Issue 133 – March 2017
S.M.A.R.T (Stop Mind control And Ritual abuse Today)
P. O Box 1295
Easthampton, MA 01027-1295 USA
Home page: https://ritualabuse.us/
Issue 133 – March 2017
The purpose of this newsletter is to help stop secretive organizations and groups from abusing others and to help those who allege they have been abused by such organizations and groups. This newsletter is not a substitute for other ways of recovering from ritual abuse. Readers should use caution while reading this newsletter. If necessary, make sure other support systems are available during and after reading this newsletter.
Important: The resources mentioned in this newsletter are for educational value only. Reading the books cited may or may not help your recovery process, so use caution when reading any book or contacting any resource mentioned in this newsletter. Some may have a religious or other agenda that may be separate from your own recovery process. Others may have valuable information on secretive organizations, but have triggers or be somewhat sympathetic to those organizations. Unless explicitly stated otherwise, the views expressed in this newsletter constitute expressions of opinion, and readers are cautioned to form their own opinions and draw their own conclusions by consulting a variety of sources, including this newsletter. Resources listed, quoted and individual articles, etc. and their writers do not necessarily support all or any of the views mentioned in this newsletter. Also, the views, facts and opinions mentioned in this newsletter are solely the opinions of the authors and are not necessarily the opinions of this newsletter or its editor.
Copyright 2017 – All rights reserved. No reproduction of any material without written permission from the editor and individual authors.
The Survivorship Ritual Abuse and Mind Control 2017 Conference
On May 19 – 21, 2017 Survivorship will have two conferences at the Executive Inn & Suite in Oakland, CA.
There will be a clinician’s conference on Friday, May 19, 2017 for licensed clinicians and students in the field.
Alison Miller will be presenting a full day presentation at this conference. Six CEs are available for professionals at this conference. Her presentation is titled: Working with Deliberately Structured Personality Systems
Speaker List for the Saturday and Sunday Conference
Alison Miller – Confronting the Spiritual Issues in Ritual Abuse
Wendy Hoffman – Dirty Therapy – We know that satanic cult perpetrator groups infiltrate the very professions and organizations that survivors turn to for help.
Neil Brick – Freedom from Mind Control – Subliminal methods and mind control influence our lives in all areas.
Kimber Olson – The Reversal of Words: Navigating the Complex Therapeutic Relationship
Conference Information is at: https://survivorship.org/the-survivorship-ritual-abuse-and-child-abuse-2017-conference/
Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
This issue includes information on: child sex slave, Belgian aristocratic paedophile ring, Anneke Lucas, Marc Dutroux, satanist ritual abuse, Maoist cult leader Aravindan Balakrishnan, Comrade Bala, Scottish child abuse inquiry, Australian Catholic priests, Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse, Child Abuse Figures, Jerry Sandusky, Jeffrey Sandusky, Ritual Abuse, Mind Control, Cults, Donald Trump, white supremacist, alt-right, Richard Spencer, authoritarian ruler, Summer Zervos, Gloria Allred, Aldous Huxley, Brave New World, Big Brother, Geroge Orwell, Steve Bannon, Breitbart’s Milo Yiannopoulos, pedophilia, Breitbart News, nationalists, anti-immigration proponents, racist, anti-Semitic, sexist, Is Trump A Fascist?, Andy Puzder, Sir Edward Heath, satanic sex cult, ritual sacrifices, MS-13 gang members, Satanic murder, Satanic ritual, Mara Salvatrucha, Animal Abuse Records Deleted, Victor Barnard, River Road Fellowship, child abuse scandal of British children sent abroad, Christian Brothers, Australian Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, Fairbridge Molong, London Premier League clubs, historic child abuse allegations, Baylor lawsuit, The Cult Next Door: The Moaist Cult Leader, Nazi’s defense of just following orders, Adolf Eichmann, Nazi Holocaust, Stanley Milgram, Patrick Haggard
Resources and Information
Please note: Listing of these resources does not necessarily constitute our endorsement of them. They are for educational value only and some may be heavy for survivors to read. Some of the conferences listed may not necessarily be safe for all survivors. If you are a survivor of mind control and/or ritual abuse, S.M.A.R.T. recommends learning about mind control techniques before attending conferences or other survivor events. This article may be helpful: How to Avoid Being Mind Controlled at a Conference https://survivorship.org/survivorship-articles/how-to-avoid-being-mind-controlled-at-a-conference/
Former child sex slave sold into Belgian aristocratic paedophile ring where boys and girls were tortured and KILLED reveals the horrors of her five years of abuse Anneke Lucas, 53, was sold into a murderous paedophile ring in Belgium at six
She was raped 1,700 hours before reaching the age of 12 during horrifying abuse
Children were scared into silence and members of the network killed those who threatened to go to the police
At the age of 11, it was decided she was ‘of no use anymore’ and was to be killed
But she was spared, fled Belgium and now spoken out about sickening ordeal
By Thomas Burrows for MailOnline 19 January 2017 describes abuse
A former child sex slave sold into a Belgian aristocratic paedophile ring where boys and girls were raped, tortured and murdered has revealed the horrors of her five years of abuse. Anneke Lucas, 53, was sold into the murderous paedophile network in Belgium when she was just six years old in 1969. Recalling her sickening abuse, she said: ‘I was raped many, many, many times. I don’t have any scars to show how many times I was raped. ‘Usually it was a full night and weekend and so I gathered I was raped for about six hours a week – more than 1,700 hours before I reached the age of 12.’ Speaking to MailOnline, she said: ‘I was first taken to the paedophile ring when I was six by a woman who worked as a cleaning lady for my mother. She and her husband took me away for a weekend to babysit me and it was her husband who took me to the paedophile ring. ‘Later on, my mother got involved and then she started to take me herself. My mother was never really a mother. She was a very sick woman and a psychopath.’ It was around her sixth birthday Miss Lucas was taken to an orgy for the first time, in a castle. She was used for an S&M show, chained up with an iron dog collar and made to eat human faeces. ‘Afterwards, left lying there like a broken object, I felt so humiliated’, she said.
Bravely speaking out about her horrifying ordeal on the Global Citizen, she said: ‘The adult men that were part of the network were there for various reasons. ‘There was a lot of alcohol and a lot of drugs. The children were a commodity, the highest and more valued commodity, and used for sex. ‘No child deserves what I went through, or what millions of children go through.’
Children were scared into silence and members of the network killed those who threatened to go to the police.
She told MailOnline: ”I had to do it [the rapes] because there was always the threat of being killed….
She told MailOnline: ‘When I returned home for the school week, my parents acted like nothing had happened, so I took their denial and kept telling myself I was normal….
The man who tortured her was one of the defendants in the Dutroux case, which, when it broke in 1996, was believed it would blow up the Belgian pedophile network. But instead, eight years later, only Marc Dutroux received a life sentence….
