My favorite segment of the year is here once again. Since the calendar turned over to 2022, I’ve been sifting through all the news stories I’ve collected in the past twelve months to see how they stack up with the plotlines and characters in books I’ve written. I’ve got a couple of good ones for you this time.
Enemy At The Gates
I really love to think about technology and the way it can be used for good as well as evil. In Enemy at the Gates, isolating location data that’s associated with a burner phone—a pay-as-you-go phone that most people believe is untraceable—gives Rapp some hard evidence to advance his mole hunt.
For those who still think they can slink around in the shadows of today’s world, think again. It’s been repeatedly shown that “anonymous” data can be linked to an individual’s home or office. You can’t disappear if you use a smartphone. Period.
If you’ve read Enemy at the Gates and listened to any of the interviews I did during my tour, you know that I’m fascinated by the megawealthy and their increasing influence around the globe. In the book, CIA Director Irene Kennedy becomes entangled with the world’s richest man when they discover that their spheres of influence are mutually beneficial. It turns out that Gina Haspel, the woman who used to run the CIA in real life, has decided to do something similar.
And finally, a story about a man who boarded a plane dressed as his wife in order to take a flight after he tested positive for COVID-19 felt strangely familiar. Apparently, Mitch Rapp isn’t the only one who has experienced the concealing power of Islamic women’s clothing.
In Red War, I created a scenario in which Russia threatened Ukraine with a buildup of troops. It wasn’t really about security concerns, but instead the fictional Russian president’s desire to maintain his grip on power.
While America’s State Department doesn’t seem to take my view, a few analysts are starting to come around. This aggressive action is entirely about Putin giving his people what they want—the illusion that they’re still a Soviet-level world power.
I know this article should be listed in next year’s predictions post, but I’m going to include it here since we’re on the topic of the Russians making trouble. Recently, Ukraine suffered a massive cyberattack likely carried out by Russian hackers. For Red War fans out there, this recent move comes as no surprise. In the book, Krupin’s minions knocked out government communications, power, and more to weaken the targets of their invasion. Let’s hope Putin is not gearing up for a fight.
There’s more! You can read Part 2 of this post here.