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Suzanne Breen

For all his ferocity, Bobby Storey's struggle for Irish unity was in vain

Suzanne Breen


Bank notes and war stories can't hide the IRA's failure

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Martin McGuinness (left) and Bobby Storey (3rd left) address Sinn Fein supporters, joined by Martina Anderson (right) attending the unveiling of Gerry Adams in the Falls Road, Belfast

Martin McGuinness (left) and Bobby Storey (3rd left) address Sinn Fein supporters, joined by Martina Anderson (right) attending the unveiling of Gerry Adams in the Falls Road, Belfast

PA

Martin McGuinness (left) and Bobby Storey (3rd left) address Sinn Fein supporters, joined by Martina Anderson (right) attending the unveiling of Gerry Adams in the Falls Road, Belfast

BOBBY STOREY, hero or villain. These are the two conflicting narratives played out since the death of one of the most prominent IRA leaders of the conflict.

But often there is no simplicity or consistency in history or life. The man who once waged war on the British State later became an instrumental peeler for the peace.

And even that was a messy business - reliant if not on violence, then at least on the unspoken threat of it. Those republicans who transgressed from the peace process, or were thinking about it, knew that big Bobby calling to the door was a whole different ball game to a chat with Mary Lou, or whoever was her late 1990s equivalent.