embraer420
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Posts: 139
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Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Tue Jul 09, 2019 9:56 pm

Hello all,
I'm looking for everyone's opinion on the Irish Air Corps and the fact that they don't have the ability to defend Irish airspace. I think it is quite frankly ridiculous and the AC, like the military as a whole is severely underfunded. Of course the government seems to think otherwise. I find it unusual that Ireland can't even afford a basic jet trainer when countries of similar size and GDP, such as Finland and Denmark, can afford multiple squadrons of proper jets like F-18s and F-16s, and now even F-35s.

I know there are arguments for the Air Corps actually getting smaller, there was a presidential candidate last year who said that he believes they should sell all of the fixed wing aircraft, leaving just helicopters for police work/air ambulance/SAR. This would enable them to slash the budget even further. And of course there's the small group of people know as the AFRI (Action from Ireland) who complained when the government was considering buying used airframes from the Czech Republic, saying that by purchasing fighter jets we would be giving up our neutrality( There was an article in the Irish Times about it in 2015.)

The AC has no primary radar, meaning it can't actually see aircraft if they switch their transponders off. Kind of seems like a good investment considering most transatlantic flights cross our airspace. But even if they got a proper radar, they have no way of intercepting a rouge aircraft. The PC-9s are a joke, they are decent as a basic trainer but the government is trying to peddle them as the country's air defence solution which is completely ridiculous, they are slow and have a low service ceiling and endurance, and are completely unsuitable for intercepting aircraft.
What we need is a light supersonic jet, ideally a squadron of F-16s or JAS-39 Gripens, with two on QRA duty at any given time. Obviously these are a bit costly for Ireland. The government considered buying six Aero L-159s a while ago but didn't as they were deemed too expensive. The L-159s are subsonic and aren't great interceptors, they would probably be too slow for QRA . They wouldn't offer a huge advantage over the PC-9. I propose that the government make an investment in national defence, and buy a squadron of KAL FA-50s or HAL Tejas. These aircraft are significantly cheaper than even second hand F-16s and would provide adequate protection. I'm not familiar with the Tejas but I know that the FA-50 is currently unable to use BVR weapons, but there are plans to upgrade them to be able to do so. There are also plans to upgrade to the more powerful F414 engine. The FA-50 is a very manoeuvrable jet, and with the upgrades would be a decent interceptor.
 
Ozair
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Tue Jul 09, 2019 10:13 pm

embraer420 wrote:
Hello all,
I'm looking for everyone's opinion on the Irish Air Corps and the fact that they don't have the ability to defend Irish airspace. I think it is quite frankly ridiculous and the AC, like the military as a whole is severely underfunded. Of course the government seems to think otherwise. I find it unusual that Ireland can't even afford a basic jet trainer when countries of similar size and GDP, such as Finland and Denmark, can afford multiple squadrons of proper jets like F-18s and F-16s, and now even F-35s.

I know there are arguments for the Air Corps actually getting smaller, there was a presidential candidate last year who said that he believes they should sell all of the fixed wing aircraft, leaving just helicopters for police work/air ambulance/SAR. This would enable them to slash the budget even further. And of course there's the small group of people know as the AFRI (Action from Ireland) who complained when the government was considering buying used airframes from the Czech Republic, saying that by purchasing fighter jets we would be giving up our neutrality( There was an article in the Irish Times about it in 2015.)

The AC has no primary radar, meaning it can't actually see aircraft if they switch their transponders off. Kind of seems like a good investment considering most transatlantic flights cross our airspace. But even if they got a proper radar, they have no way of intercepting a rouge aircraft. The PC-9s are a joke, they are decent as a basic trainer but the government is trying to peddle them as the country's air defence solution which is completely ridiculous, they are slow and have a low service ceiling and endurance, and are completely unsuitable for intercepting aircraft.
What we need is a light supersonic jet, ideally a squadron of F-16s or JAS-39 Gripens, with two on QRA duty at any given time. Obviously these are a bit costly for Ireland. The government considered buying six Aero L-159s a while ago but didn't as they were deemed too expensive. The L-159s are subsonic and aren't great interceptors, they would probably be too slow for QRA . They wouldn't offer a huge advantage over the PC-9. I propose that the government make an investment in national defence, and buy a squadron of KAL FA-50s or HAL Tejas. These aircraft are significantly cheaper than even second hand F-16s and would provide adequate protection. I'm not familiar with the Tejas but I know that the FA-50 is currently unable to use BVR weapons, but there are plans to upgrade them to be able to do so. There are also plans to upgrade to the more powerful F414 engine. The FA-50 is a very manoeuvrable jet, and with the upgrades would be a decent interceptor.


The question should be asked, defend Irish airspace from who? Ireland has a stated policy of militarily neutrality so I can see why they don’t bother spending too much money.

If this was really an issue then perhaps the EU should take over airspace responsibility? Ireland is a NATO partner for Peace but that obviously doesn’t really mean much and I can’t see NATO being inclined to patrol their borders.
 
embraer420
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Posts: 139
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Tue Jul 09, 2019 10:27 pm

Ozair wrote:
embraer420 wrote:
Hello all,
I'm looking for everyone's opinion on the Irish Air Corps and the fact that they don't have the ability to defend Irish airspace. I think it is quite frankly ridiculous and the AC, like the military as a whole is severely underfunded. Of course the government seems to think otherwise. I find it unusual that Ireland can't even afford a basic jet trainer when countries of similar size and GDP, such as Finland and Denmark, can afford multiple squadrons of proper jets like F-18s and F-16s, and now even F-35s.

