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Chris Owen and Jon Atack remember Jane Kember, Scientology’s ultimate spymaster

On Friday, we reported on the death of Scientology’s former “Guardian,” Jane Kember, at 85. We had learned about her passing the day before, and scrambled to put together a basic outline of what an important figure she is in Scientology. Since then, we’ve heard from two of the very best researchers and historians of Scientology, Chris Owen and Jon Atack. They were each good enough to send us remarkable pieces about Kember, and we’re happy to publish them both here today. Prepare for some amazing, unvarnished truth about this organization and its legendary spymaster. First, a detailed overview of Kember’s involvement in Scientology from Chris Owen, author of “Ron The War Hero.”

The death last week of Jane Kember marks the final passing of the triumvirate who ruled Scientology from 1966 to 1981 – L. Ron Hubbard, his wife Mary Sue, and Kember. She served the Hubbards with unbridled fanaticism, breaking the law and ruining lives without hesitation when she deemed it necessary to protect Scientology and its founding couple.

As Tony has written, those who worked for her “were clearly terrified of her.” Former Sea Org member Hana Whitfield, who met Kember in the late 1960s, found her a frightening figure. She came across as an imposing presence, with “an impassive face above a huge body,” a deep, loud voice and an authoritative manner.

Another former Scientologist, who knew Kember in the late 1970s, describes her as “a warrior, highly charismatic and intelligent [who] seemed (to me) to be both fearless and extremely confident.” She was certainly capable of turning on the charm and networking effectively, playing a significant – though necessarily hidden – role in British politics in the late 1970s.


Born in 1937 to a British settler family living in the then Kenya Colony, her teenage years were overshadowed by the violence of the Mau Mau rebellion of the 1950s. Her subordinates later claimed that she had shot an intruder in her family home at the age of 16. Whatever the truth of that story, it certainly reflected her later determination to use any means necessary to protect that which she considered precious to her.

Kember moved to South Africa in the early 1960s to study Scientology there. She credited Scientology with enabling her to overcome a medical problem that had prevented her having children, and was unswervingly loyal to Hubbard and Scientology thereafter. Both of her twin boys eventually became Scientologists themselves.

She rose rapidly within the South African Scientology organisation, reaching the position of Executive Secretary of the Johannesburg org by the mid-1960s. At the time, Scientology faced intense pressure from the South African National Council for Mental Health (SANCMH). Kember successfully fought it off and managed to avoid a government intervention against Scientology by pursuing a no-holds-barred campaign against the local press and psychiatric critics.

Kember’s performance in South Africa evidently impressed the Hubbards. They hand-picked her to help Mary Sue lead the newly-established Guardian’s Office (GO), created on 1 March 1966, from its worldwide headquarters at Saint Hill Manor Near East Grinstead in England. She was promoted to the role of Guardian Worldwide in January 1969. While Mary Sue directed the overall strategy of the GO as its Controller, Kember oversaw its day-to-day work. The two women were effectively the second and third most senior people in charge of Scientology.

Kember governed the GO with iron determination, ruthlessly deploying the church’s wealth and reach to crush any threats to Scientology and the Hubbards. Thousands of operatives and agents worked worldwide to further the GO’s goals. The GO had much the same relationship to Scientology as the KGB had to the Soviet Communist Party; it was the ‘sword and shield’ of Scientology.

She directed campaigns against an array of enemies, including authors, journalists, ex-Scientologists, psychiatrists and consumer groups. Kember bought fully into L. Ron Hubbard’s conspiratorial worldview that any criticism of Scientology was illegitimate and driven by a cabal of hidden enemies. It was a worldview that endorsed the use of blatantly illegal methods to achieve its goals.

In mid-1974, for instance, she ordered the US GO to explain why it had failed to suppress criticism of Scientology by the St Louis Better Business Bureau and three local newspapers. Her subordinates advised her to set up operations to infiltrate the newspapers and local mental health groups to steal their files on Scientology, to acquire derogatory information against key individuals, with the aim of getting them sacked from their jobs, and to prepare evidence for libel suits to deter the BBB.

