New Hotline from Washington to Cuba

By Tracey Eaton  (

DISA headquarters at Fort Meade in Maryland
DISA headquarters at Fort Meade in Maryland

HAVANA TIMES — The US Defense Information Systems Agency, or DISA, announced Friday that it is looking for contractors interested in establishing a high-speed digital connection from Washington, D.C., to Cuba.

DISA, a combat support agency of the Department of Defense, wants to know what it would cost to set up a T1 line to Cuba.

Details of the agency’s request are considered sensitive and are not publicly available.

T1 lines can be made of copper or fiber optic cable. They can carry phone conversations and data. According to How Stuff Works:

   If the T1 line is being used for telephone conversations, it plugs into the office’s phone system. If it is carrying data it plugs into the network’s router.

   A T1 line can carry about 192,000 bytes per second — roughly 60 times more data than a normal residential modem. It is also extremely reliable — much more reliable than an analog modem. …a T1 line can generally handle quite a few people. For general browsing, hundreds of users are easily able to share a T1 line comfortably. If they are all downloading MP3 files or video files simultaneously it would be a problem, but that still isn’t extremely common.

2000px-US-DefenseInformationSystemsAgency-Seal.svgDISA’s request for information about the T1 line does not say whether the connection would be linked to the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base or the U.S. Embassy in Havana.

The agency’s “Special Mission Areas” includes providing the communications support to the commander-in-chief. So could this new T1 connection be a hotline to Raul Castro? I doubt it.

What do you think? Why does DISA want a new digital link to Cuba?

According to DISA’s website, the agency:

Provides, operates, and assures command and control, information sharing capabilities, and a globally accessible enterprise information infrastructure in direct support to joint warfighters, national level leaders, and other mission and coalition partners across the full spectrum of operations.

   The agency is composed of nearly 6,000 civilian employees; more than 1,500 active duty military personnel from the US Army, Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps; and approximately 7,500 defense contractors.

   The agency provides, operates, and assures command and control and information-sharing capabilities and a globally accessible enterprise information infrastructure in direct support to joint warfighters, national level leaders, and other mission and coalition partners across the full spectrum of military operations.

Terry Halvorsen
Terry Halvorsen

DISA has a budget of about $9.4 million (See 2015-2020 Strategic Plan). Its chief information officer is Terry Halvorsen, a former Army intelligence officer. He is responsible for:

  …achieving and maintaining information superiority through the collection, processing, and dissemination of an uninterrupted flow of information in support of DoD missions. The DoD CIO exercises authority, direction, and control over the director of DISA and organizationally reports to the secretary of defense, the principal advisor to the president of the United States on all defense matters and issues.

Previously, Halvorsen was the deputy commander of Navy Cyber Forces. Before that, he was deputy commander of the Naval Network Warfare Command. In that role, he led more than 16,000 military and civilian personnel and supported more than 300 ships.

13 thoughts on “New Hotline from Washington to Cuba

  • October 17, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    unfortunately there is no other option but the show the whole picture of how rotten American especially and European in general politics and behavior can get , there is no money in peace at the same time war is highly profitable , if it takes one race killing another they will have no option but to start a Wars in the name of profit , that’s how twisted they are , if you think that you are exempt in Cuba in South America in the Caribbean or anywhere on the planet think again ,not to talk and complain about what’s going on is equivalent of sticking our heads in the sand I hoping for the best

  • October 17, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    how many times do I have to say this it was the Europeans who occupied Palestine not the Palestinians occupy Europe , are you aware that Bashar Al Assad was not in line to become a president, his brother was who died in a mysterious car accident , I wonder how did that happen ? who was mysterious hand behind it ? the Americans the British Israelis , the Ottoman Empire provided almost 700 years of stability until the Zionist and the Europeans decide to change that .
    the 1st Jewish settlers start causing troubles in Palestine over a hundred years ago somewhere around 1886 , here we are today and they are still causing troubles

  • October 15, 2015 at 7:43 am

    Let’s close the subject with this one. This is not a Middle Eastern publication.

