The latest offshore radio related news by reporters from Europe and the Middle East, updated whenever there is a new item. Please feel free to contribute via
Sunday April 13th 2003
6 - 10 Ships Broadcasting To Iraq
By Mika Mäkeläinen, Camp as-Sayliyah, Qatar
(published on April 5th, 2003, sligthly updated later)
Surrender or die is the message beamed at the remaining Iraqi Republican Guard soldiers in trenches around Baghdad. Coalition propaganda is aired 24 hours a day over Information Radio, part of a sophisticated psychological warfare operation aimed at winning the war in Iraq with less fighting, less casualties - and more clever persuasion.
With emphasis on the technical aspects, this article is the most comprehensive report published so far of the ongoing Iraqi mission of Information Radio.
Information Radio, Radiyo al-Ma'ulumat in Arabic, is a US military Special Operations radio station broadcasting anti-Saddam Hussein messages, which are aimed at weakening his support among the Iraqi people and military.
The programs however are well-known - or at least they should be - because that is the purpose of the mission. Each program normally lasts about an hour and contains an introduction, combinations of regional and Western music and an information message. (...)
In mid-February 2003, Information Radio transmissions were extended. "We're currently broadcasting on five different radio frequencies 24 hours a day and have been doing so since the 17th of February," said Brigadier General Vincent Brooks in a Central Command press briefing on March 25. However, it was not the five frequencies nor the 24-hour transmissions that were new. What Brooks failed to mention is that for the first time Coalition partners were involved - and that the extended transmissions originated from ships.
Broadcasts began from coalition naval vessels patrolling in the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman in the northern Arabian Sea. One ship at a time, primarily performing maritime interdiction missions, has been relaying Information Radio programming using whatever transmitters have been available on the particular ships, says Major Peter Mitchell, US Marines Public Affairs official at Central Command forward headquarters in Qatar.
Currently the ships are broadcasting only on 9715 kHz shortwave. Transmitter power depends on the ship in question. Broadcasts begin at 23.00 Baghdad time - when Commando Solo [on board a U.S. Air Force EC-130E aircraft] heads back to its base - and end at 18.00 Baghdad time, when Commando Solo once again begins its five-hour broadcast. Together these platforms make 9715 kHz available for 24 hours a day.
Ships from at least three Coalition countries (US, UK and Australia) are rotated so that each ship transmits a few days at a time, before handing over responsibility to another ship. In late March 3-4 ships were rotating, but since the beginning of the naval transmissions in February, a total of 6-10 ships have been involved in the broadcasts.
Coalition partners have been reluctant to identify the ships in question to maintain operational security. As far as the United Kingdom is concerned, there are three frigates (HMS Chatham, HMS Marlborough and HMS Richmond) and three destroyers (HMS Liverpool, HMS Edinburgh and HMS York) which could be involved. HMS Chatham has previously been reported operating as a platform for broadcasts to Iraq. (...)
Taken from: http://dxing.info/profiles/clandestine_information_iraq.dx
The Type 22 frigate HMS Chatham (...) broadcasts programmes dubbed ‘Radio Free Iraq’, consisting of a mix of modern Middle East music interspersed with messages of peace – and warnings that the Allies will use extreme force against those who do not surrender.
(published on March
18 april, precies 30 jaar na de grote demonstratie tot behoud van
Veronica, gaat Radio 192 terug naar Den Haag. Vanaf de Pier in
Scheveningen wordt een 7 uur durend live programma gemaakt, waarin wordt
teruggeblikt op één van de meest gedenkwaardige dagen in de
geschiedenis van Radio Veronica. Op diezelfde 18de april 1973 werd ook
het zendschip De Norderney weer vlotgetrokken, nadat het ruim twee weken
op het strand van Scheveningen aangespoeld had geleden.
Klik HIER voor meer details.
Tuesday April 1st 2003
VOP is to return
Plans are under way to salvage the former VOP ship from the Mediterranean Sea.
Friday March 28th 2003
Hans Knot reporting from the Dutch radio scene:
The international news for the month of March 2003.
During the past 8 months, one by one, the readers brang in a lot of nicknames, and still they’re coming in more and more. It was Peter from England who did remind us that Neil Gates from Radio Caroline also was named ‘Nellie’ Gates. Then another one we didn’t mention, I found back in the French language edition of Offshore Echoes. His real name is Kirk Clyaat and worked in the eighties for Laser Hot Hits as KC ‘in the morning’.
