Michael Beary

Michael Beary (born 1956) is an Irish Army Major general and current Head of Mission and Force Commander of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) appointed May 2016.


Michael Beary

Born1956 (age 6263)
Allegiance Ireland
Service/branch Army
Years of service1975–present
Rank Major general
Commands heldCommander UNIFIL
Commander EUTM Somalia
GOC 2 Brigade
Director of Defence Forces Training
OC Eastern Brigade Training Centre
Battles/warsUNIFIL (Lebanon)
UNIKOM (Iraq-Kuwait)
UNPROFOR (Bosnia and Herzegovina-Croatia)
ISAF (Afghanistan)
EUTM (Somalia/Uganda)
Awards Commander of the National Order of the Cedar
Service Medal
UN Peacekeepers Medal
Centenary Medal
UN Medal for UNIFIL (3)
UN Medal for UNIKOM
UN Medal for UNPROFOR (2)
NATO Medal for the Balkans
NATO Medal for ISAF
CSDP Medal for EUTM Somalia Distinguished Service Medal

Military career

Beary was commissioned as an officer in the Irish Army Infantry Corps in 1975. Beary has held appointments as Commanding Officer of the Eastern Brigade Training Centre, in training, operations and Military Intelligence at Defence Forces Headquarters (DFHQ) and served as a Senior Instructor at the Command and Staff School, Military College, Defence Forces Training Centre (DFTC). In March 2009 Beary was promoted to the rank of Colonel and appointed Director of Defence Forces Training with responsibility for education and training policy, the development of doctrine and liaison with external education and training agencies.[1]

In November 2013 and upon promotion to the rank of Brigadier general, Beary was appointed General Officer Commanding the 2nd Brigade (Army).[2]

Overseas appointments

Beary has served on three deployments to Southern Lebanon (1982, 1989, 1994) with the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) peacekeeping mission, including as Company Commander and Staff Officer in the Operations Branch at UNIFIL HQ.[1]

He served in Kuwait and Baghdad, Iraq as part of the United Nations Iraq–Kuwait Observation Mission (UNIKOM).[1]

He served in Bosnia and Herzegovina with the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR).[1]

In 2003, Beary completed a four-month tour of duty as Liaison Team Leader with the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) HQ in Afghanistan.[1]

Between September 2004 and 2007, Beary served for three years with the European Union Military Staff (EUMS) Intelligence Division in Brussels while seconded to the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union. Beary provided intelligence planning expertise in this role for EU military operations and civilian missions.[1]

From August 2011 to February 2013, Beary commanded the European Union Training Mission Somalia (EUTM Somalia), an EU Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) mission to train Somali Armed Forces in Uganda.[3]

On Friday, 27 May 2016 Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon appointed Major General Beary as the Head of Mission and Force Commander of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon, to succeed Major General Luciano Portolano of the Italian Army.[4] Beary assumed command of UNIFIL on 19 July 2016.[5]

In August 2017, the Trump administration Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley launched an unprecedented personal attack on a United Nations general, accusing Beary of being "blind" to a "massive flow of illegal weapons" to Hezbollah in Southern Lebanon. She said Beary displayed "an embarrassing lack of understanding of what's going on." Beary responded by saying "if there was a large cache of weapons, we would know about it" and that if anyone had information to the contrary, that they should provide it to the UN.[6] Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres gave his full backing to Beary, as did the Irish government. The US or Israel did not provide any evidence to back up the claims.[7]

Education

Beary received his second level education at Patrician College, Ballyfin, County Laois.

He has a Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree from NUI Galway and is a graduate of the Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School, University College Dublin (UCD) holding a Master of Business Studies in Organisational Studies.[8]

He is a graduate of the Irish Defence Forces Command and Staff School, and a 2009 graduate of the National War College, National Defense University in Washington, D.C. from which he holds a Master of Science degree in National Security Studies.[1][9]

Decorations

Lebanese National Order of the Cedar - Commander
"Wings" – Qualified Parachutist
Service Medal (20 years service)
United Nations Peacekeepers Medal
1916 Centenary Commemorative Medal
United Nations Medal for UNIFIL (3)
United Nations Medal for UNIKOM
United Nations Medal for UNPROFOR (2)
NATO Non-Article 5 Medal for the Balkans
NATO Non-Article 5 Medal for ISAF
Common Security and Defence Policy Service Medal for EUTM Somalia in Uganda
Fianóglach shoulder tab (selection/service in the Army Ranger Wing)

References

  1. "Brigadier General Michael Beary". Defence Forces Ireland. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  2. Quann, Jack (27 May 2016). "Irish general announced as head of UN mission in Lebanon". Newstalk. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  3. Brady, Tom (24 December 2015). "Irish general is tipped for top UN post on the Golan". Irish Independent. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  4. McMahon, Cathal (27 May 2016). "Irish officer appointed head of UN mission in Lebanon". Irish Independent. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  5. "Major-General Michael Beary takes over command of UNIFIL". United Nations. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  6. "Nikki Haley says UN commander in Lebanon 'blind' to illegal arms trafficking". The Guardian. Associated Press. 26 August 2017. Retrieved 9 September 2017.
  7. Murtagh, Peter (31 August 2017). "Irish chief of Unifil backed after attack by US ambassador to UN". The Irish Times. Retrieved 9 September 2017.
  8. "Ireland to take on the role of mission commander in EU training mission Somalia". 26 July 2011. Archived from the original on 26 April 2016. Retrieved 26 July 2011. Colonel Beary received his early education at Patrician College, Ballyfin, County Laois and completed a B.Sc Degree in University College, Galway. He is a graduate of the Smurfit Business School, University College, Dublin and holds a Master of Business Studies in Organisational Studies.
  9. "Secretary-General Appoints Major General Michael Beary of Ireland Head of Mission, Force Commander, United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon". United Nations. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
Military offices
Preceded by
Luciano Portolano
Commander of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon
2016–present
Succeeded by
Incumbent
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