The head of MI5, Mr Andrew McSmythe, made an impassioned speech from an unspecified lavatory, yesterday. His words echoed the Home Secretary’s in their defence of state secrets. And they also echoed because he was in a toilet. The Home Secretary was not in the toilet, because she is a lady, so had she been in a toilet at all, she would have been in the Ladies, and unable to hear the speech.
It’s thought the M15 chief would have handed her a copy of the speech before going to the toilet, so she could have read it on the toilet in the Ladies in total secrecy. Though that scenario is the subject of some sensitivity, according to secret sources.
One source said Smythe “could have handed the speech under the toilet door to a male aid who could have taken it out of the Gentleman’s toilet, then handed it to a female aid in the corridor of the secret location, then the female aid could have taken it into the Ladies and handed it under the door to the Rt Honourable Home Secretary."
The source continued: “That is less likely because of a number of tradecraft factors. Number 1: hygiene concerns, Number 2: the danger of mistaken identity, Ladies toilet cubicle-wise. The speech could have fallen into the wrong hands, under the wrong door. Even if the Home Secretary's shoes are instantly recognisable.
"But that hypothetical chain of events sounds a little bit more Carry On than Tinker Tailor,” the source said. “And please don’t use the word “chain” in a humorous context in what you write. The same goes for quoting me saying “Number 1” or “Number Two” in a way likely to cause a vulgar response among readers. Or "Carry On." If you do we will ask you to destroy your hard drives in our presence, then thow the bits down the…I mean set fire to them.”
Asked earlier why he had chosen the toilet to make his remarks, MI5 boss McSmythe said “It’s about privacy and secrecy. Unless we can observe total secrecy about secret things which nobody should know about ever (even if it is secrets about those people) then Britain is in danger. That is no secret. But everything else is top secret, including what I am doing in the toilet. Or where it is. So please go away until I have finished …er…doing a…I mean finished making a speech about secrets… Thank you…That’s better.”