She also directed Scientology’s notoriously ruthless litigation strategy during the 1970s, which – even decades later – still deters some media organisations from writing about the church. In a June 1971 memorandum, Kember advised the GO’s legal section to be “aggressive, fast, persistent and untiring.” She exploited the UK’s punitive libel laws, importing into the UK books critical of Scientology published in other countries so that she could have the authors sued in English courts. At one point in 1968, the GO’s legal section reportedly had 64 libel lawsuits ongoing simultaneously, mostly against British newspapers.

Kember wrote that in the United States, “where Freedom of Speech includes freedom to malign with impunity, except for old ladies and crippled men, much more imagination is required.” She instructed the GO to force its targets to settle for purely financial reasons, driving up their costs by deluging them with legal actions. “The message,” she wrote, “is that in combating entheta articles and books, legal should be agressive [sic], fast, persistent and untiring. Every skirmish should be treated like a battle.”

Kember termed journalists “degraded beings” and ordered that they be targeted systematically if they wrote about Scientology. In December 1969, for instance, she personally ordered that the Australian Sunday Times and two of its employees were to be targeted. Many other journalists and writers around the world were targeted on Kember’s direct orders, most notoriously Paulette Cooper, who suffered an extraordinarily intense campaign of harassment for years.

Under Kember’s direction, the GO focused particularly on the World Federation of Mental Health (WFMH), which Hubbard considered without evidence to be the centre of a global anti-Scientology conspiracy. A March 1974 order from Kember instructed GO operatives in the US to burgle the WFMH secretariat in Jamaica. “I would like a mission sent to finish off the files and make quite sure we have cleared them out. … What I am after is any files on Scn [Scientology], Dn [Dianetics], LRH [Hubbard] etc, that the WFMH has.” Other psychiatric organisations and individual psychiatrists in Europe, the US and Canada were burgled and harassed by GO agents working for Kember.

Kember was also responsible for ordering one of the GO’s most ambitious plots against the US government. In Guardian Program Order 1238, she ordered the GO to “obtain the information necessary to take over the control of NIMH [the National Institute of Mental Health] while at the same time establishing the lines and resources to be used in taking over NIMH.”

Politicians who opposed Scientology were also targeted. Kember personally ordered covert operations against Gabe Cazares, the Mayor of Clearwater, Florida, after he criticised Scientology’s covert attempts to take over the city. In the “Mayor Cazares Handling Project” written in June 1976, she ordered the GO to ”remove Cazares from any position from which he can fight the expansion of Scientology or United Churches in the Base area” and to “force Cazares out of office as mayor”.

Kember’s role in Scientology was not just limited to harassment and illegality; she was also a political operator of some skill. After the UK government banned the immigration of foreign Scientologists in 1968, she oversaw a lengthy and patient campaign to discredit the ban and persuade the government to change its mind. Along with her very capable head of public relations, David Gaiman (fantasy/sci fi writer Neil Gaiman’s father), she was able to build a coalition of over 100 MPs who publicly opposed the ban. A February 1976 memorandum, possibly written by Kember, ordered the UK GO to use PR to “bring maximum embarrassment” against the government in an effort to overturn the ban.


The GO established a close relationship with several British MPs, including Sigmund Freud’s son Clement – an irony that Kember doubtless savoured, given Hubbard’s hatred of the elder Freud. In a bid to get access to UK government files on Scientology, the GO covertly directed a campaign for a Freedom of Information bill. It was literally written by Scientology and was piloted through Parliament by two GO staff. The GO even managed to get a Scientologist employed as an MP’s secretary, likely giving it access to parliamentary resources and MPs of all parties. However, the effort collapsed when the Times newspaper exposed the church’s role in the FOI Bill.

It was Kember’s willingness to break the law on Scientology’s behalf that eventually brought her – and the Hubbards – down. The GO had been targeting its enemies for years using tactics such as burglary, theft and infiltration, before L. Ron Hubbard massively escalated the scale of its operations in April 1973. He launched the Snow White Program – an effort to scrub government files worldwide of any negative references to Scientology – with Kember in charge of its implementation.

