If you have a new account but are having problems posting or verifying your account, please email us on for help. Thanks :)
Hello all! Please ensure that you are posting a new thread or question in the appropriate forum. The Feedback forum is overwhelmed with questions that are having to be moved elsewhere. If you need help to verify your account contact

Interesting articles



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,746 ✭✭✭roadmaster

    I think there is absolute absence of urgency in alls aspects of irish life at the moment what ever has happened. In the 50s we built the cabras if this world. In the 70s we built the then RTCs and in the late 90s and 00s we built the motorway network.

    Today we as nation seam to be crippled with inaction

  • Registered Users Posts: 24,074 ✭✭✭✭Larbre34

    Completely agree.

    If oftens takes "official" Ireland being embarrassed into social change for anything major to happen, this is no different.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,442 ✭✭✭Dohvolle

    You can blame much of this on the Thatcherist policies of some in Government in recent times, privatising many of the vital functions of state. In the 1950s, the county councils got state funding to build hundreds of housing estates, to get people out of unsuitable 19th century tenements. Near where I live, an entire village uprooted itself to relocate in the "new houses", abandoning the thatch and tin roof cottages that had been their squalid homes.

    The same thing today would require a lengthy tender process, and the successful developer would index link their prices, meaning on completion, with numerous delays, they would stand to pocket a considerable profit, and the local authority would be left to cover the costs of upkeep when it is found that these houses are unfit for purpose.

    Militarily, we have always had to be embarassed into action. I've said it before, how many of the significant purchases in the last Half century were as a result of our weakness being exposed?

    1970s, Crumbling obsolete corvettes replaced because the navy took days to reach the Tuskar Viscount crash site, and the RN were first on scene. Wheeled APCs bought for Internal security duties when the border campaign kicked off, and the refugee crisis it caused showed the obsolete army vehicles were not up to the job.

    1980s, Dauphin Helis for 24hr SAR bought because a Donegal based fisherman died from a relatively simple injury, while waiting for the RAF heli to come from wales to take him off his vessel.

    I could give an example from every decade up to now.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,831 ✭✭✭Alkers

    Very interesting, I haven't read the codf document in some time but do any of the analysis or recommendations address the dept or are they all focused on the df itself?

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,442 ✭✭✭Dohvolle

    The Dept was supposed to be the subject of a separate review. It was the main criticism of the Terms of Reference for the CoDF in the first place, but we were all assured that the Dept would also come under scrutiny.

    That appears to have been a lie.

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 3,943 ✭✭✭sparky42

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,746 ✭✭✭roadmaster

    That would sit a precedent the civil service could not allow

  • Registered Users Posts: 276 ✭✭vswr

    there could easily be a Primary radar program in place in conjunction with AirNav Ireland, to put in PSR Heads in Malin/Mt Gabriel/Doonacarton (or Woodcock/Mt Gabriel/Doonacarton)…

    This stuff is trivial and can be subbed out quite easily, with project staff in AirNav/DF required for integration and V&V.

    This would be the precursor to future air defence plans.

    Alternative, is getting some medium range Giraffes with sea tracking capability.

    Some additional SAM and SAS missile systems, you're making leaps and bounds ahead of what has been done the last few years…

    Re: the 2% NATO funding. With the addition of Hybrid warfare theatre into NATO, there are some camps arguing Ireland is already close to 1% with current protections of infrastructure and supply chains which feed into NATO use, will be interesting to see if that can be argued as the case….

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,943 ✭✭✭sparky42

    unless you are throwing the Garda budget in somehow, it’s beyond hard to see how you get anywhere close to 1%, no matter which top line figure you use.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,442 ✭✭✭Dohvolle

    We continue to use GDP as a guide, numerous sources suggest this is far from an accurate reflection of the real wealth of the state. GDP being inflated by the activities of multinationals who pay little or no tax to the exchequer, yet report huge earnings.

