Q575 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: Tapes Not Summarized

FBI preliminary tape identification note: One Audio Magnetics 60/ Jim Jones on KLIL 5/6/73

Date cues on tape: May 10 or 11, 1973 (News item recorded incidentally says "Judge Matt Byrne has told Justice Department lawyers he wants new checks made to determine if any electronic surveillance had been conducted in the Pentagon Papers case.")

People named:

Members of Peoples Temple

    Suzanne Jones (adopted child of Jim Jones) (by reference)
    Agnes Paulette Jones (adopted child of Jim Jones) (by reference)
    Stephan Gandhi Jones (by reference)
    James Warren Jones, Jr. (adopted child of Jim Jones) (by reference)
    Lew Eric Jones (adopted child of Jim Jones) (by reference)
    Marceline LeTourneau

Public figures/National and international names:

    President John Kennedy
    Dr. Karl Irvin, Disciples of Christ
    Rob Basini [phonetic], interviewer at KLIL radio station, Ukiah (speaks)

Temple adversaries; members of Concerned Relatives

    Lester Kinsolving, columnist

Bible verses cited:

"I’d be glad to meet anyone … however hostile, if they would sit down as the old prophet said, Isaiah, and let us reason together." (Isaiah 1:18, "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.")

"We take care of our own people in the tradition of the scripture that says, take care first of the household of faith." (Galatians 6:10, "As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.")

Summary:

This tape consists of a Ukiah radio station interview of Jim Jones in 1973, about eight years after Peoples Temple migrated from Indianapolis to Ukiah. In it, Jones talks about what attracted him to the area, the relations which the church maintains with the community, and the problems which have discouraged some of its members.

The tape begins with the interview underway, as Jones describes some of the anonymous threats made against Temple members, including seniors, children — notably his own — and animals. He says the threats have arisen from a misunderstanding of what the church was about, and encourages those who disagree with him, "however hostile" they might be, to sit down and talk. The interviewer invites Jim to speak about his Indianapolis years and the decision to come to California.

Jones talks about the church’s work in rehabilitating drug abusers, the senior citizen homes, and other social services. But for the most part, he speaks of race relations in Redwood Valley, how the community responds to the number of blacks in the area, how everyone assumes that every black person in the area must belong to the church, and — as a consequence — how every criminal or "anti-social" act committed by a black person reflects on Peoples Temple.

But the deeper fear, Jones says, is of the sheer numbers of blacks in Peoples Temple. Area residents hear the membership figures of the San Francisco and Los Angeles congregations, and understand that the percentage of blacks is considerably higher than in the Redwood Valley congregation, which is "90% Caucasian." Fearful of the unknown, Jones says, people of the area assume that all those blacks are ready to move to Redwood Valley.

The interviewer also asks Jones about his political views, and more specifically, how he responds to the charge of being a communist. Jones replies that the church is anti-communist, just as it is anti-big government, anti-imperialist, and anti-fascist. Instead, he says, "we’re utopianist, in the terms of the acts of the Apostles, who, when they received their baptism of the Holy Spirit of their ineffable union with Christ … shared in every way."

Responding to the interviewer’s question about the church’s wealth, Jones talks about the amount of money which the Temple puts back into the community, not only in providing social services and donating to area charities, but supporting area businesses through their commerce. "[I]f we were to pull out of this community, there would be an economic depression, and a lot of people would be in hardship," he says.

Nevertheless, every answer Jones gives carries a note of discouragement, as though he is thinking of taking the church elsewhere. When the interviewer confronts that issue directly, Jones says: "I have anticipated it in the past, but I’m not a person to run under fire … If bigots or even poorly informed people who are frenzied from their own fear and paranoia, if they can achieve running people out that way, no good person is safe. So I don’t work that way. I’d rather die than run under fire."

FBI Summary:

Date of transcription: 3/6/79

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 March 1, 1979, Special Agent (name deleted) reviewed the tape numbered 1B47 #16. This tape was found to contain the following:

This tape was reviewed, and nothing was contained thereon which was considered to be of evidentiary nature or beneficial to the investigation of Congressman RYAN.

Differences with FBI Summary:

There is nothing to compare the two summaries, since the FBI did not write anything for this, or 64 other tapes which bear the notation "Tapes Not Summarized." These tapes seems to have little on them which the FBI could use for its purposes of investigating crimes arising from the Jonestown tragedy, but then again, that describes many other tapes as well. The difference seems to be that one or two FBI agents catalogued this set of tapes — as evidenced by the typewriter used in writing the reports — and that generally, the transcriptions were made early in the process, before someone may have asked for greater detail in the reports.

Tape originally posted February 2003

Originally posted on June 16th, 2013.

Last modified on April 5th, 2014.
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