A Most Dangerous Spymaster

Bradley Hope

Here's some ingredients: chess lover, likes to sit quietly for hours at a time in a dark flotation chamber, wears sunglasses indoors, runs a Middle East spy agency, cycling fanatic, eats one meal a day, believes he can live to age 150, controls billions of dollars and is the secret master of a mysterious company called Group 42.

If you add those up and don't end up with a James Bond film villain, then I'll be truly shocked. Just going through all those details would be a fascinating journey even if the man behind them didn't have ambitions that could have repercussions across the world for years to come.

Meet Tahnoon bin Zayed, a.k.a. TBZ, the national security advisor of the United Arab Emirates. He's one of the most powerful men in the Middle East, but is hankering for even more (as you'll see further below).

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