Snow White involved overt illegality from the start, despite the church later claiming it had gone off track at a late stage due to the excesses of a handful of staff. In June–July 1973, only a few weeks after Hubbard issued the Snow White program orders, Kember summoned Deputy Guardian Canada Bryan Levman to Saint Hill Manor to receive a confidential verbal briefing. (She almost certainly also personally briefed the Deputy Guardians of other Scientology organisations.) He later testified that he had been shown a secret directive from Hubbard himself mandating the use of “rip-offs” (burglaries) and agents. Kember instructed him to target several dozen individuals and government agencies in Canada whom Scientology saw as threats.

Kember also explicitly acknowledged in writing that the GO had broken the law in targeting Interpol, which Hubbard believed was controlled by Nazi remnants. In a hand-written memo sent in November 1973, she wrote that the GO had obtained “some documents, illegally obtained, that indicate Interpol Washington was in touch with Interpol Paris, London, Melbourne, Ottawa and Lomba [sic] Malawi.”

In October 1974, Kember set out an ambitious plan to infiltrate United States Internal Revenue Service offices, steal files on Scientology and Hubbard and develop a cover story to disguise how the information was obtained. She ordered that when the relevant areas of the IRS had been identified, “infiltrate and get the files.” The objective was to steal documents and disguise their sources. Her orders included the instruction to create “suitable cover … for the way the data was obtained.”

Kember ordered the GO to “immediately get an agent into DC IRS to obtain files on LRH, Scientology, etc. in the Chief Council’s [sic] office, the Special Services staff, the intelligence division, Audit Division, and any other areas.” The intelligence bureau was to obtain “every single false report in every single IRS file. Once the data has been revealed, the lies can be corrected, the SPs [Suppressive Persons] isolated and handled, further PR and legal actions initiated and the IRS attack turned off.”

The plan also called for the GO to “infiltrate IRS London office,” which was located in the US Embassy in London, “and obtain all documents.” The office was subsequently reported to have been “handled” successfully, presumably indicating that an operative managed to infiltrate the embassy without being detected.

The attack on the IRS was intended not just to gather intelligence but to discredit the agency, in what amounted to an act of information warfare. In April 1975, a GO official devised a plan called Project Horn to strategically leak documents stolen from the agency. Kember loved the scheme: “This is a really bright idea,” she wrote in a hand-written note. “Very well done.”

Project Horn apparently did not go ahead, but the related Operation Beetle Cleanup – to use agents to steal files from IRS headquarters in Washington DC – was approved all the way up to Kember. She also approved an extensive harassment campaign against Assistant US Attorney Nathan Dodell, who had represented the government in a number of cases involving Scientology. GO operatives repeatedly burgled his Washington, DC office and stole reams of documents. Kember was delighted with this approach, telexing Deputy Guardian US Henning Heldt: “I consider that yr actions are excellent and that you are holding the line beautifully. V[ery] W[ell] D[one] and let me know how it goes.”

The campaign against the IRS in Washington, DC proved enormously successful. Vast numbers of stolen IRS files were taken to the GO’s US headquarters in Los Angeles for analysis, with highlights being sent to Kember and Mary Sue Hubbard in the UK. Kember was at the very heart of the conspiracy. Because of their extreme sensitivity, the documents were very closely held; only twelve individuals in the GO, including Kember and Mary Sue Hubbard, were on the distribution list.

Kember noted her delight with the results of the burglaries against the IRS in a handwritten letter sent to US GO official Dick Weigand: “Dear Dick, This is very well done indeed. Thank you for your excellent compliance. Much love, Jane.”

However, things began to fall apart in July 1976 when packs of GO documents being couriered from London to Los Angeles were intercepted by the US government during a routine customs inspection. Their contents were so incriminating that customs agents considered them seditious. “Can we steal the packs back?” Kember asked the day after the seizure. “This would be preferable to letting them fall into enemy hand. [sic] Also I would rather we were investigated for theft than for subversion.” The GO mounted a burglary operation on Kember’s orders but was only partly successful.

