OC News 2008
This is an archive of news related to Operation Clambake and/or it's author(s). Other news about the controversial fight against the atrocities done by the Cult of Scientology can be found on the newsgroup alt.religion.scientology or Operation Clambake Message Board.
|August 26 2008|
Author of Operation Clambake was interviewed by:
Naturally, I didn't have such luck finding any people who felt so strongly about Beck's beliefs in real life.
"I don't mind watching a Travolta movie or listening to a Scientologist musician" says Andreas Heldal-Lund, the anti-Scientology activist behind xenu.net. "But I do try to stay away from celebrities who use their position to promote the cult."
Huh? I spoke to Heldal-Lund specifically because I wanted a fire-and-brimstone speech about Beck and thetans and brainwashing. Instead, he's totally sensible.
"I imagine all artists are influenced by many things they experience, including a cult... if they visit one," Heldal-Lund continues.
Heldal-Lund is probably right. But it's hard to speculate how deeply Scientology influences Beck, especially given how tight-lipped he's been about it. The little he has admitted is that he's been around it his whole life - his parents have been Scientologists for over 30 years. And his mother, Bibbe, is an Operating Thetan (Level Five!).
|August 21 2008|
Author of Operation Clambake was interviewed on NRK P2 Radioselskapet (national radio) about the beliefs of Scientology.
|August 13 2008|
The author of Operation Clambake was interviewed on national radio in Norway today (P3 Osenbanden) about the death of Isaac Hayes and what Scientologist believes happens when they die.
|August 8 2008|
|July 22 2008|
Article in the Australian Skeptic magazine titled "Scientology Scandals" refers to Operation Clambake.
|June 14 2008|
Video marking the Anonymous Worldwide Protest Sea Arrrgh:
Join the Sea Arrrgh, make yer mark and fly the colors -- June 13 & 20th 2009, protest of the Cult of Scientology. from TheDonzerlyLight on Vimeo.
|June 13 2008|
Portrait interview of author of Operation Clambake in the quarterly newspaper "Fri Tanke" ("Free Thought") published by the national Humanist association in Norway. Full article available here.
Faximile of the 4 page article:
|May 16 2008|
Feature article in the largest Norwegian finance magazine today titled "The Sect of Greed". Some quotes:
Abroad it is first and foremost associated with Hollywood glam and celebrities like John Travolta, Tom Cruise and Lisa Marie Presley. At home with the sad suicide of Kaja Bordevich Ballo, daughter of member of Parliament Olav Gunnar Ballo. But the meaningless has at least resulted in one positive thing: an important and correct focus on the Church of Scientology and especially its unprofessional personality tests.
The focus on the finances of the sect has however lacked, with exception of a statement from the front critic of the Church of Scientology, Andreas Heldal-Lund, to VG: -The Church of Scientology is a criminal and destructive organisation, which only objective is to earn money. The organisation destroys life and tears families apart. Put simply they break people down in order to take their money. The organisation use typical cult methods, like wearing people out physically and mentally.
Kapital has because of that tried to investigate the financial situation around the disputed sect, where all the money is coming from and where they are going. We have been met with a wall of secrecy and reluctance. Do our findings indicate why?
Most of the important aspects of the cult, it's finances and the very shabby history of many connected to it is covered in the article.
- The Church of Scientology absolutely had more than two million over many years [the limit of NOK revenue in order to have to submit your accounts] , says Andreas Heldal-Lund and point out that individual members can generate as much as half a million annually. Certainly, the church has far fewer members now, but before they have had that much income, claims the Scientology critic, who raises another interesting question:
- How is the sale booked? Those who recruit members to these courses and tests get five to ten percentages in commission. Is it booked as income? When people buy courses for hundreds of thousands, if not millions, huge earnings fall to the recruiter. And in addition to that huge sums are being transferred abroad. How is it reported?
The article goes on investigating the financial details of all the best known Norwegian public Scientologists.
On transcripts from the credit rating agencies we learn that four of the four board members of the Church of Scientology [in Norway] isn't credit-worthy. Each and all would have received a refusal even on an application for a mobile phone.
Faximile of the 8 page article in Kapital:
|May 1 2008|
Author of Operation Clambake is guest on the Norwegian talkshow Studio 5 today, similar to the American program The View:
Scientologikirken har eksistert i Norge siden 1977. Den tilbyr en personlighetstest som "lover å hjelpe deg hvis du ikke er fornøyd med livet". I USA sverger berømtheter som Tom Cruise, John Travolta, Jerry Seinfeld og Lisa Marie Presley til scientologi. Her hjemme var nyhetsbildet nylig preget av Kaja Bordevick Ballo (20), som få timer etter å ha tatt testen, valgte å avslutte sitt eget liv. Hvorfor tiltrekkes Hollywoodkjendisene - men også vanlige folk - av religionen?
