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Gardai (courtesy

“Gardai are calling for the return of high-powered machine guns to the force,” reports, “after a sudden escalation in gangland violence in the capital in the last few days.” And don’t be giving us them low-powered machine guns, neither, the Independent didn’t add. “[Garda Representative Association] President Mr Dermot O’Brien said An Garda Síóchána is under-resourced and said he wants his members ‘[to be] protected when they go out there.'” To that end, he’s got a shopping list . . .

“We are looking for the immediate introduction of the MP7 submachine gun.

“And the return of the Uzi until the MP7 is introduced,” he continued.

“That was taken away in 2012 and hasn’t been replaced.

“The MP7 would be better for protection and accuracy,” he added.

You may be wondering why the Irish police de-tooled in the first place and what they carry now. Money matters made mincemeat of their machine gun militarization. The Irish economy went to hell in a hand basket and the government ran out of other people’s money, leading to cut-backs. Some 3,000 gardai were licensed to carry firearms; a spending review reduced the number to 1,000.

Despite the death of full-auto fun, the Irish garda are hardly disarmed. They carry SIG P226 or Walther 99c pistols. Oh, and an unspecified number of .38 caliber revolvers. Go figure.

Of course, no one in Ireland is talking about allowing citizens to tool-up to protect themselves. As the killings are all gang-related, the right to legally keep and bear arms doesn’t figure. Straight out of Compton, baby.

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    • The Skorpion vz. 61 was originally chambered in 7.65mm (aka .32 ACP).
      I’d consider that a low powered machine gun.

  1. Since they are using pistol caliber automatic weapons I think it fair to call them low powered machine guns.

    And gang related in Ireland usually means some IRA faction is fattening their bank account.

    • A “high-powered machinegun” would be something like an M2 Browning Machinegun, which fires .50 BMG.

      A “standard machinegun” fires something rounds like 30-06,7.62X51 or 7.62X54R. These include things like M1919 Browning, and the Russian PK

      A “light machinegun” fires intermediate rounds like 5.56 or 7.62X39, examples include the RPK and the M249 SAW.

      This article is talking about “sub-machineguns”.

      • Dude these are European liberal land pansies. They’d probably consider a cap-and-ball revolver a “hoy power’d macheen gern” because it can fire more than one bullet every three minutes…

  2. I’m curious what they expect to be able to do with an Uzi that they can’t do with a Sig P226.

    The 9mm doesn’t get that much more out of an Uzi’s 10″ barrel. So it’s not a more powerful, more accurate, or longer range firearm. I suspect they’re only interested in the giggle switch. Cops are dangerous enough with semi-auto firearms. I don’t want to know what they’ll do with spray-and-pray tactics.

    Imagine how many innocent bystanders the NYPD could shoot with Uzis.

    • There is value to a shoulder fired weapon.

      Give them semi-automatic Beretta CX-4 Storms, or semi-auto AR15’s. That is all they really have legitimate need for.

    • “The 9mm doesn’t get that much more out of an Uzi’s 10″ barrel. So it’s not a more powerful, more accurate, or longer range firearm.”

      I’m not so sure about that.

      I recall hearing that the Uxi-specific ‘Black Tip’ 9mm ammo was loaded considerably hotter than standard 9mm ammo.

      With cautions that ‘Black Tip’ was Uzi subgun-specific *only*…

    • Yes. For human killing purposes there’s almost nothing a subgun can do that a full size pistol cannot.
      The catch is a shoulder stock and more than twice the weight behind the same bullet makes followup shots almost always faster than those from the pistol. The more you train the smaller the gap. For just regular beat cops that means a big difference but for those who really train to kick ass or those who easily classify uspsa grandmaster a subgun offers no real advantage. More importantly, the heavy weight and extra chunk really slows down your swing between targets or from ready to the target. It’s a lot easier to overshoot with the sights after which you have to bring them back when using a subgun or a PCC.
      Ballistics wise, you gotta really ask yourself what that extra bit of velocity is doing for you. It may make the hollowpoints work better, or worse by separating the core. It may penetrate nij3a. It may penetrate better into flesh after penetrating like 3 sofas and 2 mattresses. Remember we’re still talking a pistol caliber here.
      Except for followup split times, there’s no guarantee on other already minuscule advantages yet the cons are always there. I’d say if you are good, i mean really good, with a fullsize pistol, forget the subgun/pcc. Or else use them when you have no real rifles.

    • Its a comfort blanket thing with them and they already have shot up a whole bunch of innocents in a bank raid in Athy in co Kildare in the mid 80s.TBH irish police firearms training is utterly dreadful .According to one of our newspaper reports 50% of all armed officers couldnt hit a centre mass target in the black consistently at 15 meters.Thats when they go and range qualify once a year with their two clips of ammo.To be issued “fresh”ammo once a year.

  3. Based on the title of this piece, I thought it was going to be about police returning machine guns to the Irish citizenry. Color me disappointed…

  4. I agree that dealing with gangs using Kalashnikovs is a different matter to the usual run of police armed service where the last thing you need is over-penetration.