I know there are arguments for the Air Corps actually getting smaller, there was a presidential candidate last year who said that he believes they should sell all of the fixed wing aircraft, leaving just helicopters for police work/air ambulance/SAR. This would enable them to slash the budget even further. And of course there's the small group of people know as the AFRI (Action from Ireland) who complained when the government was considering buying used airframes from the Czech Republic, saying that by purchasing fighter jets we would be giving up our neutrality( There was an article in the Irish Times about it in 2015.)

The AC has no primary radar, meaning it can't actually see aircraft if they switch their transponders off. Kind of seems like a good investment considering most transatlantic flights cross our airspace. But even if they got a proper radar, they have no way of intercepting a rouge aircraft. The PC-9s are a joke, they are decent as a basic trainer but the government is trying to peddle them as the country's air defence solution which is completely ridiculous, they are slow and have a low service ceiling and endurance, and are completely unsuitable for intercepting aircraft.
What we need is a light supersonic jet, ideally a squadron of F-16s or JAS-39 Gripens, with two on QRA duty at any given time. Obviously these are a bit costly for Ireland. The government considered buying six Aero L-159s a while ago but didn't as they were deemed too expensive. The L-159s are subsonic and aren't great interceptors, they would probably be too slow for QRA . They wouldn't offer a huge advantage over the PC-9. I propose that the government make an investment in national defence, and buy a squadron of KAL FA-50s or HAL Tejas. These aircraft are significantly cheaper than even second hand F-16s and would provide adequate protection. I'm not familiar with the Tejas but I know that the FA-50 is currently unable to use BVR weapons, but there are plans to upgrade them to be able to do so. There are also plans to upgrade to the more powerful F414 engine. The FA-50 is a very manoeuvrable jet, and with the upgrades would be a decent interceptor.


The question should be asked, defend Irish airspace from who? Ireland has a stated policy of militarily neutrality so I can see why they don’t bother spending too much money.

If this was really an issue then perhaps the EU should take over airspace responsibility? Ireland is a NATO partner for Peace but that obviously doesn’t really mean much and I can’t see NATO being inclined to patrol their borders.


Ireland is a neutral country, we aren't going to join NATO so no air policing mission for us. There have been multiple incursions by TU-95s into Irish airspace, and the RAF responded to those. But as a neutral country we shouldn't be relying on a foreign air force to monitor our airspace and defend it, nevermind the fact that there's no official agreement with the RAF so we can't be sure they will respond.

I believe that the FA-50 is the way to go for Ireland, it is a good jet and also it's very cheap. We're not going to be deploying jets overseas to fight other countries' air forces so we don't need anything too elaborate. We just need something light and fast that can fulfil a QRA role and respond at a moment's notice to an unresponsive airliner or airspace incursion.
 
Ozair
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:19 pm

embraer420 wrote:

Ireland is a neutral country, we aren't going to join NATO so no air policing mission for us. There have been multiple incursions by TU-95s into Irish airspace, and the RAF responded to those. But as a neutral country we shouldn't be relying on a foreign air force to monitor our airspace and defend it, nevermind the fact that there's no official agreement with the RAF so we can't be sure they will respond.

I believe that the FA-50 is the way to go for Ireland, it is a good jet and also it's very cheap. We're not going to be deploying jets overseas to fight other countries' air forces so we don't need anything too elaborate. We just need something light and fast that can fulfil a QRA role and respond at a moment's notice to an unresponsive airliner or airspace incursion.

I get the Russian thing and to a much lessor extent the airliner issue but is that worth the cost? Buying and operating a fast jet fleet, even the FA/-50, would still be a 50 to 100 million plus per year exercise by the time you include all the ground, training and maintenance issues. As an example Hungary leased Gripens for approximately US$725 million over a ten year period but that didn’t cover their own government and operating costs.

I expect it would be far easier for Ireland to simply pay the UK a small yearly amount to patrol/police Irish airspace, or perhaps institute a pay per use of UK air assets for every time Ireland request they chase down Russian aircraft or errant airliners. Given the infrequency of the occurrences it seems the more cost effective solution for a small militarily neutral nation who has a desire to maintain airspace sovereignty.
 
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kanban
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:20 am

What you need is a few P-8s and more search and rescue helo's
 
Ozair
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:48 am

kanban wrote:
What you need is a few P-8s and more search and rescue helo's

A P-8 would be significant overkill. Ireland isn’t hunting submarines and already operate the CN-235. If increasing maritime security was a greater concern they could acquire CN-295s/ATR-72s or the like but I doubt it is an issue.
 
art
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:56 am

Ozair wrote:
I expect it would be far easier for Ireland to simply pay the UK a small yearly amount to patrol/police Irish airspace, or perhaps institute a pay per use of UK air assets for every time Ireland request they chase down Russian aircraft or errant airliners. Given the infrequency of the occurrences it seems the more cost effective solution for a small militarily neutral nation who has a desire to maintain airspace sovereignty.