    GNI (Gross National Income) changes the entire picture for us. It sees us spending, in 2020, 0.50% of GNI on defence.

    However, no matter which scale you use, Ireland is at the bottom in terms of spending, lagging behind Austria, A land locked neutral state surrounded by friendly neighbours, with no littoral defence or security issues. Oh but Austria can field a squadron of gen 4 All Weather interceptors, and its army operates a fleet of modern Blackhawk helicopters, among other military aircraft.

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 1,100 ✭✭✭jonnybigwallet

    Ah God love ya! Sure you're talking through your arse again!

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,746 ✭✭✭roadmaster

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 16,392 Mod ✭✭✭✭Manic Moran

    I'm not sure I understand the primary focus of the article. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs isn't in the US' chain of command either. It bypasses the chiefs and goes from the President to SecDef to the CoComs. This seems no different to the apparently terrible situation the Irish chief is in.

    If the Naval Service requires permission from the Defence Dept. to move a ship or the Army to move a vehicle, I suspect the problem is somewhere else.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,442 ✭✭✭Dohvolle

    You see we don't even have joint chiefs. We have 3 army brigade commanders, the head of the navy and the head of the Air Corps, all Brig Generals. Nobody is in charge of the Army, as such. Except the Sec Gen DoD apparently, who is higher up on the food chain than the CoS.

    The real problem in the Irish DF is the amount of ARMY colonels in DFHQ making decisions about day to day Naval and Air Corps operations. Worst part is these are all ARMY appointments, so colonel equivalents in the Naval Service and Air Corps never get to even apply for these DFHQ appointments.

    Imagine if the shoe was on the other foot?

    The author had a useful graphic demonstrating the current situation.

  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 16,392 Mod ✭✭✭✭Manic Moran

    That's a different issue. An almost identical graph can be used to show the US chain of command to be bypassing the chiefs of the services. Replace CoS with CJC and the D/ACOS positions with the service chiefs. Just the US is a tad bigger so instead of brigades, there are combatant commanders, and more of them. The Chiefs don't issue orders to the forces, they are administrators and advisors, which seems to be the main crux of the perceived problem that the Irish Times article is meant to fix.

    On the other matter, does not Canada have a unified control system which works?

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,746 ✭✭✭roadmaster

    Looking at that flow chart no wonder you have Lt/Cols aproaching Tds about future roles within the new structure.

    I belive its not just the army that is going to have an issue with to many Commadants & Lt/Cols but the air corps as well.

    Is there anything to be said for having Flying warrant officers so the lads and ladies that want to fly only become WOs and the ones that want to get extra pips on the shoulders just except as part of the process they will have to fly desks aswell?

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,746 ✭✭✭roadmaster

    Its behind a paywall so i wont post the link but our Jnr Minister of Defence who has Zero powers or role with the department of defence is saying in the Indo to day defence spending should be doubled along with a 12 ship navy and combat aircraft.

  • Registered Users Posts: 24,074 ✭✭✭✭Larbre34

    Yeah, thats LoA3. So?

  • Registered Users Posts: 237 ✭✭mupper2

    It's unusual they'd let her do a kite flying article in a major newspaper on a Sunday….doubly so since there are 2 articles.

    We need to double defence spending to €3bn a year so we can defend ourselves’

    The job of Minister of State for European
    Union Affairs and Defence comes with the added role of being Ireland’s
    designated Minister for the Future in Europe. There’s a minister for the
    future in all other EU nations too.

    At a recent meeting of Europe ministers
    from across the EU, we tried to talk about the future.
    We initially focused on green issues —
    until my Lithuanian colleague, Simonas Satunas, interrupted to ask were
    we talking about a future of Europe in which Ukraine had won, or in
    which Ukraine had lost.Germany’s defence minister says Europe must be ready for war before the end of the decade He said these were completely different
    scenarios, with completely different prospects for Europe, for
    democracy, for public finances, for the functioning of the European

    It stopped the conversation in its tracks
    — because he was right. It was the only question we should have been
    We in Ireland have the luxury of living
    as far away from Russia as you can get, while remaining in Europe. From
    here, it can be hard to grasp the day-to-day pressure on the eastern
    front and what that is going to mean for our participation in

    We can forget the scale of the conflict
    until something horrifying makes the front pages — such as last Monday’s
    attack on the Okhmatdyt children’s hospital in central Kyiv.

