Short Wave radio stations

Photo: Sergey KozminFrom a lonely rusted tower in a forest north of Moscow, a mysterious shortwave radio station transmitted day and night. For at least the decade leading up to 1992, it broadcast almost nothing but beeps; after that, it switched to buzzes, generally between 21 and 34 per minute, each lasting roughly a second—a nasally foghorn blaring through a crackly ether. The signal was said to emanate from the grounds of a voyenni gorodok (mini military city) near the village of Povarovo, and very rarely, perhaps once every few weeks, the monotony was broken by a male voice reciting brief sequences of numbers and words, often strings of Russian names: “Anna, Nikolai, Ivan, Tatyana, Roman.” But the balance of the airtime was filled by a steady, almost maddening, series of inexplicable tones.

The amplitude and pitch of the buzzing sometimes shifted, and the intervals between tones would fluctuate. Every hour, on the hour, the station would buzz twice, quickly. None of the upheavals that had enveloped Russia in the last decade of the cold war and the first two decades of the post-cold-war era—Mikhail Gorbachev, perestroika, the end of the Afghan war, the Soviet implosion, the end of price controls, Boris Yeltsin, the bombing of parliament, the first Chechen war, the oligarchs, the financial crisis, the second Chechen war, the rise of Putinism—had ever kept UVB-76, as the station’s call sign ran, from its inscrutable purpose. During that time, its broadcast came to transfix a small cadre of shortwave radio enthusiasts, who tuned in and documented nearly every signal it transmitted. Although the Buzzer (as they nicknamed it) had always been an unknown quantity, it was also a reassuring constant, droning on with a dark, metronome-like regularity.

They don’t know just what they’re listening to. But they’re fascinated by the unending strangeness of the mindless, evil beeping.

But on June 5, 2010, the buzzing ceased. No announcements, no explanations. Only silence.

The following day, the broadcast resumed as if nothing had happened. For the rest of June and July, UVB-76 behaved more or less as it always had. There were some short-lived perturbations—including bits of what sounded like Morse code—but nothing dramatic. In mid-August, the buzzing stopped again. It resumed, stopped again, started again.

Then on August 25, at 10:13 am, UVB-76 went entirely haywire. First there was silence, then a series of knocks and shuffles that made it sound like someone was in the room. Before this day, all the beeping, buzzing, codes, and numbers had hinted at an evil force hovering on the airwaves. Now it seemed as though the wizard were suddenly about to reveal himself. For the first week of September, transmission was interrupted frequently, usually with what sounded like recorded snippets of “Dance of the Little Swans” from Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake.

On the evening of September 7, something more dramatic—one listener even called it “existential”—transpired. At 8:48 pm Moscow time, a male voice issued a new call sign, “Mikhail Dmitri Zhenya Boris, ” indicating that the station was now to be called MDZhB. This was followed by one of UVB-76′s (or MDZhB’s) typically nebulous messages: “04 979 D-R-E-N-D-O-U-T” followed by a longer series of numbers, then “T-R-E-N-E-R-S-K-I-Y” and yet more numbers.

Eton Grundig S450DLX Deluxe AM/FM/Shortwave Radio - Black (NGS450DLB)
CE (Eton)
  • AM/MW (520-1710 KHz / 522-1620 KHz), FM (88-108 MHz), SW (continuous frequency range from 1711-2kHz).
  • Provides high sensitivity, strong anti-interference, low background noise and lower distortion.
  • MCU Control (micro controller unit) and large LCD backlight display
  • 50 station memory (10 presets for each band).
  • Individual MW 500 Ext./GND socket for external antenna and ground to improve MW sensitivity.
2005-11-15 16:10:16 by kunstler45

Radio China in English

off and on for many years I've listened to International short wave radio stations... China, Cuba, Israel, Argentina... many countries... it has always amazed me how inaccurate our news of other countries and systems is. BBC is not perfect but is better than the propoganda we push.
now we can get a lot of International News online:

2004-04-10 00:49:43 by grape

This picture and others like it

Have always fascinated me. I have this distorted view that when a country is occupied by the US that all the free presses, printers, short wave radio stations, etc; get shut down first.
And somehow this protester has a beautiful poster, in color, made with photoshop? Where and how has he found the resources? Did he produce his poster with an organized group? Or did he simply have enough ink left on his PC printer? Interesting much more for me beyond the hell that the US gov has imposed on Iraq.
Somehow, the painful reminder that my “activism” during the SF protests will never compare

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