28 February 2006

shortwave summary: feb 2006 (part 3)

It was a busy month for my shortwave receivers, as I improved reception and reduced some indoor interference. Also, I had to give the new Eton E5 a good workout! Here's the final batch of my February 2006 reception reports.

Broadcasters mentioned in this report:
* Voice of Croatia
* Voice of America
* China Radio International
* Radio New Zealand International
* Radio Havana Cuba
* Radio Canada International
* Radio Slovakia
* Voice of Korea (North Korea, that is)
* KBS South Korea
* Voice of Vietnam

* 18 Feb 2006, 0310 UTC: 7285 khz (Voice of Croatia): To my knowledge, this is a new station reception for me. It's also a very short broadcast so this reception was only about 5 minutes long. Due to a weak signal, I could only understand pieces of it. Croatia was mentioned in several headlines (a good indicator of the station), then I heard a definitive "Voice of Croatia" identification. Primetimeshortwave.com places the transmitter in Germany, so this is also one of the longest-distance receptions for me. Signoff was "have a pleasant remainder of the day!" (Thanks!) SIO 232.

* 1905 UTC: 15580 khz (Voice of America, to Africa): Sounds like a hip-hop radio station without commercials. I didn't hear station identification until 2000 UTC. It was the first time I heard VOA music programming. The featured guest was LaToya London, an American Idol finalist. The show consisted of an interview, her music, and other rap/hip-hop songs. She wants rap lyrics to focus on positive and motivational messages. ID was "Africa service of the Voice of America." During the broadcast, the SIO code started at 544 and ended at 333. This could be typical for a 19 meter broadcast from the east coast (the transmitter is in Greenville, North Carolina). I'd like to hear more VOA music programs, such as Little Stephen Van Zant's "Underground Garage." But I don't expect this opportunity to last. (Update: a-ha! Underground Garage is broadcast locally on FM.)

* 19 Feb 2006, 0300 UTC: 9790 khz (China Radio Intl): China offered US$1 million for Phillipines relief. Pakistani president is visiting China; "two friendly neighbors." Abbas says "respect all previous agreements with Israel." Hamas rejected a call to negotiate with Israel. Pentagon won't close the Guantanamo prison as suggested by the United Nations. Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez says the USA failed, and will continue to fail, to isolate his country. Little hope for more survivors in the Phillipines; 1800 estimated deaths. USA dispatched 2 warships and 1000 marines to the area. Hamas is forming a new government. Japan is the biggest destination for China's agricultural products. India confirmed H5N1 (bird flu) in chickens on 18 Feb; it was also found in a wild duck in France. Canada seeks to diversify its oil business. Most of Canada's oil is consumed domestically and by the USA, but exports to China could begin. SIO 434.

* 20 Feb 2006, 0015 UTC: 9570 khz (China Radio Intl): I heard the "CRI" identification on this frequency, but not much else. It was a notable reception because the transmitter is in Albania. SIO 131.

* 0410 UTC: 15720 khz (Radio New Zealand Intl): Discussing jobs in various industries; concerns over job cuts; training. Financial news and currency rates. SIO 434. This is why yawning was invented.

* 23 Feb 2006, 0500 UTC: 6000 khz (Radio Havana Cuba): Cuba has a low HIV infection rate. Investigations into death squads within the 1500-member Iraqi police. Churches in the USA released a statement opposing the Iraq war. Mailbag show: bookmarks, QSL cards, and schedules commemorating the station's 45th anniversary. A free eye surgery program in Cuba was mentioned, but I somehow missed most of the story. The announcers said that Americans can't participate because US citizens face a ban on travel to Cuba. While that persists, I'll have to get my mojitos by using Puerto Rican rum and a recipe from the web. SIO 534.

* 2203 UTC: 15180 khz (Radio Canada Intl): Olympics news. Very brief reception. SIO 333.

* 25 Feb 2006, 0527 UTC: 6000 khz (Radio Havana Cuba): The United States operated military flights over Europe using a bogus "JGO" callsign. The callsign previously belonged to a low-cost Canadian airline. SIO 433.

* 26 Feb 2006, 0110 UTC: 7230 khz (Radio Slovakia): I stuck with this only until I heard the station identification. SIO 121. I would love to pick up a stronger signal from them! Alas, they use the problematic 41 meter band. I'd also like to know if their transmitter is in Bratislava or somewhere else.

* 0301 UTC, 7285 khz (Voice of Croatia): No reception comments in my notebook, although I believe I heard the station id. SIO 222.

* 27 Feb 2006, 0129 UTC: 13760 khz (Voice of Korea, North Korea): Blatant propaganda. I can't hear the broadcast clearly, but Kim Jong-il is mentioned frequently and every story has a positive outcome. The station id, "this is the Voice of Korea," was heard numerous times during my half-hour reception. Uplifting-sounding music (for mind control). Constant praise for Kim Jong-il. Bragging about improved agriculture due to farming machines. "We conclude the English language service." SIO 222. I hope to receive this more clearly sometime so I can capture better details. It's possibly the most appalling broadcast out there.

* 0204 UTC, 9560 khz (KBS South Korea): Discussing counterfeit money printed in North Korea. Plans for cross-border railways and roads between North and South Korea. (Oh, really?) Couples could receive subsidies for their children under 3 years of age, in efforts to increase the birth rate. Microsoft is appealing a fair trade ruling in South Korea. The fine is 32.4 billion won (approximately US$33 million); related to software bundling with the Windows operating system. Playing the latest music from South Korea and write-in requests from listeners. SIO 333. (Relayed from Sackville)

* 0230 UTC, 6175 khz (Voice of Vietnam): Difficult to understand. Interference from 6170 khz (and I'm not sure what would be broadcasting there). Japan is the largest investor in Vietnam. Discussing shipbuilding. Endoscopic surgery was introduced in Vietnam during the 1990s. Interesting, but I didn't get to hear any cultural bits. SIO 322. (Relayed from Sackville)

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