Prince Charles explains 'pebble theatre'.
Don Pierson [right]
explains how a young
Prince Charles made a
request to join the
Radio London fan club.
Prince Charles explains 'pebble theatre'.
Don Pierson [right]
explains how a young
Prince Charles made a
request to join the
Radio London fan club.
While Houston, Texas in the USA holds the key to understanding the beginnings of this story, it is Groningen that leads to the birth of 'Radio Caroline'.
Groningen is located in a northeastern province of the Netherlands, and it adjoins the North Sea. It is where the North Sea gas and oil exploration story began onshore, and it is where the Deterding family name comes into the offshore radio picture.
It was Henri Deterding who was General Manager of Royal Dutch Petroleum Company that linked up with Shell Transport and Trading Company, a company founded by a Lord Mayor of London. Under their cartel banner of Royal Dutch Shell, Deterding's involvement with Adolph Hitler's Third Reich led to a legacy tagline of death and destruction. So, we have to jump over his son to his grandson James Deterding if we want to learn about a quiet but important member of the board of directors on Allan Crawford's Project Atlanta Limited.
James Deterding was not on the PAL Ltd board of directors when it was originally incorporated on August 1, 1963, by a solicitor representing Allan Crawford. The limelight back then went to Oliver Smedley and Kitty Black. Those two, Smedley and Black, were soon pushed to one side and Smedley formed another and rival radio company which entangled itself with the Kray Twins and the murder of Reg Calvert, boss of 'Radio City'.
But PAL Ltd., was not a part of that fiasco and resulting tragedy.
By September-October 1963, PAL Ltd. had become an interesting company with a gold-plated board of directors representing the printing, publishing and offshore gas and oil industry with roots in Groningen. But don't wait for Hans Knot to tell you this, because so far, even though he has written piles of trivia about the offshore radio stations, he does not seem to have written a single word about the real story. Maybe he has, but if he has, it is buried in the trivia about the lives of disc jockeys.
If you want to know about the "second coming" of PAL Ltd. which leads into the founding of 'Radio Caroline', then you have to know about the visit by Ronan O'Rahilly in June 1963 to see Bill Weaver in Houston, Texas. That was a visit engineered on behalf of Allan Crawford who O'Rahilly had met for the first time at the beginning of 1963. But where is any of this in all of those so-called 'true' stories about the origins of 'Radio Caroline'?
The scam artists churning out rubbish to support the conmanship of the current 'Ross Revenge' fundraising charity dare not tell the people the real story. But you will find the real story, the true story of 'Radio Caroline' on this and its companion Blog pages.
Over the last few days we have revised this same Blog posting in order to clarify its content. The main point concerns the issue raised by the person who is now King Charles III, and shown above in the masthead from the days of his first marriage to Diana Spencer.
Charles talks about dropping a rock (pebble) into water and watching the ripples, but in this instance, in relation to the companion comment by Don Pierson (also shown above), it is necessary to clarify that Charles' reference to a 'rock' or 'pebble' relates to law, and not to the subject of 'pirate' broadcasting.
It seems that those who write about 'Radio Caroline' are more interested in what a 'pirate' radio disc jockey had for breakfast, than they are about the legality of the transmitters which send record selections and commentary to the world. Our focus is upon the transmitters, not from a technical point of discussion, but from a legal point of discussion.
Our primary focus is the United Kingdom with regards to 'pirate' transmissions in the time period from 1964 to 1967, and the foundational laws with which they are coming into conflict. One branch of those laws deals with 'pirate' radio broadcasting from offshore, but another branch deals with the legal ownership of the sea bed emanating from the coastline of the United Kingdom.
While 'anorak' fans love to write un-authoritatively about the High Seas ("international waters"), they miss the point that those same waters flow over a sea bed, and any form of attachment to that sea bed that stations a ship in place, changes the status of that ship. The Continental Shelf Act of 1964 was the game changer, but to suggest that its main aim was to prevent offshore broadcasting is to miss the point completely.
