Somewhere in the concrete canyons of New York City a recently formed rock group is using the name Jim Jones and the Suicides. Irreverent and disarming, the name reflects the new trend in punk rock, to take social issues head on. Cynicism about the Jonestown deaths and its social parallels abound in the lyrics of today's music. The messages are clear because we all know the story.
In fact, people today recognize the name "Jonestown" more than any other event, a full 98% of the population. The television and printed media were filled with the news for more than a year, even though the tale read like something from the National Enquirer tabloid. But despite all the coverage, the reality of Jonestown and the reasons behind the bizarre events remain a mystery. The details have faded from memory for most of us since November 18, 1978, but not the outlines. Think back a moment and you'll remember.
A fanatic religious leader in California led a multiracial community into the jungles of remote Guyana to establish a socialist utopia. The People's Temple, his church, was in the heart of San Francisco and drew poor people, social activists, Blacks and Hispanics, young and old. The message was racial harmony and justice, and criticism of the hypocrisy of the world around his followers.
The Temple rose in a vacuum of leadership at the end of an era. The political confrontations of the 60s were almost over, and religious cults and "personal transformation" were on the rise. Those who had preached a similar message on the political soap box were gone, burnt out, discredited, or dead. The counter-culture had apparently degenerated into drugs and violence. Charlie Manson was the only visible image of the period. Suddenly, religion seemed to offer a last hope.
Even before they left for the Jonestown site, the People's Temple members were subjects of local scandal in the news. Jim Jones claimed these exposés were attacks on their newly-found religion, and used them as an excuse to move most of the members to Guyana. But disturbing reports continued to surround Jones, and soon came to the attention of congressional members like Leo Ryan. Stories of beatings, kidnapping, sexual abuse and mysterious deaths leaked out in the press. Ryan decided to go to Guyana and investigate the situation for himself. The nightmare began.
Isolated on the tiny airstrip at Port Kaituma, Ryan and several reporters in his group were murdered. Then came the almost unbelievable "White Night," a mass suicide pact of the Jonestown camp. A community made up mostly of Blacks and women drank cyanide from paper cups of Kool-Aid, adults and children alike died and fell around the main pavilion. Jones himself was shot in the head, an apparent suicide. For days, the body count mounted, from 400 to nearly 1,000. The bodies were flown to the United States and later cremated or buried in mass graves.
Temple member Larry Layton is still facing charges of conspiracy in Ryan's murder. Ryan was recently awarded a posthumous Medal of Honor, and was the first Congress member to die in the line of duty.
Pete Hammill called the corpses "all the loose change of the sixties." The effect was electric. Any alternative to the current system was seen as futile, if not deadly. Protest only led to police riots and political assassination. Alternative life styles and drugs led to "creepy-crawly" communes and violent murders. And religious experiments led to cults and suicide. Social utopias were dreams that turned into nightmares. The television urged us to go back to "The Happy Days" of the apolitical 50s. The message was, get a job, and go back to church. The unyielding nuclear threat generated only nihilism and hopelessness. There was no answer but death, no exit from the grisly future. The new ethic was personal success, aerobics, material consumption, a return to "American values," and the "moral majority" white Christian world. The official message was clear.
The headlines the day of the massacre read: "Cult Dies in South American Jungle: 400 Die in Mass Suicide, 700 Flee into Jungle." By all accounts in the press, as well as People's Temple statements there were at least 1,100 people at Jonestown. There were 809 adult passports found there, and reports of 300 children (276 found among the dead, and 210 never identified). The headline figures from the first day add to the same number: 1,100. The original body count done by the Guyanese was 408, and this figure was initially agreed to by U.S. Army authorities on site. However, over the next few days, the total of reported dead began to rise quickly. The Army made a series of misleading and openly false statements about the discrepancy. The new total, which was the official final count, was given almost a week later by American authorities as 913. A total of 16 survivors were reported to have returned to the U.S. Where were the others?
At their first press conference, the Americans claimed that the Guyanese "could not count." These local people had carried out the gruesome job of counting the bodies, and later assisted American troops in the process of poking holes in the flesh lest they explode from the gasses of decay. Then the Americans proposed another theory -- they had missed seeing a pile of bodies at the back of the pavilion. The structure was the size of a small house, and they had been at the scene for days. Finally, we were given the official reason for the discrepancy -- bodies had fallen on top of other bodies, adults covering children.
It was a simple, if morbid, arithmetic that led to the first suspicions. The 408 bodies discovered at first count would have to be able to cover 505 bodies for a total of 913. In addition, those who first worked on the bodies would have been unlikely to miss bodies lying beneath each other since each body had to be punctured. Eighty-two of the bodies first found were those of children, reducing the number that could have been hidden below others. A search of nearly 150 photographs, aerial and close-up, fails to show even one body lying under another, much less 500.
It seemed the first reports were true, 400 had died, and 700 had fled to the jungle. The American authorities claimed to have searched for people who had escaped, but found no evidence of any in the surrounding area. At least a hundred Guyanese troops were among the first to arrive, and they were ordered to search the jungle for survivors. In the area, at the same time, British Black Watch troops were on "training exercises," with nearly 600 of their best-trained commandos. Soon, American Green Berets were on site as well. The presence of these soldiers, specially trained in covert killing operations, may explain the increasing numbers of bodies that appeared.
Most of the photographs show the bodies in neat rows, face down. There are few exceptions. Close shots indicate drag marks, as though the bodies were positioned by someone after death. Is it possible that the 700 who fled were rounded up by these troops, brought back to Jonestown and added to the body count?
If so, the bodies would indicate the cause of death. A new word was coined by the media, "suicide-murder." But which was it? Autopsies and forensic science are a developing art. The detectives of death use a variety of scientific methods and clues to determine how people die, when they expire, and the specific cause of death. Dr. Mootoo, the top Guyanese pathologist, was at Jonestown within hours after the massacre. Refusing the assistance of U.S. pathologists, he accompanied the teams that counted the dead, examined the bodies, and worked to identify the deceased. While the American press screamed about the "Kool-Aid Suicides," Dr. Mootoo was reaching a much different opinion.
There are certain signs that show the types of poisons that lead to the end of life. Cyanide blocks the messages from the brain to the muscles by changing body chemistry in the central nervous system. Even the "involuntary" functions like breathing and heartbeat get mixed neural signals. It is a painful death, breath coming in spurts. The other muscles spasm, limbs twist and contort. The facial muscles draw back into a deadly grin, called "cyanide rictus." All these telling signs were absent in the Jonestown dead. Limbs were limp and relaxed, and the few visible faces showed no sign of distortion.
