Read at the Yuzhno-Sakalinsk Conference October 22, 2014.
October 13, 2014
Dear President Putin:
When growing up in Chilliwack, British Columbia, I absorbed a deep fear of Russians. In certain contexts we learned to call you “Soviets,” “Commies,” or “Reds,” but generally the word “Russians” was used. You were the enemy of the period, we were in a war with you, and you had exploded your first atomic bomb when I was two years old. Our leaders say we are not in our cold war with Russia and Russians anymore, which means that by writing you and expressing any gratitude to you I am not aiding the old cold enemy.
The frightening truth is that during these last few years, US propaganda has been inciting enmity toward Russia with the sort of war level rhetoric and claims that were used to ratchet up support and pave the way for US military action in Iraq, Libya, Syria, etc. US media has worked assiduously to turn the term “pro-Russian” into something automatically negative, like “pro-fascism.” I fear that for our leaders’ belligerent purposes these media have had some success. To be “pro-west” meaning “pro-US,” has come to imply “anti-Russian” or “anti-some-other-bad-guys.”
Many years after my anti-Russian upbringing, and I had grown a brain, a heart, and a bit of backbone, I visited your country, at the invitation of people in the Russian Orthodox Church. Some Russians became my friends. I became pro-Russian, you might say. I did not become anti-west or anti-US, although I am dead set against the west and the US’s superpower hypocrisy. I have traveled to Russia five times, to talk to Church and secular groups and individuals. As I write this, I am preparing for a sixth visit, to Moscow, and then on to a conference on dangerous cults in Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk. The Islamic State cult’s militarization and ruthlessness are its well-publicized dangers. My subject is the American cult Scientology, more sophisticated, but also dangerous, and operating within our societies.
At the time of my last visit, two matters involving the US and Russia were in the world’s headlines: Edward Snowden and bombing Syria. I spoke at a youth conference on cults in Podolsk, and at other venues, and commented on these matters. I read your “Plea for Caution from Russia” published in the New York Times while I was with friends in Moscow. It was highly intelligent, reasonable and presidential.1 Your letter and your other actions, which without a doubt helped lead to Syria’s relinquishment of its chemical weapons and the US’s abandonment of its bombing plan, averted a catastrophe in the region, and brought relief and hope to many other people like me around the world. Thank you.
Thank you too for granting Mr. Snowden temporary asylum in 2013 and a three year residency this past August. For a while, I was looking forward to looking him up in the Sheremetyevo transit section, and sharing some airport pirozhki with him, but, happily for him, he had safely moved into Russia proper. He and I are kind of kindred whistleblowers, and I think we would have good things to talk about for a few minutes. If he gets this message and would like to meet while I’m in Russia it would be great and I am sure it could be easily and securely arranged.
Mr. Snowden blew the whistle on the US’s global surveillance and data collection monstrosity, and the concealment of these programs. I merely blew one of a number of whistles a generation earlier on the lies and antisocial intentions and activities of L. Ron Hubbard, the source of Scientology. For Mr. Snowden’s revelations, the US charged him with espionage, sought in various ways to apprehend him, and pressured Russia to hand him over. US officials and media smeared him, and death threats were made, apparently even by US officials.
For my telling the truth about my knowledge and experiences of Mr. Hubbard and Scientology, the Scientologists declared me an “enemy,” making me what they call in their “scripture” “fair game.” This meant that I “May be deprived of property or injured by any means by any Scientologist without any discipline of the Scientologist. May be tricked, sued or lied to or destroyed.”2 In execution of this scriptural policy, Scientologists and their agents have indeed stolen my property; physically assaulted me on multiple occasions; threatened to assassinate me; run covert operations on me; sued me six times; bankrupted me; framed me criminally right to the top of the US Federal Government; framed and compromised my attorney; obtained court orders silencing, fining and jailing me that are unlawful even in the US; and subjected me to a global defamation campaign, which the Scientologists call “black propaganda.”3
These actions against me, and much more, are documented on my web sites.4The Scientologists call their relationship with persons like me who tell the truth about this religion, its founder and practitioners, war, a “war of attrition.”5 They have waged their war on me for almost thirty-three years. Russians should be aware of what has been done to me because it could happen to any of your citizens who are lured into Scientology, have experiences or acquire knowledge similar to mine about this religion, and then speak out and tell the truth about it.