However, because of the importance of the Continental Shelf Act of 1964, we have now revised our entire approach to the subject of offshore broadcasting. Facts in evidence reveal that the mainly self-published books which all claim to reveal the "the true history of Radio Caroline'" - are in fact, absolute rubbish!
On January 28, 1964, Conservative Party Member of Parliament Mr. F. J. Erroll, who was Minister of Power, commenced the Second Reading of the Continental Shelf Bill in the House of Commons. On that day, formation of Planet Productions Limited was still a month away from registration as a sales agency in the Republic of Ireland.
Back at the beginning of the previous year of 1963, Allan Crawford first met Ronan O'Rahilly who had been sent to London in 1961, looking for investment capital on behalf of his father's roof tile business in Ireland. In June of 1963, Allan Crawford sent Ronan O'Rahilly to Houston, Texas to try to convince Bill Weaver, representative of Gordon McLendon, to lease the former radio ship 'Mi Amigo' to Allan Crawford.
Gordon McLendon had been in Ireland during the latter part of the Nineteen Fifties trying to get a license for a super-power radio station to rival 'Radio Luxembourg'. McLendon was not successful. Ideas were put forward to McLendon that he should put a radio station on a ship anchored off the coast of Great Britain in international waters, but McLendon had been told that the UK Royal Navy would simply grab it. McLendon then teamed-up with CIA interests and placed a radio ship off the coast of Sweden under the name of 'Radio Nord'. When Sweden brought an end to that venture, Bill Weaver, who had been sent by McLendon to shut down this offshore station, talked to Allan Crawford about buying it. But Crawford lacked the money, and so Weaver took the ship and the former Swedish land-based studio equipment to Texas and docked the vessel at Galveston Island.
Weaver told O'Rahilly that nothing had changed and Crawford could still buy it, but he would not lease it. O'Rahilly then produced the legal Opinion of a QC commissioned by Crawford which stated that the 'Hovering Acts' of the Victorian era were no longer law, and so the Royal Navy would not try to seize the radio ship.
McLendon remained unconvinced and told O'Rahilly to buy a test ship and with a minimum of investment, see what the Royal Navy would do. Among the people present in Texas with Bill Weaver was Superintendent Captain de Jong of the Wijsmuller Shipping and Towing Company based in Holland, which was involved with the Texas offshore oil industry.
O'Rahilly's father was at that time leasing the motor vessel 'Friendship', but he wanted his own container vessel that could double as a ferry, but he lacked the funds to make that happen. Upon Ronan O'Rahilly's return from Houston, Crawford incorporated Project Atlanta Limited on August 1, 1963, with a minimum of investors.
During September and October 1963, a new business plan was floated for PAL Ltd., based upon the suggestion by Weaver to get another ship to test the British government. Out of this came an alliance with a number of heavy investors in the print and publishing industry with connections to the oil industry as it was at that time. The symbolic head of this amalgamated group was Jocelyn Stevens, but the mover and shaker behind the new plan was Irishman Charles Orr Stanley, head of the Pye Group of companies.
At the end of 1963, the former Danish ferry 'Fredericia' was purchased by a financial scheme in the name of a new company created by Ronan O'Rahilly's father, and the vessel was renamed 'Iseult'. The transaction was carried out by Wijsmuller and it was taken from Copenhagen to Amsterdam. Simultaneously, the 'Mi Amigo' was conditionally reloaded with radio broadcasting equipment. But it would not be leased to Crawford unless the 'Fredericia' - 'Iseult' first passed its test.
However, just after these arrangements were put into place during the Christmas and New Year's holiday period in Texas, inside London's House of Commons on January 28, 1964, Conservative Party Member of Parliament and Minister of Power Mr. F. J. Erroll, commenced the Second Reading of the Continental Shelf Bill in the House of Commons. Hansard reported that:
"The Bill comes before the House primarily because of the exciting possibility that oil and natural gas may be found under the North Sea. Not very long ago, such a development would have seemed most improbable. But the search for new sources of energy the world over is unremitting, and in recent years it has brought about remarkable advances in oil technology, particularly in drilling in submarine areas. Today, more than 20 oil companies of international reputation are concerned in surveys of the North Sea, which are costing substantial sums of money."