To me the only thing of real concern would be hijacked airliners and having the capability to intercept and destroy them to prevent them being flown into ground targets. I'm not sure how the British government would view an Irish government request for the RAF to do such a thing. Fortunately Ireland is neutral and does not make enemies by attacking other countries so such a threat scenario ever arising seems extremely unlikely to me.
 
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Spacepope
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 3:32 am

For the stated need, I fail to see why a few long range SAM units wouldn’t be just as useful.
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Ozair
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:50 am

art wrote:
Ozair wrote:
I expect it would be far easier for Ireland to simply pay the UK a small yearly amount to patrol/police Irish airspace, or perhaps institute a pay per use of UK air assets for every time Ireland request they chase down Russian aircraft or errant airliners. Given the infrequency of the occurrences it seems the more cost effective solution for a small militarily neutral nation who has a desire to maintain airspace sovereignty.


To me the only thing of real concern would be hijacked airliners and having the capability to intercept and destroy them to prevent them being flown into ground targets. I'm not sure how the British government would view an Irish government request for the RAF to do such a thing. Fortunately Ireland is neutral and does not make enemies by attacking other countries so such a threat scenario ever arising seems extremely unlikely to me.

You would assume that an agreement would cover UK rules of engagement over Irish territory but given the UK has previously scrambled jets to cover Russian incursions into Irish airspace it doesn’t seem insurmountable.

It would appear though that at some form of agreement does exist,
then Fianna Fáil defense minister, Michael Smith, let slip in the Dáil that the RAF would come to Ireland’s aid if there was a 9/11-like incident over Ireland.
RAF cover is required because the Irish Army Air Corps lacks the kind of aircraft with the speed and altitude capability required to intercept Russian bombers.

https://www.irishcentral.com/news/raf-f ... h-airspace

Spacepope wrote:
For the stated need, I fail to see why a few long range SAM units wouldn’t be just as useful.

I’m not sure that would be a good look nor as effective. An errant airliner doesn’t now it is being targeted by a SAM system while it certainly knows it is being monitored/targeted when a fighter jet flies right beside or past it.
 
Planeflyer
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 5:33 am

They’ll get an AF if they ever have a disaster that could been prevented by same.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 5:56 am

art wrote:
Ozair wrote:
I expect it would be far easier for Ireland to simply pay the UK a small yearly amount to patrol/police Irish airspace, or perhaps institute a pay per use of UK air assets for every time Ireland request they chase down Russian aircraft or errant airliners. Given the infrequency of the occurrences it seems the more cost effective solution for a small militarily neutral nation who has a desire to maintain airspace sovereignty.


To me the only thing of real concern would be hijacked airliners and having the capability to intercept and destroy them to prevent them being flown into ground targets.


I am not sure that shooting down a passenger airliner with passengers on board would be legal in Ireland to beginn with, it isn´t here and the constitutions are fairly similar....

best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
VSMUT
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 8:22 am

embraer420 wrote:
I find it unusual that Ireland can't even afford a basic jet trainer when countries of similar size and GDP, such as Finland and Denmark, can afford multiple squadrons of proper jets like F-18s and F-16s, and now even F-35s.


Breaking news: Denmark can't afford them either.

A shill will be along shortly to alleviate any worries you might have.
 
mxaxai
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:14 am

Planeflyer wrote:
They’ll get an AF if they ever have a disaster that could been prevented by same.

I assume this disaster would be your "russian invasion" fantasy?


I don't see any need for an Irish fast jet fleet. If anything, a small long-range patrol aircraft could be useful to monitor the Atlantic. This could help SAR efforts, control fishing and shipping as well as aid environmental protection. Something like the Gulfstream maritime patrol aircraft. The P-8 would likely be overkill.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 11:07 am

mxaxai wrote:
Planeflyer wrote:
They’ll get an AF if they ever have a disaster that could been prevented by same.

I assume this disaster would be your "russian invasion" fantasy?.


:checkmark:
because those 500~600 Russian fighters would just wipe out the 2k+ Fighters in the EU (w/o Non-EU NATO).........

best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
embraer420
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 11:08 am

mxaxai wrote:
Planeflyer wrote:
They’ll get an AF if they ever have a disaster that could been prevented by same.

I assume this disaster would be your "russian invasion" fantasy?

It is highly unlikely that Russia will ever invade Ireland, but they will probably continue to fly through our airspace with their transponders turned off.

mxaxai wrote:
I don't see any need for an Irish fast jet fleet. If anything, a small long-range patrol aircraft could be useful to monitor the Atlantic. This could help SAR efforts, control fishing and shipping as well as aid environmental protection. Something like the Gulfstream maritime patrol aircraft. The P-8 would likely be overkill.

Yes the P-8 is too much, a Gulfstream would be better. But there is a need for a fast jet fleet. Irish airspace is extremely busy, what with all of the transatlantic traffic as well as local flights so you can never be sure that the next MH370 won't occur here. These things can happen anywhere and the country needs to be prepared.
 
embraer420
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 12:12 pm

tommy1808 wrote:

I am not sure that shooting down a passenger airliner with passengers on board would be legal in Ireland to beginn with, it isn´t here and the constitutions are fairly similar....

best regards
Thomas


I'm going to assume you're based in the UK ( I'm probably wrong but anyway) or somewhere else in the EU. A lot of countries including the UK, US etc. have some form of quick reaction alert, whether it's covering the whole country permanently( as in the UK) or major events and certain areas (as in the US). Their jets will follow an escalation of force procedure to determine if the aircraft is definitely hijacked and a major threat, and if it is, they will shoot it down, if it is a Cessna 172 or a B777 is irrelevant, they followed procedure and determined it to be a major threat, so it is shot down. As bad as it is, it is better kill everyone on the plane than have countless people on the ground die as well.
 