Scientologists in your country, whose directions come from the US, have already recruited Russian citizens into their war on me. They have, that I know of, disseminated lies about me to government officials, media and religious leaders; hosted and posted Russian language black propaganda online; and even attempted repeatedly to have me prosecuted criminally.6
In a letter that the Scientologists apparently mass mailed in Russia in 2001, just before my first visit, a Russian Scientologist leader wrote about trying to get persons from the US Embassy in Moscow to detain me. This provides a clue about Russian Scientologists’ relationship with the US Federal Government, and is obviously and spookily what the Americans would want to do with Mr. Snowden.
I also would like to inform you that this document, with an explanatory letter similar to this one, has already been submitted to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation, and the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation. Moreover, the information about the arrival of Armstrong in Russia has been handed to the U.S. Embassy in Russia so that the necessary measures may be taken for his detention.7
The document the Scientologist referred to is a warrant for my arrest in California. It is not, however, as she claims, for “anti-religious propaganda.” I was to be arrested for violating a court injunction8 that prohibits me from saying even one word about my Scientology-related experiences or knowledge. Since the US declares that Scientology is a religion, the injunction is as unlawful and as violative of human rights charters and the US’s own Constitution as a court order would be that prohibited a citizen from discussing his Christian experiences or his knowledge of Christianity. Such an injunction is unthinkable. People who oppose Scientology are no more anti-religious than people who oppose the religious cult ISIS are anti-religious.
The Scientologists also obtained a court judgment9 against me that created a condition in which I am penalized $50,000 per utterance for anything I say about my Scientology-related experiences or knowledge. These now have accumulated over forty-six years since I first heard of Scientology, and have necessarily proliferated because of the Scientologists’ continuing war on me, and others like me. The US Court’s ruling is that the Scientologists can say whatever they want to vilify or destroy me in any context and any country, and I cannot respond. The idea that I am to be financially ruined and jailed if I mention this religion, or participate in my own defense, or, in essence, even mention my life, is ridiculous, but also very cruel. The Scientologists and US Officials have known these orders are cruel, ridiculous and unlawful for many years, but maintain the pretense that they are rational and just, in order to fit into their black propaganda campaign, and keep my persecution working. I am mentioning these things in my letter to you, and that will be $50,000.
How the Scientologists obtained their court orders against me, and why they would even seek such unconscionable conditions, is a very long, complex story of legal and extralegal malfeasance. It is too much to relate in this letter, but can be understood through the court documents on my sites.10. The injunction does not prohibit slanderous, libelous, untrue, anti-religious or blasphemous statements as the Scientologists claim. It prohibits only the truth about my experiences and knowledge of the religion. The injunction applies anywhere in the world, and the Scientologists have sued me in the US for discussing Scientology in other countries, including Russia. The injunction also applies to anyone “acting in concert” with me; that is anyone who might in some way facilitate my discussion of my religious experiences and knowledge.
It is Thanksgiving Day in Canada, and among so much I am thankful for, I thank the Russian Orthodox Church for the courage of many of its clergy and members in acting in concert with me in reasoned defiance of this US court order. Thank you for whatever officials in your government have done to facilitate my being in Russia and being able to communicate to your citizens. I am aware that without some governmental facilitation the Scientologists and their collaborators’ smear of me as persona non grata could be accepted, and I would not even be granted a visa. Thank you for the visa.
I am aware that your Government has records on me, and it should. I discussed my experiences and knowledge with Justice Department Officials in Moscow in 2011, and I have had meetings with a number of officials during my other visits to Russia. I am also aware that the Scientologists and their collaborators would make sure that these Russian records contained their lies and black propaganda about me, in as much volume and from as many sources as possible.
