To: Dad – Personal
I feel that it is my duty to share these thoughts with you. About an hour ago Lisa Layton said she wanted to speak with me. She said that after the white night she felt a kind of angry feeling inside, she felt furious. She felt that she’d “been had.” Deceived. She felt that she couldn’t write it up to you because you had so much on you. She said that she felt the information given to the congregation was inaccurate and incomplete, and that she couldn’t make a decision based upon it, but was being asked to. I told her that we had to look at the situation in terms of the worst of the possibilities, and that Dad always did this as part of his duty to the collective. Also that we often cannot expect that we will have perfect intelligence on everything that is going on – we might have to make calculated determinations on what’s available. I think she felt better after we talked for about five minutes. She said so, anyway.
I feel that Lisa’s reaction is a danger sign. I personally did not know all the details, but my feeling was very definite that we were being tested on our collective and individual determination and willingness to die. But this time, I felt that the kind of necessary collective testing didn’t quite come across authentic. Most people again tried to sense which way the wind was blowing, and ‘voted’ that way. My apprehension is that among the Lisa Layton-Marlene Wheeler-Jann Gurvich segment of our community, in other words, people with a fair degree of savvy and intelligence, there is going to be a feeling from now on that the white night is really a kind of elaborate ritual testing. Already the same format has been followed too often – we go through the test, take a ‘vote’ and the right and wrong sides of the vote are pretty much felt by the fact that those moving against immediate ‘revolutionary suicide’ are subject to questioning that contains within it a not-so-subtle intimidation that they are either cowards or disloyal or too attached to living.
This, I feel, is going to undermine the respect people have for the white night situation – it’s going to breed cynicism about it, and it’s ultimately going to lead people to harbor criticism about you. It may even jeopardize the whole proceedings of vote-taking, so that it is no longer an index to what people feel (if it ever was) but something else.
I don’t know quite what to say about it as an answer. I just feel a little ominous about it, that the procedure will be counter-productive and breed distrust of you and less than total credulity of your motivations. When that happens, I don’t know what to say. I also feel that a bad point of the evening is when Steven [Stephan Jones] verbally attacked you. I can personally understand and empathize, and don’t mean at all to be critical of Steven – in a way it’s good that he be able to attack you purely from the psychological necessity of any young man to work out his Oedipus complex. But not in public.
I am sure you have had a lot weighing on you concerning the above matters and I surely am in no position to presume to be able to advise. I’ve written this out of what I feel is a duty and responsibility. I think that other white nights strengthened this organization. I don’t really know if this one did.
[handwritten] With appreciation for your sacrifice, Dick Tropp
N-1-C-3b is reverse side of page with notation of “Dad – personal”
Fr: [Richard] Tropp
Here are some ideas for possible strategies that may or may not be useful, but may help spark other ideas.
- Katsaris – is there some way to pressure him to drop his suit in light of what we have on the CIA connections – if he doesn’t cooperate with us he will be implicated in a CIA-plot, etc. What we ask him to do is drop the suit – we will have Maria publicly forgive him, maybe have a public ‘reconciliation’ – with understanding that he allows Maria to live her life as she chooses without any interference from him. This will save his reputation [handwritten insertion: “and no lawsuit”]. If he doesn’t go along, we will blast his ass in book, movie, etc. and he will have lost his reputation.
- To New West, Examiner, Chronicle, Progress, etc.: Do articles clearing us, publicizing the exposé of the conspiracy against us, or we sue you all for slander and character defamation or whatever – BIG. If you don’t cooperate, we will endeavor to expose press/CIA connections in big expose. Just want a simple story saying you were sucked into a plot (especially from New West).
Appeal to Reg Murphy of the Examiner to reveal all this that we have – he said he was committed to an objective report after the Houston articles. If he really is, let’s test him.
- Katy Butler (or one of her freelancing friends – like Lowell Bergman): maybe she can do story for big exposé under a pseudonym or anonymously for magazine that will carry it (New Times?). Meet with [Don] Freed, [Joe] Mazor, come to project, see [Charles] Garry, etc. Full exposé. I suggest possibly Lowell Bergman (Friend of Katy’s) since the Examiner refused to back him when he was sued for $50 million for exposing police scandals in Chinatown last year – he is one of the toughest young investigative journalists and might go for it. Might do it for any number of magazines, maybe give it a try –set up meeting when we are ready – maybe Katy can help in this. Also might be interested: Levering, Jerry Roberts
- Put the screws to Tracy/Kilduff to recant or we will blow the whistle on their being part of the CIA/media connection – also Reiterman. Lay the facts out in front of them (maybe just Tracy???) And ask them to go with a story saying they were duped).
- Take out full-page ads in Chron, Examiner – rehearse whole conspiracy, go into details – try to get in media being a pawn – big exposé
- Go back to all the Congressmen who Stoen contacted – and got collaboration from – ask them to publicly, in light of new evidence, denounce Stoen, say they were duped, etc. etc. or we will use their names in book on how their [they] were hoodwinked by a CIA agent to pursue vendetta against black people. Get ALL congressmen Stoen contacted, also any sympathetic people to him in State Department or elsewhere. Contact all the relatives he tried to pressure, tell them, have them sworn affidavits about how he pressured them, etc. etc.
- Get arrest order called off (on Jim) in light of new evidence, also have all court orders dropped in US that Stoen instigated in custody case – based on new evidence. If not, those issuing the order will also read about the complicity in a book/exposé, etc. etc.
- Get many to sign statements – think of all we can – who would, in light of new evidence, come out publicly on our side –
- Release story when we can to all media who tried to screw us – Newsweek, London Observer, Toronto Star. Have Wallace Turner (via Garry) to story for NY Times on this. Get to Religion editor of Newsweek and tell him to do a story that will get us off the hook, say what they did before was based on a plot to get Jim Jones, do positive story on mission, etc. If they don’t we will go to Time and others. (?)
- When the story comes out, remind all the TV media who helped smear us (plus others) to tell the story using as much space as they did to cream us – or else we will suspect they are involved in CIA/media connections and we will go for exposing it, naming names (Jim Clancy, etc.)
- Peoples Forum: in addition to the material we are planning to run in our special edition (now in preparation here – stories on Johnstown, history of church, pictures, Freed’s speech on MLK in Jonestown, and what people have said about us), do a big front-page story: THE ANATOMY OF A CONSPIRACY – CIA/POLICE PLOT/PEOPLES TEMPLE IS REVEALED –
- Debby Blakey: get her to swear out that she lied about us – tell her CIA about to be exposed in this – she will be in the ‘movie’ (played by a third-rate actress) how she killed her mother how she lied; tell her we really don’t want to make her look like a pile of shit but if she swears she was lying and recants and say who it was who pressured her, etc. then we will obviously not paint her in such a light – depends on her, because she won’t have a big part in the movie or the book. WE WILL NAME HER NAME
- Do same kind of thing with all the ‘concerned relatives’ – tried to pressure them to rat on their operation, and tear their organization up.
- When a lot of the CIA influence is exposed, then sue Federal Government for saying Jim Jones is not in CIA files – say it’s an obvious lie and demand the files – make a Federal case out of it.
Okay, I know that most if not all of these ideas are hare-brained, but my point is – let’s take the initiative and go after these conspirators, and smash their whole organization. I know lawyers will think this is crazy, but shit, I say go as far and as hard as we can to pursue these people.
Final note, on Stoen. LEAVE HIM OUT IN THE COLD. I wonder if there is any discreet way to get a message to whoever is above him that he is trying to sell out his CIA connections and re-joining Peoples Temple, and get on our side of this – then he will be useless to them and right up shit creek if he isn’t there already.