Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND) has teamed up with political thriller
author David Hagberg to write an insightful and gripping novel,
Gridlock. Not only is there a fascinating plot but
it also has a warning of a possible terrorist threat that
not many are considering.
The plot includes many good action scenes that involve a former
Russian agent turned paid assassin, Iranian and Venezuelan
intelligence agents, a small town sheriff, Nate Osborne, and
his future fiancé, a brash journalist. After two Iranian
agents hand over one million dollars to a Russian engineer
they receive a thumb drive containing a deadly computer virus.
They engage a hacker in Amsterdam to do the necessary job
that could shut down all electrical power in the US.
The protagonist character, Nate Osborne, is a former special
forces Marine, which helps to explain how a small town North
Dakota sheriff is familiar with international espionage. Given
the fact that with the last two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan
the enemy was not clear-cut, the authors used this scenario
for their antagonist. Senator Dorgan told blackfive.net, “In
those wars the enemy did not wear a uniform so it was not
apparent who was the adversary. In this book there were many
antagonists including rogue nations, countries like Russia
and China, terrorist organizations, and all a possible threat.
Because we in the US need to preserve and produce more energy
there should be more urgency about the need to protect our
grids. We wanted to have our readers consider the devastating
effect that could happen if a rogue nation or terrorist organization
were able to shut down a substantial portion of this nation’s
Also, very timely and relevant is their creation of a secret
government facility, given what Snowden has said about the
facility in Utah. In Gridlock the secret facility is known
as the Donna Marie Power Plant that is working on experimental
forms of energy. It produces clean and abundant energy so
that the US no longer needs to rely on foreign oil. The Senator
noted, “In our first book we created a top secret government
facility using Los Alamos as a model. Just as it was created
for the nuclear experiments in New Mexico we decided in Gridlock
to create a remote facility in the North Dakota Badlands.
Since North Dakota is where I am from and what I know about
I chose it as the setting.”
Although Gridlock is a fictional book that is meant
to entertain it is also meant to inform and allow the readers
to understand that this threat is very real and dangerous.
It’s about cyber terrorism where the next war may be
fought with digital weapons instead of guns.