Ozair
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 12:50 pm

embraer420 wrote:

I'm going to assume you're based in the UK ( I'm probably wrong but anyway) or somewhere else in the EU. A lot of countries including the UK, US etc. have some form of quick reaction alert, whether it's covering the whole country permanently( as in the UK) or major events and certain areas (as in the US). Their jets will follow an escalation of force procedure to determine if the aircraft is definitely hijacked and a major threat, and if it is, they will shoot it down, if it is a Cessna 172 or a B777 is irrelevant, they followed procedure and determined it to be a major threat, so it is shot down. As bad as it is, it is better kill everyone on the plane than have countless people on the ground die as well.

Tommy is from Germany but I'm not sure that matters. I don't agree with your escalation argument, we haven't seen this actually occur. If anything based on the graphs I have posted below the threat has lessened as security improved. The statistics don't lend themselves to this being a current threat that will result in significant casualties. 9/11 really changed how the world views the threat of airliners but also made it significantly more difficult to hijack and create the types of casualties you are concerned about.

Hijackings up to 2015 and a significant reduction since 2001
Image

Deaths from hijackings and a significant reduction since 2001.
Image
 
tommy1808
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:42 pm

embraer420 wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:

I am not sure that shooting down a passenger airliner with passengers on board would be legal in Ireland to beginn with, it isn´t here and the constitutions are fairly similar....

best regards
Thomas


I'm going to assume you're based in the UK ( I'm probably wrong but anyway) or somewhere else in the EU.


Germany

A lot of countries including the UK, US etc. have some form of quick reaction alert, whether it's covering the whole country permanently( as in the UK) or major events and certain areas (as in the US). Their jets will follow an escalation of force procedure to determine if the aircraft is definitely hijacked and a major threat, and if it is, they will shoot it down, if it is a Cessna 172 or a B777 is irrelevant, they followed procedure and determined it to be a major threat, so it is shot down.


So does Germany, they also scramble a lot. However, the, as far as i know, only time such a system to permit a shutdown of a highjacked airliner has so far been tested in court is here, and the judges decided that

it is better kill everyone on the plane than have countless people on the ground die as well.


is not true. There is no lives lost vs. lives saved calculation that has any validity, shooting down an highjacked airliners is illegal, unless it is certain that only highjackers are on bord. It is irreconcilable with human rights for the state to deliberately kill an innocent person, regardless of circumstance.

Ozair wrote:
If anything based on the graphs I have posted below the threat has lessened as security improved. The statistics don't lend themselves to this being a current threat that will result in significant casualties. 9/11 really changed how the world views the threat of airliners but also made it significantly more difficult to hijack and create the types of casualties you are concerned about.


:checkmark:
It used to be "remain calm and do what they say". Now its "overwhelm them if you want to live" as soon as someone looks at the cockpit door wrong.


best regards
Thomas
This Singature is a safe space......
 
Armadillo1
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:02 pm

must be russian hackers provoke martian invasion directly to Ireland
 
GDB
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:38 pm

No need, as stated agreements with the UK government can cover any need, if one arises and they want, as you'd expect, a rapid response, hopefully that includes supersonic overflight of Ireland!

There is a sort of precedent, I can remember when the Air Corps's largest helicopter was this;
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A%C3%A9ro ... 8030721401).jpg
So in air-sea rescue situations, often RAF/RN Sea Kings would have been used, some of these incidents would have been in Irish waters.

While I agree that Eire is not the most likely target of Islamic fundamentalist terrorism, the idea that they are safe because 'they don't attack anyone' was tested to destruction in Bali in 2002.

If the Irish Republic wants to increase spending in this area, better it be on more OPV's, not only for SAR work but maritime policing, plenty of contraband finances terrorism after all. Choppers too.
As well as retaining their small but well trained army.
 
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AirlineCritic
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 5:44 pm

embraer420 wrote:
I find it unusual that Ireland can't even afford a basic jet trainer when countries of similar size and GDP, such as Finland and Denmark, can afford multiple squadrons of proper jets like F-18s and F-16s, and now even F-35s.


If you'd like to to trade places on the map, Finland would be up for it :-)

Ireland in a new location would probably quickly find a need to acquire an Air Force :-)
 
embraer420
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 7:50 pm

Armadillo1 wrote:
must be russian hackers provoke martian invasion directly to Ireland

That would be a bit disastrous alright. I think the martians have F-35s as well so even if we did have a couple of light fighter jets they wouldn't be much use.
 
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Spacepope
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:09 pm

embraer420 wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
I don't see any need for an Irish fast jet fleet. If anything, a small long-range patrol aircraft could be useful to monitor the Atlantic. This could help SAR efforts, control fishing and shipping as well as aid environmental protection. Something like the Gulfstream maritime patrol aircraft. The P-8 would likely be overkill.