    Diplomatic Service operatives in the UK police, CO19 are now equipped with MP7’s, no doubt because of the higher risk of terrorist attack-you have to be able to bite back.

    Airport police are now routinely armed, in the UK, with HK G36, no doubt for similar reasons to above, but I for one would dread to be the one using that thing in a crowded airport.

    Ireland is in a tricky place, the Gardee are underfunded, despite the PIRA round every corner and much more deeply embedded than most people realize. The latest Gangland murders in Dublin showed that the, “Continuity IRA,” are certainly still around and well organized.

    Tricky thing to deal with. If they start killing tourists as in Egypt, et al, that’ll be a big market gone awry.

    brendan (born in Baila Na Coira, Co Cork-now escaped to KY 🙂

    • Pistol caliber weapons such as pistols and submachines such as the MP5 have worse over penetration problems than rifles firing 5.56 ammunition that isn’t barrier blind. Its been well documented for a while now. One

      • If you mean something like Winchester PDX1 or Hornady Critical Defense than he’s but regular 223/5.56 than noooo!

        • The vast majority of 5.56 is going to have less over penetration problems than the majority of pistol rounds. People get confused cause they don’t understand how a rifle round that can easily penetrate kevlar and kill the guy wearing it, is more affected by passing thru a barrier such as dry wall than pistol rounds. 5.56 is a spitzer projectile. When hitting a barrier, if its capable of making it thru(a non barrier blind round that is) its external ballistics go to crap and it bleeds energy far quicker than a pistol round does. Its one of the big selling point of M855A1 and MK318. The rounds are designed so you can shoot thru barriers effectively which is something that was a major issue before.

        • TTAG ran a drywall test a few years ago. You should look it up. Standard 5.56 overpenetrates more than a 9mm.

      • You mean 55gr vs 62gr. “Barrier blind” is a special 62gr JHP only used by the USMC and SOCOM, so it’s out of the question entirely. However, all of NATO and its “contact countries” use 62gr PENETRATORS, which slice through mild steel like butter (but without the good soft target ballistics of the barrier blind boolits). 55gr may penetrate less than 9mm, but no government entity (outside of some US police forces and 3rd world countries) uses 55gr anymore, and it’s primary user is American plinkers. If they were to issue ARs, it would almost certainly be with 62gr M855/SS109 milspec stuff, and they probably would cost the Irish gov’t about as much as MP7s, and more than Uzis. Furthermore, an Uzi or MP7 is a lot handier than an AR15, the MP7 is several pounds lighter, and for the most part these guys are going to be just toting it around, not shooting it.

      • OakRiver,

        Heh, don’t it make you laff hearing Murricanes griping all day about how crap things are here…when most of ’em don’t got passports and haven’t, “really,” seen how it is in most everywhere else.

        I spent three sweat soaked months in Doha on DipPro duty and I thought it was HELL on earth. Ouagadougou pretty much the same.

        My heart used to be in Cork….but I adored Atlanta, (apart from the terrifying thunderstorms.)

        Kentucky and it’s lazy wind is too cold for my old bones, but the people are great, the food is good. Just everything is better than almost everywhere else.

        I’ve been almost everywhere and America is pretty darn good.

        Slainte Mhath


        • My father and mother are buried in KY. I’m from WV over in Wayne county tho I live in CA now. I agree about KY.

          And I’ve traveled enough to know the truth of your words about America. We ain’t perfect but it beats the next best all to hell.

          • “My father and mother are buried in KY”


            Hit me up with the location and I’ll TRY and pay my respects.

            Oddly enough, the history of this place is…just amazing. There are all sorts of folks buried here who bear my surname..some who are slave, or slave related. It is a head buster and I don’t have the historical balance organized in my head yet.

            I adored Atlanta, (T-storms aside) but the folks..and boyo the women of KY are real tough.

            I’m often on my way to Kroger or WM and I’m in five degrees of covering and they are in T-shirts and shorts.

            Don’t want to come across them any dark night. 🙂


        • Stallard, appreciate the sentiment. But they’re buried in a family cemetary on private land. A stranger might not get a warm welcome.

          And yes, every where you walk in KY is historic ground. If you want real history start at Pittsburgh and follow the Ohio down to the Mississippi and from there head for New Orleans.

    • According to the media, a 9mm Hi-Point carbine is a high-powered deadly assault machine gun of death.

      • Does it have the shoulder thing that goes up? Still not as high powered as the .9mm version. That’ll kill souls.

  5. I don’t think the 4.6x30mm is a high power anything. Better luck for something that shoots a intermediate rifle round.

  6. Their ignorance is galling. But those same so-called journalists will have not the slightest second thought about mocking us Americans (and I’m half Scots-Irish I should add) for our ownership of guns. As if their editorial prowess has bestowed some great and sagacious wisdom upon their addled brains. This stupid culture war has got to end while there’s still a chance. Unfortunately I don’t see it happening. Too late now.


