Alexander Filippov: Gerry Armstrong’s Truth About Scientology

Translation of a Russian article posted on May 20, 2011 on the Russian Orthodox website

Gerry Armstrong’s Truth about Scientology
by Alexander Filippov

May 20, 2011

Gerry Armstrong, former personal secretary to L. Ron Hubbard, founder of the Church of Scientology, spoke on May 18 at St. Tikhon’s Orthodox University.  The meeting was attended by clergy, professors, university staff and many guests.

The university lecture room was completely filled with people and those for whom there weren’t enough seats stood in the aisle.  The meeting lasted over two hours and translation was provided by Alexander Dvorkin, a scholar at St. Tikhon’s Orthodox University who specializes in nontraditional religious movements and sects.

The Scientology sect has spread throughout the world and the organization collects information about its members which it uses to totally control all aspects of their lives, leaving them no possibility of privacy.

Mr. Armstrong’s testimony and analysis are very important for gaining a true understanding of the Scientology organization, its development, its doctrine, its crimes, the scale of its expansion and the ways to combat it because, having been secretary to Hubbard for many years, he possesses full and accurate information.

Gerry Armstrong spoke about the doctrine and the history of the “Church of Scientology”, one of the most dangerous cults in the world today, about the threat the sect poses for private individuals and for society as a whole, and about his work in this organization, his personal impressions of his encounters with Hubbard, the contents of Hubbard’s personal documents, his escape from the totalitarian organization, and the fight that ensued.

Biography of Mr. Armstrong, former personal secretary to L. Ron Hubbard

“I got into the Scientology cult in 1969 and, in 1971, I joined the “Sea Organization” (which runs the sect around the world).  I was sent to the ship which Hubbard was on and there I became a dishwasher, then a storesman, and the ship’s driver for a little car we had on board.  In 1972, I became the legal officer.  Then I became responsible for public relations and for the organization’s intelligence department.

“But sometime later I was locked up in a secret prison and ‘sentenced’ to confinement in the ‘Rehabilitation Project Force’ (RPF), which is like a reeducation camp (the very existence of the RPF should be grounds for citizens of all countries to recognize the threat the cult poses to human rights).  When the punishment was over, I was again working with Hubbard”, said Armstrong.

The cult’s reeducation camps

Hubbard created Scientology’s reeducation camps in 1974.  People could be sent there if he thought they weren’t working hard enough, if someone looked the wrong way or laughed at him, or for a simple movement of the needle on an electropsychometer (E-meter).  The electro-psychometer was “invented” by Hubbard and is a primitive lie detector; it has a display with a needle and two tin can electrodes through which a current passes.

Persons subjected to punishment were not allowed to speak, except to answer questions.  They wore a special black outfit.   For any “crime”, they had to run up and down stairs or perform other physical punishment.  They were fed leftovers from the plates of Sea Organization members.  The purpose of the camp was to break the will of the inmate.  A person who objected to anything during the punishment would be kept under surveillance 24 hours a day.  Victims were generally forbidden to speak and the duration of confinement was not specified at all.

“When Hubbard thought I was joking about how he made films, I was again sent to the RPF.  This time I spent 8 months there.  Then I started working at the Scientology headquarters in California.”

During searches, U.S. police found documents that resulted in jail sentences for certain Scientologists, so when it became known in 1979 that a new search was imminent, Armstrong was ordered to destroy all of L. Ron Hubbard’s documents.

At that time, all members of the sect were afraid the FBI would search the headquarters.  Hubbard gave orders to destroy all personal documents that incriminated him.  Armstrong and his subordinates faithfully searched for documents and destroyed them, until one of his juniors found about 20 boxes of various documents relating to Hubbard’s youth, including personal diaries.  Armstrong said the documents were very valuable and should not be destroyed.  He petitioned Hubbard to authorize the preparation of a new biography.

Ironically, Hubbard approved the petition, and Mr. Armstrong spent two years collecting documents.  During this work, Armstrong said, “I actually deprogrammed myself, realizing that the leader’s every word was a lie.”  It turned out that he was not a hero, he spent the entire war on the home front, evading military service, he was not a nuclear physicist, he was not injured and he did not receive 27 medals for bravery.

L. Ron Hubbard

The truth about L. Ron Hubbard

Gerry Armstrong described his impressions about working with L. Ron Hubbard and the reasons for which he decided to escape from the sect. “When I realized that Hubbard was a pathological liar,” said Armstrong, “Scientology fell apart for me.””The diaries I had with me after escaping and which I used in the courts against the cult show the connection between Hubbard and occultism.  There were also documents called ‘affirmations’ that Hubbard used to program himself with a certain emotional momentum, for example, by reciting the phrase: ‘All people are my slaves.’

“The diaries also document his connection with Parsons and describe his sexual perversions.  In addition, Hubbard was a drug addict and he pumped himself up with testosterone, which further increased his aggressiveness.  All this is laid out in the documents.  He gave the impression of a man strung out on hormones,” confided Armstrong.

According to Armstrong, Hubbard was a narcissist and a sociopath: “He certainly had a certain charm, when he wanted to, but he constantly kept everyone under pressure and, if something wasn’t to his liking, he would throw a terrible tantrum.  Hubbard was ruthless with anyone who said anything contrary to his opinion.  He was a pathological liar on a gargantuan scale, a classic sociopath.”