Instead, Dr. Mootoo found fresh needle marks at the back of the left shoulder blades of 80-90% of the victims. Others had been shot or strangled. One survivor reported that those who resisted were forced by armed guards. The gun that reportedly shot Jim Jones was lying nearly 200 feet from his body, not a likely suicide weapon. As Chief Medical Examiner, Mootoo's testimony to the Guyanese grand jury investigating Jonestown led to their conclusion that all but three of the people were murdered by "persons unknown." Only two had committed suicide they said. Several pictures show the gun-shot wounds on the bodies as well. The U.S. Army spokesman, Lt. Col. Schuler, said, "No autopsies are needed. The cause of death is not an issue here." The forensic doctors who later did autopsies at Dover, Delaware, were never made aware of Dr. Mootoo's findings.
There are other indications that the Guyanese government participated with American authorities in a cover-up of the real story, despite their own findings. One good example was Guyanese Police Chief Lloyd Barker, who interfered with investigations, helped "recover" 2.5 million for the Guyanese government, and was often the first to officially announce the cover stories relating to suicide, body counts and survivors. Among the first to the scene were the wife of Guyanese Prime Minister Forbes Burnham and his Deputy Prime Minister, Ptolemy Reid. They returned from the massacre site with nearly $1 million in cash, gold and jewelry taken from the buildings and from the dead. Inexplicably, one of Burnham's political party secretaries had visited the site of the massacre only hours before it occurred. When Shirley Field Ridley, Guyanese Minister of Information, announced the change in the body count to the shocked Guyanese parliament, she refused to answer further questions. Other representatives began to point a finger of shame at Ridley and the Burnham government, and the local press dubbed the scandal "Templegate." All accused them of taking a ghoulish payoff.
Perhaps more significantly, the Americans brought in 16 huge C-131 cargo planes, but claimed they could only carry 36 caskets in each one. These aircraft can carry tanks, trucks, troops and ammunition all in one load. At the scene, bodies were stripped of identification, including the medical wrist tags visible in many early photos. Dust-off operations during Vietnam clearly demonstrated that the military is capable of moving hundreds of bodies in a short period. Instead, they took nearly a week to bring back the Jonestown dead, bringing in the majority at the end of the period. The corpses, rotting in the heat, made autopsy impossible. At one point, the remains of 183 people arrived in 82 caskets. Although the Guyanese had identified 174 bodies at the site, only 17 (later 46) were tentatively identified at the massive military mortuary in Dover, Delaware.
Isolated there, hundreds of miles from their families who might have visited the bodies at a similar mortuary in Oakland that was used during Vietnam, many of the dead were eventually cremated. Press was excluded, and even family members had difficulty getting access to the remains. Officials in New Jersey began to complain that state coroners were excluded, and that the military coroners appointed were illegally performing cremations. One of the top forensic body identification experts, who later was brought in to work on the Iranian raid casualties, was denied repeated requests to assist. In December, the President of the National Association of Medical Examiners complained in an open letter to the U.S. military that they "badly botched" procedures, and that a simple fluid autopsy was never performed at the point of discovery. Decomposition, embalming and cremation made further forensic work impossible. The unorthodox method of identification attempted, to remove the skin from the finger tip and slip it over a gloved finger, would not have stood up in court.
The long delay made it impossible to reconstruct the event. As noted, these military doctors were unaware of Dr. Mootoo's conclusions. Several civilian pathology experts said they "shuddered at the ineptness" of the military, and that their autopsy method was "doing it backwards." But in official statements, the U.S. attempted to discredit the Guyanese grand jury findings, saying they had uncovered "few facts."
Guyanese troops, and police who had arrived with American Embassy official Richard Dwyer, also failed to defend Congressman Leo Ryan and others who came to Guyana with him when they were shot down in cold blood at the Port Kaituma airstrip, even though the troops were nearby with machine guns at the ready. Although Temple member Larry Layton has been charged with the murders of Congressman Ryan, Temple defector Patricia Parks, and press reporters Greg Robinson, Don Harris and Bob Brown, he was not in a position to shoot them. Blocked from boarding Ryan's twin engine Otter, he had entered another plane nearby. Once inside, he pulled out a gun and wounded two Temple followers, before being disarmed. The others were clearly killed by armed men who descended from a tractor trailer at the scene, after opening fire. Witnesses described them as "zombies," walking mechanically, without emotion, and "looking through you, not at you" as they murdered. Only certain people were killed, and the selection was clearly planned. Certain wounded people, like Ryan's aide Jackie Speiers, were not harmed further, but the killers made sure that Ryan and the newsmen were dead. In some cases they shot people, already wounded, directly in the head. These gunmen were never finally identified, and may have been under Layton's command. They may not have been among the Jonestown dead.
At the Jonestown site, survivors described a special group of Jones' followers who were allowed to carry weapons and money, and to come and go from the camp. These people were all white, mostly males. They ate better and worked less than the others, and they served as an armed guard to enforce discipline, control labor and restrict movement. Among them were Jones' top lieutenants, including George Phillip Blakey. Blakey and others regularly visited Georgetown, Guyana and made trips in their sea-going boat, the Cudjoe. He was privileged to be aboard the boat when the murders occurred. This special armed guard survived the massacre. Many were trained and programmed killers, like the "zombies" who attacked Ryan. Some were used as mercenaries in Africa, and elsewhere. The dead were 90% women, and 80% Blacks. It is unlikely that men armed with guns and modern crossbows would give up control and willingly be injected with poisons. It is much more likely that they forced nearly 400 people to die by injection, and then assisted in the murder of 500 more who attempted to escape. One survivor clearly heard people cheering 45 minutes after the massacre. Despite government claims, they are not accounted for, nor is their location known.
Back in California, People's Temple members openly admitted that they feared they were targeted by a "hit squad," and the Temple was surrounded for some time by local police forces. During that period, two members of the elite guard from Jonestown returned and were allowed into the Temple by police. The survivors who rode to Port Kaituma with Leo Ryan complained when Larry Layton boarded the truck, "He's not one of us." Rumors also persisted that a "death list" of U.S. officials existed, and some survivors verified in testimony to the San Francisco grand jury. A congressional aide was quoted in the AP wires on May 19, 1979, "There are 120 white, brainwashed assassins out from Jonestown awaiting the trigger word to pick up their hit."