The “dreadful doc business,” as one GO staff member called it, was very badly timed: two GO operatives, Gerald Wolfe and Michael Meisner, had recently been caught by the FBI burgling the IRS headquarters building in Washington, DC. Kember was concerned that the Los Angeles documents would be linked to Meisner and Wolfe’s activities. She instructed that nothing was to be said or done that might lead to a broader investigation of Scientology: “Our biggest success elsewhere in these circumstances,” she wrote, “is to have the party concerned say nothing more than what they have been charged with. That way there have been no further complications.”

Unfortunately for Kember and her colleagues, there were indeed complications. Meisner was subsequently held prisoner for months on Mary Sue Hubbard’s orders to ensure that he wouldn’t talk to the FBI, which had indicted him, but he escaped and turned himself in. His confession exposed the GO’s numerous crimes and led to the indictment of Kember and 10 of her colleagues. Nine of the defendants eventually agreed to not contest a stipulation of evidence by the government, without actually admitting guilt.


Kember and her deputy Mo Budlong were the only GO defendants who went to trial after being extradited from the UK. They argued that they had not known anything about Meisner’s activities in Washington because they had been preoccupied with other church projects, such as “overseeing installation of a new sewer system” at Saint Hill Manor. The jury did not find this convincing and convicted the pair after a five-week trial.

Kember only finally expressed contrition as she faced sentencing on 20 December 1980, when she told the court that she would “do everything in my power to ensure that nothing illegal is ever done again … I am sincerely sorry for my part in it.” She claimed that she had not known about the burglaries and “did not order burglaries but I should have realised that the staff would have interpreted things this way.” (Her own memos show this to have been completely untrue.) She asked to be allowed to undertake probation or community service, involving working for the Sunshine Home for Blind Children in East Grinstead. However, the court sentenced her and Budlong to two to six years’ imprisonment.

In 1981, while they were waiting for their appeals to be exhausted, Kember and Mary Sue Hubbard were both purged from their positions in the church. They were the targets of what amounted to an internal coup by David Miscavige, one of L. Ron Hubbard’s personal ‘Messengers.’ Kember in particular was effectively scapegoated, with Hubbard’s approval, while the GO itself was abolished and its functions taken over by a new Office of Special Affairs.

The church’s newly appointed Executive Director International, Bill Franks, carried out an evaluation of the GO’s use of Scientology ‘technology.’ He found that “Jane Kember had taken Scientology and turned it 180 degrees around and we had completely black Scientology. There were two Scientologies. LRH Scientology and Scientology per Jane Kember’s interpretations.” This was, of course, a convenient fiction: Hubbard had been fully aware and approving of what Kember was doing.

Miscavige established and chaired a Criminal Handling Unit to deal with the GO ‘crims.’ In August 1981, a five-person panel sat as a ‘committee of evidence’ – a Scientology disciplinary tribunal – to pass judgement on Kember, Gaiman, and other senior GO staff, excluding Mary Sue. The outcome was never in doubt; all were found guilty and were removed from post and stripped of most of their Scientology certificates. The following month, it was publicly announced that Kember had been replaced by the head of Scientology’s South African branch and that the GO had been stripped of its autonomy.

Kember, who had once been so powerful, found herself being treated as an outcast. She was studiously ignored by other Scientologists in their Los Angeles complex while on bail during her trial and appeals. Her fall had been dramatic: for a decade and a half she had been the third most important person in Scientology, wielding great power and feared by many. Now her achievements were dismissed and her mistakes were “relentlessly pursued,” as she later put it. She was subjected to repeated interrogations by Messengers demanding to know what her “overts” – hidden sins – against the government were. Worse still, one of her teenage sons – who was also in Scientology – was being “constantly hit” merely for being her offspring.

