08 July 2006

shortwave summary: jul 2006 (part 1)

I continued using the quirky Redsun RF-1210, and got the Eton E5 running after recharging the depleted batteries yet again. My Sony ICF SW7600GR was also part of the action. I'm including a June reception that I overlooked last month.

Received stations:
* Radio Canada International
* Radio Netherlands
* Radio Taiwan International
* China Radio International

* 18 Jun 2006, 2004 UTC, 17765 khz (Radio Canada International): There are currently two big sporting events: the soccer/football World Cup and hockey's Stanley Cup. The announcer described the World Cup as "physical poetry." Callers are invited to discuss these sporting events. People at the studio are watching the South Korea / France game. An announcer made an analogy between soccer and music. Pop music is predictable and formulaic: approximately three minutes long with a "payoff" through chord progressions. In jazz, a solo could go nowhere or turn out amazing. Canada is "farther behind now" in returning to the World Cup. Leipzig is calling hosting the South Korea / France game.

I lost interest in this broadcast due to the prolonged focus on sports. Their broadcasts have never really kept my interest.

* 02 July 2006, 0400 UTC, 6165 khz (Radio Netherlands): "Welcome to the weekend connection." Alcohol consumption warning across the EU; binge drinking is associated with sports events like the World Cup. "Too little, too late" in the case of Ayaan Hirsi Ali (born Ayaan Hirsi Magan), who was ultimately granted Dutch citizenship after it was discovered that she lied in her asylum application. The situation led to the collapse of the second Balkenende cabinet.

The World Cup "encourages binge drinking." One interviewed consumer said that "it's already difficult to speak English." The alcohol industry is responsible for the link between sports and alcohol consumption due to advertising. EU wants to clamp down on alcohol advertising. There was a story about the use of the gaelic language in Ireland. Then a story about working on the EU constitution. Finland will demonstrate to the French president that they are more than simple farmers. (I'm not sure what that means!) The Tour de France has a new doping scandal. Italy has been accused of bribing World Cup officials. Running of the bulls (el encierro) is coming up in Spain. Is justice or peace more important in Uganda? Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) leaders have been indicted; their leader is Joseph Kony. The LRA is described by Wikipedia as a "rebel paramilitary group". Joseph Kony has escaped arrest for 20 years. He was continually able to escape, and has been aided by Sudan. Again from Wikipedia, the Sudanese government has given money to the LRA to prevent them from attacking Sudanese cities.

Thanks to Radio Netherlands for telling me about the LRA, which I didn't know about before. The story about alcohol consumption by World Cup fans was an interesting side of the story that I haven't heard elsewhere.

* 02 July 2006, 0700 UTC, 5950 khz (Radio Taiwan International): Taiwan asked Japan to resume fishery talks. A Taiwanese fishing boat was chased by a Japanese coast guard boat. Fifteen talks have been held since 1996 without an agreement. Cancer was Taiwan's number one killer in 2005 for the 24th year in a row. Incidents of oral, rectal, breast, and colon cancer are all increasing. Taiwan is dedicated to helping other developing countries. Taiwan is one of the most successful recipients of international aid; it received aid from the USA from 1950 to 1960. Sunday weather in Taipei: sunny, 29-35C (84-95F). In the legislature, 119 out of the 221 lawmakers voted in favor of a presidential recall, but it was less than the two-thirds majority required to pass the motion. The president needs to regain the public's trust. Following the failed recall effort, a no-confidence vote could happen.

Radio Taiwan International is usually a good source of news about various conflicts in Asia. I didn't know that Taiwan had any disputes with Japan.

* 03 July 2006, 0400 UTC, 6080 khz (China Radio International): Israel attempts to free an Israeli soldier held by Palestinians.
Israel continued its military actions on Monday. The military strikes in Gaza have been going on for a week. Iraq has released a new most-wanted list so that Iraqis know their enemies. Iraq targets those who seek to increase sectarian violence. Mexicans vote for their next president. The Mexican presidential election was too close to call. The winner could be declared late Sunday. The NASA space shuttle launch was scrubbed for a second day. Airbus A380 production delay is a big setback for EADS. China has issued new regulations for the insurance sector.

The new Tibetan railway could help reduce poverty. Tibetans could participate in railway projects and benefit from local tourism. Most tourists to Tibet will be Chinese citizens. Seeing Tibetan people in person will change relations for the Chinese. Automobile duties in China have been reduced from 28% to 25%. Brazil lost to France in the World Cup by a score of 1-0. "One is never prepared for defeat; we only prepare for victory." Weddings in Shanghai cost about US$22k; the highest amount in China. Weather in Beijing: cloudy with showers, 23-30C (73-86F).

"Career or baby?" A pregnant woman was fired from her job at a camera equipment company when she was five months pregnant. She had worked at the company for 3.5 years. She was not given a reason for the termination. In court, the company claimed she was not performing well and the manager intended to give her a different job. Nowadays, more women of child-bearing age in China are working. Women also tend to have children at a later age when they are more financially secure.

I am eager to learn more about the new Tibetan railway, and I definitely want to hear China's side of the story.

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