3 convicted for child abuse at religious Alabama private school By Anna Claire Vollers January 24, 2017
In the end, three leaders of a religious Alabama bootcamp for troubled teens were convicted on multiple counts of aggravated child abuse for what they did to the children in their care. The convictions were thanks in large part to the testimony of five former students, who told the court about the physical and mental abuse they suffered at the school. Despite multiple investigations by the Mobile County DA’s office, local law enforcement and the Alabama Department of Human Resources, it took officials five years to close down the school and another seven months to arrest the employees accused of the worst of the abuse. On Jan. 13, 55-year-old pastor John David Young was convicted on five counts of aggravated child abuse at the Saving Youth Foundation, a bootcamp-style residential school in Mobile for troubled teens that was associated with Young’s Solid Rock Ministries church.
Two other school leaders, boys’ instructor William Knott, 48, and girls’ instructor Aleshia Moffett, 42, were convicted on three counts each of aggravated child abuse. None of the attorneys for Young, Knott or Moffett have returned AL.com’s calls or emails asking for comment.
Punishment and abuse
The prosecution built its case around specific instances of abuse involving isolation, handcuffs, and excessive exercise. “We were able to put in front of the jury a lot of good testimony and evidence about what these people were doing to these teenagers at the Saving Youth Foundation,” said Blackwood. “The jury got to hear about the isolation chambers, kids being put in restraints for punishment and transport, and the excessive physical training over several hours with no breaks.”….
Students talked about being locked in isolation cells for weeks at a time, with little or no clothing, a single bulb burning overhead day and night. They shared stories of other students being handcuffed to beds as punishment, and being forced to exercise outdoors in the south Alabama heat for hours…. http://www.al.com/news/birmingham/index.ssf/2017/01/three_convicted_for_child_abus.html
Top private schools included as part of Scottish child abuse inquiry
Inquiry chair Lady Smith has said more than 100 locations so far have been identified for investigation, including current and former boarding schools Tuesday 31 January 2017 More than 60 residential care establishments including several top private schools are being investigated by Scotland’s national child abuse inquiry. They are among more than 100 locations where the abuse of children is said to have taken place, chair Anne Smith confirmed. Six boarding schools or former boarding schools, including Fettes college and Gordonstoun, are being investigated. Several faith-based organisations, other major care providers and local authority institutions are also being looked at by inquiry staff. Lady Smith, a senior judge who was appointed to the role in July, named a list of places being investigated as she provided an update on the inquiry’s progress at a preliminary hearing. The inquiry is examining historical allegations of the abuse of children in care and has been taking statements from witnesses since last spring…. Https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/jan/31/top-private-schools-included-as-part-of-scottish-child-abuse-inquiry
Child abuse: 7% of Australian Catholic priests alleged to be involved 6 February 2017 Australia
An inquiry examining institutional sex abuse in Australia has heard 7% of the nation’s Catholic priests allegedly abused children between 1950 and 2010. In one religious order, over 40% of church figures were accused of abuse. Over 4,440 people claim to have been victims between 1980 and 2015, the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse was told. The commission, Australia’s highest form of inquiry, is also investigating abuse at non-religious organisations. It has previously heard harrowing testimony from scores of people who suffered abuse at the hands of clergy…. Gail Furness, the lead lawyer assisting the commission in Sydney, said more than 1,000 Catholic institutions across Australia were identified in claims of sexual abuse, with a total of 1,880 alleged perpetrators between 1980 and 2015.
The average age of the victims was 10.5 for girls and 11.5 for boys. On average, it took 33 years for each instance of abuse to be reported….
Abuse survivor Andrew Collins told the BBC it had been “drummed into his head” by the four men who abused him between the ages of seven and 14 – two teachers, a priest and a Catholic Brother – that he was the one who had “done wrong”.
“I did try to tell my mum once and she said it was absolute rubbish and a man of God would never do such a thing,” he said….
The royal commission also detailed the number of abuse claims against 10 religious orders, with data showing that four orders had allegations of abuse against more than 20% of their members. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-38877158
Teenage boy forced by barrister to join in ‘cult’ beating of friends by Patrick Foster Nicola Harley Peta Thornycroft, Johannesburg
5 February 2017 A barrister accused of subjecting teenage boys to savage sadomasochistic beatings forced one of his victims to join in with the attacks, it has emerged. John Smyth QC, a friend of the Archbishop of Canterbury, is being investigated by police over claims that he beat 22 teenagers in his garden shed in the late Seventies. A report by the Iwerne Trust, the charity that ran the Christian camps at which Mr Smyth met many of the victims, documents how he persuaded one of the boys to assist with the attacks….
He wrote in the 1982 report: “There was considerable persuasion for anyone who held back. It had almost become a cult, with a powerful group dynamic. “S, wanting to ‘be the best for God’, beat as hard as he could. “Immediately after the beating, the man lay on the bed, while [Mr Smyth] and/or S would kneel and pray, linking arms with him and kissing him on the shoulder and back. “[Mr Smyth] and S saw this as a ‘ministry’ from God. But the ‘ministry’ of discipline in this sense was secret, self-appointed and never approved by other Christian leaders.” http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/02/05/teenage-boy-forced-barrister-join-cult-beating-friends/
Federal Child Abuse Figures Rose for Third Year in a Row, Neglect at the Top of the List
Feb 8, 2017 Neglect tops the list of abuses that children endure, according to a new report that finds cases of abuse and neglect edged up for the third consecutive year during 2015. The Child Maltreatment 2015 report by the Administration on Children, Youth and Families noted 683,000 victims of child maltreatment or 9.2 victims per 1,000 children. The slight increase from 2014’s 9.1 victims per 1,000 is concerning, experts said, because not all maltreatment is reported and in some cases abuse or neglect exists but there’s not enough evidence to substantiate it, leading to the suspicion that the count is actually undercounted….
Daniel Heimpel, executive director of the nonprofit Fostering Media Connections, which produces three publications for foster and adoptive parents….”The number of kids in foster care also has gone up over this period of time,” he said. “Abuse rates have gone up, reports of abuse have gone up and the number of kids entering the system has gone up after a huge decline for many years.” The report estimates 1,670 child deaths in 2015 related to maltreatment. Actual reporting from 49 states documented 1,585 child deaths….