Mr Erroll added:
"International law, however, preserves the legal status of the waters above the Shelf as high seas and the legal status of the air space above those waters. The United Kingdom's rights under the Continental Shelf Convention are, in fact, defined as sovereign rights for the purpose of exploring the Shelf and exploiting its natural resources."
To lay people like Ray Clark or Paul Rusling, this seems to say that free movement on the High Seas is guaranteed, but what they want it to say, but which it does not say, is that 'loitering' or 'hovering' is also covered. But it is not - due to the fact that to 'loiter' or 'hover' on the High Seas requires a ship to drop anchor to the sea bed! Once a ship does that, it is entangles itself in the Continental Shelf with a Clause 7 that:
"extends the protection of the Submarine Telegraph Act of 1885 to all submarine cables and pipelines."
Thus the Bill was given a Second Reading. It eventually found its way to the pen of Queen Elizabeth II who signed it into law on April 15, 1964, and to which these words were then added ....
"Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same ...."
Clause 6 of this Law is Wireless telegraphy, and it reads ....
"An Order in Council under section 3 of this Act may make provision for treating for the purposes of the Wireless Telegraphy Act 1949 and any regulations made thereunder any installation in an area or part with respect to which provision is made under that section and any waters within five hundred metres of such an installation as if they were situated in such part of of the United Kingdom as it may be specified in the Order."
By the time this Bill became Law on April 15, 1964, the plans of Allan Crawford had been sunk, two days before the mv 'Mi Amigo' left Greenore on April 17, 1964!
The avalanche of rubbish calling itself the "true story" of 'Radio Caroline' is but a lie!
When 'Radio Caroline' began testing on March 27, 1964, the new law was just nineteen days away from coming into force!
On May 6, 1964, which was twenty-one days after the new law came into force, the Royal Navy sent the HMS Venturous to request permission to board the mv Caroline (ex-Fredericia; Iseult), but it was refused. At the time, Simon Dee was broadcasting this exchange from a temporary studio aboard the mv 'Caroline'. This test was based upon the anchor of the mv 'Caroline' resting upon the Continental Shelf, which was now part of the United Kingdom.
The UK was the twenty-second signatory to an international treaty which underpinned its new law. While the radio ships attached themselves to the continental shelf by anchors, REM island, which was the location of 'Radio and Television Noordzee', had been built by Houston's Brown and Root by driving steel legs into part of the continental shelf which adjoined the Netherlands. By the end of 1964 the Dutch Government had been forced to introduce their own version of the UK Continental Shelf Act which gave them authority to close down REM Island.
This same British law of April 15, 1964, was also linked by precedence to actions taken in the USA, which had been used in part during the 1962 blockade of USSR ships importing nuclear missiles into Cuba. The USA did not even bother to sign the international treaties that bound the UK and Holland. It simply dusted off its own and out-of-date 'Monroe Doctrine' which turned the USA into an international maritime police force acting under its own laws.
The British used their maritime police powers over the High Seas when they were forced to use covert methodology. In this way, the UK acted 'softly-softly' in contrast with the USA going in guns blazing, when necessary.
On November 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, and the world was left to wonder who had shot him and why. But the succession of threats of nuclear war that surrounded that event seemed to last for a brief moment before they were drowned-out by the screams of 'Beatlemania'. It was a cultural youth movement which was already underway long before 'Radio Caroline' began broadcasting.
'Radio Caroline' was not the advent of anything, but a myth. The music revolution in Britain had begun with people like Alan Freed syndicated on 'Radio Luxembourg' and appearing in films which predated the concept of MTV videos. Britain's Jack Good had also become part of the same revolution in the UK with music programming aired on ITA's leased television airtime.