  7. “We are looking for the immediate introduction of the MP7 submachine gun.”

    Well, the *former* of Recoil magazine approves of this request…

  8. Being of Irish descent and having done an amateur study of the struggle for Irish independence, the thing I find ironic is that one of the ways the British kept their boot on the neck of the Irish was through gun control, but as soon as the new state was founded, the Irish turned around and did it to themselves, only the laws were even worse than the British laws! What started as using gun control in an unsuccessful attempt to end the Irish Civil War has endured for 80 years as some of the strictest gun control policies in the world.

    They also conducted one of the sneakiest gun confiscations in history in 1973. IRA terrorists were stealing guns from homes in the Republic of Ireland to use for attacks in Northern Ireland. So the police required all gun owners to bring their guns in for ballistic testing, so if a gun was later stolen and used for terrorism, it could get traced back. The Irish police collected the guns and were only supposed to keep them for 30 days, but they never gave them back, based on a legal loophole they had planned all along.

    It should be a lesson to us.

    • Jeeze your research of our gun laws actually Sucks big time!! First the year was 1972.And the legislation you are referring to is the tempoary custody order.As such it did not “confiscate” anything .Otherwise the Irish govt would be now liable to paying the citizens for their property.They simply withdrew all firearms above .22 caliber from private ownership for supposedly 31 days.But kept renewing this legislation for 35 years.Idea was behind this was that the IRA was going to arm themselves from Irish sympathisers in the republic and start the war in nthn Ireland.Stumped by this the PIRA went to the US to tool up from donations of gulliable Americans and criminals like Whitey Bolger or in the end Libya where they got an estimated 300 TONS of arms heavy military hardware and semtex.For free from Ghadaffi who was intent on destabilising Europe.Meantime the poor Irish gunowner was in stasis for 30 plus years.The govt is now sitting on over 1000 guns they cant return as the people who have owned them have died emigrated or lost the paperwork or are too old and senile to remember they had a gun in the first place.THAT is more what happened in Ireland.The ballistic libary is an utter nonsense that never worked and was quietly dumped in the mid 1970s.

  9. Alrighty-didn’t they just have an Ak shooting at a boxing weigh-in last weekend on the Emerald Isle? I’d say they need some firepower. I’ve certainly known plenty of Irish folks(and cops) in Chicagoland. All 4 of my sons have Irish names too…

  10. MP7? You gotta be kidding me. For god’s sake it’s not like there’s any concealibility to the mp7 anyway. Just run 223 SBRs. The 4.6 was meant for second-line troops against infiltration from advanced enemies. It’s a niche weapon that sacrifices everything for armor-piercing. If they use hollowpoints there is not much increase in armor penetration over a 9mm yet the projectiles are too small to expand or fragment effectively even versus a 22hmr. If the tungsten rounds are used, it’s even weaker against flesh as the velocity itself is still not high enough to cause tumbling damage as bad as 223. It just doesnt make sense for the cops to use this thing.

    • Well it was proably used in a movie recently so that means it must be good .That seems to be weapon selection criteria with the Garda Siochana.Based on this story .In 1984 the SPAS12 became famous in the Terminator movie with Arnie Schwarzenegger.By PURE coincidence the Irish Emergency Response Unit (SWAT) orderd these guns two months after the movie hit the Irish screens.As did our Army Ranger Wing (SF unit)and of course banned civillian ownership of them as well.Oddly you never see them being used or talked about since they went and got Benelli M3s or M4s.And yet they have an ideal weapon that they have proably junked by now as too old and what alot of US PD regret losing.TheThompson sub machine gun!!Yes we have those still someplace in Garda HQ .

  11. But but I thought the ROI had strict gun laws! Why do police need “low powered machine guns” if [/sarc] no one [sarc] can get a gun or evil salt rifle? It’s almost like gun control er “safety” doesn’t affect the people who carry out “gangland shootings”. Don’t those mean criminals know their guns are illegal!?!?!

  12. Poor Irish cops. Even with subguns, its hard to look tough standing in front of your volvo station wagon.

  13. This brought to mind something I’ve been wondering: is there a middle ground between full auto and semi-auto? That is, does anyone make a weapon that allows to select one-, two-, or three-round settings, but not more?

    • I don’t know about two shot bursts, but some versions of the M16 rifle (A2, A4) and M4 carbine allow only semi-auto or three shot burst. The military supposedly likes it because it conserves ammo and encourages more accurate, controlled fire. The three round burst versions are in use by every branch of the military, as far as I know, although some troops are issued the M4A1 and M16A3 which allow full auto fire.

      I can’t claim to have laid hands on any of them, but Wikipedia can be pretty informative 🙂

  14. There is no reason for a civilian police force to have any type of machine gun.
    The police are there to arrest a criminal. Period. They are not soldiers who use heavy weapons.
    But the Irish can do as they wish.

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