Infants were three times more likely to die from abuse or neglect than a year-old child. Fifty-five percent of child victims who die from abuse or neglect are boys. At least one parent was involved in 77 percent of the deaths, and alcohol, drug abuse or domestic violence were often factors. Women were more likely than men to be perpetrators, 54 percent vs. 45 percent. In the other cases, gender wasn’t known. Three-fifths of maltreatment reports to child welfare systems came from professionals, including teachers, lawyers, social workers and police officers. Demographically, the biggest category of victims were white at 43.2 percent, compared to Hispanic at 23.6 percent and African-American at 21.4 percent…. http://www.wtxl.com/news/federal-child-abuse-figures-rose-for-third-year-in-a/article_110684b6-ee22-11e6-a06e-73fa4a6ae341.html
Archbishop admits Church ‘failed terribly’ over abuse revelations Cathy Newman Presenter 1 Feb 2017 UK
The Church of England has tonight apologised unreservedly after a Channel 4 News investigation revealed that a prominent Anglican evangelical and former colleague of the Archbishop of Canterbury is alleged to have severely assaulted boys and young men for decades.
The alleged abuse was carried out by prominent QC and part time judge called John Smyth, who was chairman of the Iwerne Trust, a charity closely linked to the church which ran Christian holiday camps for public school students. The Church admitted that it had “failed terribly”, after this programme learned that the Trust had discovered the alleged abuse in 1982, but failed to report it to the police. Winchester College, where some of the young men met Smyth, was made aware of the alleged abuse, but also failed to report it to the police at the time. There is no suggestion that any abuse took place at the College or with the knowledge of its staff. The Archbishop’s apology comes after a six month investigation by Channel 4 News, in which we tracked down and spoke with many of Smyth’s alleged victims. One man told us that he and other boys were beaten so violently by Smyth that they had to wear nappies to staunch the bleeding….
It described what it called the “beatings” of 22 young men. “The scale and severity of the practice was horrific…8 received about 14 thousand strokes: 2 of them having some 8000 strokes over three years,” the document, written in 1982, noted. Despite the findings of the report, the Iwerne Trust did not inform the police. Instead, a senior figure in the Iwerne Trust wrote to John Smyth, telling him to leave the country. He went on to live in Zimbabwe, and then South Africa…. https://www.channel4.com/news/archbishop-admits-church-failed-terribly-over-abuse-revelations
Ex-Penn State coach Sandusky’s son accused of child abuse
The adopted son of Jerry Sandusky, the US college football coach convicted of child abuse, has been accused of sexually abusing two teenage sisters. Jeffrey Sandusky, 41, allegedly sent explicit text messages to children, asking for nude photographs.
The arrest comes nearly five years after his father, who worked for Pennsylvania State University, was found guilty on similar charges.
The elder Sandusky is serving a lengthy prison sentence for molesting 10 boys.
The son – who attended many of his father’s court proceedings – faces 14 counts, including statutory sexual assault, unlawful contact with a minor, sexual abuse of a minor and photographing or depicting sexual acts….
Danish man charged with ordering the sexual abuse of 346 Filipino children 16 February 2017
A 70-year-old Danish man from the Copenhagen suburb of Brøndby is at the centre of what may be the world’s biggest case ever involving the on-demand sexual assaults committed over the internet.
The man is charged with a total of 346 counts of participating in rapes or sexual assaults of minors. The Dane allegedly ordered the abuse of Filipino children from his home and had it streamed to his computer….
The children involved were as young as three years old and were forced to perform sexual acts on each other. In some instances, the children’s own parents carried out the abuse.
The charges against the 70-year-old are laid out in a 119-page indictment that details the depravity of his alleged acts. In once instance, a four-year-old girl was sexually abused by her own mother after the man paid her $35 dollars, or about 250 kroner. In another, a three-year-old girl was forced to perform oral sex on a five-year-old girl.
The man was arrested in February 2016 after Copenhagen Vestegn Police received a tip-off from a foreign law enforcement agency….
The child abuse scandal of the British children sent abroad By Tom Symonds Home affairs correspondent, BBC News 26 February 2017
For several decades, the UK sent children across the world to new lives in institutions where many were abused and used as forced labour. It’s a scandal that is still having repercussions now.
Imagine the 1950s, in the years before air travel became commonplace or the internet dominated our lives. Imagine being a child of those times, barely aware of life even in the next town. An orphan perhaps, living in a British children’s home.
Now imagine being told that shortly you would board a ship for somewhere called Australia, to begin a new life in a sunlit wonderland. For good. No choice.
It happened to thousands of British children in the decades immediately following World War Two, and they had little understanding of how it would shape their lives.
The astonishing scandal of the British child migrants will be the first subject for which the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse will hold full public hearings. It’s first because the migrants are now nearing the end of their lives….
The Catholic institution known at one point as Bindoon Boys Town is now notorious. Based around an imposing stone mansion in the Australian countryside, 49 miles north of Perth, are buildings Walsh and his fellow child migrants were forced to build, barefoot, starting work the day after they arrived.
The Christian Brothers ruled the place with the aim of upholding order and a moral code. Within two days of arriving he says he received his first punishment at the hands of one of the brothers.
“He punched us, he kicked us, smashed us in the face, back-handed us and everything, and he then sat us on his knee to tell us that he doesn’t like to hurt children, but we had been bad boys….
He describes one brother luring him into his room with the promise he could have some sweet molasses – normally fed, not to the boys, but the cows. The man sexually abused him.
He claims another brother raped him, and a third beat him mercilessly after falsely accusing him of having sex with another boy.
“We had no parents, we had no relatives, there was nowhere we could go, these brothers – these paedophiles – must have thought they were in hog heaven.”
He has accused the brothers at the Australian Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, the first time he has fully disclosed his experiences….
Britain is perhaps the only country in the world to have exported vast numbers of its children. An estimated 150,000 children were sent over a 350-year period to Virginia, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and what was then Southern Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe.
Australia was the main destination in the final wave between 1945 and 1974.
There were twin purposes – to ease the population of orphanages in the UK and to boost the population of the colonies.
The children were recruited by religious institutions from both the Anglican and Catholic churches, or well-meaning charities including Barnardo’s and the Fairbridge Society. Their motivation was to give “lost” children a new life, and it would be wrong to say that every one of Britain’s exported children suffered.
But for too many, the dream became a nightmare. Hundreds of migrant children have given accounts of poor education, hard labour, physical beatings and sexual abuse….
In 2009 the Australian government apologised for the cruelty shown to the child migrants. Britain also made an apology in 2010.
The pressure for answers and reparations had been growing. Questions might never have been asked, had it not been for two seekers of the truth.
In the early 1980s a Nottingham social worker, Margaret Humphreys, came across Australian former migrants who had suddenly started to realise they might have living relatives in the UK.
Many had been told, as children, their parents were dead. It wasn’t true. “It was about identity,” she says, “being stripped of it and being robbed of it.”
Her life’s work has been about reuniting “lost children” with their lost relatives. Having reinstated their sense of identity, she went on to build a lifelong bond with many former migrants, and they began to disclose the physical and sexual abuse they had suffered….
Hill makes the astonishing claim that 60% of the children at Fairbridge Molong allege they were sexually abused, based on more than 100 interviews.