Unfortunately, the chronology of these events, including the arrival of the nuclear submarines in Scotland and the hurried obfuscation of the Central Intelligence Agency operations at South Miami, Florida, have all been blotted out from the nonsense books published by people such as Ray Clark and Paul Rusling. These two have been part of the ilk producing a deluge of rubbish which poured forth like a flood. It seems to have begun after the year 1990, which is when the 'Hovering Acts' were reintroduced as part of the new UK Broadcasting Act.
The platform for that new 1990 Broadcasting Act, was the 1967 Marine Offences Act that was built in part upon the 1964 Continental Shelf Act. But actions taken in the USA by American citizen Allan Weiner, had involved a new offshore broadcasting venture that also called itself 'Radio Caroline'.
In New York, Weiner tried to broadcast from a hulk anchored off its Long Island coastline using the call sign of 'Radio Newyork International'. When the USA took action and boarded Weiner's ship which was anchored in international waters, Weiner's defence in court was that the shortwave broadcasts from the new 'Radio Caroline' operation could be heard in the State of New York. Those transmissions originated from a ship called 'Ross Revenge' anchored in the North Sea, but its shortwave broadcasts were made on behalf of an entity that was registered in the State of California.
A U.S. FCC Administrative Court then turned to the U.K. Official Solicitor for legal help, and a U.K. document was introduced to show that Weiner had registered his ship with an entity calling itself 'Sealand' that was merely the location a disused U.K. fort called HMS 'Rough Tower', but it was occupied by squatters who had no sovereign authority.
In other words, when the now deceased fraudster named Ronan O'Rahilly ranted on about getting a license from another country to find a way around British broadcasting laws, he was spouting a fiction that only true believers in his 'Loving Awareness' quasi-religion could believe. There were domestic political reasons why the offshore stations lasted until 1967, and why the British Crown finally decided to finish off both 'Laser' and 'Caroline'.
A new fraudster named Malcolm Smith is currently dusting off the lies once told by Ronan O'Rahilly and he is using them for his own purpose to solicit money from the public in the name of yet another entity calling itself 'Radio Caroline'. Smith is asking immature minds to hand over cash to support a hulk that was once paid for with money stolen from Americans under false pretenses. In return for his conmanship, Malcolm Smith offers to give these suckers a copy of Ray Clark's fake story about 'Radio Caroline'.
If Smith had merely began a new station and called it 'Caroline', then he would not be in trouble. But instead of doing that, Smith claims that he is carrying on with the fraudulent gospel of Ronan O'Rahilly.
What a sad and very small world these anoraks live in. But one thing is sure, and that is the state of the very thin ice that Malcolm Smith and his fraudster friends are currently skating upon. It is showing all the signs of stress and a resulting potential calamity.
Yes! We have reported Smith's fund-raiser as a fraud in the making.
Malcolm Smith claimed ownership of the motor vessel Ross Revenge and cited a British court ruling, but that ruling did not wipe out all prior debts created by that vessel. Mr. Morrison was tricked into investing in the radio venture attached to this ship, and a USA criminal court case in Philadelphia ruled against the man who had orchestrated the theft by false pretenses by stealing from Mr. Morrison.
The USA court wanted to hear from Ronan O'Rahilly but he stayed away and was never heard from. So the ship, which was in Spain, hurriedly departed from Spanish waters and dropped anchor in the North Sea. Years went by and it was eventually towed into British waters and that is how Malcolm Smith got involved.
Paul Rusling wrote a 'bible' about the Caroline frauds that benefitted Malcolm Smith and now Malcolm Smith does not want to be associated with Paul Rusling, while still promoting Paul Rusling's book. So did Malcolm Smith repay Mr Morrison before Malcom Smith decided to transfer his ownership to a charity headed by himself, and registered in England?
Or, has Malcolm Smith merely continued the theft of assets taken from Mr Morrison?
Malcolm Smith thinks that he can avoid answering this question by attacking those who ask the question. But the question that is still awaiting an answer, is whether Malcolm Smith is merely continuing the same theft process that began with Ronan O'Rahilly?
Our team produced this free radio program for PCRL in Birmingham.
It was repeatedly broadcast on and after October 20, 1985.
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