Mission Creep

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From top; Mario Blokken, head of Finabel, has said he has met representatives of the Irish Defence Forces

Via the office Luke Ming Flanagan MEP:

‘Meetings have taken placed between a member of the Defence Forces and Finabel, the European Interoperability Centre, according to documents releasedu nder Freedom of Information.

Emails outline preparations for a meeting on Monday 17th September 2018 at the office of the Irish Permanent Representative in Brussels, between Mr Mario Blokken, Finabel Permanent Secretariat, and the MILREP (Military Representative) of the Defence Forces.

More documents show that on the 22nd November 2018, the Irish Military Representative attended the Finabel “Annual Address to the European Military Representatives”, where representatives from the 22 countries were also in attendance.

Speaking to Mr. Flanagan’s office by phone, Mr Mario Blokken confirmed that meetings had taken place with a member of the Irish Defence Forces.

He went on to say the meeting went “well” and that he expected Defence Forces Ireland to apply first for observer status, and later for full membership of Finabel.

A separate Freedom of Information request revealed that Ireland is participating in ten PESCO projects and that the Department of Defence considers that Irish participation in EU military projects such as EU Battlegroups “contributes to our overall credibility in the Union”.

Founded in 1953, Finabel describes itself as “an informal international de facto association” initially focussing on cooperation between armament programmes, but now involved in “the harmonisation of army doctrines”. 22 member states of the EU are currently members of Finabel.

Previously Ireland had only stated its involvement in two PESCO projects, and no further update had been given.’

Previously: EU Army on Broadsheet

Luke Ming Flanagan said:

“The Taoiseach and Minister for Defence Leo Varadkar needs to tell us why it is in Ireland’s interest to turn away from our traditional position of military neutrality and voluntarily involve ourselves in this growing imperial project. Even our newly elected President, Michael D Higgins has said that the government has not done enough to explain this decision.”

Luke Ming Flanagan

9 thoughts on “Mission Creep

  1. Eoin

    Some unelected pencil pusher at the Dept of Defence thinks it will contribute to Ireland’s credibility if we participate in EU military projects. “Credibility” with whom? I bet our credibility was really enhanced when we stumped up 20% of the EU’s bank bailouts just so foreign bondholders could be repaid. Credibility as dim patsies.

    This is what the Constitution says.

    “The State shall not adopt a decision taken by
    the European Council to establish a common
    defence pursuant to Article 42 of the Treaty on
    European Union where that common defence
    would include the State.”

    This is our so-called neutrality clause. What the wannabe Rambos at the Dept of Defence want is to undermine the Constitution by chipping away at our distance from EU military projects. Finabel is the latest example.

    1. Fact Checker

      There are small but significant numbers of Irish defence forces personnel and department of defence staff based in Brussels to interact with European Defence Agency and NATO. This is not a secret, and it would be very strange if they spent their time in Brussels not meeting anyone.

      Ireland is obviously not a part of a military alliance. But we have next to zero chance of being at war with any other EU or NATO member, and are closely aligned on most geopoliticalissues. Not to mention trade, agriculture, etc.

      The question is more: why should Ireland lose out by NOT participating?

  2. Roger Opinions

    A tiny country with a population under 5 million has no need for an army.

    Thankfully our health care system doesn’t have hundreds of people waiting on trolleys everyday and a new hospital will end up costing 2-3 billion.

    Let’s keep the “tradition” of soldiering up. Very important.

    We live on a mad island. And if you can’t see it, you never will.

    1. Rob_G

      Yeah – not sure if you read the newspapers, but a paramilitary organisation has just set off a car bomb 5 miles from our border, so I think we should consider holding onto our armed forces for the time being.

  3. Dub Spot

    Wouldn’t mind being behind old Mario there in a firefight. Chances of me being hit: 0%. Chances of him not being hit: 100 %

  4. bisted

    …today the zionists bombarded Damascus over the heads of Irish Defence Forces on the Golan Heights…their credibility in the area has been slowly diminished over the years before being totally compromised by Shatter…bring them home now before they have to fight on the frontline for the zionazis…

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