The Australian law firm Slater and Gordon successfully claimed compensation on behalf of 215 former Fairbridge children, of whom 129 said they had been sexually abused.
For the Christian Brothers the figures are even higher. The Australian Royal Commission on child abuse recently revealed 853 people had accused members of the order…. http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-39078652
All FIVE London Premier League clubs are caught up in historic child abuse allegations
Police today said they are now investigating 255 allegations involving 77 clubs
Five teams in the Premier League are involved, as well as three in Championship
Scandal came to light when ex-Crewe Alexandra player opened up on the abuse….
By James Dunn For Mailonline 30 January 2017
All five of London’s Premier League clubs and three teams in the Championship are now caught up in hundreds of historic sexual abuse claims.
In what is quickly becoming the biggest scandal in the history of British football, 77 clubs from the top flight to non-league are now being investigated by police. There have now been 255 allegations made since former Crewe Alexandra player Andy Woodward lifted the lid on the murky world of abuse in football by opening up about being abused by ex-coach Barry Bennell. It is understood that Arsenal, Chelsea, West Ham, Tottenham and Crystal Palace are being investigated by the Sexual Offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Command. A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said: ‘The allegations are connected with individuals at 77 named clubs or teams. ‘The breakdown for those clubs is five in the Premiership, three against Championship clubs, three against clubs in Leagues One and Two and there have also been 66 other named clubs which would include non-league or non-professional or amateur teams.’Earlier this month, the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), which is co-ordinating the nationwide police investigation Operation Hydrant, said more than 500 complainants and 184 potential suspects had been identified. The inquiry involves up to 248 football clubs, spanning all tiers of the game from the Premier League down to amateur level. Latest figures show the total number of potential victims standing at 526, with 97 per cent identified as male. Their ages span from 20 to four…. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4173086/All-FIVE-London-Premier-League-clubs-caught-abuse-probe.html
New Baylor lawsuit alleges 52 acts of rape by 31 football players, ‘show ’em a good time’ culture By Davis Potter Friday, January 27, 2017 The sexual assault scandal within Baylor’s football program had another repulsive layer added to it Friday. A Baylor graduate has sued the school, alleging in the lawsuit that she was raped in 2013 and that more than 50 acts of rape were committed by 31 football players from 2011-14, according to a report by the Dallas Morning News. The suit, according to the report, sheds further light on a culture of sexual violence under former Baylor coach Art Briles, stating the school implemented a “show ’em a good time” policy in reference to the football program’s use of sex to attract recruits. Briles coached the Bears from 2008-15 before being fired after an investigation into the program’s handling of sexual assault allegations found that it largely ignored rape claims and discouraged other victims from reporting rape. The suit states an investigation carried out by lawyers uncovered at least 52 rape acts, including five gang rapes with two of those committed by at least 10 players at once. The woman, a 2014 Baylor graduate identified in the suit as Elizabeth Doe, alleges she was gang raped in the spring of 2013 and is suing the school for Title IX violations and negligence, according to the report….
Ritual Abuse, Mind Control and Cults
Donald Trump’s Authoritarian Politics of Memory
Driven by opportunism, pragmatism, or fear, many begin to forget that they used to think certain things were unacceptable.
Ruth Ben-Ghiat Jan 22, 2017
President Donald Trump’s journey to the pinnacle of American power has offered the opportunity to study these processes in real time. Although we cannot yet know what kind of president he will be, from his June 2015 declaration of candidacy to his January 2017 inauguration, Trump has undertaken two parallel projects aimed at unsettling the mental habits and moral foundations of American democracy. First, he has cultivated a political persona that inspires adulation and unquestioning loyalty that can be mobilized for action on his behalf. Second, he has initiated Americans into a culture of threat that not only desensitizes them to the effects of bigotry but also raises the possibility of violence without consequence.
The founding moment of this era came one year ago, when Trump declared at a rally, “I could stand on Fifth Avenue and shoot someone and not lose any voters.” Trump signaled that rhetorical and actual violence might have a different place in America of the future, perhaps becoming something ordinary or unmemorable. During 2016, public hatred became part of everyday reality for many Americans: those who identify with the white supremacist alt-right like Richard Spencer openly hold rallies; elected officials feel emboldened to call for political opponents to be shot (as did New Hampshire and Oklahoma State Representatives Al Baldasaro and John Bennett, among others); journalists reporting on Trump and hijab-wearing women seek protection protocols and escorts. The bureaucratic-sounding term many use for this, “normalization,” does not fully render the operations of memory that make it possible. Driven by opportunism, pragmatism, or fear, many begin to forget that they used to think certain things were unacceptable.
The risk is that the parameters of thought and action will be nudged to align with those of the leader, easing the retrofitting of history to suit his personalization of the land’s highest office. Trump’s success at this in a country known for individualism, and with no history of living under an authoritarian ruler, shows how susceptible people are to such approaches….
Authoritarianism needs that predator edge; that shared understanding that the leader’s body carries within it the potential for violence– and the power to make it difficult to prosecute him. Trump’s attacks on women; his targeting of Muslims, Mexicans, immigrants, and others as dangers to the nation; and the threats from his supporters against the lives of ordinary citizens that follow his criticisms of them on Twitter (such as the union leader Chuck Jones and the college student Lauren Batchelder) all go into the category of things it’s safer not to talk about. Normalization is actually decriminalization, a willingness to forget that such things were once thought of as lawless behavior….
The Many Scandals of Donald Trump: A Cheat Sheet One of the women who accused Trump of sexual misconduct has sued him for defamation after he labeled her claims false. David A. Graham Jan 23, 2017 Donald Trump is now president and not just a private citizen, but that doesn’t mean he’s free of the controversies that dogged him in his former life. Last week, a few days before Trump’s inauguration, former Apprentice contestant Summer Zervos sued him in New York state, accusing the president of defamation. Zervos, who’s represented by the famous lawyer Gloria Allred, was one of the several women who accused Trump of sexual assault or misconduct prior to the election. She claims that he kissed her and pressed his genitals against her non-consensually. Trump denied those claims, saying all of the women who had accused him had made their stories up. So Zervos sued him for defamation. “I wanted to give Mr. Trump the opportunity to retract his false statements about me and the other women who came forward,” she said, as my colleague Nora Kelly reported. She added that she would withdraw the suit if Trump said she had been truthful. That seems unlikely, since a spokeswoman dismissed the suit immediately….
Zervos’s suit serves to underscore an even more unusual fact, though, which is that Trump won election despite a raft of allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct lodged by women in multiple places, from different eras.
The 2016 presidential campaign saw a long string of stories showing scandals involving Trump, both large and small—from questionable business dealings to allegations of sexual assault. While they did not derail his presidential hopes, many of them remain live issues as Trump begins his transition to the White House.
The breadth of Trump’s controversies is truly yuge, ranging from allegations of mafia ties to unscrupulous business dealings, and from racial discrimination to alleged marital rape. They stretch over more than four decades, from the mid-1970s to the present day….
Trump Team Considering Cuts to Federal Violence Against Women Program: Report By Lucy Westcott On 1/19/17 President-elect Donald Trump’s incoming administration is working on plans to make “dramatic cuts” in funding for initiatives to end violence against women, as well as for federal arts and humanities programs, according to a report from The Hill published on Thursday morning.
The article, which quickly sparked widespread social media outrage, says two members of Trump’s team—Russ Vought, a former aide to Vice President-elect Mike Pence, and John Gray, who has worked for Pence, Senator Rand Paul and House Speaker Paul Ryan—are working on the plan for widespread budget cuts after meeting with White House staff ahead of Friday’s inauguration. In total, the cuts would save $10.5 trillion over 10 years, according to The Hill…. http://www.newsweek.com/donald-trump-violence-against-women-federal-funding-budget-cuts-544710
Trump’s not Orwellian. He’s the distracter-in-chief. Matt Bai Yahoo News February 2, 2017 But Orwell’s dark prophecy isn’t actually the one that best explains the moment we’re living through right now. And to the extent that we focus on fears of statist mind control and mass disinformation, we may miss the subtler thing that’s really going on.
Here I turn again to the late Neil Postman, whose classic critique of mid-’80s culture, “Amusing Ourselves to Death,” is as relevant today as it was then. In his foreword, Postman compared Orwell’s vision of fascist repression with the trivial, substanceless society envisioned by Aldous Huxley in his 1932 novel “Brave New World.”
In Huxley’s vision, Postman wrote, “no Big Brother is required to deprive people of their autonomy, maturity and history. As he saw it, people will come to love their oppression, to adore the technologies that undo their capacities to think.”
It’s worth hearing a bit more of Postman’s comparison: “What Orwell feared were those who would ban books. What Huxley feared was that there would be no reason to ban a book, for there would be no one who wanted to read one. … Orwell feared that truth would be concealed from us. Huxley feared that truth would be drowned in a sea of irrelevance.”
As it happens, in 1949, just after the publication of “1984,” Huxley drew much the same contrast in a letter to his countryman Orwell. Much as he liked Orwell’s book, he suggested that tyrannical governments would soon abandon “boot-on-the-face” tactics in favor of “animal magnetism and hypnotism.” Cable TV had yet to be invented….
In some ways, though, Trump is the perfect embodiment of a Huxleyan culture, endlessly distracted by the superficial or the spectacular. He doesn’t want to control what you think — only what you think about, which is him. He cares that you’re watching the performance, and it doesn’t matter whether you watch because you love it or because you find it too grossly compelling to look away.
I’ve written before that Trump is an emotional extremist, not an ideological one. His gift is for channeling the passion in an audience, for provoking adoration or outrage or whatever’s most visceral….
And the danger here is that the constant trivia can too easily distract us from decisions that have deadly serious consequences. Like Huxley’s Alphas and Betas, we can be lulled into thinking that the ephemeral is all there is….
It’s not as if the immigration ban and a seat on the high court aren’t important — they really are. But at the same time, the public is less focused on Trump’s decision, made with no theatrical flourish, to give Steve Bannon, his liaison to the world of white nationalists, a permanent seat on the National Security Council’s principals committee — rather than allotting it to, say, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs.
There’s not so much discussion about Trump’s prompt withdrawal from the Asian trade pact, which a lot of Democrats applauded but which has grave implications for our economic power in the region. Likewise on Trump’s proposed tariffs on exports, which could lead us quickly into an all-out trade war.
There’s not much focus on what’s happening now in the Middle East, where Israel, emboldened by Trump’s rhetoric, is about to vastly accelerate settlements in the occupied territories. The public isn’t buzzing about the imminent dismantling of the EPA….
Breitbart’s Milo Yiannopoulos resigns following outrage over his past comments about pedophilia By Paul Farhi February 21 at 7:15 PM Milo Yiannopoulos, the incendiary writer who helped make Breitbart News a leading organ of the alt-right, resigned from the news organization Tuesday after a video of him endorsing pedophilia resurfaced online over the weekend.
Yiannopoulos has been a flame-throwing provocateur whose writing has offended women, Muslims, blacks and gay people ever since former Breitbart executive chairman Stephen K. Bannon hired him as a senior editor in 2014.
Bannon, now President Trump’s senior adviser, championed the British-born Yiannopoulos’s inflammatory commentary and promoted him as a conservative truth-teller and champion of free speech. In turn, his popularity helped raise Breitbart’s profile among Trump’s supporters and the alt-right, a vaguely defined collection of nationalists, anti-immigration proponents and anti-establishment conservatives. Adherents of the alt-right are known for espousing racist, anti-Semitic and sexist points of view.
“Breitbart News has stood by me when others caved,” Yiannopoulos said in a statement announcing his resignation. “They have been a significant factor in my success.”….
But Yiannopoulos’s views on pedophilia apparently went too far even for Breitbart.
The site was under pressure to take action against Yiannopoulos, 32, from its own staff, which had threatened to revolt if he wasn’t fired or disciplined, according to people familiar with the discussions.
In a video interview early last year, Yiannopoulos condoned sexual relations with boys as young as 13 and joked about a sexual encounter he said he had with a Catholic priest as a teenager.
“You’re misunderstanding what pedophilia means,” he told the hosts of a podcast. “Pedophilia is not a sexual attraction to somebody 13 years old who is sexually mature. Pedophilia is attraction to children who have not reached puberty.”….
Yiannopoulos, meanwhile, defended himself on Facebook on Sunday and Monday as the tide of controversy rose.
“I do not support pedophilia. Period,” he wrote. “It is a vile and disgusting crime, perhaps the very worst. There are selectively edited videos doing the rounds, as part of a coordinated effort to discredit me from establishment Republicans, that suggest I am soft on the subject.”
The openly gay writer made his name with a knack for taunting various groups and manipulating the outrage that followed. He led a Twitter campaign last year against “Ghostbusters” star Leslie Jones that was so vitriolic that Twitter banned him. He has called feminism “cancer” in his campus appearances, and he once wrote a Breitbart story headlined, “Birth Control Makes Women Unattractive and Crazy.” ….
Schneider: Media keep falling for Trump’s mind control tricks Christian Schneider , Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Published Jan. 27, 2017
….But in Trump’s version, it is he who is controlling other peoples’ brains — most specifically, he is directing the hive mind of the American media, bamboozling them into covering superfluous nonsense while his actual policies evade proper scrutiny.
