Tag Archives: NK News

An aircraft hijacking story with “a shortwave twist”

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Mark Fahey, who writes:

[A] great aircraft hijacking story with a shortwave twist….

Read the full article from NK News on the link below–the shortwave twists are here in two interesting paragraphs…

“Two fight attendants from the YS-11 eventually emerged as announcers on the “Voice of the National Salvation,” a North Korean propaganda radio station targeting South Korean audiences.”

“The station claimed to be a voice of the alleged South Korean underground Juche resistance, and thus it badly needed broadcasters who were capable of speaking polished, Seoul-style Korean.”

Take to the skies: North Korea’s role in the mysterious hijacking of KAL YS-11 | NK News – North Korea News

https://www.nknews.org/2019/03/take-to-the-skies-north-koreas-role-in-the-mysterious-hijacking-of-kal-ys-11/

Thank you, Mark. I was not aware of this story. It was too bad for those flight attendants that they had a skill the North Korea propaganda machine needed.

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Mark records “Pyongyang’s 6 am wake up call”

This week, SWLing Post contributor, Mark Fahey, was featured in the NK News for his research in North Korea. While Mark has made a wide array of his work available through a media-rich (free) iBook, this particular article focuses on the “Morning Chorus” heard throughout Pyongyang in the early hours of the morning:

(Source: NK News)

Why does an eerie electronic ballad play across North Korea’s capital every morning?

It was early in the morning, but Mark Fahey had been awake for hours. A biomedical engineer turned North Korean propaganda expert, he had spent most of the night tinkering with a radio in his room at the Yanggakdo International Hotel, secretly recording the opening moments of Pyongyang FM Pangsong.

While he listened to the station’s typical offering of classical music and propaganda, another microphone and recorder were set up next to an open window to capture the sounds of the city as it roused itself awake. It was August 2011, and the sun hung low on the horizon. Fahey expected to pick up the sound of the dredging work taking place along the Taedong River.

Instead, he heard music.

“Pyongyang is deadly silent at night,” Fahey tells NK News. “If a lorry’s just passing through the city, you’re going to hear it. It’s so quiet. And at 6 am, you hear this kind of weird…” he hesitates. “It sounds like mind control music.”

Seeking an explanation, Fahey brought the tune up with his minder.

“They didn’t know what I was talking about,” he recalls, “but I don’t actually think that means they didn’t know what it was. They probably didn’t realize that I could hear it from where I was.”[…]

Click here to continue reading the full article at the NK News.

The NK News article is fascinating and also includes several more video clips from North Korea media.

Also, consider downloading Mark’s interactive iBook Behind The Curtain from the Apple store by clicking here.

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Could software-defined radios empower citizen journalists in North Korea?

USB SDRs like the FunCube Dongle Pro could inspire a generation of SDRs that transmit information across the North Korean border.

USB SDRs like the RTL-SDR could inspire a generation of SDRs that not only receive, but transmit information across the North Korean border.

I was recently interviewed and quoted in an article by Ole Jakob Skåtun at NK NewsSkåtun is exploring the possibility of using inexpensive SDR dongles as a means for citizen journalists to receive and potentially send information across the North Korean border:

(Source: NK News)

“While North Korea recently ranked second-to-last on Reporters Without Borders’ World Press Freedom Index, new ways of using digital radio broadcasting might prove a valuable tool for those who wish to increase information flows into and out of the country.

So-called software-defined radio (SDR) technology, brought into the country on USB devices, could be used for receiving and, potentially, sending data – text, audio and video files – on radio band frequencies.

SDR technology is a radio communications system where all components typically implemented via hardware for standard radios have been made into software. Loaded onto a flash drive-sized USB-dongle, they have the potential to turn any computer with a USB port into a receiver and transmitter. 

Radio experts and NGO representatives said that something like this might have potential as a new way of bringing information into North Korea, and in certain cases provide a tool for citizen reporters working inside the country to bring information out.”

[Continue reading…]

Click here to read the full article, How digital radio could break North Korea’s information blockade at NK News.

(NK News is an independent, privately owned specialist site focused on North Korea.)

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