Germany Bans Cruise Nazi Movie
Germany has banned the makers of the Tom Cruise movie about the plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler from shooting at German military sites because Cruise is a Scientologist and Berlin believes the Hollywood cult masquerades as a religion to make money. Is the German Government intolerant and paranoid in their hatred of Scientology or do they have a good reason to be worried?
Berlin has never recognized Scientology as a church, and in 1992 it established The Scientology Task Force for the Hamburg Interior Authority, an organization whose primary mission is to monitor the activities and publications of Scientology, raise public awareness about the organization, and serve as a resource to Scientology members who may wish to exit the group.
Furthermore, German politicians have called Scientology members "a cancer" on its society, as their aims included "world domination and the destruction of society," as well as "infiltration of business and government." Has Berlin gone too far?
In addition to its controversial origins, teachings and business practices, Scientology has generated additional negative publicity as early as the 1970s when their criminal activities, the so-called "Operation Snow White" and "Operation Freakout" had been exposed.
"Operation Snow White" was carried out in the 1970s - the goal was to purge unfavorable records about Scientology and its founder L. Ron Hubbard.
Scientology operatives committed infiltration, wiretapping, and theft of documents in government offices, most notably those of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service.
Eleven highly-placed Church executives, including Mary Sue Hubbard (wife of founder L. Ron Hubbard and second in command of the organization), pleaded guilty or were convicted in federal court of obstructing justice, burglary of government offices, and theft of documents and government property.
"Operation Freakout" was a covert plan intended to have the author Paulette Cooper (she wrote the highly critical book "The Scandal of Scientology") imprisoned or committed to a mental institution. The plan failed after the "Operation Snow White" was exposed.
In 1991 Time Magazine published an article entitled "The Cult of Greed and Power" unmasking the practices of the organization. Scientology filed a $416 million lawsuit which was ultimately dismissed. The cult is known for harassment and litigious actions against its critics and enemies.
Last year Paramount Studios pompously parted its ways with Tom Cruise after reports about a dozen Scientology members surrounding studio chief Brad Grey on a parking lot in an attempt to pressure Grey to give Cruise a better deal in the Mission Impossible 3 project.
According to Radar Online, John Travolta used similar tactics in the 1990s to get FOX to produce science-fiction stinker "Battlefield Earth" (based on founder Hubbard's science-fiction book) which eventually bombed at the box office - it cost $73 million to produce, but earned $21 million in domestic sales.
Former FOX studio chief Bill Mechanic said at the time: "He had Scientologists all over me. They come up to you and they know who you are."