Yes the P-8 is too much, a Gulfstream would be better. But there is a need for a fast jet fleet. Irish airspace is extremely busy, what with all of the transatlantic traffic as well as local flights so you can never be sure that the next MH370 won't occur here. These things can happen anywhere and the country needs to be prepared.


I fail to see how a manned fighter would possibly prevent an MH370 type incident in Ireland.
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embraer420
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:23 pm

Spacepope wrote:

I fail to see how a manned fighter would possibly prevent an MH370 type incident in Ireland.


Well a fast jet interceptor could respond to the airliner as soon as transponders are switched off and communication is lost and escort it to the nearest suitable airport. You mentioned an SAM system earlier, this would not be suitable for dealing with either hijacked/unresponsive airliners or intruding foreign aircraft. They wouldn't know that they were being targeted.
 
embraer420
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:33 pm

Ozair wrote:
I don't agree with your escalation argument, we haven't seen this actually occur. If anything based on the graphs I have posted below the threat has lessened as security improved. The statistics don't lend themselves to this being a current threat that will result in significant casualties. 9/11 really changed how the world views the threat of airliners but also made it significantly more difficult to hijack and create the types of casualties you are concerned about.

Hijackings up to 2015 and a significant reduction since 2001
Image

Deaths from hijackings and a significant reduction since 2001.
Image

Yes, I get that the threat has lessened post-9/11, what with increased security and all, but you can't rule it out. There is a reason other countries have procedures in place to deal with this situation, and just because Ireland is relatively small and "neutral" doesn't mean it can't happen here. We have fairly busy airspace and any potential hijacker who's done twenty minutes of research would realise that we're a weak spot. The same way the Russian AF knew that we were a weak spot and flew through our airspace multiple times to mess with us and see what would happen.
 
Ozair
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:54 pm

embraer420 wrote:
Spacepope wrote:

I fail to see how a manned fighter would possibly prevent an MH370 type incident in Ireland.


Well a fast jet interceptor could respond to the airliner as soon as transponders are switched off and communication is lost and escort it to the nearest suitable airport. You mentioned an SAM system earlier, this would not be suitable for dealing with either hijacked/unresponsive airliners or intruding foreign aircraft. They wouldn't know that they were being targeted.

You are making a few logical leaps there. First, how long it takes for the jet to catch up to the airliner. Even going supersonic, which would significantly impact overall range due to afterburner fuel use, the fighter is going to take some time to catch the airliner. Second, with the transponder off the fighter also has to find the airliner. While the fighter may have a radar the airliner could have flown in any direction since that moment and therefore the search volume required grows massively with time. If they are operating in the congested airspace around Ireland then the sky is full of contacts and it would be hard to sort out the wheat from the chaff.

These problems aren’t easy to solve. Scrambling jets takes time and an aircraft flying at M1.3 covers approx a thousand miles an hour. That is 16 miles a minute and therefore for a target 150 miles away, not a short nor unrealistic distance for a scrambled fighter jet to have to travel to arrive at a target, the jet takes at least 10 minutes to arrive plus take off time. In that same ten minutes the airliner, at M0.8, has also flown 110 miles in any direction. That 110 miles is probably longer than the range of an FA-50 radar, if the fighter jet even knows where to look, so the interception becomes very difficult. Once it gets there how much fuel remains for the fighter, after using so much to accelerate and stay above M1, to actually stay on station with an airliner that could have eight to twenty times the fighters range. Does Ireland then have to also stand up an A2A refuelling capability to handle these scenarios?

The Irish Government has spoken about but yet to acquire a long range search radar so until then would be reliant on just the ATC network of secondary radar systems, in other words not great chance of finding a target that doesn’t have a transponder on. Even long range search radars have limitations such as the radar horizon to contend with so if the airliner decides to descent the search radar may not be able to acquire it anyway.

All in all the ability of fighters to prosecute a MH370 situation is governed by a host of variables that make the interception a difficult prospect.
 
Ozair
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:02 pm

embraer420 wrote:
Yes, I get that the threat has lessened post-9/11, what with increased security and all, but you can't rule it out.

Agree you can’t rule it out but the likelihood of an incident occurring is low, so that creates a strong argument about whether the investment in a jet capability solely for interception is worth it.

embraer420 wrote:
There is a reason other countries have procedures in place to deal with this situation, and just because Ireland is relatively small and "neutral" doesn't mean it can't happen here.

Again agree but those countries already have invested in the capability for not only interception but often other reasons, such as national defence. Ireland doesn’t have a lot of justification for the other reasons to maintain a fighter fleet.

New Zealand is a similar example albeit with less congested airspace. It no longer maintains a fighter jet fleet. It simply cannot justify the cost based on the likelihood of an incident occurring.

embraer420 wrote:
We have fairly busy airspace and any potential hijacker who's done twenty minutes of research would realise that we're a weak spot. The same way the Russian AF knew that we were a weak spot and flew through our airspace multiple times to mess with us and see what would happen.

I don’t see how Ireland is a weak spot. Security is the same in Ireland as other locations so choosing Ireland, which is somewhat devoid of targets of political/terror significance, seems unlikely.

As for the Russians, they are not interesting in Ireland, their use of Irish airspace would have been to test the UK/NATO response to that move, not how the Irish Government/Military would react.
 
