Please note: Comments by Ian Anderson are in regular black typeface and Commentary is in red.
"Posted Online by Ian Anderson on 16/5/2022, 9:28:19 .... I have to say something in mitigation of the criticism of Mervyn, for reasons I will now explain. Between 2015 and 2018 there was about 25 of us from the UK, to Norway, to Australia, to the United States and so on that were circulated regularly by Mervyn. Many had a pedigree in offshore radio going back to 1963 or in writing about offshore radio, and radio in general, going back to the mid-sixties, some who contribute to this forum."
(Ian): "The format was one of us asking a question and others answering or debating, so whatever we wrote was effectively being peer-reviewed."
"Even if Mervyn asked a rather silly question, I always thought of this being devil’s-advocate-like and worth answering seriously."
Up until this point no commentary is necessary because Ian's words are accepted as a reasonably accurate, balanced and general description!
(Ian): "For instance when he suggested that there was a radio receiver in the engine-room of the Bon Jour off Stockholm to monitor Iron Curtain radio traffic, it was explained that was just about the worst place to have such a radio. However I took up the challenge to identify all of the antennae on the Bon Jour up to the summer of 1962."
Our involvement with the issue that Ian is referring to comes from a book written by Bill Weaver. Suffice to say at this stage, that Bill Weaver claimed that the mv 'Bon Jour' was a CIA-funded operation, but it turned out that what Weaver actually wrote and claimed, is not what appeared in that book. We will provide more details about that in our continuing response in a later paragraph, rather than here, because we want to mention another book by another author.
In 2013 or thereabouts, a book called 'Radio Man' published by IEE came to our (TRIO) attention. It was about the life of Charles Orr Stanley who built PYE into a massive conglomerate of various companies engaged in a vast number of products and services. Not all of them were broadcasting related such as the Pye 'Fish Finder' that someone told Ronan O'Rahilly about. O'Rahilly used that information and twisted it into a misleading obfuscation regarding the purpose of the antenna being erected to the mv 'Frederica' by Harry Spencer. (O'Rahilly is on video footage laughing while he is describing it. The Pye 'Fish Finder' was sonar and it did not entail a mast, but it did scan the sea floor looking for fish. So there was an element of truth in what O'Rahilly said, but not what he related it to.)
On one page of 'Radio Man' (276) was a single paragraph which totally contradicted the accepted story the 1964 advent of 'Radio Caroline'. Up until then the Trio had been documenting material and events in a series of academic monologues, newspaper articles and books that began when Don Pierson (who we worked with in Texas), gave us his financial and legal records about 'Radio London', etc. So we just went along with the known 'Radio Caroline' story. (Our 2009 monologue with the old information is still available to read at http://foundthreads.com/PDF%20FILES/08-A-CAROLINE.pdf )
Unfortunately for Mervyn Hagger, he read the 'Radio Man' book shortly before he was due to give a speech before an audience at a Communications Museum. An apology ensued to the 'live' audience with an explanation about what had occurred. Then the TRIO began an investigation into the story behind that paragraph in that book. We teamed up with Chris Edwards of 'Offshore Echos' magazine and split the costs.
Chris performed the leg work, and Mervyn Hagger pursued the people responsible for writing and publishing that book in order to discover the authenticity of its text. Unfortunately, in that one vital section there were no documented footnotes or endnotes. Then we discovered that IEE no longer existed as such, and both the author and his technical writer co-author were deceased. This led to a very involved story which has been explained in detail elsewhere on this site in past editions of this Blog.
We discovered that Ronan O'Rahilly was lying, and that his sidekick Ian Cowper Ross had spun and published a fictitious story both about the funding of 'Radio Caroline' and the identity of his father. Years later we have been able to establish the true identity of Ian Cowper Ross' father and grandfather and create an unpublished (to date) biography. In a similar manner we have now compiled the biography of the girl behind the name of 'Caroline' which in reality should be written as 'Carolyn'.
This explanation leads into Ian Anderson's comments about the mv 'Bon Jour' because another book with another misleading storyline is also involved. That book is about the Kennedy Assassination, and its author is listed on the cover as Charles W. Weaver - but he did not write that book!
Back in the 1970s, Mervyn Hagger met Charles William Weaver who was known to everyone as 'Bill'. It was at a place called McAllen in the Texas valley leading down to the border with Mexico. Bill had retired, but he had been McLendon Sales Manager for all of Gordon McLendon's radio stations, while managing KILT in Houston, and the mv 'Bon Jour'. Back then he introduced Mervyn Hagger to the Texas engineers responsible for getting the ship and outfitting it. He even told Mervyn Hagger about meeting Ronan O'Rahilly in June 1963 and provided details about where O'Rahilly stayed in Houston, and about the cowboy boots that O'Rahilly bought. Ronan O'Rahilly was sent to Houston on behalf of Allan Crawford who Weaver had met in London back in 1962 when Crawford wanted to lease the ship. (See our video at http://yesterdayneverhappened.com/ for more details.)