Classic FM, not only active with a radio station in England but also, thanks Paul, in Holland, has gained more listeners than ever before. In the period December 2002 up till January 2003 10.1 % of the Dutch people tuned in. That will say the listeners from above the 10 year age. During the past two years the listener ship has grown with 2%.
this month congratulations are going to Bart
and Ada Serlie for the birth of their son Cesar Ross. He is the
son of the Dutch deejay Bart (The Floating Dutchman) who could be mainly
heard in (Cloggie) English on several RSL’s from the LV18 (Radio Mi
Amigo and RNI) during the past years. Also Ada did a lot of cooking and
assorted work (including her famous Cloggie weather) during several RSL
periods. Here's just a little snap (more on www.babyalbum.com/bb5beede_Cesar_;
including the motive for his second
name) of the young boy, who was already on the radio within 100
hours. He will probably get a microphone for his first birthday and a
mini radio ship when he’s 5 years of age. The both of you take care
and again congratulations.
On March the 6th there was the four days a week program on Radio 2 called ‘Theatre of the sentiment’. Every time they go back to a special year with the exact day of transmissions. On the 6th it was 32 years ago all people in Holland could hear for the very first time Radio Noordzee, the Dutch Service of RNI. This happened on 220 metres as well on FM and SW. The first team consisted out of three people. Well known Jan van Veen as well as Joost den Draayer. Newcomer Ferry Maat was there too. He became famous too and was guest today in the program of the KRO on Radio 2.
One of the readers who knew that I had to go to England this March wrote me an e mail, which was one my computer arriving back. It was from former Harwich inhabitant Shaun Brennan. He nowadays lives in California and wrote: ‘Welcome home! Hopefully you had a good time in Ye Old England. I hope the LV18 is still there? Is it out in the river, or back on Harwich Quay? Hmm, wonder what's going on there. I've heard stories that there's a lot of infighting going on between the various parties involved...hey, just like real offshore radio! Seems a shame that the boat's not being used now, eh? ‘ Well Shaun talked about the
Light Vessel number 18, which is anchored in the river and can be seen very clearly passing it on the ship from Stena Line, which I used for the crossing this time. The ship was used for several RSL’s during the last years. In 2002 it became Radio Mi Amigo during 28 days and the name is still painted on the ship. It is not known if the ship will be used again this year.
Around March 20th this month’s edition of the Radio Review arrived from England and yet Geoff Baldwin and his team succeeded in bringing a most informative bulletin. As a long time ago promised by Geoff, in this bulletin the very first episode of ‘TV Flashback’ of what he hopes becomes a regular feature. There are more than 10 pages going back in time with the high days of television. Good work and if you want a copy of the magazine I can advise you to sent 2 Pounds to Radio Review, PO Box 46 Romford, Essex, RM7 8AY England.
Sunday March 23rd 2002
Een commentaar door Rob Olthof (SMC):
Je vraagt je af of de luisteraar gebaat is bij steeds meer van hetzelfde? Zoals bekend gaat de overheid tussen de golfoorlog perikelen, alsmede narigheid in de familie van Beatrix. Dit inzake een prinsesje wier moeder tegen bomen praat en een licht criminele echtgenoot heeft en dan ook nog de economische crisis in Nederland, ook nog wat FM frequenties verkopen aan de meest biedende. Dat wordt een feest straks! Er worden negen kavels verdeeld, die natuurlijk onder Sky Radio, Radio 538, Radio Noordzee,
Radio10 en Yorin FM verdeeld worden. Als ze mazzel hebben zit ook Classic FM goed. Volgens peilingen zou ook Nederlands talig het 'goed' doen, alsmede een nieuwsstation. Ik dacht dat wel Radio 1 al hadden? Merkwaardig is dat Nederlandstalig goed zou scoren. Holland FM is aan het 'succes' ten onder gegaan, maar misschien is niet alle hoop vervlogen voor Radio Nationaal. Tot in Polen kon met 'genieten' van André Hazes en de zijnen, maar er werd geen enkele commercial op dit station verkocht.
37% van de luisteraars wil classic rock horen, dat zal je niet zeggen als je de toch nog wat teleurstellende cijfers van Arrow Classic Rock ziet. Wellicht dat dit met de AM frequentie te maken heeft. 19% van de luisteraars wil alternatieve rock horen, dat is in schril contrast met de luistercijfers van Kink FM, maar ja, die zit alleen maar op de kabel. 31 % wil vervolgens R&B horen en die komen dus wel aan hun trekken. De 20% country luisteraars ook wel via Country FM, maar waar blijft een easy listening station? De enquêteur houdt kennelijk niet van dit genre, want deze staat niet in het lijstje. Kennelijk vindt men dat Sky Radio aan deze behoefte voldoet. Echte easy listening luisteraars kunnen beter een schotel aanschaffen en naar Prime Time Radio luisteren (op 28 graden oost, precies die richting waar Radio Caroline ook met haar signaal op zit).
