LONDON – Britain's intelligence chiefs – Sir John Scarlett of MI6, Jonathan Evans of MI5 and David Pepper of the Government Communications Headquarters – each have been provided with the ultimate Christmas present, a mobile fortress fitted with more gadgets than ever given to James Bond, according to a report from Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin.
Their defenses are being raised because of the belief in al-Qaida's intention to bring terror to the streets of Great Britain and concern that those dangers will reach extreme levels during the Christmas season.
Each time the intelligence chiefs leave their already heavily guarded headquarters overlooking the Thames or the doughnut-shaped building in the English countryside from where GCHQ intercepts all electronic messages in and out of Britain, their new mobile fortress will provide even better protection than President-elect Barack Obama will have when he takes office next month.
An MI5 analysis has concluded that the threat to Britain's intelligence chiefs is "higher today than ever before."
"To claim the leaders of the fight against al-Qaida in Britain is al-Qaeda's prime target," the analysis said. "That threat will be at its height during the Christmas and New Year period when people are more relaxed."
The new vehicles, with top speeds of 150 miles an hour, were built in secret in a high security workshop at BMW headquarters in Munich, Germany. The blueprints were kept under lock and key, and engineers who hand-built each limousine were security cleared by German intelligence and MI5 vetting officers.
Each mobile fortress costs over 400,000 British pounds, roughly $600,000.
The vehicles were secretly shipped to England earlier this month. One now is installed in the basement parking space for each intelligence chief.
MI5's evaluation confirms the threat of a terrorist attack remains "severe," and there are at least 2,000 extremists in Britain "who will attempt such an attack."
Each mobile fortress is equipped with defenses that can resist a 33-pound roadside bomb as lethal as those that have killed so many British and U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.