Britain’s security forces have been put on maximum alert following an audacious terrorist attack in South London, believed by experts to have been carried by extremist Moslem supporters of Osama bin Laden – the man accused of masterminding the recent bombings of the Pentagon and World Trade Centre which left thousands dead. In this latest outrage, a hijacked kebab van packed full of highly volatile cooking oil and grease was driven through the front window of a Tooting branch of MacDonalds in the early hours of Sunday morning. The resulting fireball totally destroyed the fast-food outlet. “Lumps of charred meat were falling out of the sky, at first I thought it was bits of bodies, but quickly realised it was chunks of lamb and processed burgers,” says an eyewitness. Luckily the restaurant was closed at the time, thereby avoiding casualties. However, a spokesman for MacDonalds has confirmed that over six hundred Big Macs are still missing in the debris – there is little hope of salvaging them. No trace of the van’s driver was found by emergency services attending the scene, leading to speculation that he was a suicide bomber whose body had been totally vapourised in the huge explosion.

The owner of the kebab van, thirty six year old Ali Farouk of Balham, claims that his van was seized from his lucrative pitch outside Tooting Bec tube station by a group of Middle Eastern looking men wielding sharpened wooden kebab skewers. “There was nothing I could do to stop them – one minute I’m serving them extra onion, the next they’ve got sharpened sticks at my throat and I’m being forced to drive down the High Street,” he explained. “Once I realised what they intended to do I tried to fight them, but they were too strong, and threw me out of the van!” Whilst some have praised Mr Farouk for his heroism, some local commentators have pointed out that he had long been complaining that MacDonalds was stealing his custom, and have suggested that he crashed the vehicle himself. Farouk has denied that he had recently insured his van against use by terrorists in suicide attacks.

The Home Secretary is convinced that the attack is the work of Islamic fundamentalists. “The target was obviously carefully chosen as a potent symbol of American commerce,” he told a packed House of Commons, adding that, until further notice, all kebab, hot dog, fish and chip and ice cream vans had been impounded. “Any such vans seen on the public highway will be assumed to be under terrorist control, and will run the risk of being destroyed by RAF jets.”  Another fast food attack may already have been foiled by members of the public. Islington hot dog vendor Harry Flakers claims that a group of Arabic looking men pushed to the front of the queue as he served late night customers outside of the local cinema, and attempted to make off with his hand cart. “I’m convinced that they planned to ram a nearby Burger King with it”, he says. However, enraged customers grabbed the terrorists and beat them to the ground before they could realise their devilish plan. Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Police have announced that they have arrested several men in connection with these attacks. The men, described as being of “Middle Eastern origin”, are all believed to hold UK driving licences qualifying them to drive “private light goods” vehicles, such as kebab vans, and some may have received training in deep fat frying and other catering techniques. One unconfirmed report suggests that one might even have worked in a MacDonalds outlet.

There have been suggestions that the arrested men are linked to London-based Saudi dissident and Islamic fundamentalist cleric Abdul Alhazred – dubbed the “Mad Mullah” by the popular press – who has frequently called for an end to US involvement in the Middle East. Whilst hook-handed Alhazred (he claims to have lost his right hand whilst fighting the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan), has frequently been linked with Afghan-based terrorist Osama bin Laden, The Sleaze can exclusively reveal that he is actually a former wrestler from Hackney. During the 1980s he was prominent in the East Kent Wrestling Federation (EKWF), where, dressed as the late Ayatollah Khomeni, he wrestled under the name “Freddie Fatwah”. Former associates have cast doubt on his claims of fighting with the Afghan rebels. “The closest he ever got to battling the Soviets was when he beat Ivan the Terrible for the EKWF Home Counties Championship,” states ex-wrestler Stan “Stepney Stalker” Bellows. Moreover, Bellows claims that Alhazred actually lost his right hand after he was caught giving manual pleasure to a young man during a holiday in Damascus. “Islamic law can be very strict,” says Bellows. “Without the hand he couldn’t wrestle, so he decided to put the costume to good use and set up in the Mad Mullah business instead – I’m told it can be very lucrative!”

Some politicians have voiced concerns that innocent fast food vendors could be mistaken for terrorists and fall victim to revenge attacks by vigilantes. Such cases of mistaken identity have already occurred in the US, where President Bush’s calls for al-Qaida to be brought to justice have resulted in fifty-six year old Florida resident Al Kaider’s house twice being firebombed by vigilantes, and Mr Kaider himself being chased out of the state by a lynch mob. Consequently, the Home Secretary has announced the introduction of a new national ID scheme. “From January next year all UK residents will, by law, be required to carry a special tattoo on their foreheads, describing their name, address, race, religion and occupation. Convicted criminals will also be required to display the types of offences they have been found guilty of – ‘rapist’, ‘child molester’, ‘unemployed’, for instance,” he told reporters. “Anyone found without such a tattoo, or indeed, anyone vaguely foreign looking, will immediately be adjudged to be an illegal immigrant and deported forthwith. It is clear that if such measures had previously been in place these latest atrocities would not have occurred – no-one would have allowed someone with ”international terrorist” tattooed on their forehead to board an airliner, for instance.” These proposals have been denounced as “idiotic”, “irrelevant”, “crackpot” and “downright dangerous” by civil liberties groups, who describe their introduction during this crisis as “cynical opportunism” on the Home secretary’s part.