Other survivors included Mark Lane and Charles Garry, lawyers for People's Temple who managed to escape the massacre somehow. In addition to the 16 who officially returned with the Ryan party, others managed to reach Georgetown and come back home. However, there have been continuing suspicious murders of those people here. Jeannie and Al Mills, who intended to write a book about Jones, were murdered at home, bound and shot. Some evidence indicates a connection between the Jonestown operation and the murders of Mayor Moscone and Harvey Milk by police agent Dan White. Another Jonestown survivor was shot near his home in Detroit by unidentified killers. Yet another was involved in a mass murder of school children in Los Angeles. Anyone who survived such massive slaughter must be somewhat suspect. The fact that the press never even spoke about nearly 200 survivors raises serious doubts.
In order to understand the strange events surrounding Jonestown, we must begin with a history of the people involved. The official story of a religious fanatic and his idealist followers doesn't make sense in light of the evidence of murders, armed killers and autopsy cover-ups. If it happened the way we were told, there should be no reason to try to hide the facts from the public, and full investigation into the deaths at Jonestown, and the murder of Leo Ryan would have been welcomed. What did happen is something else again.
Jim Jones grew up in Lynn, in southern Indiana. His father was an active member of the local Ku Klux Klan that infest that area. His friends found him a little strange, and he was interested in preaching the Bible and religious rituals. Perhaps more important was his boyhood friendship with Dan Mitrione, confirmed by local residents. In the early 50s, Jones set out to be a religious minister, and was ordained at one point by a Christian denomination in Indianapolis. It was during this period that he met and married his lifelong mate, Marceline. He also had a small business selling monkeys, purchased from the research department at Indiana State University in Bloomington.
A Bible-thumper and faith healer, Jones put on revivalist tent shows in the area, and worked close to Richmond, Indiana. Mitrione, his friend, worked as chief of police there, and kept him from being arrested or run out of town. According to those close to him, he used wet chicken livers as evidence of "cancers" he was removing by "divine powers." His landlady called him "a gangster who used a Bible instead of a gun." His church followers included Charles Beikman, a Green Beret who was to stay with him to the end. Beikman was later charged with the murders of several Temple members in Georgetown, following the massacre.
Dan Mitrione, Jones' friend, moved on to the CIA-financed International Police Academy, where police were trained in counter-insurgency and torture techniques from around the world. Jones, a poor, itinerant preacher, suddenly had money in 1961 for a trip to "minister" in Brazil, and he took his family with him. By this time, he had "adopted" Beikman, and eight children, both Black and white. His neighbors in Brazil distrusted him. He told them he worked with U.S. Navy Intelligence. His transportation and groceries were being provided by the U.S. Embassy as was the large house he lived in. His son, Stephan, commented that he made regular trips to Belo Horizonte, site of the CIA headquarters in Brazil. An American police advisor, working closely with the CIA at that point, Dan Mitrione was there as well. Mitrione had risen in the ranks quickly, and was busy training foreign police in torture and assassination methods. He was later kidnapped by Tupermaro guerillas in Uruguay, interrogated and murdered. Costa Gravas made a film about his death titled State of Siege. Jones returned to the United States in 1963, with $10,000 in his pocket. Recent articles indicate that Catholic clergy are complaining about CIA funding of other denominations for "ministry" in Brazil; perhaps Jones was an early example.
With his new wealth, Jones was able to travel to California and establish the first People's Temple in Ukiah, California, in 1965. Guarded by dogs, electric fences and guard towers, he set up Happy Havens Rest Home. Despite a lack of trained personnel, or proper licensing, Jones drew in many people at the camp. He had elderly, prisoners, people from psychiatric institutions, and 150 foster children, often transferred to care at Happy Havens by court orders. He was contacted there by Christian missionaries from World Vision, an international evangelical order that had done espionage work for the CIA in Southeast Asia. He met "influential" members of the community and was befriended by Walter Heady, the head of the local chapter of the John Birch Society. He used the members of his "church" to organize local voting drives for Richard Nixon's election, and worked closely with the republican party. He was even appointed chairman of the county grand jury.
"The Messiah from Ukiah," as he was known then, met and recruited Timothy Stoen, a Stanford graduate and member of the city DA's office, and his wife Grace. During this time, the Layton family, Terri Buford and George Phillip Blakey and other important members joined the Temple. The camp "doctor," Larry Schacht, claims Jones got him off drugs and into medical school during this period. These were not just street urchins. Buford's father was a Commander for the fleet at the Philadelphia Navy Base for years. The Laytons were a well-heeled, aristocratic family. Dr. Layton donated at least a quarter-million dollars to Jones. His wife son and daughter were all members of the Temple. George Blakey, who married Debbie Layton, was from a wealthy British family. He donated $60,000 to pay the lease on the 27,000-acre Guyana site in 1974. Lisa Philips Layton had come to the U.S. from a rich Hamburg banking family in Germany. Most of the top lieutenants around Jones were from wealthy, educated backgrounds, many with connections to the military or intelligence agencies. These were the people who would set up the bank accounts, complex legal actions, and financial records that put people under the Temple's control.
Stoen was able to set up important contacts for Jones as Assistant DA in San Francisco. Jones changed his image to that of a liberal. He had spent time studying the preaching methods of Fr. Divine in Philadelphia, and attempted to use them in a manipulative way on the streets of San Francisco. Fr. Divine ran a religious and charitable operation among Philadelphia's poor Black community. Jones was able to use his followers in an election once again, this time for Mayor Moscone. Moscone responded in 1976, putting Jones in charge of the city Housing Commission. In addition, many of his key followers got jobs with the city Welfare Department and much of the recruitment to the Temple in San Francisco came from the ranks of these unemployed and dispossessed people. Jones was introduced to many influential liberal and radical people there, and entertained or greeted people ranging from Roslyn Carter to Angela Davis.
The period when Jones began the Temple there marked the end of an important political decade. Nixon's election had ushered in a domestic intelligence dead set against the movements for peace, civil rights and social justice. Names like COINTELPRO, CHAOS, and OPERATION GARDEN PLOT, or the HOUSTON PLAN made the news following in the wake of Watergate revelations. Senator Ervin called the White House plans against dissent "fascistic." These operations involved the highest levels of military and civilian intelligence and all levels of police agencies in a full-scale attempt to discredit, disrupt and destroy the movements that sprang up in the 1960s. There are indications that these plans, or the mood they created, led to the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, as unacceptable "Black Messiahs."
