Bobby & Bamber

William Johnstone is underwhelmed by Bobby Storey’s recent foray into the media. William Johnstone is a Ballymoney unionist with an interest in history and politics.

For many years, Loyalists have been semi awestruck at the eloquence of Sinn Fein politicians. I am one of them. I had to begrudgingly accept that Sinn Fein had speakers who could handle themselves in a debate and could argue a point. At the various talks and series of negotiations, they stepped out in front of the cameras looking and sounding confident, snappily delivering their sound bites and clichés.

OK, so they were monotonously repetitive but they were cleverly worded clichés. Indeed, I used to despair ...

And then along came Bobby Storey ...

It is widely alleged that big Bobby was once the Director of Intelligence in the PIRA. Now let's not get carried away by taking this title too literally! No one is suggesting for a moment that the Big lad is a contender for Countdown or The Chase. Intelligence in this context is the gathering of information on his professed enemies with a view to having them killed. 

Bobby spent 20 years in prison where many spent their time studying through the Open University whereby they attained degrees, Masters and even PhDs. Now before Bamber Gasgoine starts practicing saying the phrase, "Storey, Open University, Maze", I don't think Bobby enrolled. Given his analogy that hardened Provos spent the Troubles disguised as a harmless caterpillar that evolved into a beautiful butterfly and flew away into the skies above, I will also wager that he did not study the works of Yeats or the romantic, complex writings of Pearse. 

Richard Attenborough has nothing to fear from big Bobby. His relationship with nature is not like his tree hugging boss. But he did dispel that myth that Sinn Fein is packed with clever wordsmiths who will eternally confound us with their profound turns of phrase. Maybe, as he flicks through his old copies of Beano and Dandy, Bobby can reflect on the damage he has done to Republicanism and the relief he has brought to Unionists.

As for me, I will always retain a certain degree of suspicion every time I see a butterfly in my garden. Sure, it could be there gathering intelligence on me...

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Anthony McIntyre

Former IRA prisoner, spent 18 years in Long Kesh. Free Speech advocate, writer, historian, humanist, and researcher.

5 comments to ''Bobby & Bamber"

  1. This piece makes the error of reducing intelligence to academic ability. I am hardly a fan but he is as sharp as a razor.

  2. Unionistas on the other hand are all geniuses.
    Whose intelligence simply cannot be measured by the 11 +
    Hence why many fail it..Or even fail to take it.

  3. Anthony,

    'I am hardly a fan but he is as sharp as a razor.'

    'As cunning as a fox who's just been appointed Professor of Cunning at Oxford University?'

  4. Ozzy,

    Martin McGuiness did away with the eleven plus on account of the fact that he failed it.

  5. Storey may sound dumber than dog shit, but the Thiepval Barracks bombs, Northern Bank robbery and Castlereagh break in suggest Anthony is quite correct.


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