By the end of 1982, Kember had exhausted her appeals, but she still remained confident that Hubbard would somehow rescue her. Even as she was being driven to prison in California by her friend Virginia Downsborough, she “still thought that Ron was going to surface and fix everything. All she had done was what he had told her to and she couldn’t believe that he would betray her. It was incredible.” As Federal Inmate #3889U-066, she shared cells with thieves, drug dealers and murderers. It was an “awful place,” she wrote, and she missed England “with physical pain at times.” Kember pursued every possible avenue to obtain parole and leave behind her “dreadful existence” in jail.

She kept in touch with events in the church and occasionally received visits from church officials who needed her help with ongoing legal cases. She was particularly indignant at the way that the new management had treated her ex-GO colleagues, particularly David Gaiman, who had been a good friend. Letters from friends brought her news from the world of Scientology, which was still embroiled in crisis at the time.

Kember remained steadfastly loyal to Scientology and Hubbard, despite the way she had been treated. She made one more brief return to the limelight in 1992 when she testified for the church in a trial of Canadian former GO staff for a series of crimes they had committed in the 1970s. She testified that she had authorised the illegal activities that were carried out by the Guardian’s Office Toronto. She claimed that her activities had not been authorised by Hubbard, abused church doctrine and constituted a fraud on the church – all of which was almost certainly untrue. The jury certainly didn’t believe it and found the defendants and the church itself guilty.

After her release from prison Kember returned to East Grinstead, where she lived until her recent death. She was never again allowed to return to church management but studied Scientology and continued to undertake auditing. While in prison, and doubtless afterwards, she sought to find answers for how she had ended up behind bars. Scientologists believe that anything bad that happens to them is their fault and has been ‘pulled in’ on themselves through their unacknowledged ‘overts’ or sins.

Kember wrote that while she was in prison, she tried persistently to understand her situation and reviewed her overts until she was “blue in the face,” but failed to reach a successful ‘cognition.’ It is unclear whether she ever acknowledged or expressed regret for the harm she had caused to so many people.

— Chris Owen



Jon Atack is the author of one of the greatest histories of Scientology ever written, 1990’s “A Piece of Blue Sky,” which is now out in a new edition. Here’s what he sent us.

News at the Underground Bunker of Jane Kember’s death sparked some reflections about Ron Hubbard’s attitude to women.

Bearing in mind that all Hubbard issues are considered sacred scripture, no matter how contradictory, this statement from 1951’s Science of Survival remains valid:

A society which looks down upon this mission, and in which women are taught anything but the management of a family, the care of men, and the creation of the future generation, is a society which is on its way out. The historian can peg the point where a society begins its sharpest decline at the instant when women begin to take part, on an equal footing with men, in political and business affairs; since this means that the men are decadent and women are no longer women.

By the time of Jane Kember’s involvement, however, Hubbard’s views had evolved.

In Ron’s Journal No.8, Hubbard commented that the ‘Old HASI [Hubbard Association of Scientologists International] Johannesburg that was on its last legs has revived wonderfully under the capable management of Sthiller [sic – St Hiller] Jane Kember.’ She was the most likely candidate to head his new harassment department. With the formation of the Guardian’s Office in 1966 and the Sea Project (which became the Sea Organization) in 1967, Hubbard violated his earlier pronouncement that a woman’s place is in the home, and created what has been dubbed the ‘vixen’ culture – where women would often have power over men (though all under Hubbard’s direction).

Jane Kember was the foremost ‘vixen’ ruling the Guardian’s Office with a rod of iron. The success of the Guardian’s Office in infiltrating so many government offices – in the US, Canada, France and the UK – relied upon the steely fanaticism of Kember. As with other ‘vixens,’ her husband Kevin was appointed her junior as the Deputy Guardian for training and stayed very much in his place. Kevin oversaw the training of Branch One operatives who ran ‘covert data collection’ using the 800-page training pack that remains in effect to this day, including issues on breaking and entering and the infamous Training Routine Lying or ‘TR-L.’

Machiavelli tells us that it is better to be feared than loved. Kember certainly applied this maxim. She played Sejanus to Hubbard’s Roman emperor, raining down terror on those of us who dared to speak out about Scientology’s excesses.