One of the architects under then-Governor Reagan in California was now-Attorney General Edwin Meese. He coordinated "Operation Garden Plot" for military intelligence and all police operations and intelligence in a period that was plagued with violations of civil and constitutional rights. Perhaps you recall the police attacks on People's Park, the murder of many Black Panthers and activists, the infiltration of the Free Speech Movement and antiwar activity, and the experimentation on prisoners at Vacaville, or the shooting of George Jackson. Meese later bragged that this activity had damaged or destroyed the people he called "revolutionaries." It was into this situation Jones came to usurp leadership.
After his arrival in Ukiah, his methods were visible to those who took the time to investigate. His armed guards wore black uniforms and leather jackboots. His approach was one of deception, and if that wore off, then manipulation and threats. Loyalty to his church included signing blank sheets of paper, later filled in with "confessions' and used for blackmail purposes, or to extort funds. Yet the vast membership he was extorting often owned little, and he tried to milk them for everything, from personal funds to land deeds. Illegal activities were regularly reported during this period, but either not investigated or unresolved. He clearly had the cooperation of local police. Years later, evidence would come out of charges of sexual solicitation, mysteriously dropped.
Those who sought to leave were prevented and rebuked. Local journalist Kathy Hunter wrote in the Ukiah press about "Seven Mysterious Deaths" of the Temple members who had argued with Jones and attempted to leave. One of these was Maxine Swaney. Jones openly hinted to other members that he had arranged for them to die, threatening a similar fate to others who would be disloyal. Kathy Hunter later tried to visit Jonestown, only to be forcibly drugged by Temple guards, and deported to Georgetown. She later charged that Mark Lane approached her, falsely identifying himself as a reporter for Esquire, rather than as an attorney for Jim Jones. He led her to believe he was seeking information on Jones for an exposé in the magazine, and asked to see her evidence.
The pattern was to continue in San Francisco. In addition, Jones required that members practice for the mysterious "White Night," a mass suicide ritual that would protect them from murder at the hands of their enemies. Although the new Temple had no guards or fences to restrict members, few had other places to live, and many had given over all they owned to Jones. They felt trapped inside this community that preached love, but practiced hatred.
Following press exposure, and a critical article in New West magazine, Jones became very agitated, and the number of suicide drills increased. Complaints about mistreatment by current and ex-members began to appear in the media and reach the ears of congressional representatives. Sam Houston, an old friend of Leo Ryan, came to him with questions about the untimely death of his son following his departure from the Temple. Later, Timothy and Grace Stoen would complain to Ryan about custody of their young son, who was living with Jones, and urge him to visit the commune. Against advice of friends and staff members, Ryan decided to take a team of journalists to Guyana and seek the truth of the situation. Some feel that Ryan's journey there was planned and expected, and used as a convenient excuse to set up his murder. Others feel that this unexpected violation of secrecy around Jonestown set off the spark that led to the mass murder. In either case, it marked the beginning of the end for Ryan and Jones.
At one point, to show his powers, Jones arranged to be shot in the heart in front of the congregation. Dragged to a back room, apparently wounded and bleeding, he returned a moment later alive and well. While this may have been more of his stage antics to prompt believers' faith it may also have marked the end of Jim Jones. For undisclosed reasons, Jones had and used "doubles." This is very unusual for a religious leader, but quite common in intelligence operations.
Even the death and identification of Jim Jones were peculiar. He was apparently shot by another person at the camp. Photos of his body do not show identifying tattoos on his chest. The body and face are not clearly recognizable due to bloating and discoloration. The FBI reportedly checked his fingerprints twice, a seemingly futile gesture since it is a precise operation. A more logical route would have been to check dental records. Several researchers familiar with the case feel that the body may not have been Jones. Even if the person at the site was one of the "doubles," it does not mean Jones is still alive. He may have been killed at an earlier point.
According to one story, Jones was seeking a place on earth that would survive the effects of nuclear war, relying only on an article in Esquire magazine for his list. The real reason for his locations in Brazil, California, Guyana and elsewhere deserve more scrutiny. At one point Jones wanted to set up in Grenada, and he invited then-Prime Minister Sir Eric Gairy to visit the Temple in San Francisco. He invested $200,000 in the Grenada National Bank in 1977 to pave the way, and some $76,000 was still there after the massacre.
His final choice, the Matthew's Ridge section in Guyana is an interesting one. It was originally the site of a Union Carbide bauxite and manganese mine, and Jones used the dock they left behind. At an earlier point, it had been one of seven possible sites chosen for the relocation of the Jews after World War II. Plans to inhabit the jungles of Guyana's interior with cheap labor date back to 1919. Resources buried there are among the richest in the world, and include manganese, diamonds, gold, bauxite and uranium. Forbes Burnham, the Prime Minister, had participated in a scheme to repatriate Blacks from the UK to work in the area. Like all earlier attempts, it failed.
Once chosen, the site was leased and worked on by a select crew of Temple members in preparation for the arrival of the body of the church. The work was done in cooperation with Burnham and the U.S. Embassy there. But if these were idealists seeking a better life, their arrival in "Utopia" was a strange welcome. Piled into busses in San Francisco, they had driven to Florida. From there, Pan American charter planes delivered them to Guyana. When they arrived at the airport, the Blacks were taken off the plane, bound and gagged. The deception had finally been stripped bare of all pretense. The Blacks were so isolated and controlled that neighbors as close as five miles from the site did not know that Blacks lived at Jonestown. The only public representatives seen in Guyana were white. Guyanese children were "bought" also.
According to survivors' reports, they entered a virtual slave labor camp. Worked for 16 to 18 hours daily, they were forced to live in cramped quarters on minimum rations, usually rice, bread and sometimes rancid meat. Kept on a schedule of physical and mental exhaustion, they were also forced to stay awake at night and listen to lectures by Jones. Threats and abuse became more common. The camp medical staff under Dr. Lawrence Schacht was known to perform painful suturing without anaesthetic. They administered drugs, and kept daily medical records. Infractions of the rules or disloyalty led to increasingly harsh punishments, including forced drugging, sensory isolation in an underground box, physical torture and public sexual rape and humiliation. Beatings and verbal abuse were commonplace. Only the special guards were treated humanely and fed decently. People with serious injuries were flown out, but few ever returned. Perhaps the motto at Jonestown should have been the same as the one at Auschwitz, developed by Larry Schacht's namesake, Dr. Hjalmar Schacht, the Nazi Minister of Economics, "Arheit Macht Frei," or "Work Will Make You Free." Guyana even considered setting up an "Auschwitz-like museum" at the site, but abandoned the idea.
