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Radio News in January 2010

Commando Solo broadcasting to Haiti on 1030 kHz AM

Commando SoloThe U.S. military has begun airborne broadcasts as part of the relief effort to help earthquake victims in Haiti. Broadcasts are conducted by "Commando Solo" aircraft of the Air Force Special Operations Command's 193rd Special Operations Wing, based in Pennsylvania. According to the U.S. Department of Defense, AM transmissions are aired on 1030 kHz AM, as well as on 92.4 and 104.1 MHz FM. In coordination with the government of Haiti, the U.S. Joint Task Force-Haiti (JTF-Haiti) is broadcasting news and information on public health, safety and aid distribution. CNN reports that also messages discouraging Haitians from trying to flee to the United States have been aired. CNN, citing U.S. authorities, says that broadcasts last five hours daily, but no schedule has been published.
      Commando Solo's frequency of 1030 kHz is the same as that of Radio Ginen in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince. The office building of Radio Tele Ginen collapsed in the earthquake, and it remains unclear whether 1030 kHz is still on the air.       Jim Solatie and Håkan Sundman in Finland were the first DXers to pick up Commando Solo tentatively on January 19 on 1030 kHz, with a relay of Voice of America programming.
      According to the 193rd SOW, three C-130 aircraft are involved, but only one serves as a flying radio station, while the other two transport cargo. The aircraft are "staged at locations outside the devastated area," says a press release by the 193rd SOW. In practise this would most likely mean Guantánamo or Puerto Rico. The aircraft left their home base on January 14 and 15.
      The Air Force is also delivering 50,000 hand-held receivers for distribution to survivors of the recent earthquake. The receivers are distributed by Joint Task Force Haiti. The small emergency radios are both solar-powered and hand-cranked and don't require batteries.

(DXing.info, January 24, 2010)

WTWW from Tennessee testing on shortwave

A new shortwave station in the U.S. has begun test broadcasts. WTWW is run by Leap of Faith, Inc. WTWW is licensed to operate two 100-kilowatt and one 50-kilowatt shortwave transmitter in the town of Lebanon in Tennessee. The first test broadcast took place on January 1, 2010, on 5755 kHz with a power of 15 kilowatts. Other frequencies used recently for testing have been 9475 and 9480 kHz. The test broadcasts have been heard as far as South America and Europe. WTWW is run by George McClintock, who is previously known as owner of shortwave station WWCR, also in Tennessee. You
can write to the station at Leap of Faith, Radio Station WTWW, 6611 Ormond Dr, Nashville, TN 37205.
(DXing.info, January 24, 2010)

Air America goes bankrupt

Liberal radio network Air America is filing for bankruptcy. The network has struggled from its beginning in 2004 and had already gone through one bankruptcy and several management shake-ups. The network announced its Chapter 7 bankruptcy on January 21. New programming ceased immediately, but reruns continue until January 25. Air America says that declining ad revenue is to blame for its demise. The network had around 100 radio outlets which will now need to find new program sources. Air America was best known for The Al Franken Show, which was run from 2004 to 2007 before Franken began to campaign for a U.S. senate seat in Minnesota.

(DXing.info, January 24, 2010)

The purpose of the radio news section is to inform about new mediumwave (AM) and shortwave broadcasting stations worldwide. Other news are published only on major international broadcasters or issues very relevant to DXers. New programs and schedules are not covered.

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