Ordstyrer Heidi Nordby Lunde, Mina Hadjian, Kari Simonsen og Kjersti Løken Stavrum inviterer i kveld Andreas Heldal-Lund til STUDIO 5. Han er blitt truet på livet av Scientologikirken, og er kjent over hele verden som en av bevegelsens største kritikere. Andreas forteller sin historie...
...om hvordan scientologi praktiseres. Om hvordan han ble en så stor motstander av Scientologikirken, og hvorfor han føler ansvar for å fronte denne motstanden? Og sist, men ikke minst, hvorfor han opererer med hemmelig adresse..?
|April 29 2008|
Operation Clambake mentioned on FOX News today:
Jason Beghe Begs for Records
Veteran TV and movie actor Jason Beghe wants his records back, and I do not mean "Dark Side of the Moon" or "Aqualung."
On Monday night, Beghe -- whom this column told you all about in his exit from Scientology after nearly 14 years -- posted a message on a public forum at OperationClambake.com. He wants returned to him the mountains of folders, files and tapes that were compiled about him by the sect. So far, they've refused.
They managed to get the URL wrong though.
Village Voice also had an article, titled "Former Scientologist Actor Wants His Confessional Files Back":
"This is why I have concerns that my communication will not get to David Miscavige. So I decided to post it on the Internet to make sure he sees it."
Beghe chose a forum that he knew would get maximum attention from Scientology critics and the ranks of Anonymous: on the website "Operation Clambake," which is operated by a Norwegian man, Andreas Heldal-Lund. For years, Heldal-Lund's site has been the most comprehensive clearinghouse for information critical of Scientology, and has withstood multiple attempts by the church's attorneys to shut it down.
They managed to get the URL right. :
|April 26 2008|
Operation Clambake quoted in VG (largest newspaper in Norway) in their weekend feature article titled "The Mecce of the Scientology Celebrities".
Quote (translated from Norwegian):
Tory Christman defected when she met Scientology critic Andreas Heldal-Lund from Norway on the Internet. She had reached OT III and been privileged to the teaching about the evil galactic overlord Xenu.
|April 24 2008|
The author of Operation Clambake was interviewd on Glosslip.com today. Listen to recording here..
DrawBall is an enormous circle on the Internet where anybody can earn ink and draw freely. A huge group of Scientology critics have for months drawn the domain of Operation Clambake "XENU.NET". From the top view it is the most visible web address on DrawBall. It has to be constantly defended and redrawn as anybody can draw over it - and many try.
|April 16 2008|
The first printed interview of Jason Beghe in Village Voice, titled "Scientology's First Celebrity Defector Reveals Church Secrets":
Speaking on the phone from his home in Malibu, Beghe, 48, says the 3-minute video is part of a much longer session. After leaving the church, Beghe had reached out to a Norwegian man, Andreas Heldal-Lund, who runs Operation Clambake (xenu.net), probably the most comprehensive anti-Scientology website on the Internet. Heldal-Lund convinced him to meet him along with another of the church's most well known critics, Mark Bunker, known as "wise beard man" to the "Anonymous" movement that in recent months has organized worldwide protests against Scientology.
"They came to my place out here, and we spent the day together. They set up a camera and I blabbed. And I barely scratched the surface," Beghe says.
FOX News followed up with "Actor Jason Beghe: Scientology Is 'Brainwashing'". Also covered by Defamer linking to Operation Clambake: Scientology Defector Jason Beghe: 'I'm Clear As A Fucking Bell'.
1988 - 2008
From UPI: Scientology blamed in high-profile suicide
NICE, France, April 16 (UPI) -- The daughter of a Norwegian politician killed herself after she received negative results on a personality test by the Church of Scientology, officials said.
Kaja Ballo, daughter of Norwegian politician Olav Ballo, took a personality test administered by a Scientology center in Nice, France, Aftenposten said Wednesday.
Family and friends described the 20-year-old in a generally good mood until Friday, March 28, when she "changed" after reading the results from the test.
She took her own life hours later.
A Scientology spokesman called the allegations "deeply unfair" and pointed to an eating disorder and other psychological issues she experienced in her early teens.
Critics say the break-you-down-build-you-up recruitment tool of Scientologists is controversial.
The tragedy is covered in the English edition of the Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten: "Police probe suicide linked to Scientologists" and includes a quote by author of Operation Clambake:
Break you down, build you up,' for a fee
Psychologist Rudy Myrvang said a test like the one administered by the Scientologists is not constructive, and rather aimed "at breaking you down, and then they'll offer to build you up again." It's a recruitment tool, he said, and a means of generating future income for the church.
