Q320 Summary

Summary prepared by Fielding M. McGehee III. If you use this material, please credit The Jonestown Institute. Thank you.

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FBI Catalogue: Jones speaking

FBI preliminary tape identification note: Labeled in part “11/15/78 Wed”

Date cues on tape: 15 November 1978 (notation on tape box confirmed in context)

People named:

Public figures/National and international names:
Adolf Hitler (by reference)
British Prime Minister James Callaghan
Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain (by reference)
Cyprus President Spyros Kyprianou (by reference)
Egyptian President Anwar Sadat
Shah of Iran, Mohammed Reza Pahlavi
Moroccan King Hassan II
Nicaraguan President Anastasio Somoza
Portugal President Antonio Ramalho Eanes (by reference)
Somali President Mohammed Siad Barre (by reference)
Zaire President Mobutu Sese Seko
Zambian President Kenneth David Kaunda
Joshua Nkomo, leader of Zimbabwean Patriotic Front in Rhodesia
President Jimmy Carter
California Lieutenant Governor Mervyn Dymally
Rep. Leo Ryan
Temple attorney Mark Lane
Mr. Hillman, subject of news story about Mormons

Jonestown residents, full name unknown:
Rhonda (two in Jonestown, probably Fortson)

Bible verses cited: None


(Note: This tape was one of the 53 tapes initially withheld from public disclosure.)

Near the beginning and at the end of a broadcast of the world news, Jim Jones talks to the Jonestown community about the arrival “on Friday” of Congressman Ryan. He discusses the negotiations that will allow the congressional party, the press, and some relatives to come in. It is a conciliatory, if not quite cordial, acknowledgement of the visit by the “guests,” but the conciliation appears to be a two-way street: Ryan understands us better now, Jones says, “or perhaps they are aware of our determination.”

Jones returns to the theme at the end of the broadcast, as he urges the community not to be fearful. “We are looking very good at this particular time of the day, and good position on all issues. Good support, good solid support.”

The news of the days includes items on the following subjects:

o Elections in California, with victories by right wing
o Strife in Iran
o President Carter’s meeting with the king of Morocco
o The Somali president meeting with Chinese military delegation
o Trial of SS officers in West Germany
o Sandanista rebellion in Nicaragua
o UNITA rebels in Angola
o Shooting of a former prison official in Italy
o Zambian government’s plea for whites to stay
o Carter’s plan to evacuate US cities during nuclear attack
o Commutation of Palestinian death sentences in Cyprus
o Britain’s contribution to EEC
o Bombings in Northern Ireland
o Visit of President of Portugal to Britain Jones even includes some light news, about a mugger in Israel who flashes his victims.

The news concludes with a long feature on the financial strength of the Mormons in the US.

FBI Summary:

Date of transcription: 6/13/79

In connection with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s investigation into the assassination of U.S. Congressman LEO J. RYAN at Port Kaituma, Guyana, South America, on November 18, 1978, a tape recording was obtained. This tape recording was located in Jonestown, Guyana, South America, and was turned over to U.S. Officials in Guyana and subsequently transported to the United States.

On June 1, 1979, Special Agent (name deleted) reviewed the tape numbered 1B93-61. This tape was found to contain the following:

JIM JONES announces, “We will be having guests probably on Friday. They seem to be much nicer now … the Congressman is quite apologetic for all of this ado. He probably didn’t expect to happen what is happening. We are going to receive him and he’s trying to get an understanding and he’s willing to even talk on the radio. Perhaps they are aware of our determination-whatever . . We want our attorney with us who will be here, MARK LANE, and he will accept our terms on that basis.”

There follows the news, commentary and announcements followed by, “Do not fear. Things are not near. We’re looking very good at this particular time… The government has been very thoughtful and they called the arrival of Mr. RYAN on radio (inaudible) a right wing reactionary.”

Differences with FBI Summary:

With one major exception, this summary is accurate and faithful to the tone and important contents of the tape. The exception is the last line. It quotes the tape as saying “the arrival of Mr. RYAN on radio (inaudible) a right wing reactionary” (emphasis added). The implication of the garbled line is that Ryan is the right wing reactionary. It is an understandable mistake, since Jones himself has referred to Ryan as a “right wing reactionary” in most tapes leading up to this one.

The fact is, this tape has a conciliatory tone. Jones accepts that Ryan is coming, and seems to be making the best of it as he prepares the community for the Congressman’s arrival. The concluding line of Jones’ broadcast reflects that, as he says the Guyana government has “called the rival of Mr. Ryan on Radio Demerara a right-wing reactionary.” In other words, it is not Ryan who is the reactionary, but his opponent in the last election.

Tape originally posted November 2001