Maybe the link between Red Dawn and conservative doctrine is less clear today, but at the time it came out, it was pretty much an illustration of the worst-case scenario that Reagan and his ilk warned against and used to justify a lot of their policies: "This is what will happen if we don't toughen the military/build more nukes/cut social programs to pay for the above/etc." So taken as a cautionary tale, it aligned pretty well with the narrative of 1980s American conservatives.
I am curious if you would have considered Representative Carl Vinson,
to be a predecessor of "Reagan and his ilk"
Funny how the build-up of the 80's eventually led to the downfall of the Soviet Union and ended the Cold War. How did Johnson's War on Poverty turn out?