Q251 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. To listen to MP3, click here.
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FBI Catalogue           Jones Speaking

FBI preliminary tape identification note: Labeled in part “9/5/78 News”

Date cues on tape:     News items consistent with date listed on tape box

People named:

Public figures/National and international names:

Jimmy Carter, U.S. President
Walter Mondale, Vice President
Robert McNamara, President of the World Bank

Adolf Hitler, German Fuhrer
Josef Stalin, former Soviet dictator
Yuri Orlov, Soviet dissident
Victor Parasov (phonetic), chairman of Soviet collective farm
Andrey Vlasov, Russian general who sided with Nazis

Aldo Moro, assassinated prime minister of Italy
Giulio Andreotti, prime minister of Italy
Pope John Paul

Anwar Sadat, President of Egypt
Menachem Begin, Israeli Prime Minister
Reza Pahlavi, Shah of Iran (by reference)

Ian Smith, Prime Minister of Rhodesia
Robert Mugabe, leader of Zimbabwean Patriotic Front in Rhodesia
Joshua Nkomo, leader of Zimbabwean Patriotic Front in Rhodesia
Julius Nyerere, president of Tanzania

Anastasio Somoza, President of Nicaragua
Forbes Burnham, Prime Minister of Guyana

Ethel & Julius Rosenberg, executed U.S. spies (by reference)
Mark Twain, American writer

Carlton Goodlett, San Francisco physician, newspaper publisher
Charles Garry, Temple lawyer
Mark Lane, Temple lawyer
Don Freed, author and screenwriter
Joe Mazor, private detective (by reference)

Temple adversaries; members of Concerned Relatives:

Tim Stoen

Temple members not in Jonestown:

Chris Lewis (by likely reference)

Bible verses cited:     None


As the FBI summary below points out, this news tape for September 5 begins with an announcement that an important press conference will be held that night in San Francisco, where legal and public relations advocates for Peoples Temple will introduce a detective who once was part of the conspiracy against them but who has since jumped over to the Temple’s side. Joe Mazor, the former conspirator will reveal all he knows about their enemies both in the government and in the Concerned Relatives, for whom the detective once worked.

For the balance of the tape, Jones reports the news. There are a couple of longer stories –arms production and sales have exploited Third World nations, propped up imperialist nations, and provided much of the world’s trade; a Soviet dissident has been championed by the United States, but his trial in the USSR has uncovered his lies; and Soviet productivity levels have skyrocketed since the Revolution, especially when compared to Western levels – but most are short news items, continuing ongoing coverage of stories of longstanding interest. While Jones still describes the United States as the home of monopoly capitalists and imperialists, and its allies as lackeys, and the Soviet Union as virtually perfect, his rhetorical flourishes are not nearly as pronounced as on other tapes from this period.

Jones even offers a bit of dry humor, something not often heard at this point in the Temple’s existence, when he follows up a news item about the new pope’s fondness for American writer Mark Twain by suggesting that they send him a copy of Letters From the Earth, which pokes fun at the Bible and God. “Maybe we might convert the pope,” he says.

As in other tapes, however, the specter of nuclear holocaust and World War III has a powerful presence. In news items about the Anwar Sadat’s hopes for Camp David, the Arab League’s apprehension about the same summit, F-15 fighter jet sales to Saudi Arabia, US efforts to cut inflation domestically, and unrest in the Third World, Jones repeatedly asserts that, whatever the intention to avoid nuclear war, the hopes are unfounded and that war is inevitable.

• Among the other news items covered in this tape:Copper strikes in Peru may be ending;
• Survivors of a plane crash in Rhodesia are captured and executed by Zimbabwean rebels;
• Kenya’s president meets secretly with Rhodesia’s prime minister;
• Croatian nationalists seize the Yugoslav embassy in Australia;
• President Carter says imports are the reason for the weak dollar;
• The World Health Organization points out the dangers of hypertension;
• Italy is still in shock over the assassination of Aldo Moro.

FBI Summary:

Date of transcription: 6/12/79

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 May 29, 1979, Special Agent (name deleted) reviewed the tape numbered 1B70-33. This tape was found to contain the following:

JIM JONES starts off the tape by stating that “It’s Tuesday, this is going to be a big day for us this evening.” JONES goes on to state that a news conference that evening includes GOODLETT (Phonetic), Dr. FRIED and MARK LANE. Furthermore, the news conference will deal with STOEN and conspirators; and that they will get a strong link into the conspirators with Interpol, CIA, Treasury Department, San Francisco Police Department, and the Los Angeles Police Department.

JONES then goes into the news of the day with commentary.

Differences with FBI Summary:

The summary is accurate and meets the FBI’s purposes.