The blackness of the Scientologists or their collaborators’ black propaganda machine can be experienced by all Russian readers online in the current attacks on Alexander Dvorkin. It is unconscionable. What makes Dr. Dvorkin an enemy, and a “legitimate” target for attack and pursuit, is the same as with me. He has acquired a great deal of knowledge about Scientology and more than twenty years of experiences with its members and their activities. He has told the truth about these things, where the truth should be told. He has done this despite the campaign, operated from the US, to denigrate, vilify and marginalize him and shudder him into silence. The Scientologists do not deal with their critics’ facts or reason, but attack our persons and characters. I can only guess at the hurt or threat it all causes Dr. Dvorkin, but I know the hurt the Scientologists intend: the utter destruction of a human being who, on behalf of his Church and his fellow citizens, stands up to their lies and aggression. Thanks to the Church and to your government for standing by him.
You obviously know propaganda and black propaganda when you hear or see it, and you are the target of a massive western campaign. It is in part what I recognize as black or untrue in our North American propaganda about you that made me think of writing you directly. Oddly, you and I share a top tier propagandist to the elite David Remnick, the editor of The New Yorker. He is obviously a Russia and Putin expert and has written major quasi-psychological profiles on you. With me, his magazine published an article by Lawrence Wright that parroted a few of the Scientologists’ false and defamatory statements about me.11 Making it worse, I had provided Mr. Wright and The New Yorker fact checkers the facts prior to publication. When I asked Mr. Remnick, as Editor, to correct the false statements, he passed me off to the legal department for the royal New Yorker runaround and a distressing refusal.
During this past year, I pieced together evidence that at least since the 1990’s the US Federal Government has conspired with the Scientologists for various covert purposes. Much of such a conspiracy is carried on through attorneys, of course, and only pieces of it are visible. To grant the Scientologists tax exemption, the US Government people overseeing that decision required that the Scientologists fair game the people the Scientologists had already victimized. Prior to negotiating this requirement with the Scientologists, the US had denied tax exemption in key part because of the Scientologists’ fair gaming of US citizens. This is almost too perverse to be understandable, let alone believed. The Scientologists’ war on me is central to this conspiracy, and I have assembled considerable documentation.12 The US entered into a conspiracy with the Scientologists against my rights in violation of its own laws.13
From the time the Scientologists met the US’s requirement and received their tax exemption, the US has protected the Scientologists against their victims in courts, and promoted Scientology as a religion internationally. US State Department’s Annual Report on International Religious Freedom criticizes countries that sought to curtail or even investigate Scientology, which truly is victimizing people, as again my situation shows. Their religious status, with US Government backing and US Courts’ helpful interpretations, has immunized the Scientologists to victimize people, and given the Scientologists all the tax-exempt money imaginable to do so.
The universal problem with what Scientologists are doing to each other is their intention and system to eliminate or suppress people’s consciences, and their relative success in doing so. This generates a condition of functional psychopathy in which lying is easy and hurting others can be a point of honor. Scientology leaders govern what lies are to be told and who is to be hurt in what manner. The Scientologists are limited in their actions toward their victims by fear of prosecution or reprisals, but not by their consciences. At times they have been prosecuted for criminal behavior against governments and individuals, and there have been and still can be reprisals. The Scientology v. Armstrong case shows, by the Scientologists’ own documents, the religion-wide absence of conscience.
The Scientologists advertise and sell states of “increased abilities” beyond what man has ever before attained. They have labels for these promised superhuman states like “Clear,” “Operating Thetan,” and “Cleared Operating Thetan.” What is actually attained, if anything is attained at all, is a state of functional psychopathy. In this condition, the Scientologists easily lie about their condition, and do their utmost to con others into joining them in their condition, and to keep each other in that condition. As could be said about every born psychopath as well, Scientologists become total hypocrites. If a person retains enough conscience to speak up and say he did not attain some elevated state, or, in some other way, that Scientology does not work as promised, the organized Scientologists will turn on him as an enemy.
