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Scientology secrets in government docs: Did the feds have a chance to stop ‘Snow White’?

John_McMaster2Wow, it’s been fun to hang out at the Sundance Film Festival and be a part of the Going Clear screenings. We’re certain there will be plenty more to come about the movie and Scientology’s hamfisted attempts to smear it.

But for now we need to get back to the regular work of this website, reporting on all aspects of Scientology with the help of our great tipsters. We have some really big stories coming that we can’t wait to land. And we’re getting a back up on all the stuff we’ve been sent by our sources.

Today, we’d like to get back to those really fascinating revelations about Scientology’s early days which were dug up recently in a Freedom of Information Act request by a researcher who is a friend to the Underground Bunker and a regular presence at

Last time, we told you that the files released by the Food and Drug Administration included a 1970 interview with Scientology’s first “Clear,” John McMaster.

For several years in the 1960s, the South African McMaster became L. Ron Hubbard’s ambassador to the world, and was a charming speaker who worked diligently to counter Scientology’s rotten reputation. But then he too became disillusioned and left the organization in 1969.

The next year, he was interviewed in Los Angeles by FDA inspectors who were researching Hubbard for the ongoing litigation with the church after the FDA had raided Scientology’s DC “org” on January 4, 1963. McMaster detailed his background, and then told shocking tales of people, including children, being thrown overboard from the deck of the ship Apollo while it was docked in port.


Our favorite revelation from that 1970 interview with McMaster was his assertion that Hubbard had told him he planned on being reincarnated as his own grandson in order to continue his control over Scientology.

A year later, in September 1971, a more worried-sounding McMaster contacted one of the FDA inspectors he’d talked to earlier with an appeal for help. He was being Fair Gamed…

At 1:00 PM on 9/24/71, I returned Mr. McMaster’s telephone call to me of 9/23/71. Mr. McMaster said that his life had been threatened by a special mission to Los Angeles called “Class 12 Auditors” sent by L. Ron Hubbard to destroy him. He said he had been warned two days ago by a friend who is still in Scientology. He said the “Class 12 Auditors” came the same night with their “black magic” which consisted of, among other things, putting blood and candles in his mailbox, and making a lot of noise outside the house. Mr. McMaster said they had made threatening phone calls to him yesterday, and they warned him that he would be dead in 4 days time. He indicated that the sheriff’s people from Laguna Beach have been most cooperative having come around to his house twice yesterday at his request and having done some patrolling around the area to protect him.

And what really caught our eye was this next allegation made by McMaster…

Mr. McMaster said that L. Ron Hubbard has an intelligence division that would “shock you.” He said they get information against people they are after by rifling their cabinets. They do this in various ways. They get attractive young women to obtain jobs as stenographers with people they want to persecute, and these girls rifle the filing cabinets to get information for the Hubbard intelligence people.

Well, we know exactly what McMaster is referring to there. He’s talking about Scientology’s “Guardian’s Office.”

Hubbard established the GO in 1966 and it soon became his very sophisticated legal and intelligence wing, with a covert operations corps known as “B-I” or “branch one” of the GO’s “Information Bureau.” The GO’s B-I specialized in getting moles into key government agencies or legal offices and, as McMaster said, rifling cabinets for the illegal swiping of information.

The rest of the world didn’t find out about that however, until the FBI raided Scientology’s Los Angeles and DC locations on July 8, 1977, and then the reasons why were revealed the next year.

But here, in 1971, McMaster was trying to tell a federal agency about the GO. If he’d been taken seriously, could Scientology’s “Snow White Program” — which had the GO infiltrating the IRS and Justice Department after 1973 — have been stopped before it even began?

It’s a tantalizing thought. However, McMaster did himself no favors in this 1971 interview. He comes off in the notes of FDA inspector Bud Loftis as slightly unhinged.

I advised Mr. McMaster that he did the right think in getting in touch with the local police officials when his life was threatened. I suggested that if he believes the Scientologists have some sort of international or interstate intelligence group that is destroying people that he tell his story to the FBI. I explained the limitations of the FD&C Act and the FDA with regard to police matters…There is probably truth in Mr. McMaster’s statement that he has been threatened by the Scientologists (other people have told us they were threatened), but this is a police matter not properly a matter that can be handled by FDA.

Did McMaster go to the FBI? If he did, the FBI didn’t take seriously the activities of the GO’s B-I until one of its key operatives, Michael Meisner, made a break for freedom in 1977 and started spilling his guts.

There’s plenty more in the notes of this conversation between Loftis and McMaster, and we look forward to your thoughts about the many details…

FDA 1971 interview of John Mcmaster


Access Hollywood hits us up about ‘Going Clear’

And they tell us this is only the first of a two-parter…



Bonus photos from our tipsters

David Duggan, son of Bob and Trish Duggan, celebrates running into porn king Ron Jeremy…


Vonni Ribisi is at Sundance, but somehow missed the first two showings of Going Clear


Scientologists are using social media more than ever. Drop us a line if you spot them posting images to Instagram or Facebook!


‘Going Clear’ clips released by HBO

These give you just a taste of what the film is like….



Special message about Sundance for subscribers

We’ve asked our webmaster and attorney, Scott Pilutik, to send out a special message about our Sundance experience to our subscribers as another thanks for the support. Your donations helped us defray the costs of our great trip, and we wanted to share some behind-the-scenes details with you. Thank you!


Posted by Tony Ortega on January 28, 2015 at 07:00

E-mail your tips and story ideas to or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. Here at the Bunker we try to have a post up every morning at 7 AM Eastern (Noon GMT), and on some days we post an afternoon story at around 2 PM. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of LA attorney and former church member Vance Woodward

UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists

GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice

SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer
The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ


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