A church critic, Andreas Heldal-Lund, agreed, claiming the Scientologists viewed people like Ballo as "'raw meat from the street.' You're told you're worth nothing."
|April 15 2008|
We woke up to the tragic news of the suicide of Kaja Bordevich Ballo (20) today, daughter of the well known Norwegian politician Olav Gunnar Ballo. She took her own life in France where she was studying, only 2 hours after she had been taking a personality test at the Church of Scientology.
The family has expressed that they want a public debate about this tragic event.
From live debate on NRK Redaksjon EN
Media is covering the tragic death of Kaja Bordevich Ballo. I had to fly to Oslo to take part in the following national live debates and interviews:
|April 14 2008|
Operation Clambake arranged an interview with the first huge Scientology celebrity defector when in Los Angeles. A 3 minute preview of the interview was released on YouTube today:
|April 12 2008|
Van driving around in London during the global picket by Anonymous against the Church of Scientology. Picture taken outside the cult main building. The huge poster says:
|April 6 2008|
The author of Operation Clambake was interviewed on a current affairs radio program on Australia's national youth broadcaster Triple J, part of the Australian Broadcasting Network today. The program is called, 'Sunday Night Safran' and has a focus on religion, politics and relationships. The program presenters John Safran (thirty-something year old Jewish fellow) and Father Bob Maguire (70-something year old Catholic Priest).
A recording of the program is available here.
|April 1st 2008|
in Los Angeles:
Scientology critic in Hemet, Los Angeles:
|March 17 2008|
Good article in Radar mentioning Operation Clambake titled CULT FRICTION:
As a rule, Scientologists are forbidden from exposing themselves to any of the dozens of websites - xenu.net, chief among them - devoted to exposing the Church's sordid past and nefarious nature.
Also linked from article on YourHub.com: Masked protesters descend on Church of Scientology
|March 5 2008|
Article about Anonymous on newmatilda.com titled "Scientology vs Everyone" quotes Operation Clambake:
Andreas Heldal-Lund runs Operation Clambake, one of the best known websites claiming to "undress the Church of Scientology". He has publicly criticised the attacks by Anonymous: "Freedom of speech means we need to allow all to speak - including those we strongly disagree with. I am of the opinion that the Church of Scientology is a criminal organisation and a cult which is designed by its delusional founder to abuse people. I am still committed to fight for their right to speak their opinion."
|March 3 2008|
Article in Los Angeles Times titled Scientology taking hits online links to and mentiones Operation Clambake:
In addition, the clamor generated by Anonymous has raised the profile of the small but vehement anti-Scientology community that existed before Anonymous, and even made for some cross-pollination between the two camps.
Scientology's longtime detractors, such as those at Operation Clambake (xenu.net) and Scientology Lies, claim it is not a religion at all but a business that charges its parishioners ever more onerous fees for access to revealed truths. Other online forums, such as the Ex-Scientologist Message Board and ExScientologyKids, have become places for former members to congregate, share stories and offer support
Ironically, it is the church's aversion to negative publicity -- and the legal strategy it has long used to prevent it, that has aroused more online ire than any other issue.
|February 23 2008|
Feature article about the cult, Operation Clambake and its author in Dagbladet today.
Andreas Heldal-Lund (43) claims the Church of Scientology is organised criminality, disguised as a church. As a result of this he has received threatening letters, been under surveillance and been reported to the police by the fellow-believers of Tom Cruise.
Original Norwegian article here. Full English translation by Unlisted here.
Here's an amazing quote from the article, made by Matthias Fosse (head of OSA Norway, or official title their "informations secretary") when he was confronted with the Fair Game doctrine by the journalist:
"- If [Fair Game etc] had existed, Heldal-Lund would not have been able to talk about them, as he would have been 6 feet under. That policy has never been exercised."
This is the official Church of Scientology in Norway, talking to a national newspaper... I assume this means they would have executed if the order was there. Since we can prove that the Fair Game order etc not only have existed and been used, and was never actually cancelled, should I then consider this to be a threat?
|February 16 2008|
Here's very good visial evidence of the 'Anonymous-effect' on Operation Clasmbake:
Mid January everybody were talking about Scientology because of the Tom Cruise video at Gawker, and you see both scientology.org and xenu.net feels the pressure. The cult site was at the same time victim of DDOS attacks and that might have also boosted their stats. Then Anonymous went to the streets Feb 10 and used "xenu.net" on a lot of picket signs - and look at the effect!
|February 13 2008|
|February 12 2008|
|February 10 2008|
Today photo at USA Today:
The biggest picket against the Church of Scientology happened today! In 100 locations globally almost 10.000 people gathered to give a very clear message to the cult: You don't mess with the Internet! See pictures from the pickets here. Read the WikiNews report here
Video of the picket in London
|February 6 2008|
Article in ABCNyheter today titled "Tom Cruise-video skaper bråk" ("Tom Cruise video creates controvercy") interviewing both the author of Operation Clambake and the intelligence officer of Scientology in Norway, Matthias Fosse.
