‘Nick Buckles’ : Not so much a name as grounds for a dishonourable discharge

Oor Ain Folk – GEORGE FORBES, freelance security consultant and retired Colour Sergeant with the Gordon Highlanders with an insider’s take on the G4S debacle.

Name? George Malachi Forbes! Rank? Colour sergeant in The Gordon Highlanders (retired). Number? 6060842! In terms of the Geneva Convention, I am under no obligation to provide further information. I’ll tell you nothing. Sling me in the cooler if you like. Stake me out over a field of growing bamboo, I’ll never talk!

This position makes sound operational sense, but can prove counter productive in the civilian arena. For example, at a Pub Quiz, or job interview.

I recently reported for such an interrogation with the private security firm G4S. It was not fruitful. It is not for me to comment upon the weaknesses of a superior officer; but if directly ordered to speak freely I would describe the CEO of the company, Nick Buckles as a long-haired peacenik, unable to grasp even the basic tenets of security.

Having heard reports that their next assignment, securing the Olympic games for Queen and Country (God bless you, Ma’am) involved the deployment of surface to air missiles atop nearby buildings (rightly ignoring the protestations of the tofu-bothering hippies dwelling in the communes within) I had high hopes, but I realised immediately I was dealing with an amateur.

I had been told in the pre-interview briefing (a telephone call at 09.00 the previous day) that because of recent recruitment difficulties they had experienced, I, like a number of other ex-servicemen, was to be parachuted in to help the security effort. I learned that they had been speaking figuratively only after swinging in through a plate glass window.  “Now George,” Buckles said to me, as he picked shards of glass out of his suspiciously luxuriant hair, “how would approach the question of security at the Olympics?”

I gave the foppish, lentil-loving dandy the full benefit of my experience.  The risks posed by guns, knives and high explosives are known about; but the dangers posed by clothing have too long been ignored.  A belt, shoe-lace or neck-tie can be used as a deadly garrote; and consider the trouser, with their zippers that could blind a man.  Even a simple shirt can, in the hands of a 10th-dan Origami ninja, be folded so as to make a serviceable cosh, a rifle capable of firing .22 caliber bullets, or a convincing swan.  No, I told him: the only secure course was a policy of total spectator nudity.

He stopped me there, before I could even mention the dangers posed by the human tooth.  Immediately, I sensed unease.  Eventually the poltroon laid down his Hob Nob– not, you might think, the biscuit of an officer or a gentleman – and told me that my services would not be required. Now, I am no quibbler or gainsayer of orders, so I simply snapped to attention, saluted and hummed the retreat through a paper and comb while taking my leave.  Mark my words, though: they’ll rue the day they failed to secure the services of George Malachi Forbes when the watching world sees Usain Bolt brought to the ground by a man-trap fashioned from an underwired bra.  Stand Easy!


Independent Local Councilor, RON CLUNY, spokesman for the new ruling administration, explains his recent U-turns on pre-election policies.

I take my inspiration from the great American political leaders. And I have a particular affinity with Mitt Romney, presumptive presidential nominee of the Republican Party, who last week clarified details of his previous business dealings and career. He explained that whilst he worked for the private equity firm Bain Capital until 2002, he had, in fact “retroactively retired”, leaving the firm in 1999, before it started a concerted effort to asset-strip every company unfortunate enough to cross it’s path, resulting in the laying off of thousands of American workers. Thus demonstrating that he possesses not just political nous, but also a slippy shoulder and a time machine.

With this in mind, I can now announce, retroactively, that I was not, in fact, in attendance on the cross party junket to Florida in 2009 to investigate ways we might improve Codonas and surrounding seaside attractions.  Accordingly, it could never be alleged that I had any involvement in the “Malibu beach and bunny girls” incident. Furthermore I have retrospectively removed my previous effusive support for the Union Terrace Gardens project. I would not have put my weight behind it had I known then what I know now, like the fact that controlling group members have to do what they are telt to if they want get an extra buttery at fly-time.

And I am not alone in adopting this strategy. I understand that the actor David Jason is planning to retroactively retire from his role in the Royal Bodyguard, that the directors of Rangers Football Club are to retroactively retire to a time prior to setting up that EBT and that Nick Clegg has announced his retirement as at the day before the last General Election.