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The Red Glare

At the height of the Cold War, the Soviet Union creates a new undetectable submarine, but its best captain, Marko Ramius (Sir Sean Connery), violates orders and heads to the U.S., where the CIA and military must determine if he is defecting or trying to start a nuclear war.

On board the USS Dallas, Lt. Cmdr. Mike Hewitt (William Bell Sullivan) notices the Red October is in the same vicinity as they are and calls for an emergency briefing from Commander Cochrane, who informs them that their primary target is the missile base at Polyarny. Hewitt also explains that the torpedoes have a self-destruct button which will destroy the entire target area in seconds.

The Red October emerges from its turn and Ramius instructs the crew to activate the caterpillar drive. The crew members sing the Soviet national anthem which ruins the Dallas sonar and leads to a loss of contact, but Ramius lets them enjoy it. Borodin worries about the singing being heard by a spy ship, but Ramius lets him have his doubts.

In the captain’s cabin, Borodin informs Ramius that a Political Officer, Vladimir Putin (Peter Firth), is in his quarters and tries to open the orders. Ramius slams him against the table and kills him, but not before he snatches a key to the missile vault and keeps it for himself.

Aboard the Konovalov, Tupolev awaits the arrival of the Red October. The crew is anxious to test their new Caterpillar drive, but the officer in charge says that the Dallas is on course to intercept them and they must keep up with the Dallas. Tupolev realizes the Red October’s saboteur is aboard and is determined to hunt him down, so he orders his crew to continue toward Baltimore as quickly as possible.

During the battle, the Dallas is attacked by five Russian bomb ships. Two of them sank in the first salvo, but the rest were driven back by concentrated torpedo fire from the Red October. Despite this, the bombers were close enough to sink the USS Chesapeake and destroy the hangar.

Rescue Boats Take Hits in

The recent crash of a whale into a sailboat in Lower Manhattan illustrates how newer satellite technologies, including internet systems operated by the rocket company SpaceX, have changed emergency communication at sea. The crew of the 44-foot sailboat Raindancer immediately broadcast a distress signal through a private chat group and other online channels after their boat hit the whale. That prompted other boats to start sailing toward their location, people involved in the rescue say. The people in those groups say the incident is an example of how broader use of satellite systems, such as Starlink, will improve life at sea for both sailors stranded at sea and those trying to help them.

Israeli Government Installs Red Alarm System

The Israeli government has augmented its defenses with an alarm system that is being used to track Palestinians. In a new report, Amnesty International exposes an Israeli facial recognition system known as Red Wolf that is being used to automate harsh restrictions on Palestinian freedom of movement. The system uses a smartphone app to scan Palestinian faces, adding them to vast databases without their consent. One former soldier described the technology as “the army’s secret Facebook for Palestinians.” The system is being deployed at military checkpoints in Hebron.

The alarm system is triggered when the signature of a rocket launch from Gaza is detected. It sounds the standard air raid sirens throughout communities in the Gaza envelope and Sderot, and a recorded female voice intones the Hebrew words for Red Color (“Tzeva Adom”). The alarm system also has an iPhone application that allows residents to get notifications of rocket attacks near their homes.

This augmentation of the country’s defensive capabilities illustrates how Israel is evolving from its traditional security strategy of the Four Ds: deterrence, detection, defense, and (military) decision making. The Four Ds have served the nation well for decades, but they no longer provide a sufficient deterrent against the growing threat of terrorism. In the era of drones and cyber warfare, Israel is struggling to keep up.

While the rockets are a reminder of the enduring threat of terror, the current situation in northern Israel is not solely due to the conflict with Hamas. It is a manifestation of Israel’s struggle to maintain its status as a middle power in a region dominated by superpowers.

As the situation continues to develop, U.S. government employees and their families living and traveling in Israel are encouraged to remain alert for possible future incidents and to follow guidance provided by the Department of State, including the use of a navigation app, such as WAZE, on a smart phone/device, in order to be aware of road closures and other security enforcement activities that may impact travel. In addition, U.S. citizens should continue to exercise a high level of personal security awareness, avoid large crowds, keep a close eye on local news and media and be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice.

The Red Shame

Russia may have a smaller population than Nigeria and a smaller GDP than Italy, but its outsized military presence in Ukraine and Crimea, along with past infractions in Moldova and Georgia, make it clear that it will use conventional forces and softer means to undermine NATO’s Baltic members.

A shocking video showed a 93 year old man hit by shrapnel as he was being rescued from his flood-ridden home in Kherson. Another video shows the roof of a building explode as people fleeing from their homes hide behind it. A rescue worker in the city said intense shelling has been taking place as citizens attempt to navigate flooded streets on rubber boats.