What The Flip Is Going On?


Garda Commissioner Drew Harris arriving at Leinster House  to attend a Justice Commitee hearing last September

Following reports that Garda Commissioner Drew Harris’s unmarked 4×4 with heavily armed PSNI detectives on board was flung into the air at the gates of Garda HQ in Phoenix Park after a Garda on  duty activated a security bollard…

“Gardai and the Irish Defence Forces are the only service permitted to carry fire arms in the republic. That’s where the law is.

There are exceptions in some cases. Regrettably Drew Harris could be a target because of his former membership of the PSNI/RUC and his connections to the British security forces. Every care has to be taken with his protection. Measures for his security must be taken in a legal and proportional and appropriate way.

It is not standard operating procedure that an armed PSNI escort would travel to Garda headquarters to protect the Commissioner of An Garda Siochana. The officers concerned have no authority to carry firearms.”

Retired Detective Chief Superintendent John O’Brien on RTÉ Radio One dismissing the Garda’s explanation that a PSNI jeep with armed police bringing the Commissioner into the Republic was “normal procedure”.

‘Not normal procedure’ for PSNI officers to carry guns into Republic of Ireland, former top cop says after Garda HQ crash (irish Mirror)

PSNI escort for Harris to Dublin ‘most unusual’ decision (Irish Times)


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20 thoughts on “What The Flip Is Going On?

  1. newsjustin

    That’s odd. They drove with him in the car….because he felt under threat? Or did they just want a spin?

  2. eoin

    According to the Mirror which broke the story on Saturday night (the incident itself happened 25 March 2019)

    “A senior garda source last night told the Irish Mirror: “The garda saw a Northern Ireland jeep driving *at a pace* towards the barriers (at Garda HQ).”

    According to the justice minister Charlie Flanagan today, the jeep was travelling at a “walking pace”.

    The two can’t be right.

    I believe the Mirror, I don’t think a Garda would have activated the shield if the jeep was travelling at a “walking pace”

    This looks like Drew was showing off to his former colleagues and they were acting the maggot out of sense of entitlement.

    I hope GSOC opens an investigation and we don’t see heavily armed PSNI officers peforming routine tasks on roads this side of the border.

  3. millie st murderlark

    Funny. They were singing his praises on Newstalk the other day.

    The propaganda machine rumbles ever on.

  4. phil

    Must be time to remove him , might be too insistent on rule of law and professionalism ….

  5. Harry

    The question is if there is an exceptions procedure that was being followed.

    If so it was just a case of poor communication to the front line.

    If not the psni shouldn’t be performing those duties.

    I don’t blame him for wanting such security. The IRA put a bomb under his parents car which killed his father and injured his mother when they went to mass.

  6. martco


    not that I’d approve of the operational methods revealed here one way or other….
    the bit I’d be concentrating on now is how this embarrassment got leaked in the first place. I imagine Mr. Harris generates a LOT of friction within the existing cabal…fascinating to watch

    (though not nearly as fascinating as ‎Phoebe Waller-Bridge….last episode tonight :(

  7. BS

    I drive past Garda HQ every morning. They’ve been doing a massive refurb of the main gate over the last few months since after Xmas to put in one of those raising barriers. I reckon someone got a little trigger happy and not knowing how to use it.

    But also he should be driving around in a northern reg jeep with armed members of a foreign police force. Even the secret service have to get signed letters from the minister for justice to carry their weapons when they are here with a president.

    What would have happened if he was attacked? British police using illegally held weapons in Ireland

  8. SOQ

    The answer to this may actually come from the PSNI rather than An Garda Síochána. Were they given approval to be in another jurisdiction while carrying arms? Because that means they were also given approval to use them. If so, by whom?

    1. dav

      well they couldn’t be bottomed to call on ahead to say they were arriving at Garda HQ in a few minutes..

    2. My Man

      We should invite them into Monaghan to sort out the Lithuanian epidemic
      Breeding like rabbits up there they are I hear

  9. Iwerzon

    Harris is hated by a lot of long serving Guards. They are scared of the root and (special) branch changes he is proposing. I have no doubt this was an act of defiance – a ‘fupp you’ if you like. By the way, growing up on the border I have witnessed police and army from both jurisdictions crossing the border with guns. In fact, the local defense forces used to fill up their jeeps in Culloville when the petrol was cheaper in the north.

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