Local media in Ireland is reporting that a politician was angry the UK ‘had not informed Irish civil aviation authorities that they had unleashed their Typhoons’ into air space near Ireland.

According to Irish Central, Fianna Fáil’s Transport Spokesperson Timmy Dooley was ‘incensed’ that British aircraft did not notify Irish authorities of their actions (despite them being fully visible to all air traffic control facilities).

“These maneuvers were not sanctioned by the Irish Aviation Authority and had put Irish air traffic controllers in the invidious position of not being able to carry out their duties effectively. This should not be tolerated.”

Ireland operates ‘The Air Corps’ who fly a fleet of fixed and rotary wing aircraft (but no jet aircraft capable of intercepting Russian bombers), it provides military support to the Irish Army and Naval Service. Their only combat capable aircraft is the Pilatus PC-9M whih can be armed with a heavy machine gun or rocket pods. Their primary airbase is Casement Aerodrome located at Baldonnel, County Dublin.

According to journalist Ray O’Hanlon, writing in the piece linked to above:

“His anger over the British reaction was not likely to provoke as much sympathy. That is because his own party, during a period when it was in government, let slip that the Republic of Ireland was, de facto, under the protective wing of the Royal Air Force when it came to the defense of Irish skies. This came to light after 9/11 when 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.”

O’Hanlon also adds:

“Nobody panicked or fired a shot. Nobody was hurt, though Irish pride was somewhat dented.”

Last year we reported that British combat aircraft were to ‘shoot down aircraft over Ireland if they are hijacked by terrorists’, according to local media. According to the Irish Examiner, “five well-placed sources in Ireland and one in Britain have pointed to the agreement being in place, with a number saying the Defence Forces was not involved in negotiating it, despite the RAF asking for its inclusion.”

Ireland lacks aircraft that can climb high enough or go fast enough to intercept Russian aircraft which came close to Irish airspace a few times in the last few years, being driven away by British jets.

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Barry Larking

Idiot. Next.

andy reeves,

what has the rambling of a pikey got to do with the u.k?


Fricking weak! A country unable to defend their own territory and people should not bitch at the friendly foreign forces doing their dirty work for Ireland. Get some f*king balls you weak ass country.


What a tosser. Its been well known for years now that the RAF provides defacto defense of Irish air space (something else that should be drawn from the FA budget) Ireland could easily afford to lease Gripens they just choose not to pay for them and let the UK protect their airspace for free.


Tosser?? Article 15(6) of the Irish Constitution prohibits any foreign military from conducting military operations in an Irish Sovereign domain. Ireland could and should provide for the security of its sovereign airspace but it cannot legally just “let the UK protect [irish] airspace for free”.

andy reeves,

irish constitution? lol!! how many years were taken up arguing about that? sovereign? don’t make me laugh, all they have is a couple of sopwith camels

Barry Larking

Ireland would not soil its hands ever of course. When they had capital punishment they got out of doing the dirty deed themselves by sending for Pierrepoint. How they keep up this pretense of Holier Than Thou without collapsing in laughter never fails to amaze; like Obama being Irish I suppose.

andy reeves,

the oirish are a second rate nation, who are lucky that anyone, not least the u.k are interested in their welfare


Fecker can go feck himself. His country relies on the RAF to protect its airspace so they can get away with not paying a penny for a proper air force. If they want to respond to these things and not have RAF fighters near their airspace then they can fork out some of their own money for an actual airforce.


There’s always one anti-British voice. Good job the majority of Irish people will have no issue with the RAF jets.


Simple solution, we can stop defending Irish skies and see how long it takes them to start asking for it to resume.

David Steeper

Well said.

andy reeves,

when ireland was given independence, that should have been the end of any obligation for the u.k to have ANYTHING TO DO WITH THEM.


What a fecker! perhaps the Irish should get some typhoons of their own!

Daniele Mandelli

Nothing to add to all of the above.


Is this story for real?
Reading numerous news articles on the subject including a move plot for the supporting tanker, shows it never went near the west side of the UK.

The MoD said two Russian Tupolev Tu-160 bombers were intercepted as they flew over the North Sea between Denmark and the Netherlands. Belgian military planes were also scrambled. At no point did they enter UK airspace, the MoD added.

Which might explain why I can find no sight of Timmy Dooley saying such a thing in the Irish media.

jassy spik

They probably didn’t write anything in the media cause it would of been an embarrassment too the Irish people..

andy reeves,

evry piky politician is a disgrace to their country

andy reeves,

fake media


“Politician is idiot” is unfortunately quite common. Parties usually have spokespeople on matters like defence, and except in debates in the appropriate place, it would be sensible if they kept quiet and therefore hid their ignorance. Ireland for 2017 had a defence budget of €947 million – £850 million, which is about 0.5% of GDP. As a Partner for Peace in NATO they are not entitled to the all for one, one for all defence, but because of proximity to the UK would clearly be covered mostly, specially in air matters, because of their strategic part in the Atlantic and… Read more »


Morning Dadsarmy. Hope you are well. I am sure that the Scots would retain a number of Typhoons in their Armed Forces in the event of a split from the UK should that unhappy day ever arrive. If Scotland did become independent it would make more sense for the peoples of Britain and NI to pool their Defence resources although I know that some ScotsNats might not approve of such an arrangement 🙂


QRA North is the problem with that. As far as I know there’s no airfield in NI suitable, and the furthest north in England is Leeming with some work, which isn’t much further north than Coningsby. Boulmer is control, but would need a lot of work and CPO for land around to rebase QRA North. The key thing for the rUK is Faslane which realistically would need to transition for perhaps 10 years, that increases the attraction of the Russian fly-bys as in the other article. I was looking at this since 2012, including looking aerially via google, and the… Read more »


rUK ? I know what it means I just wonder why you bring it up.


