|Unit Profile (as of 3145)|
|Nickname||Túatha Dé Danann|
|Formed||After 2314, before 2341|
The Donegal Guards predate the formation of the Lyran Commonwealth. Originally the defensive force of the Protectorate of Donegal, the Donegal Guards are a large and well supplied unit, mostly because the Protectorate of Donegal was not ravaged by the Succession Wars. The Donegal Guards fight with dogged determination. At its zenith, the brigade numbered 20 BattleMech regiments and an additional 80 regiments of conventional forces.
The roots of these brigades dates back to the Protectorate of Donegal. Since that time, the units fought with a solid reputation against the enemies of the Commonwealth with great success. They have always followed their tradition to stand with the Archon and the protectorate.  The regiments of the Donegal Guards were originally all named for famed regiments from Terra that shared the predominantly Irish heritage of the Protectorate, although this tradition would fade with time.
Star League Era
The most loyal of the regional brigades, the Donegal Guards continued to join with the various state brigades of the Lyran Commonwealth Armed Forces in support of the Commonwealth and the Archon. The Donegal Guards had lost half a dozen regiments in the brutal fighting of the closing years of the Age of War prior to the formation of the Star League, but throughout the Star League era the Guards enjoyed access to the best equipment outside of the Royal Guards brigade. The Donegal Guards remained the formation of choice to conduct those offensive operations too large for the smaller Royal Guards brigade to handle alone, and the Guards attracted officers who sought to advance via their leadership and grasp of strategic skills, rather than through politics and favouritism. It was during the Star League era that the shift in unit traditions away from favoring or honoring those units associated with Ireland became distinctly noticeable amongst some of the regiments. By 2765 the Guards were eleven regiments strong.
The Donegal Guards grew in strength during the leadup to the First Succession War, and by 2786 mustered seventeen full 'Mech regiments. Two of these, the Fifth and Fourteenth Donegal Guards were former Star League Defense Force units, whilst the Ninth, Thirteenth, Fifteenth and Sixteenth Donegal Guards were reactivated regiments. During the First Succession War three new regiments of Guards - the Eighteenth, Nineteenth and Twentieth Donegal Guards were founded.
FedCom Civil War
The whole brigade sided with Katherine Steiner-Davion and five regiments were destroyed in the conflict. Note that FM:Updates isn't very clear on which regiments were destroyed. Based on the fact that they were all listed as being at 5-20% of their pre-Civil War strength, possible candidates are:
- Fourth in Wave 6 on New Syrtis
- Fifth in Wave 7 on New Avalon
- Sixth on Melissia
- Eighth in Wave 4 on Kathil
- Eleventh on Graceland
- Thirteenth in Wave 5 on Dalkeith
As of mid-Jihad, the Second and the Seventh were the only active regiments. After the end of the Jihad the Second and Seventh were the only surviving units. The Fourth Donegal Guards were destroyed in the Capellan Confederation attack on New Syrtis, the Fifth Donegal Guards were destroyed by the Blakists on New Avalon and the few survivors were drafted into other units, the Eighth Guards were destroyed on Kathil, and the Third Guards were killed on Donegal; the last two attacks were by the Blakists. The Thirteenth and Fourteenth Donegal Guards were also destroyed by the Blakists. The survivors from the Third were rolled into the Second Guards while the surviving members of the Sixth reinforced the Seventh Guards. The Eleventh and Seventeenth Guards were destroyed by the Free Worlds League Military during Operation Broken Fist.
Following the Jihad, the LCAF rebuilt a substantial number of regiments within the Donegal Guards, reactivating the Fourth, Eighth and Eleventh regiments by 3085. The rebuilding efforts were in large part due to Hauptmann-General Sarah Steiner, who fought off efforts to have the brigade disbanded. While Sarah's efforts were limited, in that the Fourth, Eighth and Eleventh were all reactivated as Light Combat Teams rather than the RCTs of the past, it was a notable success. Archon Adam Steiner was criticized for not rebuilding the Fourteenth as a priority, but as many would have criticized him for rebuilding his former command had he chosen differently. The rebuilding efforts devoted to the Donegal Guards by the LCAF went down very well with the Guards, which continued to display fanatical levels of loyalty to the Commonwealth. There were concerns that the brigade needed more time to train and rebuild, but the diminished size of the LCAF meant that the Guards were back on the frontlines sooner than anticipated; while it was considered that this was placing additional stress on the Guards, the Guards themselves viewed this as a mark of respect towards them.
