Summary prepared by Fielding M. McGehee III. If you use this material, please credit The Jonestown Institute. Thank you.
FBI Catalogue: Jones Speaking
FBI preliminary tape identification note: One Tracs 60/ “News 4-3-78”
Date cues on tape: Jones specifies Sunday on Part II, which was April 2
Jimmy Carter, U.S. President
Bert Lance, Director of Office of Management and Budget under Pres. Carter
Griffin Bell, U.S. Attorney General
Richard Nixon, former U.S. President
Pat Nixon, wife of Richard Nixon (by reference)
Henry Kissinger, former National Security Adviser, Secretary of State
Sen. John Stennis (D-Mississippi)
Hugh Carey, governor of New York
Ed Koch, Mayor of New York
David Marston, federal district attorney of Philadelphia (by reference)
Jim Hunt, governor of North Carolina
Beverly Lake, Chief Justice of North Carolina Supreme Court
Kenneth Gibson, Mayor of Newark, New Jersey
Hugh Addonozio, former Mayor of Newark, New Jersey
Prime Minister of the Soviet Union [likely Premier Alexei Kosygin] (by reference)
Aldo Moro, former Prime Minister of Italy
Benito Mussolini, former Fascist leader of Italy
Hua Kuo-feng, Prime Minister of China
Emmanuel Erskine, Ghanaian general
Sylvios Rosendahl [phonetic], “Prime Minister of Antilles”
Kjell Laugerud, president of Guatemala (by reference)
Gavin Kennard, Guyana Minister of Agriculture
Shirley Field-Ridley, Guyana Minister of Information
Hamilton Green, Guyana Minister of Health and Labor
Vibert Mingo, Guyana Minister of Home Affairs
Vincent Teekah, Guyana Minister of Education
Guyana Minister of Works
Guyana Minister of Culture
Harold Bollers, Chief Justice of Guyana Supreme Court
Lionel Luckhoo, Guyanese lawyer
Comrade Thompson, chairman of Guyana Broadcasting Studios
George Meany, U.S. labor leader
Anita Bryant, anti-gay activist
Carlo Ponti, Italian director
“my son” [either Stephan, Jim Jr., Tim, or Lew Jones]
John Victor Stoen
Bible verses cited: None
Jim Jones reads the news on April 2 and/or 3, 1978. There are two parts to this tape, but given the fact that both parts cover the same news, that the second part was recorded at 6:30 am on Sunday, and that the Temple dated the tape as from Monday, there is a good chance that Part I was recorded over Part II.
Like many of the news tapes from early April – but unlike the news tapes in general – there is a greater emphasis on Guyanese news developments and relations with the Temple. The Jonestown Express has recently performed in a Georgetown cultural center, with numerous government and foreign dignitaries in attendance, and Jones both revels in reflected glory and intimates how he has used the strong performances for leverage in previous and current demands he has made. “Opportunities were opened up right on the spot.”
And there have been recent benefits which Jonestown has received from the Guyana government. Now that the community’s school has been accredited, the children can remain in Jonestown rather than face the possibility of living in government-run schools. In addition, the community’s doctor has bypassed all national licensing requirements – “quite a breakthrough,” Jones declares several times – and will also remain in Jonestown. Finally, Jones mentions almost as an afterthought, “the government has said that none of our children … will be allowed to leave this country legally or illegally, even if the court were to decide against us, … that not one of our people, including John [Victor Stoen], would be allowed to get on an airplane, even if they had a legal custody grant.”
Beyond the events that affect Jonestown directly, Jones reports on several Guyanese initiatives, which seem to be directed towards the goal of persuading citizens to populate the interior of the country, both on communes such as theirs and on small farms. To that end, there is extensive discussion on the nation’s land use policies, beginning with the news that Parliament is considering the transfer of property out of the hands of wealthy landowners who let the land sit unused or who lease it out to small farmers, and turn the acreage over to the famers themselves.
In addition to these proposals, Jones reports on ideas emerging from other Third World nations and suggests “that Guyana is looking more and more towards Third World nations as guide for its solutions.”
One theme throughout this tape is the state of economic conditions in the US – which is deteriorating – and the need to get more Temple members down to Jonestown. This leads to the familiar exhortation to produce more, but Jones also spends some time reminding his followers of the other protections they have in their community, in contrast to the services the general population in the US has. When a young boy was severely injured in Jonestown, Jones says the Temple spared no expense in getting him the proper emergency medical care by the best specialists in the country.
Jones also makes other sacrifices. He stays up all night, making and maintaining thousands of contacts over the HAM radio, their lifeblood in communication. In a rare admission, Jones acknowledges he has stepped over the line – “We have violated many so-called rules of the fascist controls of amateur radio, by the FCC” – but anyone who monitors the Temple radio can see what services they provide and would find it unpopular to enforce the law against them. “This is the only way we’ve saved ourselves from being cut off in San Francisco.”
Jones makes one other announcement, which comes as part of his recognition that people are spending their own free time to build additional housing. While he encourages this, and says the community will allow them to use community supplies, he adds, “We do want as much work done by hand, to save fuel… We want more axes used, more handsaws, the long handsaws, less power equipment.”
Other items in the news include:
- An arrest order has been issued for Sophia Loren and Carlo Ponti for currency violations
- Former Italian Prime Minister Aldo Moro is still in the hands of the Red Brigade;
- Venezuela signs a treaty on the Caribbean Sea with Antilles;
- President Carter tours South America;
- United Mine Workers strike ends in capitulation to owners, although some locals remain out;
- New York City braces for a transit strike;
- Anita Bryant leads a national campaign against gays;
- Bangladesh is developing a strong alliance with the Soviet Union, and is making progress as a nation;
- Soviet and Chinese troops clash on the Mongolian/Russian border;
- The Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development predicts that the capitalist world “is very near a total economic collapse”;
- The black mayor of Newark, New Jersey has abandoned his black base of support, and is under investigation for income tax evasion;
- Carter is under FBI investigation for his dismissal of a US attorney;
- The chief justice of North Carolina says that lynching is “a truly Christian solution to crime, quick and efficient.”
Date of transcription: 3/21/79
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 20, 1979, Special Agent (name deleted) reviewed the tape numbered 1B62 #54. This tape was found to contain the following:
Side One – Voice of an unidentified male, possibly JIM JONES, reading news articles and making short commentary, specifically anti-Capitalist and pro-Socialist and Communist comments.
Side Two – Similar to Side One.
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:
The summary is accurate and meets the FBI’s purposes.