In personal letters from her cell in FCI Pleasanton, Kember complained that the ‘minions’ – her name for the Commodore’s Messengers – had no reason to remove her from her post as Guardian, commenting that ‘[Hubbard] policy does not seem to be the strongest point in the org at the moment.’ She also asserted that those who went to prison for the crimes of the Guardian’s Office were ‘victims.’

Before she was sentenced to prison, Kember was ostracized by almost everyone she knew and says ‘no one could ever have warned me what it was like to be sent to “Coventry” in my own group…’

She has no sympathy for the thousands of people harmed by the use of fair game and disconnection during her 14 years at the helm of the Guardian’s Office. In a Knowledge Report on Shiona Fox-Ness, Kember wrote, ‘There is no one else, who has any data on the mind that produces a predictable result of the betterment of conditions – NO ONE.’ Despite her new understanding of the pain of ostracism, she ended the report with ‘Therefore, without any communication from any member of the Church, without any pressure from any individual on the planet, I disconnect from you until such time as you withdraw your resignation and handle your situation from the Church.’

In her attempt to understand her plight, Kember says, ‘I have been trying to understand why I am here … I have looked at my overts [transgressions] until blue in the face, but nothing changed.’ There is no sense in these letters that she even considered that her direction of kidnapping, false imprisonment, breaking and entering, bugging, burglary, forgery of government credentials or theft of documents might have anything to do with her imprisonment. She summed up her position by saying, ‘I want the church [Scientology] to win – and above all on a personal level, I want the advanced auditing.’

Other Guardian’s Office luminaries paid the $40,000 to become ‘Patrons’ of the International Association of Scientologists. This included Mary Sue Hubbard, Henning Heldt, Duke Snider and David Gaiman. This would have been part of the ‘liability formula’ and the ‘A to E steps’ for those declared Suppressive to return to the fold. Kember does not appear on the Patrons’ list (and complained of her poverty in a personal letter), but she did seek to ‘make an effective blow’ against the ‘enemies of Scientology,’ as the formula demands, by harassing critics as ‘Mark Martini,’ under which pseudonym she issued several newsletters in response to my Reconnection and the anonymous Greenfields Ghost newsletters.


The redoubtable Nev Chamberlin used the same PO box as Kember and casually observed when picking up his mail that his friend Jane Kember was also using their services. This was confirmed by the agency, so the identity of Mark Martini was exposed (I responded as Sid Cinzano in Reconnection).

Jane Kember is almost the last of the Old Guard who created the reign of terror for which Scientology has become so properly infamous. Her passing marks the end of an era. Sadly, Scientology continues to oppress those who speak out, but, thankfully, there are now so many of us that the Org can no longer silence its now numerous critics. We should now look to helping the survivors as Scientology implodes.

— Jon Atack


Technology Cocktail

“For many centuries man has desired to know how to change the mind and condition of himself and his fellows but, up to a relatively few years ago, had not accumulated enough information to do so. Man now understands a great many things which he never understood before, and among these can now be placed an understanding of the human mind. Man can conquer himself, and as a result interesting miracles are taking place across this country and the other continents of earth. These miracles consist of people becoming well when they were incurably ill, of people who were unhappy becoming happy, of abolishing the danger inherent in many illnesses and many of the conditions of man. Yet the answer has been with man all the time. The science of Scientology came about because of the increase of man’s knowledge of the physical universe and of energy.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1954


Down time for maintenance

We’re told that this website will be down for maintenance for about an hour at around 7 pm Eastern today. We apologize for the inconvenience.

Our Substack site, with all of our fresh reporting, will be unaffected.




We first broke the news of the LAPD’s investigation of Scientology celebrity Danny Masterson on rape allegations in 2017, and we’ve been covering the story every step of the way since then. At this page we’ve collected our most important links as Danny faces a potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison. NOW WITH TRIAL INDEX.


THE PODCAST: How many have you heard?