Armadillo1
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 12:47 am

embraer420 wrote:
Armadillo1 wrote:
must be russian hackers provoke martian invasion directly to Ireland

That would be a bit disastrous alright. I think the martians have F-35s as well so even if we did have a couple of light fighter jets they wouldn't be much use.

Just misread you as " light speed fighters"(speed of light)
 
YIMBY
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:47 am

IMO, every independent country needs appropriately scaled self-defense forces (and no more than that). This should include capacity to control the proper airspace.

Minimum capacity includes up-to-date surveillance radars and other detectors covering all airspace and nearby, SAM's to protect most important strategic targets and a few jet fighters for air policing and interception.

For Ireland, number one is the detection network. Fighters (interceptors) come next. Given its location, it can acquire the cheapest available jet fighters, were that F-16, Gripen or F-35, depending on who you believe. An advanced trainer or its derivative might be minimum. One small squadron is enough (8 planes ready to fly, 4-8 in maintenance).

Though population and GNP are comparable to Denmark and Finland, the needs of these countries are completely different. Denmark has small area but a strategic location and Finland has large area and long border with Russia, needing at least 10 times stronger capacity than Ireland.

Of course it is clear that UK would not stand still if its enemy will enter Ireland, but relying on other countries in defense would detract from independence, and there are worries between Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
 
Spar
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 6:25 am

A good offence is the best defense.

Ireland should buy into the B-21 program and get a few smart bombs. That way instead of just intercepting intruders and giving them the finger or what ever interceptors do, they could go and take out the hanger of the plane that did the intruding.

That'd put a quick stop to anybody nosing around in Irish airspace.
 
Armadillo1
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 8:07 am

F-35 as cheapest is too frequently sayd joke.
 
mxaxai
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 8:15 am

YIMBY wrote:
One small squadron is enough (8 planes ready to fly, 4-8 in maintenance).

A NATO/EU air policing squadron, comparable to the situation in Iceland, the baltic states, or Switzerland at night, should be perfect for that (if ever a political need arises).
 
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Dutchy
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 9:30 am

mxaxai wrote:
YIMBY wrote:
One small squadron is enough (8 planes ready to fly, 4-8 in maintenance).

A NATO/EU air policing squadron, comparable to the situation in Iceland, the baltic states, or Switzerland at night, should be perfect for that (if ever a political need arises).


They are not in NATO ;)
Many happy landings, greetings from The Netherlands!
 
GDB
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 2:19 pm

Dutchy wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
YIMBY wrote:
One small squadron is enough (8 planes ready to fly, 4-8 in maintenance).

A NATO/EU air policing squadron, comparable to the situation in Iceland, the baltic states, or Switzerland at night, should be perfect for that (if ever a political need arises).


They are not in NATO ;)


But Air Policing, if needed, would not be prevented by that. They'd be more pragmatic.

I think there is a fundamental misunderstanding of the defence posture of the Republic Of Ireland, that has generated this thread.
The role of their Defence Forces is mainly civil protection, including SAR, maritime policing, secure transport for state officials, the main threat is and has always been from what the Eire government call subversives.

Which includes every terrorist organisation active within or near the Irish State, this included, including throughout the troubles, the Provisional IRA. Who in turn labelled the Eire government as the 'shit state', their ultimate goal of the whole of the island of Ireland being a kind of damp Cuba, with no place for the democratic Eire government in that.

As a neutral nation, Ireland has long provided support in UN peacekeeping operations, including the more dangerous ones, a few years ago a rather good film was made about Irish troops having to fight for their lives in the Congo of the early 1960's, based on real event.
Considering all of this, where do expensive fast jets and SAM's fit in to all this?
 
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Dutchy
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 3:42 pm

GDB wrote:
Dutchy wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
A NATO/EU air policing squadron, comparable to the situation in Iceland, the baltic states, or Switzerland at night, should be perfect for that (if ever a political need arises).


They are not in NATO ;)


But Air Policing, if needed, would not be prevented by that. They'd be more pragmatic.

I think there is a fundamental misunderstanding of the defence posture of the Republic Of Ireland, that has generated this thread.
The role of their Defence Forces is mainly civil protection, including SAR, maritime policing, secure transport for state officials, the main threat is and has always been from what the Eire government call subversives.

Which includes every terrorist organisation active within or near the Irish State, this included, including throughout the troubles, the Provisional IRA. Who in turn labelled the Eire government as the 'shit state', their ultimate goal of the whole of the island of Ireland being a kind of damp Cuba, with no place for the democratic Eire government in that.

As a neutral nation, Ireland has long provided support in UN peacekeeping operations, including the more dangerous ones, a few years ago a rather good film was made about Irish troops having to fight for their lives in the Congo of the early 1960's, based on real event.
Considering all of this, where do expensive fast jets and SAM's fit in to all this?


I am not say that they should buy a fast jet. If anything, they might want to do some air policing and get the Boeing/Saab T-X or something like that.
Many happy landings, greetings from The Netherlands!
 
embraer420
Topic Author
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 3:45 pm

Spar wrote:
A good offence is the best defense.

Ireland should buy into the B-21 program and get a few smart bombs. That way instead of just intercepting intruders and giving them the finger or what ever interceptors do, they could go and take out the hanger of the plane that did the intruding.

