Ivan The Terrible . . . Ivan the National Security Threat?

Posted on 19. Nov, 2009 by in Uncategorized

Captain Soap MacTavish, one of the playable characters in Infinity Ward's Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare 2 hunts down an international terrorist on the streets of Rio de Janiero.

Captain Soap MacTavish, one of the playable characters in Infinity Ward's Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare 2, hunts down wanted terrorists on the streets of Rio de Janiero, Brazil.

Last week, crowds flocked to their local electronics stores with smiles on their faces and money to spend.  The day they marked on their calendars months ago finally arrived.

And despite the long lines and large crowds, nothing was going to stand in their way of achieving their mission:

Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare 2 parachuted onto the market and gamers across the globe wanted to get their hands on a copy of the award winning first person shooter.

By week’s end, the game broke records , netting $550 million dollars in sales worldwide.  And as fans delved into the game’s intricate storyline, they discovered an interesting plot twist with real-life implications – – namely Russia’s invasion of the United States.

(Warning: The following video contains disturbing images of close quarters combat and trench warfare. Viewer discretion is advised.)

After seeing this footage and learning about the plot of the game, I took a step back and wondered: Could a scenario like this actually happen in real life?

Currently, the Obama Administration wants to strengthen their relationship with the former Soviet Union.  And once he took office, one of President Obama’s foremost international priorities included re-establishing solid diplomatic ties with Russia.

Obama said the following during the July 2009 visit:

The old Cold War approaches to U.S.-Russia relations is outdated and that it’s time to move forward in a different direction. I think Medvedev understands that. I think Putin has one foot in the old ways of doing business and one foot in the new.

Obama’s words echoed through the media and set the tone for the visit: the Cold War is over.  It is time to work together as allies.

The overall reception to Obama’s sojourn was rather lukewarm despite the level of optimism going into the Russian trip.  Some pundits viewed Obama’s trip as a moderate success while others thought it did little to change Russia’s diplomatic intentions.

Despite the apparent uneasiness between the two powerhouses, the world situation is not like that of the 1960’s – – Ivan doesn’t want to nuke Florida or beat N.A.S.A. to the moon.  So, it seems that it would take something pretty catastrophic to propel them into an overt, winner takes all international conflict.

Perhaps something like what Infinity Ward supposed in Modern Warfare 2 – – a bloody and highly visible terrorist attack of epic proportions.

(Warning: This video depicts gruesome violence and mature situations.  Viewer discretion is advised.)

(Author’s Note: No need to feel ashamed about not watching the video. In fact, there’s talk of countries including Russia wanting to censor the game unless Infinity Ward removes the level. So you are in good company. N-)

For those who didn’t watch the video, here’s the long and short of it:

The gamer’s first playable character, PFC. Joseph Allen of the Army Rangers, goes undercover for the CIA and poses as a mercenary for hire in order to catch the game’s main villan: international terrorist Vladimir Makarov.

The above video of the level entitled “No Russian” depicts your first (and last) mission with Makarov: a terrorist attack on an international airport in Moscow. Makarov and his men gun down thousands of innocents and the first responders before killing Allen with the sole purpose of framing the United States for the attack on the airport.

The attack shook the nation and awoke the once hibernating bear.  Shortly thereafter, the Russians, in retaliation, prepare an invasion force, infiltrates NORAD server defenses and masks an invasion force – – one that slips under missile defense radar, establishes a beachhead in Virginia and storms Washington D.C. and the White House.

While the scenario sounds worthy of a cinematic treatment, is it plausible?

Well, Infinity Ward may not be so far off on the hacking portion of the story.  As for blaming America for a terrorist attack, I wouldn’t put it past Al-Qaeda to try to incite tensions between the U.S. and its Russian ally by using a bit of subterfuge.  But it would probably take years of planning and a covert infiltration of both the United States and Russia in order for it to succeed.

And it’s not like Al-Qaeda is an organization capable of covert infiltration, right?

For all our sakes, let’s hope that art doesn’t imitate life.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.