His detractors often chalk up Trump’s erratic behavior to lack of impulse control and a shortage of maturity. And sure, it is hard to deny Trump exhibits those traits — there are likely plenty of 1980s comedy writers who are shocked to find their rejected “Kid President” scripts have become a documentary….
But when journalists wail about Trump’s wild misstatements, they are getting the “story” but missing the “news.” Certainly, Trump’s mistaken belief that between 3 million and 5 million people voted illegally is worth covering, as it indicates the president might be living in a world of delusion — but it very well could be a smokescreen to obscure other actions that actually matter far more….
Is Trump A Fascist? 10 Quotes From The President On Nationalism, Militarism And Violence By Cristina Silva 02/06/17
Donald Trump is a fascist, to hear many of his critics tell it. But what exactly does that mean?
An image from the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C., warning about the early signs of fascism went viral recently after Trump’s opponents linked the bullet points detailed in the exhibit to his administration. The warning signs included “disdain for human rights” and “powerful and continuing nationalism.”
Fascism has also become a trending search in recent months for the Merriam Webster Dictionary website, which defines the term as a “political philosophy, movement, or regime… that exalts nation and often race above the individual.” It states that fascism silences opposition and involves “severe economic and social regimentation.”
The Washington Post took a look at Trump’s campaign pledges in October and compared them to fascist traits such as hyper-nationalism, militarism, glorification of violence, a desire to purge the disloyal and theatricality, among other things. It concluded that Trump was an “amateurish imitation of the real thing.”
Since taking office in January, Trump has vowed to put “America first” and banned refugees and people from seven majority-Muslim countries from entering the United States. He has told his opponents at the State Department and Department of Justice to get with his program or move out. And he has promised to overhaul the nation’s trade deals and economy.
Below are 10 quotes from Trump that critics claim show that his administration might be embracing the nationalistic, militaristic and violent rhetoric of extreme right-wing fascist regimes built around a leadership cult.
Ex-wife of Trump’s Labor Secretary pick Andy Puzder told Oprah he abused, threatened her: ‘You will pay for this’
The ex-wife of President Trump’s pick for Labor Secretary, Andy Puzder, once claimed he “vowed revenge” after she leaked spousal abuse allegations to the public, according to a new video….
The context of her identity implies she was speaking of Puzder, the CEO of the Carl’s Jr. parent company, CKE, and his repeated attacks detailed in divorce documents. The couple split in 1987, when Puzder was known as an anti-abortion advocate in St. Louis….
The Senate, Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee requested the footage in January, along with about 20 other domestic violence-related episodes, ahead of Puzder’s confirmation hearing on Thursday. His appointment is expected to be opposed by Democratic members of the U.S. Senate.
“I wound up losing everything. Everything. I have nothing,” Fierstein recalled.
“He has a Porshe and a Mercedes-Benz. He has the home. He has everything. He was an attorney. He knew how to play the system,” she added. Months after the episode aired, Fierstein recanted to maintain custody of their two children and has denied the allegations against Puzder ever since…. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/ex-wife-trump-labor-secretary-pick-told-oprah-abused-article-1.2973083
Group of women who say they were abused by Sir Edward Heath also claim their parents ran a satanic sex cult that was involved in SIXTEEN child murders
They say that the cult regularly slaughtered children as ritual sacrifices in church
The woman claim that the former prime minister was part of a paedophile ring
If the allegations are true it would make the cult the worst child murderers in British history
By Rebecca Camber for the Daily Mail 19 February 2017
A group of women who say Sir Edward Heath abused them as children have also accused their parents of being involved in up to 16 murders.
The farce came as police probe incredible claims that the former prime minister was linked to a paedophile ring that killed as many as 16 children – which would make them the worst child murderers in British history.
The seemingly far-fetched allegations have been made by a family who allege that the politician was part of a satanic sex cult run by their own parents. They say that the cult regularly slaughtered children as ritual sacrifices in churches and forests around southern England and also participated in similar ceremonies in Africa. They claim their mother and father – who is said to have known the former Conservative leader – were responsible for slaughtering children ranging from babies to teenagers – yet they evaded justice. The paedophile ring – which they say Sir Edward was part of – stabbed, tortured and maimed youngsters in churches and burnt babies in satanic orgies before men, women and children gorged themselves on blood and body parts, police have been told….
The godson of Sir Edward Heath reacted angrily yesterday after it was claimed that a police chief is ‘120 per cent’ sure that sex abuse allegations against the former prime minister are genuine. Wiltshire Chief Constable Mike Veale was reported to believe child abuse allegations against the late politician – which include lurid tales of satanic child slaughter – are ‘totally convincing’. Mr Veale, whose force has been investigating the claims for 18 months, is also said to believe that Sir Edward was a paedophile whose crimes were covered up. Police have established that, contrary to claims that Sir Edward could not have committed the crimes because he never drove a car and always had a police driver with him, he did drive and once had a car.
Alleged MS-13 gang members accused in Houston woman’s ‘Satanic’ murder March 02, 2017
Two alleged MS-123 gang members, Diego Hernandez-Riversa, 18, and Miguel Alvarez-Flores, 22, were charged Wednesday in a case involving the killing of a Hispanic woman in Houston as part of a “Satanic” ritual.
The pair had been arrested Monday and charged the following day with aggravated kidnapping in a different case.
The MS-13 gang, also known as the Mara Salvatrucha, has roots in El Salvador and a violent record in several countries. The MS-13 first reached into the U.S. in the 1980s and has become a notorious international street gang. According to court documents, a 14-year-old girl was kidnapped by the men, forced to ingest drugs and alcohol and sexually assaulted. In the other case, Hernandez-Rivera and Alvarez-Flores allegedly kidnapped a male victim around Feb. 2 with the intent to inflict bodily injury, sexually abuse and terrorize him, according to court documents. According to the teenage girl’s testimony to police, inside the apartment was a shrine dedicated to the gang member’s Satanic beliefs. At one point, the girl whose body was discovered — known as ‘Genesis’ in court documents — spoke out of turn in anger against the gang members’ devil worship. When the teen awoke the next morning, Genesis was gone…. http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/03/02/alleged-ms-13-gang-members-accused-in-houston-womans-satanic-murder.html
Gang members accused in satanic ritual murder, jailed in Texas
Monday, March 06, 2017 By Shelby Lin Erdman – Cox Media Group National Content Desk
Houston authorities arrested two alleged gang members from El Salvador, both in the U.S. illegally, on charges of kidnapping three girls and killing one of them in what was described as a satanic ritual, police said.
Law enforcement officials identified the suspects as Miguel Alvarez-Flores, 22, and Diego Hernandez-Rivera, 18, of the MS-13 gang. Both are jailed on $300,000 bonds and are facing charges of aggravated kidnapping and murder, The Associated Press reported.
The body of a 15-year-old girl was found last month with gunshots to the face and chest. While her identity is still unknown, police believe that she’s a missing teenager from Jersey Village, Texas, and the victim of gang violence.
The other two kidnap victims were 14 and 16 years old, police said. The 14-year-old told investigators that gang members forced drugs and alcohol on the girls and forced them to have sex.
She also said the 15-year-old was killed in a satanic ritual after the teen got angry and lashed out at the gang’s shrine to a satanic saint…..
Inside the ‘Satanic’ home where police freed five children from their parents Charles White Thursday 16 Feb 2017
Five children have been freed by police after they were seen to be malnourished and were reportedly on drugs.
The police have now taken the kids away from their American-Colombian parents after neighbours saw them ‘dancing around’ with ‘Satanic symbols’ on them. The children were freed after neighbours heard concerning screams from the Bucaramanga, Colombia, flat.
Reportedly the children showed signs of malnutrition and abuse.
Police reported the flat was filled with smoke and that they found ‘burnt offerings’ after breaking open the door….
Messages seen from outside the flat show graffiti such as ‘US=Enemies, 666’ and ‘Mundo de la mentira’ or ‘World of lies’.
DEVIL’S LAIR Inside the chilling ‘Satanic’ home where ‘drugged up’ kids were rescued from parents who ‘practised devilish rituals’
The children, who all showed signs of malnutrition and abuse, were freed after a police raid following a call from neighbours who were worried about screaming By GUY BIRCHALL 16th February 2017 FIVE kids have been taken into care by Colombian cops after their American and Colombian parents were found to be drugged up and dancing around the property covered with satanic symbols.
The children, who all showed signs of malnutrition and abuse, were freed after a police raid following a call from neighbours who were worried about screaming coming from the flat….
U.S. Animal Abuse Records Deleted—What We Stand to Lose
By hiding online records of welfare violations, U.S. agency robs journalists, investigators, and the public of timely information—and takes pressure off abusers. By Natasha Daly February 6, 2017 Two weeks into the Trump Administration, thousands of documents detailing animal welfare violations nationwide have been removed from the website of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), which has been posting them publicly for decades. These are the inspection records and annual reports for every commercial animal facility in the U.S.—including zoos, breeders, factory farms, and laboratories.
These records have revealed many cases of abuse and mistreatment of animals, incidents that, if the reports had not been publicly posted, would likely have remained hidden. This action plunges journalists, animal welfare organizations, and the public at large into the dark about animal welfare at facilities across the country. The records document violations of the Animal Welfare Act, the federal law that regulates treatment of animals used for research and exhibition. The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), which has maintained the online database, cites privacy concerns as justification for the removal….
In response, animal-rights groups have launched a counterattack. On February 6, the Humane Society of the United States initiated legal action against the USDA, arguing that the removal of records violates a 2009 settlement between the two parties. Other groups, including PETA, the Physicians Committee For Responsible Medicine, and Born Free USA, have filed a joint lawsuit against the USDA, arguing that in removing this data, the department is in violation of FOIA and that the action hinders the groups’ ability to identify violations of the Animal Welfare Act. The USDA has yet to respond to either legal action…. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/02/wildlife-watch-usda-animal-welfare-trump-records/
Positive Profile: writer Jean Rafferty says being creative is the key to positivity Claire Henderson 23rd January 2017
Award-winning journalist Jean Rafferty is well known for her highly respected features on subjects such as prostitution, rape and abuse. She has also written Myra, Beyond Saddleworth, and The Four Marys, and is chair of Scottish PEN’s writers in prison committee. Today, Jean reveals how she works through “writer’s terror”; enjoying the small pleasures in life is essential to get through the difficult times; and how she uses creativity as the best way of staying positive.
….You have written on some very confronting topics such as prostitution, abuse and rape…what is the most difficult piece you have written?
I think the first one I wrote on satanist ritual abuse. It was about a family in Ayrshire, where a little boy from one of the families had spoken out about weird and abusive ceremonies held by his extended family. He and his brothers were taken into care. The families took the legal process to the final legal appeal. They won, but my reading of the court documents and interviews with people around it led me to believe they were guilty. The way satanist ritual abuse controls people’s thoughts damages them for life. The whole thing seeped into my spirits, to the extent that a very close friend said, “You’re not yourself.” It was the lack of mental freedom that really upset me. The little boy was returned to his family at the age of 10, having been told by the judge that he was a liar. I still think of him and wonder what happened to him….
Sex Abuse Victim Speaks Out After Religious Cult Leaves Minnesota January 25, 2017 SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — A victim of sexual abuse by the leader of a religious sect in Minnesota spoke out Wednesday amid concerns that its members have relocated to the state of Washington.
Lindsay Tornambe, 30, and two of her attorneys held a news conference and urged any other possible victims to come forward.
In October, Victor Barnard, 55, longtime leader of the River Road Fellowship, was sentenced to 30 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting two teenage girls, including Tornambe, who were members of his sect in Minnesota.
Tornambe has filed a lawsuit in Minnesota against leaders of the sect for failing to protect her when she lived as a young girl at the River Road Fellowship near Finlayson. “Our concern is that children are at risk today because of this cult,” said Leander James of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, an attorney for Tornambe. Barnard was the only sect member charged in Minnesota with sex crimes. Lawyers for Tornambe said they were not aware of any abuse occurring in Washington. They did not know why members had moved to the Spokane and Bellingham areas….
The women said they were among about 10 girls and young women chosen to live in a camp apart from their families as part of Barnard’s “Maidens Group.” Barnard kept the girls secluded, using religious coercion and intimidation to maintain his control over them, authorities said…. http://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2017/01/25/sex-abuse-victim-speaks-out-after-religious-cult-leaves-minnesota/
U.S. News AP Exclusive: Ex-congregants reveal years of ungodly abuse By MITCH WEISS 2/27/17
SPINDALE, N.C. (AP) — From all over the world, they flocked to this tiny town in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, lured by promises of inner peace and eternal life. What many found instead: years of terror — waged in the name of the Lord.
Congregants of the Word of Faith Fellowship were regularly punched, smacked, choked, slammed to the floor or thrown through walls in a violent form of deliverance meant to “purify” sinners by beating out devils, 43 former members told The Associated Press in separate, exclusive interviews.
Victims of the violence included pre-teens and toddlers — even crying babies, who were vigorously shaken, screamed at and sometimes smacked to banish demons.
“I saw so many people beaten over the years. Little kids punched in the face, called Satanists,” said Katherine Fetachu, 27, who spent nearly 17 years in the church.
Word of Faith also subjected members to a practice called “blasting” — an ear-piercing verbal onslaught often conducted in hours-long sessions meant to cast out devils.
As part of its investigation, the AP reviewed hundreds of pages of law enforcement, court and child welfare documents, along with hours of conversations with Jane Whaley, the evangelical church’s controlling leader, secretly recorded by followers….