Oh, and good morning Geoff 🙂

andy reeves,

i hope we get our order first


New Zealand gets the same free ride from Australia. Both Ireland and new Zealand could afford to purchase a Squadron of fast jets yet inexplicably chose not to. What I don’t understand is how they can live with the humiliation of such a situation-particularly given the animosity that exists among a large sector of the Irish population toward the UK. The same sentiments exist among those who criticise the US , UK and France for their Nukes yet happily accept the Insurance cover they give for ‘gratis’.
BTW-whats with the US spelling-“Defense,maneuver etc


Wouldn’t any RAAF aircraft have to be stationed in NZ ? Are there any there ? I seem to remember some Singapore AF jets visiting NZ but I don’t know if it was semi – permanent.


Hi HF-not sure of the terms of the agreement but it is in place although i doubt there are any RAAF fighters on station in NZ. Response times must be a problem considering the distances and I would think the Aus squadrons tasked with this must be dubbed the Fairly QRA team 🙂


I thought that I read on here that NZ wanted an agreement with Singapore for Singaporean F-15s to be stationed in NZ for air defence.

Oscar Zulu

There are no RAAF units based in NZ. RAAF fighter visits to NZ are infrequent mainly for airshows or in transit. The Super Hornets were ferried to Australia via Auckland International airport (rather than RNZAF Whenuapi’s relatively short runway) as an overnight stopover. Many practical issues rule out anything approaching QRA from Australia, chief among them distance. RAAF Williamtown (near Sydney) to Auckland is 2200 kms and RAAF Amberley (near Brisbane) is 2300 kms away – so about a 5000 km round trip including loiter or patrol time. That would an equivalent to scrambling a Typhoon from the UK to… Read more »

Matt W

Yeah right unless Australian airport is being used as refuelling point for enemy aircraft NZ is out of range for any potential black buck raid.
Not sure free loading would best describe the ANZAC relationship think Battle of Kaypong , Long Tan .

Recent Shortfalls in the ADF capabilities have seen Kiwi Ships and Helicopters support ADF outputs and vice versa with RAAF heavy lift support supporting NZDF outputs.



Mr Bell

What an idiot.
Pay for your own fecking defense then.
Unless it is acceptable for Ireland to have Russian Tupolev backfire Bs and their newer versions overflying Ireland at will.
If Ireland is part of NATO, simple solution start paying the extra £2-3 billion a year you need to to meet the NATO 2% requirement. Ireland might then be able to afford a couple of squadrons of Eurofighter typhoons of their own to provide QRA force.

Peter French

Another person looking to be insulted. The intrusion it seems did not intrude Irish airspace , so wheres the problem. I expect we,ll have to stroke the back of didums an inform him when we intercept over the Shetlands or any where within 500 miles of Southern Ireland


I read somewhere that the Russians do not log flight plans and fly with their transponders turned off, making them invisible to Air Traffic Control radars, and hence a great concern to civil flights on the busy transatlantic routes. Perhaps someone more knowledgeable might be able to confirm the truth or otherwise of that.


Eire are just following the German defence model of paying the least amount of cash while enjoying the protection of the UK and NATO

Maybe its something we should ‘discuss’ with their new PM when he kicks off (when ordered by the EU) about ‘The Border’ …..

Barry White

“Here Here”


You couldn’t make it up, I mean we have to suffer Ryan bloody Air polluting our airspace all the time.


What an idiot,if he’d listened to any BBC radio news bulletin yesterday morning he’d have heard all about it.


Perhaps sell some Eurofighters to Ireland




Fine – when can the UK expect the repayment of the billions we pumped into your ToyTown economy when it went belly-up several years ago ?


I don’t think that was actually used. It was a guarantee of support if required.

John Hampson

Why do we let Ireland intimidate us. Our so called friendly neighbour has actively worked against Britain for a century. For every official denial of U-boats operations in Irish waters, there are twice as many accounts by locals of Germany sailors in coastal pubs. There is an account of a U-boat captain in a pub in Dingle proposing a toast to the “downfall of Great Britain” and there are numerous accounts of German sailors appearing on remote islands and buying fresh fruit and veg. These accounts are dismissed as they mistaken for British sailors or, preposterously, Irish navy sailors, whose… Read more »


Another view of the intel op you mentioned:- http://www.irishexaminer.com/viewpoints/analysis/irelands-phoney-neutrality-during-world-war-ii-259756.html Ireland usually returned allied soldiers etc who ended up there while interning Axis soldiers etc. It also allowed the RAF to cut through Irish airspace tom get to the N Atlantic quicker, and numerous landmarks for directing aircraft from the USA were constructed on the Irish west coast. You’re correct about the shameful treat of Irish soldiers who’d fought for the allies, though I thought the number of Irish personnel in British forces was far larger than that. I remember a couple lines from a Dubliners song – ‘When Hitler was… Read more »


Maybe this is where the 5000 figure comes from:-

‘Another concern was the danger of encouraging desertion from the Irish to the British armed forces (there were 5,000 such deserters)’

I’m sure the total was in the hundreds of thousands.


“The 5000 Irish men who joined the British army to fight the Nazis were brutally punished on their return home at the end of the war. ”

My grandfather was one of these and, afaik, didn’t go back to Ireland until well in to his sixties. Sadly, I never knew he’d deserted his homeland to fight against the Nazi’z until after he had died.

Lee H

“Thank you” would have been enough, hey-ho we live in interesting times.


Belgium has revealed the flight path of those TU160s and they never went near Ireland