What influenced Hubbard more: delusions or Satanism?  In response to this question, Armstrong said that Hubbard wrote a lot of fiction; he was not connected with the Masons.  The real source of Scientology is a direct relationship with occultism and Satanism, which he picked up from Parsons, a devotee of European Satanist Aleister Crowley.

From the sect to Christianity

Having decided to act against the terrifying Scientology machine, Armstrong realized that all the anger of this aggressive organization would be unleashed against him.  “Because I knew too much, I would have been locked up again and I would not have come out alive.  I thought of escaping and I managed to escape,” said Mr. Armstrong.

As expected, the organization began its fight against the escapee.  The first lawsuit was initiated in 1984 and, since then, the organization has considered Gerry Armstrong its number one enemy. There have been six attempts on his life in the U.S. and in Germany.  A campaign of “black PR” is being waged against him on the internet.

Armstrong said that, after he left the sect, he became a Christian and found the truth: “God is truth. I thank God for this experience, which allowed me to appreciate the value of freedom.  My task is to do my utmost so that other people do not lose this freedom.”

Mr. Armstrong described how the cult prosecuted him in America.  A U.S. court handed down an absurd decision that stipulates Mr. Armstrong has no right to even utter the word “Scientology”, and that whenever he pronounces the word “Scientology”, he has to pay a fifty thousand dollar fine.  “So our meeting today is very valuable,” joked Armstrong.  This decision also applies to individuals and legal entities “who act in concert with Mr. Armstrong”, for example, said Armstrong: St. Tikhon’s Orthodox University, which invited him to Russia, the St. Irenaeus of Lyon Center and the entire Russian Orthodox Church.  While he is not allowed to speak, the cult is allowed to say whatever it wishes about Mr. Armstrong.

Father Georgiy Orekhanov asked how American democracy could produce such a wild court decision.

Father Georgiy Orekhanov

The guest speaker replied: “Due to corruption and pressure on the court, with the help of embarrassing material gathered by the cult’s intelligence agents.”

How is Scientology a threat to individuals and to the world?

Speaking about the dangers of Scientology, Armstrong said that Scientology destroys the morals and the psyche of an individual, replacing human principles by Hubbard’s system of values.  It destroys families and can ruin businesses.  It is a threat to the societies and to the countries in which it operates.  The cult’s methods violate laws and human rights at all levels: from total espionage to direct crimes such as kidnapping people, holding them in Scientology prisons, and even murder.

“Scientology continues to be incredibly dangerous, but we – those who fight the cult – are not going away.  However, it would be wrong to think that our victory is near.  They have not yet won, but they haven’t lost,” warned Armstrong.

The organization is in a state of war with the entire world: “The first thing a new Scientologist learns is that Scientology is at war.”

One of the elements of Scientology doctrine is the policy concerning “suppressive persons” – people who are supposedly to blame for all the troubles on earth.  Scientologists are supposed to subject them to “Fair Game”, whereby cult members must strive to inflict maximum damage to “suppressive persons”, to seize their property and, if necessary, to kill them.  The list of people that Scientologists believe are the cause of all misfortunes includes, for example, critics of Scientology such as Gerry Armstrong and Alexander Dvorkin.

Answering a question from the correspondent about how Scientology obtained its tax exemption from the U.S. government, Armstrong cited four factors.

First factor. Scientologists filed more than two thousand lawsuits against the U.S. government.  For each of these claims, the U.S. Department of Justice had to appoint a lawyer.  These lawsuits were costing the government a great deal of money.  When tax-exempt status was granted, Scientology withdrew the lawsuits.

Second factor. Scientologists researched the biographies of all high officials of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), they hired former IRS personnel and they paid for any information that could undermine the IRS, hiring private investigators to follow the officials.  “I have no information concerning exactly what they learned about the officials, but they probably found compromising evidence.”

Third factor. In Armstrong’s opinion, the decision was influenced by America’s intelligence agencies (FBI and CIA), who considered that the information the sect could provide the government might be useful.  This would not be a historical first.  It is possible for the government to make agreements with dictators and even with socially dangerous organizations.

Fourth factor. On paper, the decision was made by the director of the IRS.  However, it is known that then U.S. President Bill Clinton had friendly relations with the cult and that his Secretary of State Madeleine Albright was actively defending its interests.  The decision to cooperate with the Scientology cult was so important that it would be absolutely unbelievable to assume that the President, the Secretary of State, and the heads of the intelligence agencies did not know about it.  We must assume that they knew about it and agreed with it.

Scientologists hire experts in the field of internet technologies and they use the personal data that trusting account holders share in social networks such as Facebook or “I don’t think they operate their own social networks, but they use all the available ones.”

In 2010, a court handed down a ruling which said that Scientologists have the right to forcibly hold people and, if they escape, to pursue and capture them.  The basis for this decision is that this “is a matter of religious doctrine”.

“It is clear why Scientology chooses to be called a religion.  In America, this allows it to bully people and violate human rights, if it is written in religious scripture,” explained Armstrong. “I will also speak about this with the Ministry of Justice of Russia,” said Gerry Armstrong, elaborating on the plans for his visit to Russia.

Russia and Scientology – Who will win?

Despite all the power of this totalitarian sect, the Scientology “church” can be defeated.  Gerry Armstrong sees the proof of this in what he has witnessed during his lifetime: “More and more people today know the truth about this organization.”  Armstrong came to Russia to help prevent the spread of Scientology in our country.

Link to a complete audio recording of Gerry Armstrong’s May 18, 2011 conference at St. Tikhon’s Orthodox University:
Duration: 2 hours 11 min. 57 sec.