A few years ago I read a story set on board a military spaceship, where a character uses cartoon character names to designate operational contingency plans, fearing that their communications are being monitored.

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    Can you give some examples? What was the plot? – Broklynite Nov 3 '15 at 9:46
  • My memory about the story is vague, but I think the spaceship is on active duty and the ?commander believes that they are somehow being spied on. The use of cartoon character names is as aliases to conceal their real plans to combat the enemy they are engaged with. This is as much as I can remember. – Ian Nov 3 '15 at 22:49

Possibly a Babylon 5 novel? Babylon 5: Voices Security Chief Michael Garibaldi has a fondness for cartoon characters (his second favourite thing), Babylon 5 is run by the military and they are surrounded by telepaths - some of them people noted for spying on them in episodes of the TV show.

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In David Gerrold's Star Wolf series, the ship is infested with "Imps" who are monitoring the ship's internal communications. In order to coordinate a shutdown and isolation of all systems, the ship's AI has generated what the crew believe to be nonsense phrases to be used as code words. Each phrase was actually the opening words of a classic story, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times...", "Call me Ishmael.", etc. Not cartoon characters, but the exact situation otherwise.

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  • In James E. Gunn's 1949 novelette "Communications" a military spaceship used code phrases based on Alice in Wonderland to coordinate battle plans with other ships in a war between Sol and Procyon. – user14111 Jan 3 '16 at 3:29

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