Q887 Summary

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

To read the Tape Transcript, click here. Listen to MP3 (Pt. 1, Pt. 2).
To return to the Tape Index, click here.

FBI Catalogue: Jones Speaking

FBI preliminary tape identification note: None

Date cues on tape: Part I: October 10, 1978; Part III: September 28, 1978

People named:

Public figures/National and international names:

    Part I:

    Feodor Timofeyev, Consular of Soviet Union embassy in Guyana

    U.S. President Jimmy Carter
    Vice President Walter Mondale
    Sen. Henry M. “Scoop” Jackson (D-Wash.)
    Rep. Charles Vanik (D-Ohio)

    Adolf Hitler
    Gustáv Husák, leader of Czechoslovakia

    Pope John Paul I
    Pope John XXIII
    Dr. John Magee, private secretary to John Paul I

    John Vorster, president of South Africa
    Nicolaas Diederichs, former president of South Africa
    P.W. Botha, prime minister of South Africa

    George Meany, labor leader, head of AFL-CIO

    Part III:

    U.S. President Jimmy Carter
    Franklin Roosevelt, former U.S. President
    Dwight Eisenhower, former U.S. President
    John F. Kennedy, assassinated U.S. President
    Richard Nixon, former U.S. President
    Pat Nixon, wife of Richard Nixon, (by reference)

    Zbigniew Brzezinski, national security adviser
    Frank Press, science and technology advisor to President Carter
    Andrew Young, U.S. Ambassador to United Nations
    Cyrus Vance, U.S. Secretary of State
    Ray Marshall, U.S. Secretary of Labor Secretary

    Rep. John Conyers (D-Michigan)
    Rep. Charles Diggs (D-Michigan)
    Robert Blakey, Chief Counsel, House Assassination Committee
    William Jordan, special envoy to Nicaragua

    Adolf Hitler
    Marinus van der Lubbe, Dutch communist accused in Reichstag fire (by reference)
    Paul Joseph Goebbels, German Minister of Propaganda in World War II
    Vladimir Ilich Lenin, father of Russian Revolution
    Karl Marx, German economist, father of communism

    James Callaghan, Prime Minister of Great Britain
    Lord David Owen, British foreign secretary
    Leonid Brezhnev, Communist Party General Secretary, USSR
    Andrei Gromyko, Soviet Foreign Minister
    Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, President of France (by reference)

    Pope John Paul I
    Pope John XXIII

    Menachem Begin, Israeli Prime Minister
    Anwar Sadat, President of Egypt
    Hafez Al-Assad, President of Syria (by reference)
    Robert Mugabe, leader of Zimbabwean Patriotic Front in Rhodesia
    Joshua Nkomo, leader of Zimbabwean Patriotic Front in Rhodesia
    Ian Smith, Prime Minister of Rhodesia
    Reza Pahlavi, Shah of Iran
    Kenneth David Kaunda, president of Zambia [by reference]
    John Vorster, president of South Africa
    P.W. Botha, prime minister of South Africa
    Olusegun Obasanjo, head of military government of Nigeria [by reference]

    Jambyn Batmönkh, Chairman of Peoples Republic of Mongolia (by reference)
    Mao Tse-tung, leader of People’s Republic of China
    Fang Yi, China’s Deputy Premiere

    Anastasio Somoza, President of Nicaragua

    Romesh Chandra, President of the World Peace Council
    Leslie Harriman, Chairman of the United Nations Committee on Apartheid
    Kurt Waldheim, United Nations General Secretary (by reference)

    Dennis Kucinich, Mayor of Cleveland (by reference)
    John F. Diner, unsuccessful Republican congressional candidate

    Mervyn Dymally, California Lt. Governor

    Muhammad Ali, American boxer
    Dick Gregory, American comedian
    Paul Harvey, radio news commentator
    James Kennedy, railway union official
    George Meany, labor leader, head of AFL-CIO
    David Spencer, radio ad man
    Santo Trafficanti, Florida crime boss

Jonestown residents:

    Part III:
    Marceline Jones [by reference]

Bible verses cited: None


(Note: This tape was transcribed by Nicole Bissett. The editors gratefully acknowledge her invaluable assistance.)

This tape consists of two parts: a relatively short summary of Jim Jones reading the news from October 10, 1978 (or thereabouts); and an older news tape, from September 28.

The first tape opens with two commentaries, including one already in progress when the recording begins, in which Jones critiques trade relations between the United States and the USSR. The second is an analysis of the 1968 uprising in Czechoslovakia – the Prague spring of citizen discontent with the Soviet-backed government and the violent suppression of the protests – but since the analysis is from a Soviet news source, the interpretation describes the uprising as a “counter revolution” and defends the suppression as “protecting the socialist gains of the Czechoslovak people.” At the end of the news segment that follows the commentaries, Jones discusses various methods for learning languages which are practiced in the Soviet Union, and suggests that the people of Jonestown consider adopting some of those methods for learning the Russian language prior to their emigration.

The news of the day includes:

    • The former Prime Minister of South Africa – who had resigned his post for health reasons – takes over the largely-ceremonial post of president;
    • Workers rally on the steps of the US Capitol for legislation to reduce unemployment;
    • Carter invokes a law forcing striking railway workers back to work;
    • Officials of the General Services Administration are indicted;
    • Cuba and Ethiopia sign an economic agreement;
    • Zambia evicts foreigners;
    • The Catholic Church seeks a successor to John Paul I.

As in other news tapes, Jones offers periodic editorial comments, even as he struggles to repeat the news items simultaneously coming in over the radio to him. Some come from the news outlet itself, but the two which Jones offers on the pope and the Catholic church show his own continuing alienation from a Christian God. The first item on the pope ends with the rhetorical “questioning and wonder, why did it happen, and what is to follow?” He provides his answer: “Let us hope that people are beginning to question the justice of the God that does not exist in the universe.” A moment later, he revisits the same subject with a slightly more sober assessment: “We are saddened by the death of any. We are not religious, we are atheist as all dialectic materialists are, as all Marxist-Leninists must be.”

The balance of the tape is a rough cut of the news tape which – in edited form – appears as Q 267. The difference is that this tape includes the exchanges between Jim Jones at the microphone and unknown assistants recording the tape, during which Jones periodically asks that the tape be stopped and re-recorded from a certain point. Most of the edits are inconsequential, but the fact that they were made at all suggests that Jones intended them to be archived for more than just a single day’s use.

A summary of Q 267 appears here.

FBI Summary:

Date of transcription: 6/25/79

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 10, 1979, Special Agent (name deleted) reviewed the tape numbered 1B102-C21. This tape was found to contain the following: A JIM JONES lecture on the Soviet Union and international politics followed by a news of the day lecture.

Differences with FBI Summary:

Other than the fact that the tape consists of two newscasts separated by almost two weeks in time, the summary is accurate and meets the FBI’s purposes.

Tape originally posted January 2011