  • October 15, 2015 at 6:50 am

    Pretty incompetent genocide, don’t you think? The Palestinian population is one of the fastest growing in the world. The genocide is next door in Syria where your Arab brothers are slaughtering each other. (Oh, and it was started by the Sunni Islamists fighting against the bloody Assad regime, which is backed by Iran, Russia & Cuba.) In 4 years, over 250,000 Arabs have been killed in Syria, compared to 45,000 in all Arab-Israeli wars since 1948.

    Speaking of the “bloodbath going on in Jerusalem” who is encouraging the Palestinians knife attacks on Jews? They don’t want peace, they just want to kill Jews.

  • October 14, 2015 at 10:33 pm

    Of course the detainees in Gitmo have human rights. I have a question for you. Why are Palestinian youth randomly attacking the elderly and children in Jerusalem lately? Is this why you seem so poorly guided in your opinions regarding Cuba. Do Palestinians have a different moral compass?

  • October 14, 2015 at 9:21 pm

    The US does indeed give these terrorists their “human rights”, a concept these prisoners don’t even believe in. They get regular visits from international human rights bodies such ad the Red Crescent.

  • October 14, 2015 at 9:17 pm

    You never could stick to the subject at hand. Neither this article nor my comment are about Palestinians. This article is about my homeland, Cuba. You should go somewhere else to discuss Israel and the Palestinian situation. But I agree you should return there, post haste! I certainly don’t want my hard earned tax dollars supporting you!

  • October 14, 2015 at 7:09 pm

    just about all the leaders in the Middle East are nothing more than Western appointees especially the Saudis , the West bears 100% responsibility for what’s going on in Middle East.
    I would say this again what about the prisoners of war in Guantanamo do they have human rights

  • October 14, 2015 at 7:08 pm

    who kidnapped citizens of foreign nations and is illegally holding them in Guantanamo Bay for torture ?
    where is the Great American justice system ?
    why is it that none of the laws on this planet applies to the prisoners of war who where arrested in Afghanistan ?
    what gives the United States the right to ignore international law especially the Geneva Convention ?
    who took my Palestine and give it to somebody else ?
    what about the bloodbath in Syria who started it ?
    as we speak right now there’s a bloodbath going on in Jerusalem ,who is giving the Zionists a freehand to commit genocide in Palestinians ?
    if I have a choice I will not be in this god damn country , I will go back home to Palestine .
    for crying out loud the only thing missing out of Palestine is gas chambers , please cut the crap and get off your pot .

  • October 14, 2015 at 8:08 am

    Well said, IC. As always, Moses, you have brought a smile upon my face.

  • October 13, 2015 at 11:24 am

    Apparently the Cuban government thinks differently. They know that to succeed they need to attach their star to the USA. They’re only trying to figure out how they can do that while maintains power and control, a losing proposition. Nothing good comes out of the USA? Who gave you shelter? Who gives you assistance? What are you using as a means of communication? …as a matter of fact you should consider that the USA does nothing to prevent you from expressing your views, unlike Cuba. Must be difficult for you to accept.

  • October 13, 2015 at 7:48 am

    You are confused. Americans are obsessed with freedom. And in a world where there are people who cut off the heads up other people on video in the name of their god, the guarantor of our obsession is the “green machine “. Americans don’t like war. But we don’t want to live the way you live, that is to say, living off the assistance of a government that you hate. That’s gotta suck!

  • October 12, 2015 at 7:44 pm

    I wish I have more time to express my opinions , what I have said before I will say again keep your eyes open nothing good comes out from the United States of America
    I am not referencing average American,it is the government of the United States that I am talking about that warmongering death machine , remarkably enough they refer to the US Army as the green machine
    US government obsession with war is beyond explanation , after all they found himself engaged in military action every 10 to 15 years except the latest which looks like it’s going to be indefinite open-ended war .

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