    The war isn’t limited to Ukraine. It’s clear that the Black Sea region is of more importance to the EU than before.

    The Baltic states are dealing with hybrid warfare in the form of
    relentless Russian cyber-attacks and weaponised migration, whereby
    asylum seekers are taken by bus through Belarus and left at the borders.

    Moldova is continuing to face Russian attempts at destabilisation ahead
    of its upcoming elections and a referendum in the autumn on the
    country’s EU membership.

    There is no doubting the sense of urgency in continental Europe.
    Germany’s defence minister, Boris Pistorius, has said that Europe must
    be ready for war before the end of the decade.The fundamental duty of any state is the protection of its territory and its people
    We don’t want to have this conversation, but we must. The circumstances
    have changed. We have enjoyed a peace dividend from the creation of the
    EU — but over the past 10 years, since Russia’s invasion of Crimea, the
    security landscape has changed and we have to adapt. As we did with
    Covid. As we did with Brexit.

    In Europe, the far right is enjoying increasing success and tends to be
    sympathetic to Vladimir Putin. Even though France’s National Rally party
    failed to win a majority in last weekend’s elections, there is a strong
    possibility that its leader, Marine Le Pen, will win the presidency in

    In Germany, the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party — which is too far to the right even for Le Pen — is growing in strength.

    ​It is these changing circumstances in Europe to which we must adapt.

    Earlier this month the Dáil voted for several government defence motions
    including approval for Ireland to join the European Defence Agency
    cyber defence exercises and approval to join an EU defence cooperation
    project relating to critical seabed infrastructure protection.

    These actions will help build our Defence Forces’ ability to address risks and enhance cooperation with our EU partners.

    We spend about €1.2bn (or 0.23pc of GDP) on defence. Nato members have a
    target of spending 2pc of GDP, or almost 10 times as much. Or consider
    another neutral country, Austria, which spends €3.3bn (or 0.8pc of GDP)
    on defence.

    Russia, meanwhile, is now spending 7.1pc of GDP on defence — or, more accurately, on attack.

    The extensive Report of the Commission on the Defence Forces, published
    in 2022, found that the existing level of preparedness and spending
    would “leave the Defence Forces unable to conduct a meaningful defence
    of the State against a sustained act of aggression from a conventional
    military force”.

    ​In 2022, Ireland took the first major step toward ramping up our defence capabilities.

    The Cabinet took the decision to increase defence spending from €1.1bn
    to €1.5bn annually by 2028 (at January 2022 prices), the largest
    increase in the defence budget in the history of the State.

    The Report of the Commission on the Defence Forces laid out three
    possible tiers of defence spending, or levels of ambition: the first was
    to retain the existing capability, which would leave the State with
    woefully inadequate defences; the second (which was ultimately chosen)
    allowed for a significant upgrading of capability, including hiring an
    additional 2,000 personnel, both civil and military, above the current
    staffing of 9,500.The world has changed and will continue to change. We must adapt and react
    But there was also the third option — “developing full-spectrum defence
    capabilities to protect Ireland and its people to an extent comparable
    to similar sized countries in Europe”.

    This would include a fleet of at least 12 naval ships plus combat aircraft.

    This third option would come at a cost of almost €3bn annually, roughly
    double the current target. If that sounds like a lot, consider that
    €23.5bn is budgeted for the health service this year.

    I believe €3bn is a target we now need to be working steadily toward.
    The fundamental duty of any state is the protection of its territory and
    its people. This does not mean abandoning neutrality or joining Nato,
    it simply means being in a position to defend ourselves.