By this point, Jones had amassed incredible wealth. Press estimates ranged from $26 million to $2 billion, including bank accounts, foreign investments and real estate. Accounts were set up worldwide by key members, often in the personal name of certain people in the Temple. Much of this money, listed publicly after the massacre, disappeared mysteriously. It was a fortune far too large to have come from membership alone. The receivership set up by the government settled on a total of $10 million. Of special interest were the Swiss bank accounts opened in Panama, the money taken from the camp, and the extensive investments in Barclay's Bank. Other sources of income included the German banking family of Lisa Philips Layton, Larry's mother. Also, close to $65,000 a month income was claimed to come from welfare and social security checks for 199 members, sent to the Temple followers and signed over to Jones. In addition, there are indications that Blakey and other members were supplementing the Temple funds with international smuggling of guns and drugs. At one point, Charles Garry noted that Jones and his community were "literally sitting on a gold mine." Mineral distribution maps of Guyana suggest he was right.
To comprehend this well-financed, sinister operation, we must abandon the myth that this was a religious commune and study instead the history that led to its formation. Jonestown was an experiment, part of a 30-year program called MK-ULTRA, the CIA and military intelligence code name for mind control. A close study of Senator Ervin's 1974 report, Individual Rights and the Government's Role in Behavior Modification, shows that these agencies had certain "target populations" in mind, for both individual and mass control. Blacks, women, prisoners, the elderly, the young, and inmates of psychiatric wards were selected as "potentially violent." There were plans in California at the time for a Center for the Study and Reduction of Violence, expanding on the horrific work of Dr. José Delgado, Drs. Mark and Ervin, and Dr. Jolly West, experts in implantation, psychosurgery, and tranquilizers. The guinea pigs were to be drawn from the ranks of the "target populations," and taken to an isolated military missile base in California. In that same period, Jones began to move his Temple members to Jonestown. The were the exact population selected for such tests.
The meticulous daily notes and drug records kept by Larry Schacht disappeared, but evidence did not. The history of MK-ULTRA and its sister programs (MK-DELTA, ARTICHOKE, BLUEBIRD, etc.) records a combination of drugs, drug mixtures, electroshock and torture as methods for control. The desired results ranged from temporary and permanent amnesia, uninhibited confessions, and creation of second personalities, to programmed assassins and preconditioned suicidal urges. One goal was the ability to control mass populations, especially for cheap labor. Dr. Delgado told Congress that he hoped for a future where a technology would control workers in the field and troops at war with electronic remote signals. He found it hard to understand why people would complain about electrodes implanted in their brains to make them "both happy and productive."
On the scene at Jonestown, Guyanese troops discovered a large cache of drugs, enough to drug the entire population of Georgetown, Guyana (well over 200,000) for more than a year. According to survivors, these were being used regularly "to control" a population of only 1,100 people. One footlocker contained 11,000 doses of thorazine, a dangerous tranquilizer. Drugs used in the testing for MK-ULTRA were found in abundance, including sodium pentathol (a truth serum), chloral hydrate (a hypnotic), demerol, thalium (confuses thinking), and many others. Schacht had supplies of haliopareael and largatil as well, two other major tranquilizers. The actual description of life at Jonestown is that of a tightly run concentration camp, complete with medical and psychiatric experimentation. The stresses and isolation of the victims is typical of sophisticated brainwashing techniques. The drugs and special tortures add an additional experimental aspect to the horror. This more clearly explains the medical tags on the bodies, and why they had to be removed. It also suggests an additional motive for frustrating any chemical autopsies, since these drugs would have been found in the system of the dead.
The story of Jonestown is that of a gruesome experiment, not a religious utopian society. On the eve of the massacre, Forbes Burnham was reportedly converted to "born again" Christianity by members of the Full Gospel Christian Businessman's Association, including Lionel Luckhoo, a Temple lawyer in Guyana. This same group, based in California, also reportedly converted Guatemalan dictator Rios Montt prior to his massacres there and they were in touch with Jim Jones in Ukiah. They currently conduct the White House prayer breakfasts for Mr. Reagan. With Ryan on his way to Jonestown, the seal of secrecy was broken. In a desperate attempt to test their conditioning methods, the Jonestown elite apparently tried to implement a real suicide drill. Clearly, it led to a revolt, and the majority of people fled, unaware that there were people waiting to catch them.
Author Don Freed, an associate of Mark Lane, said that Martin Luther King, "if he could see Johnstown would recognize it as the next step in his agenda, and he would say, one, two, three, many more Jonestowns." Strangely enough, almost every map of Guyana in the major press located Jonestown at a different place following the killings. One map even shows a second site in the area called "Johnstown." Perhaps there were multiple camps and Leo Ryan was only shown the one they hoped he would see. In any case, the Jonestown model survives, and similar camps, and their sinister designs, show up in many places.
Inside Guyana itself, approximately 25 miles to the south of Matthews Ridge, is a community called Hilltown, named after religious leader Rabbi Hill. Hill has used the names Abraham Israel and Rabbi Emmanuel Washington. Hilltown, set up about the same time as Jonestown, followed the departure of David Hill, who was known in Cleveland, a fugitive of the U.S. courts. Hill rules with an "iron fist" over some 8,000 Black people from Guyana and America who believe they are the Lost Tribe of Israel and the real Hebrews of Biblical prophecy. Used as strong-arm troops, and "internal mercenaries" to insure Burnham's election, as were Jonestown members, the Hilltown people were allowed to clear the Jonestown site of shoes and unused weapons, both in short supply in Guyana. Hill says his followers would gladly kill themselves at his command, but he would survive since, unlike Jones, he is "in control."
Similar camps were reported at the time in the Philippines. Perhaps the best known example is the fascist torture camp in Chile known as Colonia Dignidad. Also a religious cult built around a single individual, this one came from Germany to Chile in 1961. In both cases, the camp was their "Agricultural Experiment." Sealed and protected by the dreaded Chilean DINA police, Colonia Dignidad serves as a torture chamber for political dissidents. To the Jonestown monstrosities, they have added dogs specially trained to attack human genitals. The operations there have included the heavy hand of decapitation specialist Michael Townley Welch, an American CIA agent, as well as reported visits by Nazi war criminals Dr. Josef Mengele and Martin Bormann. Currently, another such campsite exists at Pisagua, Chile. Temple member Jeannie Mills, now dead, reported having seen actual films of a Chilean torture camp while at Jonestown. The only source possible at the time was the Chilean fascists themselves.
