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

  • 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.

  • 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?

  • 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.

  • 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!

  • 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

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *