Thursday, 10 May 2012

OSA Film in Europe - The Eye of Scientology

OSA goes mad about a FILM that will be broadcasted in EUROPE !!!,CmC=6629614.html

    Here's a loose translation of the article... I don't speak German..


    Many think of Tom Cruise in Scientology, but hardly anyone knows the "Office of Special Affairs." Interview with director Mark Thoess about his investigative documentary, and the largest private intelligence of the world: OSA.

    Behind the name "Office of Special Affairs", or OSA, is hidden the secret of Scientology, as told by dropouts and critics of the sect.

    According to Scientology, the "Office of Special Affairs" it is a media and law office, but there's also the "Investigations Section,". Why does an organization that see's itself as a religion, have a secret service?

    Director and cinematographer Mark Thoess has made this effort, together with author Frank Nordhausen, to search for answers.

    ARTE: How large is OSA, do you think?

    MARKUS: No one knows for sure. O.S.A. In the United States, it has perhaps only 100 people. Interviewees in the film compare O.S.A. to the Stasi (former East German secret service). The high-level dropout Marc Headley told us that OSA spends $100,000 a week.

    ARTE: Is O.S.A. officially a secret?

    MARK THOEß: The Scientologists do not deny that there is a "Investigations Section", but they say they did nothing illegal. Many things that happen in OSA are very dubious.

    ARTE: Like what?

    MARK THOEß: That Scientology monitors as people around the clock, says Ingo Heinemann, who worked for a consumer association as a lawyer back in the 1970s against Scientology. There were judicial inquiries made, where detailed instructions on what occurs in the OSA were found.

    ARTE: How did OSA retrieve their information?

    THOEß MARK: It found out, for example, why Mr. Heinemann was investigating Scientology, and who were the backers who financed his efforts. And how to attain information - for example, by looking through his garbage cans.

    ARTE: Scientology considers itself a religion - why does a church such information?

    MARK THOEß: This question asks itself. I personally do not believe that Scientology is a religion. I believe that Scientology is a business company that does nothing more than what is now insanely popular: to recruit a person and they make it their own, as long as it is dependent on the organization - promising a better world without crime.

    ARTE: In the USA, Scientology is recognized as a charity and is tax-exempt. Is Scientology also recognized as a religion, as is always claimed?

    THOEß MARK: No, the American state recognizes no religion. The tax exemption in 1993 is a great victory, if not the largest ever, for OSA & Scientology. The letter from the tax authority with regards to Scientology referred to the common interest and led to it's tax-exempt status for religious reasons.

    Scientologists now run around with this letter and say: "We are still recognized in America, so you must now recognize us here as well."

    ARTE: In Germany, we saw the constitutional protection of the sect. Why is it not banned?

    THOEß MARKUS: On one hand, there is the constitutional protections in Germany, which most countries have. On the other hand, the organizational structure in Germany is complicated: there is the International Organization of Scientologists, but also many sub-organizations such as Narconon Criminon. Therefore, it is difficult to ban Scientology as a whole.

    Two examples: Russia has classified Scientology literature as extremist in 2011, and the higher regional court in Greece confirmed the dissolution of the Athens Scientology office in 1997. But, there's more than one Scientology entity in a country; there are maybe 20 sub-organizations to it.

    ARTE: How dangerous is O.S.A. really?

    MARK THOEß: Scientology is a state within a state, with its own police ethics and financial structure, its own news service and health care system, even with their own punishment systems.

    The German Constitutional protection observed is not intended to support dangerous groups like Scientology. I've never heard of another religious community that has so influenced the American consulates, for them to act abroad.

    ARTE: In what way?

    MARK THOEß: German politicians of high rank, of all stripes have confirmed time and again, that if they take action against Scientology, they would get visits and receive undue political pressure from America.

    There are even German politicians appointed to the consulate. All this came in 2010 when Wikileaks: Dispatches-out scandal.

    The reason for the political pressure: A lot of money and familiar faces (celebrities like Tom Cruise) are two things that influence politicians to alighn themselves, and act on behalf of, Scientology.

    ARTE: You have Mike Rinder, the former head of OSA, the now independent Scientologist who you interviewed. How credible is he?

    THOEß MARK: I think he's very believable in what he says about the Scientology leader David Miscavige & political lobbying by the cult.

    I consider him lacking in credibility when it comes to himself. Mike Rinder was responsible for almost all major OSA actions until he left 2007. He must know a lot more than he reveals.

    ARTE: How were you during your filming when you were confronted by OSA?

    THOEß MARK: We were observed during the entire filming in America. We were photographed. Scientologists always knew where we were. We were kept under surveillance. When we drove to Florida, in Clearwater, which is the Scientology stronghold, all windows had something blocking them from the inside, so we couldn't film anything. The dropout Marc Headley told me that OSA possessed contacts within travel agencies.

    ARTE: Were you personally threatened?

    THOEß MARKUS: There was a very specific incident at a gas station in Hamburg, where I felt threatened, and which we report in the film.

    ARTE: Have you communicated with Scientology?

    THOEß MARK: We have asked countless times in various countries, for a television interview. We have a very short statement from Scientology's spokesman in France and Germany, Juerg Stettler, when we approached him on the street.

    But when you ask him 20 questions, he responds with questions to counter you. Of course, Mr. Stettler has also answered questions in writing, but not before the camera. I cannot understand why an organization like Scientology is not able to give a reasonable television interview.

    ARTE: Could you show this film at all?

    MARK THOEß: The movie would not happen without the courage of the broadcasters and the production company, even if it is a compromise. The German press law is very strict and it also protects the Scientologists.

    ARTE: What is it about the film that stuck out most in your mind?

    THOEß MARK: I've made films about other faiths. I was in Kurdistan, and have made a film about honor killings. But I have never been prosecuted for hours, photographed, or even attacked by members of a religion, until we did a story on Scientology. This is unique. And I'm not the first person this has happened to.

    MARK THOESS - Born in Berlin in 1967, trained as a camera assistant, since 1990, he's been a freelance cameraman and author; numerous investigative documentaries. He's currently writing a book on the East German spy, Huseyin Yildirim.

    SCIENTOLOGY - The former science fiction writer Lafayette Ronald Hubbard founded in 1954, the "Church of Scientology", since 1986. David Miscavige is the leader of Scientology. Scientology sees itself as a "religion of salvation," the people want "free spirit" (Dianetics). "Operating thetans" to take control over their environment. In Germany there are about 5,000 followers, and according to Germany's Constitutional Protection Office, globally, there are 130,000 Scientologists.

    INTELLIGENCE - O.S.A. - In 1966, the first information service "Guardian Office" was established with a Guardian (Guardian) on the tip - Mary Sue Hubbard. The third wife of L. Ron Hubbard in 1979 after the biggest spy scandal of Scientology ("Snow White") was sentenced. From 1983, the office in the "Office of Special Affairs" (OSA) is renamed. Headquartered in Los Angeles, the headquarters in Munich Germany.!!!

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