Korean jammers and propaganda stations

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Chris Kadlec, who has kindly (and upon my request) shared this interesting audio survey of Korean jammers and propaganda stations.

This is the final 45 minutes of my 3-hour – exactly 3 hours – broadcast of East Asia AM radio (skywave as heard from Seoul, frequency by frequency).

Click here to download or play in a new window.

This includes jammers and propaganda stations on TV, FM, AM, and SW, though the AM band is covered in the first 2 hours. Some stations covered include Voice of the People, Echo of Hope, Jayuui Sori, Jayu FM, and Korean Central Television, as well as a look at the sounds of more than 30 Korean jammers one frequency at a time.

At the end of this month, the first 2 hrs. 15 min. will be released with a 60+ page guide, broadcast transcript with all song titles from the broadcast, and station map and all audio will be posted in a (somewhat) visible location. This project has taken 14 months to complete, so I truly hope you’ll take the time to become educated on the radio wars on the Korean peninsula. And if you’re too busy now, this part will be included in the full broadcast coming soon, so do not fret!

This is fascinating, Chris.  Thank you for taking the time to share this with us–I imagine you’ve put in a number of days recording, editing, and narrating this fine spectrum survey. I’m also certain our community member, Mark Fahey, will love this (if he hasn’t already discovered your work)!

Please keep us updated on your project!

5 thoughts on “Korean jammers and propaganda stations

    1. C. Kadlec

      Tom, your comment struck me as interesting for the fact I had never considered it in that way. I think it really depends on your perspective. Living in South Korea, VOA, BBC, RFA, etc. are not considered propaganda since they originate from countries that are allies. In fact, VOA and RFA are broadcasted from Incheon on 1188 every night. I spent next to no time bothering with these broadcasts as I didn’t consider them propaganda, though they’re covered briefly in the first 2 hours of the broadcast, not to mention that the frequency isn’t jammed in the north, meaning they really don’t regard it as worthy of their time. They like to use their electricity investments on broadcasts originating specifically from South Korea, not other countries.

      However, if you’re on the northern side of the border, your view of what is propaganda is very different. For them, KBS 1R is jammed at any chance on AM and FM. The FM propaganda networks are generally run by the military or national intelligence, as are the SW stations. In that case, I certainly consider such stations “propaganda” due to being run by organizations that exist for that purpose. Of course, no need to explain what propaganda is from the north: basically everything. It’s embedded into every aspect of every broadcast just by way of societal and governmental beliefs. But the US has its own propaganda on a domestic and international level. It can be an interesting topic to ponder.

      Reply
  1. Mark Fahey

    Fantastic!! Chris and I have been both working on this topic, though from a different angle! The first full public release of my project is now only weeks away (it’s finished – I am now just finalising the bibliography at the end of the work) my project features bandscans recorded in Pyongyang and other parts of North Korea (ie what can Nth Koreans actually receive if they have a forbidden radio) so both our projects will be very complementary! Have a look at a few screenshots of my project here:

    http://www.behindthecurtain.asia

    Reply
    1. C. Kadlec

      Mark, your name is extremely familiar to me in regards to North Korea. We may share some contacts, and obviously share some interests. I think we differ in that my methods are totally unfunded and low-tech. 🙂 I was supposed to visit Pyongyang earlier this year, but life got in the way. Either way, it would have been immensely difficult to not bring my radio along.

      Reply

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