The European Court of Human Rights’ ruling this month that the Scientologists be permitted to register as a legal entity in St. Petersburg is ironic because it is based on a right to freedom of conscience from Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights.14. The Scientologists actually seek the right to destroy the conscience. By not granting the Scientologists the legal ability to operate, the Russian authorities were actually defending citizens’ right to their own consciences and the freedom to be guided by them. The Scientologists war on me in and outside the legal arena is the best-documented demonstration of their human rights hypocrisy and their actual group intention to crush basic human rights, and most ironically freedom of religion. The Scientologists also hire non-Scientology professionals who are conscienceless enough to assist them in their hypocrisies and human rights abuses.
Earlier this year, President Obama said publicly, “Freedom of religion across the world is important to national security and is a central tenet of US diplomacy.” This has actually been the US’s position for many years, and it passed its “International Religious Freedom Act” in 1998, pursuant to which the State Department makes its annual reports on other nations’ religious freedoms.15 Since religious freedom is a national security issue in the US, it must also be a national security issue in other countries. Russia’s national security is therefore implicated in the ECHR decision, and certainly in the religious freedom to compromise consciences that is practiced and enjoyed by the US-directed Scientologists in your country.
Scientology was spawned and allowed to grow during the Cold War with the knowledge of US Intelligence. At the same time, more visible parts of government, notably the Internal Revenue Service and Department of Justice, opposed the organization in accordance with US Law. In 1977 the FBI raided the Scientologists’ own intelligence bureaus in Los Angeles and Washington, DC, resulting in the conviction and imprisonment of eleven Scientologists for crimes against the government. With no moral reason or legal necessity, and despite its knowledge of criminal and antisocial behavior toward government and citizens, the US ceased its opposition to the Scientologists. The US made them allies, and defends and uses them for hegemonic purposes.
Russia is now being pressured, by the Scientologists and by their governmental and NGO allies, to likewise accept them rather than oppose them. The US found itself morally incapable of maintaining its stand against the Scientologists. The US accepted the Scientologists to the knowing prejudice of their victims, the ones the US knew about then, and the future victims the US knew they would make. As far as I know, your government has been able to maintain a moral position relative to the Scientologists that is not to the detriment of their citizen victims.
Russia is poised at this time in its history with the Scientologists to make some effective observations and decisions concerning their philosophy, religion, system, societal value and danger. Your decisions can help US citizens as well as Russian citizens; indeed you can help everyone, including the Scientologists. Many good people from every country recognize that there are cultic groups that are dangers to their countries and fellow citizens. The most important defense and corrective action is education. Confrontation must also take place, and is already taking place, in the legal arena. I offer my experiences and knowledge to you and your country’s educators and lawmakers, and anyone else they might help. And I ask for the Lord’s blessings on whatever we might do together, His equal creations.
With sincere respect,
- See http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/12/opinion/putin-plea-for-caution-from-russia-on-syria.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0. ↩
- See http://www.gerryarmstrong.org/50grand/cult/sp/pl-1967-10-18-penalties-for-lower-conds.html ↩
- See http://www.gerryarmstrong.org/50grand/cult/index.html ↩
- See http://www.gerryarmstrong.org/; http://gerryarmstrong.ca/; http://www.suppressiveperson.org/; http://armstrong-op.gerryarmstrong.ca/ ↩
- See Battle Tactics ↩
- See http://www.gerryarmstrong.org/50grand/cult/scientology-da-docs.html#russiada ↩
- See http://www.gerryarmstrong.org/50grand/cult/osa-ltr-fsb-2001-04-20a.pdf ↩
- See http://www.gerryarmstrong.org/50k/legal/a4/2623.php ↩
- See http://www.gerryarmstrong.org/50k/legal/a4/2692.php ↩
- http://www.gerryarmstrong.org/archives/category/legal ↩
- See http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2011/02/14/the-apostate-3 ↩
- See http://armstrong-op.gerryarmstrong.ca/ ↩
- See http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/241; http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/242 ↩
- See http://armstrong-op.gerryarmstrong.ca/op/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/CASE-OF-CHURCH-OF-SCIENTOLOGY-OF-ST-PETERSBURG-AND-OTHERS-v.-RUSSIA.pdf ↩
- See http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/22/6401 ↩