That'd put a quick stop to anybody nosing around in Irish airspace.


That's a horrendous idea. That would just cause a major conflict that we wouldn't be able to effectively fight in. Also, if an airliner was hijacked, are you going to destroy the airline's maintenance hangar?
 
Spar
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 4:17 pm

embraer420 wrote:
That's a horrendous idea.

My post was meant as satire.
Why should the people of Ireland expend their limited resources to fund a squadron of jet fighters? Wouldn't they have more pressing priorities? The idea sounds absurd to me.
 
KLDC10
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 4:49 pm

embraer420 wrote:
Ireland is a neutral country, we aren't going to join NATO so no air policing mission for us. There have been multiple incursions by TU-95s into Irish airspace, and the RAF responded to those. But as a neutral country we shouldn't be relying on a foreign air force to monitor our airspace and defend it, nevermind the fact that there's no official agreement with the RAF so we can't be sure they will respond.

I believe that the FA-50 is the way to go for Ireland, it is a good jet and also it's very cheap. We're not going to be deploying jets overseas to fight other countries' air forces so we don't need anything too elaborate. We just need something light and fast that can fulfil a QRA role and respond at a moment's notice to an unresponsive airliner or airspace incursion.


Generally speaking, if TU-95s cross into Irish airspace, they're coming far too close for comfort for the RAF and those jets are going to be scrambled anyway. From a British perspective (and with the caveat that others may disagree), I don't see any problem with the RAF providing support for the Irish government in such situations, especially since doing so helps Ireland to maintain its policy of neutrality.

Actually, there reportedly is an agreement in place: https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/royal-a ... d-ireland/
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embraer420
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:10 pm

Spar wrote:
embraer420 wrote:
That's a horrendous idea.

My post was meant as satire.
Why should the people of Ireland expend their limited resources to fund a squadron of jet fighters? Wouldn't they have more pressing priorities? The idea sounds absurd to me.


Well of course there are issues in the country that are of higher priority than fighter jets. But just because we have other issues that doesn't mean that we shouldn't address this one at some stage in the future.
 
embraer420
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:12 pm

KLDC10 wrote:
From a British perspective (and with the caveat that others may disagree), I don't see any problem with the RAF providing support for the Irish government in such situations, especially since doing so helps Ireland to maintain its policy of neutrality.


I fail to see how having a foreign country in a military alliance effectively control our airspace helps us maintain our policy of neutrality.
 
KLDC10
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:20 pm

embraer420 wrote:
I fail to see how having a foreign country in a military alliance effectively control our airspace helps us maintain our policy of neutrality.


Plausible deniability. If the British intercept a Russian jet, it doesn't impact as badly on Irish-Russian relations. Whereas if the Irish government did so, that would turn into a bilateral diplomatic maelstrom and drag Ireland's neutrality into question.

Ultimately, it is for Ireland to decide whether they wish to continue their policy of neutrality, which will naturally mean relying on the RAF in such circumstances, or abandon its policy of neutrality and embark upon creating a proper Air Force of its own. Not an easy decision, I understand, but that is the choice and in the meantime, certainly from my perspective, we don't mind lending you a hand.
DC9/MD90/MD11/F70/BAE146
737/738/739/744/748/752/763/772/789
A319/A320/A321/A332/A333/A346/A359
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embraer420
Topic Author
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:28 pm

GDB wrote:
Dutchy wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
A NATO/EU air policing squadron, comparable to the situation in Iceland, the baltic states, or Switzerland at night, should be perfect for that (if ever a political need arises).


They are not in NATO ;)


But Air Policing, if needed, would not be prevented by that. They'd be more pragmatic.

I think there is a fundamental misunderstanding of the defence posture of the Republic Of Ireland, that has generated this thread.
The role of their Defence Forces is mainly civil protection, including SAR, maritime policing, secure transport for state officials, the main threat is and has always been from what the Eire government call subversives.

Which includes every terrorist organisation active within or near the Irish State, this included, including throughout the troubles, the Provisional IRA. Who in turn labelled the Eire government as the 'shit state', their ultimate goal of the whole of the island of Ireland being a kind of damp Cuba, with no place for the democratic Eire government in that.

As a neutral nation, Ireland has long provided support in UN peacekeeping operations, including the more dangerous ones, a few years ago a rather good film was made about Irish troops having to fight for their lives in the Congo of the early 1960's, based on real event.
Considering all of this, where do expensive fast jets and SAM's fit in to all this?


You say there is a misunderstanding about the country's defence policy, but surely the defence policy should include monitoring and responding to security threats? You've also mentioned that the main threat is from terrorist organisations. If terrorists really wanted to do damage to the country, they could hijack or otherwise gain use of an aircraft and crash it into a busy or important location. Because that's something the state is not prepared for. Also, other threats do exist, airspace incursions can occur and have occurred multiple times.

I don't see how acquiring long range radar and fighter jets would affect our neutrality or our ability to participate in UN peacekeeping operations. And I wasn't advocating the SAM's, just a proper radar system and a couple of fast jets, not even particularly expensive ones. That's all we need.
 
embraer420
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:32 pm

KLDC10 wrote:
embraer420 wrote:
I fail to see how having a foreign country in a military alliance effectively control our airspace helps us maintain our policy of neutrality.