In the current period, Jonestown is being "repopulated" with 100,000 Laotian Hmong people. Many of them grew opium for CIA money in Southeast Asia. Over 1,000 reside there already under a scheme designed by Billy Graham's nephew Ernest, and members of the Federation of Evangelical Ministries Association in Wheaton, Illinois (World Vision, World Medical Relief, Samaritan's Purse, and Carl McIntyre's International Council of Christian Churches). Similar plans devised by the Peace Corps included moving inner-city Blacks from America to Jamaica, and other Third World countries. And World Relief attempted to move the population of the Island of Dominica to Jonestown. It is only a matter of time before another Jonestown will be exposed, perhaps leading again to massive slaughter.
Our story so far has hinted at connections to U.S. intelligence, such as the long-term friendship of Jones and CIA associate Dan Mitrione. But the ties are much more direct when a full picture of the operation is revealed. To start with, the history of Forbes Burnham's rise to power in Guyana is fraught with the clear implication of a CIA coup d'état to oust troublesome independent leader Cheddi Jagan. In addition, the press and other evidence indicated the presence of a CIA agent on the scene at the time of the massacre. This man, Richard Dwyer, was working as Deputy Chief of Mission for the U.S. Embassy in Guyana. Identified in Who's Who in the CIA, he has been involved since 1959, and was last stationed in Martinique. Present at the camp site and the airport strip, his accounts were used by the State Department to confirm the death of Leo Ryan. At the massacre, Jones said, "Get Dwyer out of here" just before the killings began.
Other Embassy personnel, who knew the situation at Jonestown well, were also connected to intelligence work. U.S. Ambassador John Burke, who served in the CIA with Dwyer in Thailand, was an Embassy official described by Philip Agee as working for the CIA since 1963. A Reagan appointee to the CIA, he is still employed by the Agency, usually on State Department assignments. Burke tried to stop Ryan's investigation. Also at the Embassy was Chief Consular officer Richard McCoy, described as "close to Jones," who worked for military intelligence and was "on loan" from the Defense Department at the time of the massacre. According to a standard source, "The U.S. embassy in Georgetown housed the Georgetown CIA station. It now appears that the majority and perhaps all of the embassy officials were CIA officers operating under State Department covers . . ." Dan Webber, who was sent to the site of the massacre the day after, was also named as CIA. Not only did the State Department conceal all reports of violations at Jonestown from Congressman Leo Ryan, but the Embassy regularly provided Jones with copies of all congressional inquiries under the Freedom of Information Act.
Ryan had challenged the Agency's overseas operations before, as a member of the House Committee responsible for oversight on intelligence. He was an author of the controversial Hughes-Ryan Amendment that would have required CIA disclosure in advance to the congressional committees of all planned covert operations. The Amendment was defeated shortly after his death.
American intelligence agencies have a sordid history of cooperative relations with Nazi war criminals and international fascism. In light of this, consider the curious ties of the family members of the top lieutenants to Jim Jones. The Layton family is one example. Dr. Laurence Layton was Chief of Chemical and Biological Warfare Research at Dugway Proving Grounds in Utah, for many years, and later worked as Director of Missile and Satellite Development at the Navy Propellant Division, Indian Head, Maryland. His wife, Lisa, had come from a rich German family. Her father, Hugo, had represented I.G. Farben as a stockbroker. Her stories about hiding her Jewish past from her children for most of her life, and her parents' escape from a train heading for a Nazi concentration camp seem shallow, as do Dr. Layton's Quaker religious beliefs. The same family sent money to Jonestown regularly. Their daughter, Debbie, met and married George Philip Blakey in an exclusive private school in England. Blakey's parents have extensive stock holdings in Solvay drugs, a division of the Nazi cartel I.G. Farben. He also contributed financially.
Terri Buford's father, Admiral Charles T. Buford, worked with Navy Intelligence. In addition, Blakey was reportedly running mercenaries from Jonestown to CIA-backed UNITA forces in Angola. Maria Katsaris' father was a minister with the Greek Orthodox Church, a common conduit of CIA fundings, and Maris claimed she had proof he was CIA. She was shot in the head, and her death was ruled a suicide, but at one point Charles Beikman was charged with killing her. On their return to the United States, the "official" survivors were represented by attorney Joseph Blatchford who had been named prior to that time in a scandal involving CIA infiltration of the Peace Corps. Almost everywhere you look at Jonestown, U.S. intelligence and fascism rear their ugly heads.
The connection of intelligence agencies to cults is nothing new. A simple but revealing example is the Unification Church, tied to both the Korean CIA (i.e., American CIA in Korea), and the international fascist network known as the World Anti-Communist League (WACL). The Moonies hosted WACL's first international conference. What distinguished Jonestown was both the level of control and the openly sinister involvement. It was imperative that they cover their tracks.
Maria Katsaris sent Michael Prokes, Tim Carter, and another guard out at the last minute with $500,000 cash in a suitcase, and instructions for a drop point. Her note inside suggests the funds were destined for the Soviet Union. Prokes later shot himself at a San Francisco press conference, where he claimed to be an FBI informant. Others reported meeting with KGB agents and plans to move to Russia. This disinformation was part of a "red smear" to be used if they had to abandon the operation. The Soviet Union had no interest in the money and even less in Jonestown. The cash was recovered by the Guyanese government.
Their hidden funding may include more intelligence links. A mysterious account in Panama, totaling nearly $5 million in the name of an "Associacion Pro Religiosa do San Pedro, S.A." was located. This unknown Religious Association of St. Peter was probably one of the twelve phony companies set up by Archbishop Paul Marcinkus to hide the illegal investments of Vatican funds through the scandal-ridden Banco Ambrosiano. A few days after the story broke about the accounts, the President of Panama, and most of the government resigned, Roberto Calvi of Banco Ambrosiano was murdered, and the Jonestown account disappeared from public scrutiny and court record.
The direct orders to cover up the cause of death came from the top levels of the American government. Zbigniew Brezezinsky delegated to Robert Pastor, and he in turn ordered Lt. Col. Gordon Sumner to strip the bodies of identity. Pastor is now Deputy Director of the CIA. One can only wonder how many others tied to the Jonestown operation were similarly promoted.
