Locked And Loaded


From top Croke Park on Saturday; Half-time video featuring Irish Rangers on manoeuvres


Croke Park, Dublin

Ros writes:

Was at the hurling semi final on Saturday. They had some of the armed forces out holding large flags at the beginning of the match to mark 60 years of Ireland in the UN. Fair enough.

At half time though they showed this video. Not sure what a video of people “locking and loading” rifles has got to do with peacekeeping, it was bizarre to say the least. Seemed overly militaristic.


52 thoughts on “Locked And Loaded

  1. Praetorian

    The UN missions Irish troops are involved in now are peace enforcement as opposed to peace keeping…’locked & loaded’ would be SOP while on patrol or on checkpoints.
    The ARW iis now the primary recce force on any new UN missions…an internatioally highly commended unit.

    1. Daisy Chainsaw

      The next video will have comely maidens Irish dancing to that traditional Celtic tune “Ymra Eht Nioj”.

  2. Kolmo

    Inject this military marketing into normal everyday social events to normalise war and mechanical destruction of far away places and people. FG are hell bent on killing whats left of our non-aligned status and tapping the tax payer to pay for increases in military spending – who has shares in military or ‘dual use’ technologies is a question I’d ask..

    Bad form GAA, bad form.

    1. Bonkers

      In the US the playing of the anthem and displaying of gigantic American flags by the military at sports events only began post 911- also the Dept of Homeland Security pays the NFL to do so

        1. Cian

          And NFL have been doing it since WW2:
          1941-42: Playing the national anthem before the start of regular season baseball games became the standard. And with the U.S. in World War II now, the National Football League also included the playing of the anthem before games.
          •1945: NFL commissioner Elmer Layden said, “The playing of the national anthem should be as much a part of every game as the kickoff. We must not drop it simply because the war is over. We should never forget what it stands for.”


  3. Not on your Nelly Too

    No use arguing. A tiny country like Ireland needs an army. “My grandad was in the IRA…” “proud tradition…” etc.

    Now the GAA are going down the jingoistic route. Combining recruitment with feel good sports. Works for drinking and gambling.

    *granny dies waiting on a trolley, in. A cold corridor*

    *water pipe bursts*

    *cant use fibre, because I don’t have fibre*

    *joins an army to use UN surplus ammunition at the weekend and go stand on a mountain protecting Israel if I’m lucky*

    This country needs to grow up. Faster.

  4. Bernie

    Very bad form indeed. Leave this type of military display to the warlords of the world, the Brits and yanks. It has no place here.

  5. bisted

    …wonder what Squee had to say about this…he and his military attachee were there…very vocal about betting in sport…

  6. harboner

    JFC you’re fans of a sport where every match starts with ‘The Soldier’s Song’ and you’re complaining that a recruitment ad for the military is too militaristic. what a brains trust this nation has

  7. rotide

    Local woman Ros expresses surprise that video of military unit features shots of weapons and ordinance. “I thought the ‘Peacekeepers’ went around giving flowers to local ethnic lads, the fact they actually use weapons pure shocked me”

    1. ros

      Eh not a Woman, not that it should matter what my gender is. I just thought the inclusion of that specific video that focused heavily on firearms rather than one that highlighted the history of the armed forces involvement in the UN was not a great choice.

      1. rotide

        Local lad Ros expresses dumbfoundment that the history of UN Peacekeepers also involves weapons

  8. Anomanomanom

    Its softening us up for the eventual EU ARMY. Make it seem normal, celebrate it at family events and by the time the EU army happens there might be less up roar.

    1. Airey Naïve

      I presume you mean Altar Boys.

      They would be cheaper. A Mars Bar or Twix here and there…

  9. Jake38

    “Overly militaristic” would have been if they had opened fire into the crowd.

    Get a grip.

    1. Tony

      Nah that would have been overtly murderous. This video is NRA quality gun porn. But it’s too long.. Half as long would be grand. And no harm if the lads could be oiled up and in the nip apart from the balaclavas. For the laydeez

  10. Nicorigo

    What’s the point of promoting over-armed peacekeeping (sic) at the half time of a sport event.
    Euro-atlantist warmonging proganda if you ask me…but you don’t…but I tell you nethertheless.

    And by the way there is no such thing as a european army. The European army is called NATO.

      1. Nicorigo

        Ireland is part of EU and EU places all states members under the NATO umbrella. So de facto Ireland is part of NATO. As it goes for Neutral country, Shannon airport shenanigans are not very neutral now are they?

          1. Praetorian.

            i served in Kosovo under NATO….in Chad under EUFOR…Irish forces do serve under NATO.

  11. Formerly known as @ireland.com

    Definitely, no militarisation of sports needed. Leave it to the Yanks, Brits and Aussies.

  12. Airey Naïve

    The irony – the GAA – a so-called community organisation steeped in paramilitarism and a byword for violence, bigotry and prejudice in our history. NI volunteers got to play with armalites instead of hurleys like the ICA.

    Two words: Liam Miller.

    If it was Glasgow Rangers they wouldn’t even be allowed on the pitch at Croke Park- a) their Unionist prods narrative, b) they’re Brits, and c) play soccer.

    Government money poured into these Bass-swilling, Sunday carvery-dinner politicians and armchair experts.


    1. johnny

      Croke Park was opened to soccer and rugby in April 2005,do try keep up,England has played there !

  13. Jesús, María, and Josépha

    GAA fans are locked most of the time. Quite a few of the younger ones are loaded too. Looks like a good event, if somewhat closer to a Gay Pride march than a display of military expertise. Whatever. At least Mannix Flynn wont have a hissy about the Artane Band.

  14. simon@simon.com

    Where’s the detail on this?

    What’s the GAA statement on militarising sport like the Americans?

    What Minister, entity or department pushed this?

    Why now in particular?

    1. Nigel

      Unless they’re issuing guns to the players instead of hurleys they’re not really militarising the sport although the hurley-gun would be a good weapon for the zombie apocalypse.

  15. PESCO Dispenser

    Trichet must have told Leo he had to up numbers for PESCO and, rather than paying the soliders we already have a decent wage (€20,499 per annum starting salary for a job where you can get shot at), head down to the gammon convention in Croker (tongue in cheek, I jest) with a StatComm-esque video complete with lots of cool looking guns and see if you can hearts and minds a few young fellas to squander their leaving cert to become Israeli borderguards.

    1. Cian

      Get shot at?
      If you are likely to be shot at – then you are on a foreign tour. And then you get ‘danger money’ overseas allowance about 15K (tax free).
      And you are fed and quartered while abroad.

      So for a young lass with no family to support – this is a lot of money.

  16. Termagant

    Like it or not a country needs to have armed forces and if you want people to do the job you have to make it look good.

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