— The Underground Bunker Podcast

[1] Marc Headley [2] Claire Headley [3] Jeffrey Augustine [4] Bruce Hines [5] Sunny Pereira [6] Pete Griffiths [7] Geoff Levin [8] Patty Moher [9] Marc Headley [10] Jefferson Hawkins [11] Michelle ‘Emma’ Ryan [12] Paulette Cooper [13] Jesse Prince [14] Mark Bunker [15] Jon Atack [16] Mirriam Francis [17] Bruce Hines on MSH

— SPECIAL: The best TV show on Scientology you never got to see

[1] Phil Jones [2] Derek Bloch [3] Carol Nyburg [4] Katrina Reyes [5] Jamie DeWolf

— SPECIAL: Your Proprietor’s updates on the Danny Masterson trial

[1] Sep 21 [2] Sep 28 [3] Oct 4 [4] Oct 10 [5] Oct 11: Day One [6] Oct 12: Day Two [7] Oct 13: Day Three [8] Oct 17: Day Four [9] Oct 18: Day Five [10] Oct 19: Day Six [11] Special interview with Chris Shelton, Oct 19 [12] Oct 20: Day Seven [13] Oct 21: Day Eight [14] First week in review, with Jeffrey Augustine [15] Oct 24: Day Nine [16] Oct 25: Day Ten [17] Oct 27: Day Eleven [18] Oct 28: Day Twelve [19] Second week in review, with Jeffrey Augustine [20] Halloween special [21] Nov 2: Day Thirteen [22] Nov 3: Day Fourteen [23] Nov 4: Day Fifteen [24] Third week in review [25] Nov 5, Saturday special [26] Nov 6, Sunday special [27] Nov 7, Day Sixteen [28] Lisa Marie Presley breaking news [29] Nov 8, Day Seventeen [30] Nov 9, Day Eighteen [31] Nov 10, Day Nineteen



Source Code

“Hitler didn’t have any trouble with a large section of his population. He just put them all in concentration camps and that was it. And it’s that kind of a game if you want to look at it. It’s not the game of government and who will we elect and democracy über alles, or something, it’s not all that kind of a government. It’s just the kind of a government, well, there they are nicely out of the running, everybody is out of the running, isn’t that nice. And things are just barely ticking over, and we’re not going to be troubled by those fellows from the 18th Panzer Division that put up such a hell of a fight on Exnoo. We’re not going to be troubled with them anymore because we got them implanted very nicely, and they’ve all been sent down to Earth, and the mores of the society there will take care of everything And they will never be in circulation again as space jockeys. It’s that kind of thinking, you see?” — L. Ron Hubbard, December 20, 1961


Avast, Ye Mateys

“Kindliness note: FEBC students and public students are no longer thrown overboard at Flag. It went out in ’68. We haven’t thrown anyone overboard for just ages. There hasn’t even been a low condition assigned on Flag for a couple of years. However, with new recruits aboard and the decks getting dirty…” — The Commodore, December 20, 1970


Overheard in the FreeZone

“I think the biggest mistake is selling and aiming at OT. Theta level auditing is spectacular, gives wonderful key-outs, and seems like it is really doing something — but when you actually look at the real lives of OTs they usually don’t look too impressive. We bypass all the myriad reasons things don’t go right in this life and this world. We should aim at making people’s real lives better, not getting them to some mystical state. That train has left.”


Past is Prologue

1995: Tilman Hausherr reposted a message from an AOL Scientologist this week. It shows the effect a.r.s is having on the lives of cult members. “A fellow scientologist (not on AOL) did tell his affiliation. Since then, his life at work has been rather difficult. Very anti-social co-workers with access to the internet confront him with jokes about clams (?), about our counsel Helena Kobrin or about a guy named Milme (??), or speak openly about the upper levels. They claim absolutely silly stuff about a guy named ‘Zenu’ (???) or something like that. His environment has become very entheta. The worst was friday, when they forced him to look at a ‘page’ on the internet that showed data looking like official state files, giving the impression that many Orgs had closed, i.e. that the Church was shrinking! (Of course we know that was all lies, since it is well known that we are expanding.) His cried while arriving home; his wife called me. I gave him a touch assist, after which he felt better. Yes, that works ! Saturday he got some VERY GOOD auditing, and he has decided to enroll on the PTS/SP course to help him handle his PTP.”