One of the persistent problems in researching Jonestown is that it seems to lead to so many other criminal activities, each with its own complex history and cast of characters. Perhaps the most disturbing of these is the connection that appears repeatedly between the characters in the Jonestown story and the key people involved in the murder and investigating of Martin Luther King.
The first clue to this link appeared in the personal histories of the members of the Ryan investigation team who were so selectively and deliberately killed at Port Kaituma. Don Harris, a veteran NBC reporter, had been the only network newsman on the scene to cover Martin Luther King's activity in Memphis at the time of King's assassination. He had interviewed key witnesses at the site. His coverage of the urban riots that followed won him an Emmy award. Gregory Robinson, a "fearless" journalist from the San Francisco Examiner, had photographed the same riots in Washington, D.C. When he was approached for copies of the films by Justice Department officials, he threw the negatives into the Potomac river.
The role of Mark Lane, who served as attorney for Jim Jones, is even more clearly intertwined. Lane had co-authored a book with Dick Gregory, claiming FBI complicity in the King murder. He was hired as the attorney for James Earl Ray, accused assassin, when Ray testified before the House Select Committee on Assassinations about King. Prior to this testimony, Ray was involved in an unusual escape plot at Brushy Mountain State Prison. The prisoner who had helped engineer the escape plot was later inexplicably offered an early, parole by members of the Tennessee Governor's office. These officials, and Governor Blanton himself, were to come under close public scrutiny and face legal charges in regard to bribes taken to arrange illegal early pardons for prisoners.
One of the people living at Jonestown was ex-FBI agent Wesley Swearington, who at least publicly condemned the COINTELPRO operations and other abuses, based on stolen classified documents, at the Jonestown site. Lane had reportedly met with him there at least a year before the massacre. Terri Buford said the documents were passed on to Charles Garry. Lane used information from Swearingen in his thesis on the FBI and King's murder. Swearingen later served as a key witness in suits against the Justice Department brought by the Socialist Workers Party. When Larry Flynt, the flamboyant publisher of Hustler magazine, offered a, $1 million reward leading to the capture and conviction of the John F. Kennedy killers, the long distance number listed to collect information and leads was being answered by Mark Lane and Wesley Swearingen.
With help from officials in Tennessee, Governor Blanton's office, Lane managed to get legal custody of a woman who had been incarcerated in the Tennessee state psychiatric system for nearly eight years. This woman, Grace Walden Stephens, had been a witness in the King murder. She was living at the time in Memphis in a rooming house across from the hotel when Martin Luther King was shot. The official version of events had Ray located in the common bathroom of the rooming house, and claimed he used a rifle to murder King from that window. Grace Stephens did, indeed, see a man run from the bathroom, past her door and down to the street below. A rifle, later linked circumstantially to James Earl Ray, was found inside a bundle at the base of the rooming house stairs, and identified as the murder weapon. But Grace, who saw the man clearly, refused to identify him as Ray when shown photographs by the FBI. Her testimony was never introduced at the trial. The FBI relied, instead, on the word of her common law husband, Charles Stephens, who was drunk and unconscious at the time of the incident. Her persistence in saying that it was not James Earl Ray was used at her mental competency hearings as evidence against her, and she disappeared into the psychiatric system.
Grace Walden Stephens took up residence in Memphis with Lane, her custodian, and Terri Buford, a key Temple member who had returned to the U.S. before the killings to live with Lane. While arranging for her to testify before the Select Committee on Ray's behalf, Lane and Buford were plotting another fate for Grace Stephens. Notes from Buford to Jones, found in the aftermath of the killings, discussed arrangements with Lane to move Grace Stephens to Jonestown. The problem that remained was lack of a passport, but Buford suggested either getting a passport on the black market, or using the passport of former Temple member Maxine Swaney. Swaney, dead for nearly 2-1/2 years since her departure from the Ukiah camp, was in no position to argue and Jones apparently kept her passport with him. Whether Grace ever arrived at Jonestown is unclear.
Lane was also forced to leave Ray in the midst of testimony to the Select Committee when he got word that Ryan was planning to visit. Lane had attempted to discourage the trip earlier in a vaguely threatening letter. Now he rushed to be sure he arrived with the group. At the scene, he failed to warn Ryan and others, knowing that the sandwiches and other food might be drugged, but refrained from eating it himself. Later, claiming that he and Charles Garry would write the official history of the "revolutionary suicide," Lane was allowed to leave the pieces of underwear to mark their way back to Georgetown. If true, it seems an unlikely method if they were in any fear of pursuit. They had heard gunfire and screams back at the camp. Lane was reportedly well aware of the forced drugging and suicide drills at Jonestown before Ryan arrived.
Another important figure in the murder of Martin Luther King was his mother, Alberta. A few weeks after the first public announcement by Coretta Scott King that she believed her husband's murder was part of a conspiracy, Mrs. Alberta King was brutally shot to death in Atlanta, while attending church services. Anyone who had seen the physical wounds suffered by King might have been an adverse witness to the official version, since the Wound angles did not match the ballistic direction of a shot from the rooming house. Her death also closely coincided with the reopening of the Tennessee state court review of Ray's conviction based on a guilty plea, required by a 6th Circuit decision. The judge in that case reportedly refused to allow witnesses from beyond a 100-mile radius from the courtroom.
The man convicted of shooting King's mother was Marcus Wayne Chenault. His emotional affect following the murder was unusual. Grinning, he asked if he had hit anyone. He had reportedly been dropped off at the church by people he knew in Ohio. While at Ohio State University, he was part of a group known as "the Troop," run by a Black minister and gun collector who used the name Rabbi Emmanuel Israel. This man, described in the press as a "mentor" for Chenault, left the area immediately after the shooting. In the same period, Rabbi Hill traveled from Ohio to Guyana and set up Hilltown, using similar aliases, and preaching the same message of a "black Hebrew elite." Chenault confided to SCLC leaders that he was one of many killers who were working to assassinate a long list of Black leadership. The names he said were on this list coincided with similar "death lists" distributed by the KKK, and linked to the COINTELPRO operations in the 60s.
The real backgrounds and identities of Marcus Wayne Chenault and Rabbi Hill may never be discovered. But one thing is certain: Martin Luther King Would never had countenanced the preachings of Jim Jones, had he lived to hear them.
