Staying In Tonight?


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Tonight on RTÉ One at 9.35pm.

Peacekeepers: The Irish in South Lebanon.

Gareth Naughton writes:

Irish peacekeepers have been serving in the Middle East continuously since 1958. In that time, 47 Irish soldiers have paid the ultimate price in the cause of peace while on active service in south Lebanon, an area often beset by conflict and war.

In tonight’s documentary, viewers will hear from Sergeant Michael Merrigan who was serving alongside Private Billy Kedian (22) when he was killed in May 1999 as the Irish outpost where they were stationed came under attack from mortars fired by the South Lebanon Army militia group.

Pte Kedian, from Ballyhaunis in Co Mayo, was killed when a mortar struck directly in camp as the soldiers were making their way to the safety of a bunker, an emergency response known as ‘groundhog’.

26 thoughts on “Staying In Tonight?

    1. Drogg

      I wouldn’t call it a waste when someone gives it all for peace. What the men and women do out there is nothing but commendable and we are lucky that we are part of a nation that sees peace as such a worthy cause.

  1. Tish Mahorey

    The armed forces are getting quite a lot of media coverage in the last few years. Remarkably more than years ago when you never heard about them really. Now there’s documentaries and newspaper features on a fairly regular basis.

      1. scottser

        About the Niemba anbush? My uncle.Paddy was killed in it aged 20. Another incompetence covered up by the state – the soldiers who were killed only got their service medals in the noughties.

    1. Fully Keen

      Forget it. It’s too late for this argument. “My granda was in da army…” Etc. We prioritize an army over a working health system, social welfare schemes and a fully working infrastructure.

      We have some odd leftover sense of a need for a military machine that we inherited from our neighbours.

      We have no need for an army.

      And everybody knows it.

      But facts aren’t welcome on this backward little rock.

      1. Clampers Outside!

        Sorry wha?

        So, we should kick back and tell the world that we don’t give a tuppenny half n’ six pence what regional or international wars are on, we just want nothing to do with it nor care if it escalates because we would never have had an army if it wasn’t for the fact we wuz colonised.

        This is a “fact” now, OK….

        Right. Gotcha…..

      2. shitferbrains

        Defence comes 37th on the budget appropriations list. That hardly ” prioritises ” over social welfare. It’s below turf dole ffs.

  2. Cheech

    Dad served in Lebanon in the late 70’s / early 80’s, must mention this to him this evening!

      1. Spaghetti Hoop

        To which he’ll reply “okay son, there’s no need to sh……oh…em…right…wha? WHA?”

  3. Sharon Reynolds

    Irish soldiers are more like to die of a heart than in combat.

    The Irish Army is the most useless shower of soldiers in the world.


    1. Praetorian

      I’d love to rise to your pig ignorance but 7 tours of duty with the UN on peace keeping/enforcement means im more tolerant of clowns like you…and better than you.

  4. H

    Out of morbid curiosity, do we know how many of them were suicides, or if they are counted separately? A friend who served out there twice said that they had a suicide on both tours and this was not unusual.

  5. Truth in the News

    For what purpose do we send soldiers to defend the boders of Israel when they
    defy UN resolutions, the only fuction of the Irish Army is protect the elite that is
    in power and they only reason they are dispatched on “Peace Keeping Duties” is
    to relieve boredom, the Army would be better employed as Corp Of Engineering
    similar to the US Corp, look at all the projects they could constuct and build, if we
    are so committed peace keeping, how come we never used our Army to search
    US planes in Shannon carrying arm’s and renditions.

  6. Peter

    For the comments about our peacekeepers don’t comment when you don’t know what your talking about its your mindless opinion on something you have no clue.
    I can speak however as I am currently serving in the middle east at present so I know what I’m talking about

    Ok for you ignorant people who ask what do we need an army. I turn the question around to you.

    Have you car insurance
    Have you home insurance
    Have you insurance for your phone.

    You have all these insurances you pay for but in the hope that you will never have to use them.

    That’s what our army is. Ireland’s insurance policy.
    Trained to the highest order to deal with any situation thrown at them.

    The way the world is going now Ireland won’t be long before something happens and gets a nasty surprise and then the ignorant people who were asking the question will be the ones looking for protection.

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