Each of the three reactivated commands were established via differing routes. The Fourth was rebuilt primarily using survivors from the Fourth who had been captured on New Syrtis and spent most of the Jihad in Capellan prison camps. The Eighth was raised on Donegal using new recruits, while the Eleventh was rebuilt by incorporating an irregular unit, the Blackjacks, into the LCAF and constructing the new regiment around them. Between the reactivation of the regiments and 3085, the brigade saw combat on numerous fronts - the Second was kept occupied dealing with training raids launched by the Jade Falcons, as were the Fourth, who repulsed a determined attack on Yeguas, and the Eleventh was responsible for recapturing Graceland. While there was some discontent on the part of the Seventh on being kept on light duties and cadre work, they were responsible for training both the Eighth Donegal Guards and the First Donegal Jaegers, something Colonel Bamin Taylor of the Jaegers directly credit as being responsible his regiment becoming the highest-performing unit within the Lyran Reserves.
During fighting along the Free Worlds League and Wolf Empire borders, half the Donegal Guard's 'Mech regiments were destroyed. A brigade that once had ten 'Mech regiments, seven of which led Regimental Combat Teams became a unit with a single RCT and four 'Mech regiments. Despite this, the brigade's component regiments remained loyal and had high morale.
Kathleen Heany led the brigade recently, since the "retirement" of Geoffry Berg. She fought in many wars and is regarded by many as old school. Her XO, Sarah Steiner is a competent strategist and developed many new tactics with her last position. Following the Federated Commonwealth Civil War, Heany was replaced by General Caesar Steiner. However, day-to-day management of the Donegal Guards was in the hands of Sarah Steiner due to Caesar's responsibilities operating the Cavanaugh Theater, commanding the 2nd Donegal Guard, and serving as an adviser to Archon Peter Steiner-Davion. Sarah Steiner became the Brigade Commander following the assassination of her predecessor, a position she continues to hold after the Jihad's conclusion.
8 RCT and 3 'free' regiments are the main force of these command. The equipment covers a weight range from light, high mobile units to those which use sheer fire power and mass.
Units of the Donegal Guards
- First Donegal Guards
- Second Donegal Guards
- Third Donegal Guards (destroyed during the Jihad)
- Fourth Donegal Guards (destroyed during the Jihad)
- Fifth Donegal Guards (merged with 1st Davion Guards in January 3068)
- Sixth Donegal Guards (destroyed during the Jihad)
- Seventh Donegal Guards
- Eighth Donegal Guards (destroyed during the Jihad)
- Ninth Donegal Guards
- Tenth Donegal Guards (destroyed during Clan Invasion)
- Eleventh Donegal Guards (destroyed during the Jihad)
- Twelfth Donegal Guards (destroyed during Clan Invasion)
- Thirteenth Donegal Guards (destroyed during the Jihad)
- Fourteenth Donegal Guards (destroyed during the Jihad)
- Fifteenth Donegal Guards
- Sixteenth Donegal Guards
- Seventeenth Donegal Guards (destroyed during the Jihad)
- Eighteenth Donegal Guards
- Nineteenth Donegal Guards
- Twentieth Donegal Guards
Color Scheme and Unit Insignia
- Field Manual: Lyran Alliance p. 62
- Field Report 2765: Lyran Commonwealth, p. 10-11, "Donegal Guards"
- First Succession War, p. 139, "Lyran Commonwealth Armed Forces (LCAF)"
- Field Manual: Updates, p. 169
- FedCom Civil War, pp. 182-183
- FedCom Civil War, p. 185
- Field Manual: Updates, pp. 177-179
- Masters and Minions, p. 98
- Field Report: LAAF, p. 11
- Field Manual: 3085, p. 95, "The Einherjar"
- Field Manual: 3085, p. 100, "Donegal Guards"
- Field Manual: 3085, p. 103, "Lyran Reserves"
- Field Manual: 3145, p. 127
- Jihad Turning Points: New Avalon
- Masters and Minions, p. 98