Red September is one of 26 Criminal Organizations you may encounter, and appears only in the Africa/Middle East Theatre of Operations. Since no known real-world terrorist organization used the name "Red September", it is assumed that this is an allusion to "Black September", a Palestinian terrorist organization.
In the GameEdit
Red September, sometimes abbreviated in game as "RedSp", is regarded as a Criminal Organization.
Red September appears only in one Theatre of Operations: Africa/Middle East. It will have a Hideout in almost every City in this Theatre, though the location of each Hideout may not be known at the start of each Mission.
You may occasionally encounter Red September agents Participating in Criminal Plots. It is also possible for the Red September Mastermind to be the head of such a Plot, and if so that Mastermind must be Arrested - as with all 26 other Masterminds - in order to complete the entire game.
There is no fundamental difference between any Criminal Organization, and Red September is no exception.
The game lists this faction as being named "Red September". No real-world terrorist, criminal, or state-security organization of that name has ever existed, leading to the assumption that this is an allusion to "Black September", a Palestinian terrorist organization. This keeps in line with several more-obvious allusive organization names used in Covert Action.
Following the Israeli-Arab war of 1948 and the Six Day War of 1967, the state of Jordan had received a massive influx of Palestinian refugees, which by 1970 comprised a considerably majority of its population. Arab militants were conducting raids into Israel and the Occupied Territories from within the safety of Jordanian borders, garnering massive popular support for their cause even within the Jordanian government and military.
In September 1970, Palestinian operatives made several assassination attempts on the King of Jordan, and the various factions of the PLO committed several airplane hijackings around the world to attract attention to their cause. This was the final straw, which prompted the King to initiate a sweeping campaign to retake control of his country. Declaring martial law, the Jordanian Legion assaulted several PLO headquarters and camps across the country, culminating in several thousand dead. Despite a cease-fire signed between the warring parties, the PLO failed to respect the terms and prompted a final assault by King Hussein's forces, which effectively ended PLO influence in Jordan. The primary PLO headquarters were moved to Lebanon as a result.
Palestinians refer to this period as Black September, being a low point in their attempt to carry out their armed struggle over the region. One of the many outcomes of this period was the creation of a splinter-group within the PLO calling itself Black September after these events. The organization, collaborating closely with Fatah (the leading faction of the PLO), declared its intention to exact revenge upon Jordan. As Jordan has long been one of the more pro-western states (so far as maintaining clandestine political ties with Israel despite the Six Day War in which the two countries battled each other!), the Black September group expanded its operations to strike at both Western and Israeli targets wherever possible.
Amongst the group's most notorious exploits were the assassination of the Jordanian Prime Minister, the sabotage of gas plants in Germany and the Netherlands, and even a planned multiple-car-bomb attack in New York that was foiled only due to technical difficulties with the bombs. More famously, the group hijacked a Sabena flight, landing it in Tel-Aviv, ending in an almost flawless successful rescue by Israeli commandos.
The most infamous (and most deadly) attack by Black September however is known as the Munich Massacre. Armed terrorists from the group infiltrated the Olympic Village in Munich during the games, killing several Israeli athletes outright and eventually executing the rest of their hostages during the ensuing siege at the local airport.
The insidious attack prompted a brutal retaliation from the Israeli Mossad, which relentlessly hunted down Black September and Fatah operatives involved in the attack and assassinated them, all across the world. In 1973, Israeli commandos made a nightly raid on the city of Beirut, Lebanon, killing three of the organization's highest-ranking operatives. This point marks the end of the known Black September operations. The remaining members of the group have apparently been re-absorbed into the ranks of the Fatah or other similar splinter-factions.
By 1990, the year Covert Action was released, the Black September had no longer been a distinct or active terrorist faction for over 15 years.