In the face of such horror, it may seem little compensation to know that a part of the truth has been unearthed. But for the families and some of the Survivors, the truth, however painful, is the only path to being relieved of the burden of their doubts. It's hard to believe that President Carter was calling on us at the time not to "overreact." The idea that a large community of Black people would not only stand by and be poisoned at the suggestion of Jim Jones, but would allow their children to be murdered first, is a monstrous lie, and a racist insult. We now know that the most direct description of Jonestown is that it was a Black genocide plan. One Temple director, Joyce Shaw, described the Jonestown massacre as, "some kind of horrible government experiments, or some sort of sick racial thing, a plan like that of the Germans to exterminate Blacks." If we refuse to look further into this nightmarish event, there will be more Jonestowns to come. They will move from Guyana to our own back yard.
The cast of characters is neither dead nor inactive. Key members of the armed guard were ordered to be on board the Temple Ship, Cudjoe -- at the hour of the massacre they were on a supply run to Trinidad. George Phillip Blakey phoned his father-in-law, Dr. Lawrence Layton, from Panama after the event. At least ten members of the Temple remained on the boat, and set up a new community in Trinidad while Nigel Slingger, a Grenada businessman and insurance broker for Jonestown, repaired the 400-ton shipping vessel. Then Charles Touchette, Paul McCann, Stephan Jones, and George Blakey set up an "open house" in Grenada with the others. McCann spoke about starting a shipping company to "finance the continued work of the original Temple."
That "work" may have included the mysterious operations of the mental hospital in Grenada that eluded government security by promising free medical care. The hospital as operated by Sir Geoffrey Bourne, Chancellor of the St. George's University Medical School, was also staffed by his son Dr. Peter Bourne. His son's history includes work with psychological experiments and USAID in Vietnam, the methadone clinics in the U.S., and a drug scandal in the Carter White House. The mental hospital was the only structure bombed during the U.S. invasion of Grenada in 1983. This was part of a plan to put Sir Eric Gairy back in power. Were additional experiments going on at the site?
In addition, the killers of Leo Ryan and others at Port Kaituma were never accounted for fully. The trial of Larry Layton was mishandled by the Guyanese courts, and the U.S. system as well. No adequate evidentiary hearings have occurred either at the trial or in state and congressional reviews. The Jonestown killers, trained assassins and mercenaries, are not on trial. They might be working in Africa or Central America. Their participation in Jonestown can be used as an "explanation" for their involvement in later murders here, such as the case of the attack on school children in Los Angeles. They should be named and located.
The money behind Jonestown was never fully examined or recovered. The court receivership only collected a fraction. The bulk went to pay back military operations and burial costs. Families of the dead were awarded only minimal amounts. Some filed suit, unsuccessfully, to learn more about the circumstances of the deaths, and who was responsible. Joe Holsinger, Leo Ryan's close friend and assistant, studied the case for two years and reached the same unnerving conclusions: these people were murdered, there was evidence of a mass mind-control experiment, and the top levels of civilian and military intelligence were involved. He worked with Ryan's family members to prove the corruption and injustice, but they could barely afford the immense court costs and case preparation. Their suit, as well as a similar one brought by ex-members and families of the victims, had to be dropped for lack of funds.
The international operations of World Vision and the related evangelical groups continue unabashed. World Vision official John W. Hinckley, Sr. was on his way to a Guatemalan water project run by the organization on the day his son shot at president Reagan. A mysterious "double" of Hinckley, Jr., a man named Richardson, followed Hinckley's path from Colorado to Connecticut, and even wrote love letters to Jody Foster. Richardson was a follower of Carl McIntyre's International Council of Christian Churches, and attended their Bible School in Florida. He was arrested shortly after the assassination attempt in New York's Port Authority with a weapon, and claimed he intended to kill Reagan.
Another World Vision employee, Mark David Chapman, worked at their Haitian refugee camp in Ft. Chaffee, Arkansas. He was later to gain infamy as the assassin of John Lennon in New York City. World Vision works with refugees worldwide. At the Honduran border, they are present in camps used by American CIA to recruit mercenaries against Nicaragua. They were at Sabra and Shatilla, Camps in Lebanon where fascist Phalange massacred the Palestinians. Their representatives in the Cuban refugee camps on the east coast included members of the Bay of Pigs operation, CIA-financed mercenaries from Omega 7 and Alpha 66. Are they being used as a worldwide cover for the recruitment and training of these killers? They are, as mentioned earlier, working to repopulate Jonestown with Laotians who served as mercenaries for our CIA.
Silence in the face of these murders is the worst possible response. The telling sign above the Jonestown dead read, "Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it." The genocide will come home to America. How many spent time studying the rash of child murders in Atlanta's Black community or asked the necessary questions about the discrepancies in the conviction of Wayne Williams? Would we recognize a planned genocide if it occurred under similar subterfuge?
Leo Ryan's daughter, Shannon, lives among the disciples of another cult today, at the new city of Rajneeshpuram in Arizona. She was quoted in the press, during the recent controversy over a nationwide recruiting drive to bring urban homeless people to the commune, saying she did not believe it could end like Jonestown, since the leader would not ask them to commit suicide. "If he did ask me, I would do it," she said. Homeless recruits who had left since then are suing in court because of suspicious and unnecessary injections given them by the commune's doctor, and a liquid they were served daily in unmarked jars that many believe was not simply "beer." One man in the suit claims he was drugged and disoriented for days after his first injection.
The ultimate victims of mind control at Jonestown are the American people. If we fail to look beyond the constructed images given us by the television and the press, then our consciousness is manipulated, just as well as the Jonestown victims' was. Facing nuclear annihilation, may see the current militarism of the Reagan policies, and military training itself, as the real "mass suicide cult." If the discrepancy between the truth of Jonestown and the official version can be so great, what other lies have we been told about major events?
History is precious. In a democracy, knowledge must be accessible for informed consent to function. Hiding or distorting history behind "national security" leaves the public as the final enemy of the government. Democratic process cannot operate on "need to know." Otherwise we live in the 1984 envisioned by Orwell's projections and we must heed his warning that those who control the past control the future.
The real tragedy of Jonestown is not only that it occurred, but
that so few chose to ask themselves why or how, so few sought to
find out the facts behind the bizarre tale used to explain away
the death of more than 900 people, and that so many will continue
to be blind to the grim reality of our intelligence agencies. In
the long run, the truth will come out. Only our complicity in the
deception continues to dishonor the dead.