    Last year Denmark cancelled a public holiday that it had had since the
    17th century. It was cancelled to raise €427m so it could increase its
    defence spending more quickly. Denmark is not on the front line but it
    understands the danger.

    In Ireland, meanwhile, last year the Government introduced a new public holiday in recognition of Covid.

    The world has changed and will continue to change. We must adapt and react accordingly.

    ​Jennifer Carroll MacNeill is Fine Gael Minister of State with responsibility for EU Affairs and Defence

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,100 ✭✭✭jonnybigwallet

    GOod for her! Great to see some politicians talking a bit of common sense about this issue.

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 8,464 ✭✭✭Markcheese

    I dont disagree that we need to think seriously about defence and defence budgets,

    But knee jerk reactions like moving to a 12 ship naval service , so more fishery patrol vessels? , and we cant even crew what we've got , and have no way of monitoring or defending undersea pipelines and cables..

    Same with the air corp , a few newer helos are needed to replace the current ones , and we dont even have primary radar to see or know whats happening in our skys ..

    Slava ukraini 🇺🇦

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,442 ✭✭✭Dohvolle

    This is word for word out of the CODF recommendations. Nothing knee-jerk about it. Read it. You may learn something.

    Also it's Air CORPS. Not corp. Has been thus for over a hundred years now. Hopefully you'll have better luck getting the new name right.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,943 ✭✭✭sparky42

    interesting, is this the first suggestion from a sitting minister (even if she doesn’t have any powers) backing LoA3 on the record? Interesting timing as well in the run up to the budget, is it kite flying for finally starting even an above inflation increase?

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,943 ✭✭✭sparky42

    not sure if it’s paywall Ed or not, but according to the Sunday Times the Gardaí are apparently “alarmed” at the idea of ending ATCP roles like the large cash in transit protection, or the Portlaoise role. Seems it’s impossible that their armed units could be used for such roles….

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,039 ✭✭✭Notmything

    Alarmed that they might have to do it themselves.

    Done enough time in the hotel to be able to say it's time the army were pulled, although the few extra euro was nice even if the tax man took much of it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,442 ✭✭✭Dohvolle

    Its fair to say the only reason the army ended up doing anything ATCP like the CIT escorts, was that nobody else had the ability, or the interest to do it.

    Times have changed since the days of the retired DI interviewed in the article. AGS now have the equipment needed to do CIT in the same manner as how the army used to do it. They just lack the interest. Same goes for the bog. Is there a British Army regiment rotating through the UK high security prisons, or do their prisons just have better systems?

    Most of the dangerous subversives left the Bog long ago, and the handful of organised crime long timers lack the logistics that necessitated the arrival of the army to Portlaoise, and at one time Limerick prison too.

    As for cash in transit, there is a fraction of the cash in circulation now compared to what was being escorted in the 80s and 90s. Normal business is no longer using cash, mostly, and I'd say within a generation there will be few retailers using cash either.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,746 ✭✭✭roadmaster

    It looks like AGS are letting it be publicy known they dont want any of he armys ATCP duties.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,943 ✭✭✭sparky42

    Well feck them tbh, it’s not the job of the DF either, or at least shouldn’t be.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,442 ✭✭✭Dohvolle

    Exactly, DF only did it because AGS couldn't, for many reasons of their own making.

    Where else (other than tinpot dictatorships) are consignments of Cash protected by the military of that state, and not armed private security or police?

    I'm reminded of a visit myself and a friend made to the McDonalds in Kyiv some years ago, and the sight of their "securicor" guy arriving to collect the takings in the evening, followed by his colleague, dressed same as the Cash guys you see here, just with an AK over his shoulder.

    We aren't re-inventing the wheel here.

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 3,746 ✭✭✭roadmaster

    Who is the driving force behind this bill is it the Department or our elected officals?