Random Howdy

“12:35! Oh shit, there goes another day shot to hell.”


Full Court Press: What we’re watching at the Underground Bunker

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Mistrial declared November 30. Status conference scheduled January 10, retrial scheduled March 27.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Grand jury indictments include charges from an assault while in custody. Plea deadline scheduled for December 16.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay sentenced to 9 years in prison. Jeff scheduled to time served with three years supervised release, restitution of $9.7 million.
Rizza Islam, Medi-Cal fraud: Trial scheduled for March 1 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial hearing December 9.
Yanti Mike Greene, Scientology private eye accused of contempt of court: Found guilty of criminal and civil contempt.

Civil litigation:
Baxter, Baxter, and Paris v. Scientology, alleging labor trafficking: Complaint filed April 28 in Tampa federal court, Scientology moving to compel arbitration. Plaintiffs filed amended complaint on August 2. Hearing November 17 to argue the arbitration motions, awaiting ruling.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Selection of arbitrators underway. Next court hearing: February 2, 2023.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Appellate court removes requirement of arbitration on January 19, case remanded back to Superior Court. Stay in place at least through February 7.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Case settled ahead of scheduled Dec 6 trial.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: New trial ordered after appeals court overturned prior ruling.
Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Lawsuit filed by the FTC and state of Georgia in August, now in discovery phase.



After the success of their double-Emmy-winning, three-season A&E series ‘Scientology and the Aftermath,’ Leah Remini and Mike Rinder continue the conversation on their podcast, ‘Scientology: Fair Game.’ We’ve created a landing page where you can hear all of the episodes so far.


An episode-by-episode guide to Leah Remini’s three-season, double-Emmy winning series that changed everything for Scientology watching. Originally aired from 2016 to 2019 on the A&E network, and now on Netflix.


Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Other links: SCIENTOLOGY BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks. Scientology’s Ideal Orgs, from one end of the planet to the other. Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society. Scientology Lit: Books reviewed or excerpted in a weekly series. How many have you read?


[ONE year ago] INSIDER: How the ‘Chase Wave’ began, and how it crashed, leaving Scientology in chaos
[TWO years ago] Scientology social media: Planetary conquest still on track even as orgs are boarded up
[THREE years ago] Scientology asks for emergency hearing Monday to force Valerie Haney into ‘arbitration’
[FOUR years ago] Bill Franks, 1946-2018, appointed by Hubbard to ‘reform’ Scientology after Snow White scandal
[FIVE years ago] AUDIO: David Miscavige’s claim that Mexico has officially recognized Scientology as a religion
[SIX years ago] The fight over the secrets on a Scientology spy’s seized laptop that no one is talking about
[SEVEN years ago] Augustine: Compton scam rehab and ‘literacy crusade’ have vanished since raid
[EIGHT years ago] Jon Atack looks back at his final Scientology auditing session — and how he broke free
[NINE years ago] Tom Cruise drops his disastrous suit against Bauer Media and its magazines
[TEN years ago] Scientology in 2012: John Sweeney, Paulette Cooper, and More Look Back on a Year of Crisis for the Church
[ELEVEN years ago] Scientology Kids: Fully Indoctrinated by 18


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 2,884 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,389 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,939 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,929 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,820 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,125 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,995 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,100 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,573 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,889 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,455 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,374 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,542 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,123 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,384 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,420 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,135 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,700 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,015 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,190 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,741 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,872 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,210 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,065 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,184 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,540 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,843 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,949 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,347 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,223 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,806 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,301 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,555 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,664 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on December 20, 2022 at 07:00

E-mail tips to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We also post updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Our book about Paulette, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2021 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2021), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Other links: BLOGGING DIANETICS: Reading Scientology’s founding text cover to cover | 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 | Shelly Miscavige, 15 years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates, or join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news | Battling Babe-Hounds: Ross Jeffries v. R. Don Steele


Tony Ortega at The Daily Beast


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