The woman who was imprisoned by her own cult-leader father after he led her to believe he was God
Katy Morgan-Davies’ father told her lightening would strike her if she tried to leave. By Catriona Harvey-Jenner 19 January 2017
Brave Katy Morgan-Davies has recently opened up about the 30 years of her life she spent imprisoned in her own home by her cult-leader father who proclaimed to be God, and prevented his daughter from advancing her social skills past the age of six-years-old while subjecting her to inconceivable abuse. Disturbingly, 33-year-old Katy only realised that Maoist cult leader Aravindan Balakrishnan, who is also known as Comrade Bala, was her father after she was released as an adult, reports The Daily Mail. Balakrishnan, who is now in prison after having been jailed for 23 years following a trial, imprisoned cult members, threatened them with psychological terror (he told them lightening would strike them and kill them if they left the house without his permission), as well as being violent towards them and forcing his ‘followers’ to perform sexual acts on him.
Katy’s harrowing upbringing and adult life is now being depicted in a television documentary one writer describes as “more like a sci-fi drama than a documentary”, the things Balakrishnan did were so unthinkable.
The young woman, who had the social skills of a six year-old and was unable to cross the road or use basic appliances when she escaped aged 30, was made to believe natural disasters like earthquakes and tragic accidents such as the Space Shuttle Challenger explosion in 1986 were her fault.
She had never been to see a doctor or a dentist when she emerged into the real world three decades into her life….
Balakrishnan managed to establish his warped cult after initially heading up a group called the ‘Workers’ Institute of Marxism–Leninism–Mao Zedong Thought’. Through that, he had a small number of followers, and began to ‘take in’ some of his faithful loyalists. But that home was to become the site of the cult, which continued to entrap more and more people.
Tragically, Katy first tried to escape in 2005 when she was 22, and she spotted the back door open. She made a run for it and was sent to the local police station by a passer-by. But when she spoke to officers, they convinced her to call Balakrishnan, who came to pick her up after reassuring police everything was fine….. http://www.cosmopolitan.co.uk/reports/news/a48943/katy-morgan-davies-imprisoned-father-violent-cult/
The Cult Next Door: The Moaist Cult Leader Who Kept His Followers Imprisoned In Brixton For Decades He brain-washed them into thinking he had God-like powers. 25/01/2017 Sara C Nelson Senior Editor, The Huffington Post UK The 75-year-old cult leader who raped two of his followers and kept his daughter a “slave” for three decades sat impassive as he was jailed for 23 years. A slight, grey-haired pensioner, there was little hint of the charismatic, arch manipulator Aravindan Balakrishnan truly was.
But since the 1970s Balakrishnan had successfully brainwashed a group of women into thinking he had God-like powers, effectively keeping them psychological prisoners as he subjected them to decades of abuse….
He ran his tiny south London cult, the Workers’ Institute of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Zedong Thought, with an iron fist – banning his daughter from leaving the house or mixing with other children and sexually assaulting two of his followers.
To keep his devotees in check, Balakrishnan invented an invisible war machine called Jackie which he said could kill or trigger earthquakes if anyone went against his will….
Acclaimed director Vanessa Engle tells the extraordinary story of Balakrishnan’s cult in a BBC2 documentary on Thursday at 9pm.
The Cult Next Door features interviews with two of the women who escaped: Aisha Wahab, a 72-year-old Malaysian woman who was part of the cult for 40 years, and Katy Morgan-Davies, Balakrishnan’s daughter, who was born and raised in captivity….
The Cult Next Door
This documentary by acclaimed director Vanessa Engle tells the extraordinary story of a strange cult, which came to light in 2013 when a sensational news story broke about three women emerging from a small flat in Brixton in south London after decades in captivity. Tracing the group back to its roots in the 1970s, the film describes how its leader Aravindan Balakrishnan, a student of Indian origin, believed in an international communist revolution and created a tiny political sect that followed the teachings of China’s Chairman Mao.
The film features exclusive interviews with two of the women who escaped – Aisha Wahab, a 72-year-old Malaysian woman who was part of Balakrishnan’s group for 40 years, and Katy Morgan-Davies, Balakrishnan’s daughter, who was born and raised in captivity. The film documents how this left-wing collective evolved into a bizarre pseudo-religious cult, where members were controlled, threatened and brainwashed so that they were too terrified to leave. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08c3vrx
How the Nazi’s defense of ‘just following orders’ plays out in the mind
A handwritten request for clemency by Adolf Eichmann, an architect of the Nazi Holocaust, who said he shouldn’t be held responsible for his actions because he and other low-level officers were following orders from their superiors. A new study released Thursday offers one reason why people can be easily coerced into carrying out heinous orders.
In other words, people actually feel disconnected from their actions when they comply with orders, even though they’re the ones committing the act. In a 1962 letter, as a last-ditch effort for clemency, Holocaust organizer Adolf Eichmann wrote that he and other low-level officers were “forced to serve as mere instruments,” shifting the responsibility for the deaths of millions of Jews to his superiors. The “just following orders” defense, made famous in the post-WWII Nuremberg trials, featured heavily in Eichmann’s court hearings.
But that same year Stanley Milgram, a Yale University psychologist, conducted a series of famous experiments that tested whether “ordinary” folks would inflict harm on another person after following orders from an authoritative figure. Shockingly, the results suggested any human was capable of a heart of darkness.
Milgram’s research tackled whether a person could be coerced into behaving heinously, but new research released Thursday offers one explanation as to why.
“In particular, acting under orders caused participants to perceive a distance from outcomes that they themselves caused,” said study co-author Patrick Haggard, a cognitive neuroscientist at University College London, in an email.
In other words, people actually feel disconnected from their actions when they comply with orders, even though they’re the ones committing the act.
The study, published in the journal Current Biology, described this distance as people experiencing their actions more as “passive movements than fully voluntary actions” when they follow orders.
Researchers at University College London and Université libre de Bruxelles in Belgium arrived at this conclusion by investigating how coercion could change someone’s “sense of agency,” a psychological phenomenon that refers to one’s awareness of their actions causing some external outcome. Unlike Milgram’s classic research, Haggard’s team introduced a shocking element that was missing in the original 1960s experiments: actual shocks. Haggard said they used “moderately painful, but tolerable, shocks.” Milgram feigned shocks up to 450 volts.
According to Milgram’s experiments, 65 percent of his volunteers, described as “teachers,” were willing (sometimes reluctantly) to press a button that delivered shocks up to 450 volts to an unseen person, a “learner” in another room. Although pleas from the unknown person could be heard, including mentions of a heart condition, Milgram’s study said his volunteers continued to shock the “learner” when ordered to do so. At no point, however, did someone truly experience an electric shock.