Merkwaardig is ook dat als een commercieel station zou moeten afvallen alseerste Radio 10 sneuvelt en dan Yorin FM (aldus de zelfde enquête). De directie van Radio 10 zou eens met de directie van Radio 192 om de tafel moeten gaan zitten. Kennelijk heeft de luisteraar nu genoeg van de Arcade cd's die men continue draait. Maar er is hoop, want broeder John de Molheeft ook Radio10 opgekocht en vast en zeker zal hij wat coryfeeën opscharrelen op de populariteit van het station op te laten krikken. Dat opkrikken van luistercijfers zou ook op deze manier kunnen:
Wat dacht je van tante Trix voor het koffie-uurtje en Margareta en Roy Inbrekerstein voor de middaguren, kan ze mooi nog wat brieven tussen de platen voorlezen en iets vertellen over afluisterpraktijken bij haar familie. Gegarandeerd trekt dit luisteraars.
Dan 's avonds nog het programma Bedtime met Clinton en Monika Lewinsky die meteen hun laatste cd single 'Have a cigar my lovely' promoten. Zeker weten dat de populariteit boven die van Sky Radio uitkomt. Bolkestein zou nog een uurtje in de ochtend kunnen doen en meteen iets vertellen over de treurige beurskoersen. Succes verzekerd!
Mochten er té weinig FM-frequenties zijn voor de kleinere stations, dan kunnen die uitwijken naar de middengolf: de 1008, 675, 1395, 828, 1224, 891, 1332, 1035, 1584, 1602, 1485 en 1557 kHz gaan in de verkoop. Onbegrijpelijk dat de 747 kHz, waar nu een publiek station opzit waar echt niemand naar luistert, niet in de verkoop gaat. Voor Radio Caroline Nederland is een goede middengolf frequentie een manier om glorieus terug te keren en luisteraars aan zich te binden. Het zou mooi zijn als Sietse en Co. bijvoorbeeld de 828 of 1224 kHz zouden krijgen. Tenminste ¾ van Nederland zou hun signaal kunnen ontvangen, zeker als men er ook nog een lokale steunzender bij neemt: zoals bijv. de 1602 kHz voor Leeuwarden, de 1557 kHz voor Amsterdam en de 1485 kHz voor Den Haag.
Gaat het toch nog gezellig worden. En als er dan toch nog wat geld overblijft zou men bijvoorbeeld. voor een goede Astra uplink kunnen zorgen, want het blikkerige geluid van Radio Caroline Engeland op de Eurobird gaat toch wel erg tegenstaan. Zelfs ondergetekende van 57 jaar hoort dat. Helaas blijkt nu dat de luistercijfers toch bedroevend zijn wat ik zo hier en daar hoor van de insiders. Misschien vindt Malcolm (Peter Moore) het allemaal best zo, kan de hele administratie op de achterkant van een postzegel. Beter zou zijn (als voor Caroline Nederland de beschikbare frequenties bekend zijn) Sietse nog een keer naar Londen gaat en dan tegen Malcolm zegt: wij zorgen voor de uplink en jullie nemen wat programma's md of cd op en wij zenden het uit.
Leuk gedagdroomd Olthof: in de praktijk gebeurt dit niet en wel hierom niet: de horizon eindigt voor Engelsen aan de kust en op het continent wonen alleen maar bosjesmannen. Nooit lees je in een Engels tijdschrift over zeezenders over de prestaties va Nederlanders en Belgen, die notabene Caroline financieel op de been hebben gehouden. En nu in het satelliettijdperk doen de Duitsers het met hun gehuurde uurtjes! Malcolm is een aardig mens, maar geen manager. Misschien dat ooit Bob Leroi..
Saturday March 1st 2003
Hans Knot reporting from the Dutch radio scene:
Well dear radio friends another month has gone and being a short month not too much news and gossip. Thanks for the enormous response on my last newsletter. Some of you will be mentioned (again). Most of you I've answered personally.
Early February: And Robin, who told us last month that, following the words of one of his friends, the
MV Communicator has now been registered with Cambodia and plans are afoot. Well Nozema still thinks the ship is owned by the American Company Clear Channel Communications. Rob van der Vegt, former Q-The Beat director, is back. He couldn't be found last month due to a holiday. From another source we hear that our earlier mentioned Englishman is not alone. Together with his partner O'Conner he should have paid the first amount of money for buying the Communicator. So hopefully one day it will become clear what will happen to the former Laser ship.