Years went by and during the same time we were working with Chris Edwards we had established a contact with Bill Weaver's widow and daughter who sent us all of Bill Weaver's original manuscripts. It was Bill who took 'Radio Nord' off the air, and it was Bill who wrote a manuscript linking Gordon McLendon to the assassination of John F. Kennedy. But what Bill wrote is not what was published after his death, and the real author of the 'fake' version is not on the cover of the book!
Now back to Ian Anderson (with Ian's uncorrected typos):
(Ian): "When Mervyn asked what equipment on the Bon Jour, and in the Stockholm land studios, ended up on the Mi Amigo on the return from Texas, I was able to convince myself of finally reaching a level of accuracy, subject to further correction, to turn this into an article of Offshore Echos Magazine."
"Others of the group contributed the findings of thorough research and discoveries from the national archive at Kew. This was sterling work by everyone. While it is true that all this was in the past, of little consequence, and of diminishing public interest, that could be said of many things that engage small groups, and not so small groups, for instance the quest of who killed the princes in the tower."
Ian's words are again accepted as a reasonably accurate, balanced and general description of events!
(Ian): And so it went until about November 2018 when it became obvious that Mervyn was repeating himself and was rejecting input for no good reason, other than political, and we had a blow- up. It seemed to me, and, it emerged, to others in the group, that the rise of Trumpism, something he admired, had encouraged his coarser side at the expense of courtesy and reason. That was a shame if only because he had previously challenged us to search the past and to get things down in writing before it was too late. That will stand.
Ian's words do not cover what has been explained above about the two books ('Radio Man') and the book about 'Radio Nord' with connections to the assassination of President Kennedy.
The interjection regarding "the rise of Trumpism" would require a lot of time to explain and it is not directly connected to this subject. In fact, the attack on Donald Trump was launched from London using an agent for MI6 whose services were paid for with money provided by the political campaign of Hillary Clinton. The investigation into that matter is and has been ongoing in the USA at US Justice Department level for several years. One person has been indicted, but the investigation is still ongoing, although it is possibly reaching its conclusion. It is rumored several people could be facing criminal prosecution.
However, in order to keep this topic on focus. nothing more will be added about that at this time.
The 'blow-up' that Ian mentions did occur, but it stemmed from yet another part of this investigation that involved George Saunders. George was a Marconi man who became the Chief Engineer on board the mv "Mi Amigo' during the initial phase when it was home to 'Radio Atlanta', and then to 'Radio Caroline South'.
Mervyn Hagger exchanged a lot of written material and had many long accompanying phone conversations with George Saunders. George is a proud engineer who had contempt for most of the 'pirate' djs and disputed what Ian Anderson was claiming about the technical installations on board the mv 'Mi Amigo'. Mervyn Hagger became 'man in the middle'.
When he was originally hired, George Saunders went to Greenore, but he somewhat exaggerated what he did there. He was also was sent to sort out the mess created by Ove Sjöström on board the mv 'Fredericia'. George says that he sacked Ove on orders from his engineering boss at Chesterfield Gardens. In response, Ove Sjöström has responded with a version that does not check out.
Then another problem arose involving Chris Edwards. That dispute came with the methodology of telling our story using 'Caroline Brooks' as narrator. Chris says that he wanted only the story of fact, but the problem is that 'Offshore Echos' magazine has continued to publish the fake blarney spun by Ronan O'Rahilly and others about the totally false origins of 'Radio Caroline'.
This has been our response to what Ian Anderson has written. Ian is of course free to add further comments, but unlike the majority of anoraks on Dave Martin's Board, Ian has a professional life running a professional radio station. Outside the scope of this work, Ian also acquired prior experience helping to run offshore broadcasting stations. Ian is married, has children and generally seems to be a well-balanced human being.
SO WHAT WENT WRONG?
The answer is Paul Alexander Rusling.
Rusling was added to the 'Caroline Investigation' newsletter mailing list, but he contributed absolutely nothing, and took as much information as he could.
Rusling visited our original premises, and then he stole as much as could in the way of intellectual property and with the endorsement of Hans Knot, he hammered together a mixture of fact with fiction to create 'The Radio Caroline Bible' which he then sold to gullible anoraks with the blessings of Garry Stevens.
Rusling's purpose seems to have been two-fold. 1) Make money for himself, and 2) Create a bogus story that linked the start of the real 1964 'Radio Caroline' with the fraudulent affair calling itself 'Radio Caroline' that is run by Malcolm Smith who calls himself 'Peter Moore'.
The reasoning by Rusling and Moore seems to be that having a tiny and insignificant new radio station would not generate support, but if it could be shown that this tiny and insignificant radio station was in fact a continuation of the original 1964 'Radio Caroline', Malcolm Smith would gain a lot of free publicity, and he has. Along the way, Paul Rusling could sell his fraudulent work based upon plagiarism.
It was then that Garry Stevens who gave Rusling free promotional advertising, and for months Stevens refused to explain his actions - after fully endorsing this work. Eventually Garry Stevens merely made supporting comments about Rusling while disparaging this work and, strangely enough he began a sneering campaign launched against the mostly insignificant actions of Dave Martin's Board - which, among other names, Garry Stevens called the 'Church of Caroline'.
This sorry saga brought an end to the 'Caroline Investigation' newsletter and the present work began.