I thought perhaps some of you fellow Cold War buffs, former signaleers (AF6872, I'm looking at you), and comms experts (Luigi59, that's you I believe) and generally smart people might find this to be of some interest. I am more than a little obsessed with all things Cold War, especially where East Germany, the Berlin Wall, and Eastern Europe. West Point was kind enough to send me there more than once, which only fueled the obsession. Within the vein of such an esoteric and rather socially odd interest, I have an ongoing fascination with Numbers Stations. Some of you may have heard of this, but for those who haven't a Number Station is a shortwave radio broadcast which is a control mechanism for overseas espionage agents. Essentially, a foreign entity transmits a series of phrases and numbers which, when combined with a one-time decoding pad, is virtually unbreakable. Probably the most famous Numbers Station of all time is known as the Lincolnshire Poacher. Though never fully acknowledged by the UK government, the station persisted for decades. It was named the Lincolnshire Poacher because each broadcast began with the first few bars of the famous English folk song of the same name. The station could be heard "on the bounce" in many parts of the globe. There is a whole underground community of people with shortwave receivers who spend their time cataloging and tracing these stations. Those folks actually triangulated the Lincolnshire Poacher to RAF Akrotiri on the island of Cyprus, where they believe it emanates from a large curtain-antenna array. Its intended purpose is believed to be for passing messages to UK agents in the Middle East. Its sister station, Cherry Ripe, operated (operates?) in the Pacific. Those folks have further categorized things into a list of known and unknown stations, called The ENIGMA (European Numbers Information Gathering and Monitoring Association) control list. They've come up with whole system of codifying stations by their origins/language. For example, the Lincolnshire Poacher is E03 YL (English 03, YL = Male voice used). Some of the stuff out there is downright creepy, like the Swedish Rhapsody station which uses a child's voice, or the Buzzer which blasts a buzzing signal day and night. The Tyrolean Music Station was another weird one. There are some great instances of jammers and numbers stations doing battle across the spectrum. The numbers stations situation has exploded since the end of the Cold War, oddly enough. While some of the older players have obviously vanished (East Germany was big), many new ones have emerged. Mossad is big into their use, as are many FWP nations. There is a lot of question as to why many eastern European stations still operate, and who is controlling them. There is even a well-known pop culture reference in Red Dawn ("The chair is against the wall.") Anyhow, I thought I'd throw my totally nerdy pursuit out there in the hopes that maybe a few here might find it to be of interest. I know we have a lot of smart people and Cold War-era servicemembers around... A few of my favorite sites for number stations stuff... http://www.bobwelch.com/numbers stations.htm http://www.dxzone.com/catalog/Shortwave_Radio/Numbers_stations/ http://www.simonmason.karoo.net/page30.html http://www.ominous-valve.com/ecl24.pdf (the ENIGMA list) Anyone else into this stuff, or am I Lone Rangering on this one?