Plausible deniability. If the British intercept a Russian jet, it doesn't impact as badly on Irish-Russian relations. Whereas if the Irish government did so, that would turn into a bilateral diplomatic maelstrom and drag Ireland's neutrality into question.

Ultimately, it is for Ireland to decide whether they wish to continue their policy of neutrality, which will naturally mean relying on the RAF in such circumstances, or abandon its policy of neutrality and embark upon creating a proper Air Force of its own. Not an easy decision, I understand, but that is the choice and in the meantime, certainly from my perspective, we don't mind lending you a hand.


Surely if a Russian plane entered Irish airspace without permission, they would expect us to respond and escort them away? The same way if their army landed on one of our beaches they would expect us to respond to that? Just because we are neutral doesn't we can't respond to threats on our own soil.
 
embraer420
Topic Author
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:39 pm

Dutchy wrote:

I am not say that they should buy a fast jet. If anything, they might want to do some air policing and get the Boeing/Saab T-X or something like that.


Well these jet trainers are expensive enough themselves, and without anything for pilots to progress onto they would be useless anyway.
They should spend the extra money on getting a light supersonic jet that can be armed and serves a purpose in defending the country, or not spend the money at all. I believe the former would be best.
 
Kiwirob
Posts: 12259
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 5:58 pm

Meh why waste the finances on an airforce, NZ doesn’t have one, you can also argue that many euro countries also don’t need them.
 
johns624
Posts: 2232
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 6:34 pm

Kiwirob wrote:
Meh why waste the finances on an airforce, NZ doesn’t have one, you can also argue that many euro countries also don’t need them.
Yet, many complain that the US shouldn't be the world's policeman. That's fine with me. What people should remember is that a country's defense and interests don't always stop at the border. The whole "we don't need defense because we're neutral" while at the same time saying "our next door neighbor will protect us" thing just sounds asinine. What it really means is "we're too cheap or naïve to know that we have to defend ourselves". Being "neutral" really helped Belgium and the Netherlands in 1940.
 
mxaxai
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 7:07 pm

Kiwirob wrote:
Meh why waste the finances on an airforce, NZ doesn’t have one, you can also argue that many euro countries also don’t need them.

Some of them have it for alliance reasons (Belgium, Netherlands). Some are in strategically important locations (Norway, Denmark). Some need it for personal pride and because they can afford it (Switzerland).

For the other small EU countries, I fully agree. Many are so small that any hostile jet can cross their air space before any of their own jets could reach them. Some others are too poor to maintain an effective air force.
 
embraer420
Topic Author
Posts: 139
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 7:42 pm

johns624 wrote:
Kiwirob wrote:
Meh why waste the finances on an airforce, NZ doesn’t have one, you can also argue that many euro countries also don’t need them.
Yet, many complain that the US shouldn't be the world's policeman. That's fine with me. What people should remember is that a country's defense and interests don't always stop at the border. The whole "we don't need defense because we're neutral" while at the same time saying "our next door neighbor will protect us" thing just sounds asinine. What it really means is "we're too cheap or naïve to know that we have to defend ourselves". Being "neutral" really helped Belgium and the Netherlands in 1940.

Exactly, saying you're neutral isn't going to make you immune from anything. The Irish government is being naïve by assuming that the UK will always be happy to deal with any threats. In fact, what could happen now is the British government could threaten to stop the RAF protecting Ireland to gain concessions from the Irish government in Brexit deal negotiations.
 
embraer420
Topic Author
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 8:01 pm

mxaxai wrote:
Kiwirob wrote:
Meh why waste the finances on an airforce, NZ doesn’t have one, you can also argue that many euro countries also don’t need them.

Some of them have it for alliance reasons (Belgium, Netherlands). Some are in strategically important locations (Norway, Denmark). Some need it for personal pride and because they can afford it (Switzerland).

For the other small EU countries, I fully agree. Many are so small that any hostile jet can cross their air space before any of their own jets could reach them. Some others are too poor to maintain an effective air force.


Ireland isn't a "poor" country, no more than Denmark or Finland or NZ are. We should be able to afford basic capability. Especially if we want to be a neutral country and avoid having the UK and thus NATO control our airspace.
 
Ozair
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Re: Ireland needs airspace defence capability

Thu Jul 11, 2019 9:27 pm

embraer420 wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
Kiwirob wrote:
Meh why waste the finances on an airforce, NZ doesn’t have one, you can also argue that many euro countries also don’t need them.

Some of them have it for alliance reasons (Belgium, Netherlands). Some are in strategically important locations (Norway, Denmark). Some need it for personal pride and because they can afford it (Switzerland).

For the other small EU countries, I fully agree. Many are so small that any hostile jet can cross their air space before any of their own jets could reach them. Some others are too poor to maintain an effective air force.


Ireland isn't a "poor" country, no more than Denmark or Finland or NZ are. We should be able to afford basic capability. Especially if we want to be a neutral country and avoid having the UK and thus NATO control our airspace.

The point is Ireland may have the money but they don't care, politically, if the UK/NATO have access to their airspace and it actually is probably really helpful for Ireland. The text and link I quoted further up shows clearly that some type of agreement is in place that permits the UK to overfly Irish airspace for these types of incidents and that means Ireland doesn't have to spend money on fighter jets it will never use the full capability of.

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