But more people are focused on the MV Communicator. Ruud Poeze, former Radio Paradise land based station from Utrecht, was on the telephone and he stated that it wasn't a too big problem to buy the radio ship. He tried to hire the transmitter for the Christmas and New Year period but couldn't get it completely arranged due to the fact one of the people involved didn't want to give permission. I think personally he could hire the transmitter but couldn't get the money. Following Ruud's words it wouldn't be a problem with the owner, the quicker they get rid of the ship, the better. It's so cheap that everybody (well almost) can buy the ship, as it is cheap. But then comes the problem of the Nozema transmitter. The licence for the 1224 frequency is given away up till June 1st. Ruud thinks also that going to international waters with the ship is impossible, but he has other remarks than Paul Jan de Haan has: 'Juridical and technical it is impossible and we haven't talked yet about the maintenance which has to be done on the radio ship.'
And then an e-mail came in from Johnny 'Pirate Memories'. He wrote: 'Hi there Hans, and thank you once again for a really good report. It was good to read about radio happenings in Holland and beyond. I see that very good photograph of Robin Ross, and the other DJ's when Radio Caroline came back on air in August 1983. I met and worked with
Dave Simmons for a short while at Viking FM in Hull, England, where I was commercial production engineer at the time. He was a very talented broadcaster and very easy to get on with. He left in 1992, and I last heard that he was manager of a Hotel somewhere in Lancashire, England.'
Jan van Jager is currently living in England and he also wants some publicity for a new radio project: 'I'm e-mailing from the the United Kingdom with some news, a new project is under way, it's going to be hard going to turn it into a reality, the job has just recently been started. What is the project? The return of 'The Voice of Peace', not from a ship as we are not that rich, we are just a group of people who are fed up with listening to the claptrap that's being spouted from news bulletins....and now feel it's time to voice the words of peace to all nations. We hope to be on a short-wave outlet via a 10kw relay service and thanks to other stations offering there support we relay via JRRI thanks must go to Joe who runs JRRI. This should be starting soon (details will be posted on our website soon). Our websites can be found at the following URL: http://radio-rainbow.tripod.com
Our group is not out to spread propaganda, it's to say to our respective governments. Please listen to us! No one is taking any notice of those who do protest marches in the name of peace there have to be another way to stop a war? We are a group of people, some out of work, some disabled, all believe in peace and the project. I must say via your pages, thank you so much Mike Brand for you help turn a project into reality. We would of liked to tell the original founder Abe Nathan, but we cant as Abe has had a second stroke and is not very good in health. We all send our wishes to him none the less, this is the idea that he started way back in 1969 and the original project actually took of in 1973. And in 2003 we are determined to continue the fight for a free and peaceful world, the more help we get the better. Respectfully, Jan Van Jager.'
Mike Terry sent us a report on the activities of the
Radio Communications Agency, which have been on search for illegal broadcasters. And of course they're right because they're paid for it. Mike sent us a report from the Evening Star in which was mentioned that a man has been convicted of running a pirate radio station from a base in the Black Country following a sophisticated surveillance operation. It's Ryan Evans, aged 27, of Kendal House, Oldbury, and he admitted breaching the Wireless Telegraphy Act of 1949, when he appeared before Dudley magistrates on January 31. He was given an 18-month conditional discharge and ordered to pay costs of £250. The court was told that officers from the Radio Communications Agency had managed to trace the unlicensed radio transmissions, from a pirate station named Groove FM, to an address in Clent Court, Dudley. The officers were able to secretly film Evans as he was installing transmitting equipment at the address. The Radio Communications Agency, which is an executive agency of the Department of Trade and Industry, last year carried out 1,042 operations against 209 pirate radio stations in the UK resulting in a total of 49 people being prosecuted.
He also wrote that recently he joined the team at Weekend Music Radio, 7526 KHz, who are probably the longest running unlicensed station in the UK having been broadcasting regular programming since the early 70's, and still going. I wish Alex and the whole team at WMR a lot of success for the decades to come.
The directors of he Financial Daily (Financieel Dagblad) have made the decision to buy the complete shares from
Business News Radio to become the owners of the station from March 1st. Next to the radio station the company runs the Financial Daily as printed media as well as a internet site. With the three media together they think to bring a fast and honest information flow to listeners and readers as the editorial staffs of the three can work very close together and share the info which each other.
Talpa Radio International BV, part of the investment company from
John de Mol jr, will make a deal with The Foundation Management and Publishing Company Wegener to buy 100% shares of Radio 10FM. Already for more than a year the radio station was for sale. It is not know yet if the format will be changed. Talpa Radio International bought a few months ago Noordzee FM. And bringing some memories back on the RNI days of Johnny de Mol, here's a photo of one of RNI tenders, the Trip Tender.
As always, if you've any news or you want to share your memories with us, just write to me
Greetings and till next month
25th December 2002 to 14th February 2003
11th September to 10th December 2002
18th July to 1st September 2002
29th May to 12th July 2002
Impressum & Datenschutzerklärung