Irish Clause in the second sentence "This shall not prejudice the specific character of the security and defence policy of certain Member States" were lets say be revisited by the European Court of Justice interpreting that another or new EU ruling stipulating minimum contributions of all member nations was not in itself prejudicial to "the specific character of the security and defence policy" of Ireland. Where would be Irelands wriggle room?

    Trump has threatened to withdraw the US from NATO, the Brits are heading for Brexit meaning they will be off EU collective security reservation might mean that Brussels, Paris and Berlin might not be so accommodating about letting a 0.3% of GDP slide in the future. Post Brexit Britain and a US exit from NATO (which one cannot discount) would leave Ireland in a very awkward situation.

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