- Jeg håper at demonstrasjonen vil arte seg fredelig og ikke-voldelig. Det har blitt gjennomgått retningslinjer for hvordan demonstrantene skal forholde seg dersom de blir provosert. Flere av de demonstrerende vil bære maske i frykt for represalier fra kirken. Ulempen med dette er at scientologene selv kan infiltrere demonstrasjonen og skape bråk for å stille kritikerne i et dårlig lys, sier han.
Heldal-Lund mener at konflikten mellom Scientologikirken og scientologikritikere har pågått mer enn femten år.
- "Krigen" mot scientologene har blitt drevet av individer over hele verden som har interesse for ytringsfrihet. Scientologene har systematisk forsøkt å fjerne kritisk informasjon på Internett. En gruppe av oss har jobbet hardt for å stoppe det.
Gruppen "Anonymous" har blant annet forsøkt å overbelaste serveren til Scientologikirken. De har også drevet med såkalt Google bombing hvor de har manipulert søkemotoren slik at scientologi-kirken er det første treffet som kommer opp dersom du søker etter "dangerous cult". Heldal-Lund stiller seg sterkt kritisk til denne type nettkriminalitet.
- Dette handler om ytringsfrihet. Dersom noen hadde lykkes med å ta ned scientologisidene hadde jeg tilbudt meg å "hoste" dem selv for å holde dem oppe, dette til tross for at det står usannheter om meg der. Til og med de du liker minst må få uttale seg.
Den norske kritikeren mener at "Anonymous" nå har renset opp internt og at de kun driver med lovlig motstand mot scientologene.
|February 5 2008|
Operation Clambake was interviewed live on the program Hværsaagod Takkskalduha & Co. on radio Kanal24 today.
|February 4 2008|
Operation Clambake interviewed in WikiNews article today titled Church of Scientology: '"Anonymous' will be stopped":
Fielding expert opinions on the Church's response, Wikinews turned to Andreas Heldal-Lund, the creator of the Operation Clambake project, as well as a former Scientologist who wished to remain anonymous.
"I believe strongly in freedom of speech and, living in the best country in the world, I came to the conclusion that I had to help protest this cult. To me CoS [Church of Scientology] was then, and still is, a fascistic organization and a real threat to our democratic principles," said Andreas Heldal-Lund, the creator of Operation Clambake.
"The strategy was to disarm the cult; if they took down something I linked to, I had made preparations to link to another copy or host it myself. The more they resisted it the more attention we got, the more the information was spread and the more people got involved. It felt like a cat and mouse game for many years. What for me started as a weekend stunt grew far beyond my initial scope and Operating Clambake became the site most critics linked and referred to," added Heldal-Lund.
Heldal-Lund states that the effort of the Church to remove criticism of its organization from the web is failing.
"The cult 'Orgs' are 'dead'. Recruiting in most western countries where they once experienced a healthy organic growth is very hard. All their most secret documents are spread beyond recall and easily available for anybody interested. More people than we ever dreamed now know about Scientology and at least that it 'smells fishy'. All the information we once fought day and night to protect is now easily available for free and on the top of Google. The cult has even given up threatening us," added Heldal-Lund who also said that there are "no major lawsuits ongoing or pending" against Operation Clambake.
Operation Clambake was also interviewed in The Guardian today. Quote (while not perfectly accurate) used in the article "Hackers declare war on Scientologists amid claims of heavy-handed Cruise control":
According to Andreas Heldal-Lund, a free-speech campaigner from Norway and critic of Scientology, the "war" has been won by internet activists - with the wide dispersal of negative publicity about Scientology. Heldal-Lund welcomed the demonstrations but condemned the sabotage of Scientology websites.
"One of the biggest arguments against Scientology is they are a threat to free speech and here they can say people are hitting back at their free speech. It ruins our argument."
|January 31 2008|
Author of Operation Clambake receives the FU of the Week award on EPIC-FU:
|January 29 2008|
Operation Clambake was interviewd live on Kickstart! (Radio Tango) this morning about the Anonymous mobilisation and Scientologist Tom Cruise.
|January 27 2008|
Web traffic increase over the last 120 days on www.xenu.net according to Alexa.com:
|January 26 2008|
PC World published an article today titled "Hackers Hit Scientology With Online Attack" linking to Operation Clambake.
The secretive Church of Scientology's practices, including its efforts to use copyright law to restrict the dissemination of information about the church, have engendered a lot of criticism within the Internet community. But one Web site set up to criticize Scientology -- called Operation Clambake -- called the DDOS attacks a bad idea. "Attacking Scientology like that will just make them play the religious persecution card," wrote Andreas Heldal-Lund, the Web site's owner. "They will use it to defend their own counter actions when they try to shatter criticism and crush critics without mercy."
Today there also was a picket in Toronto (Canada) with xenu.net banners:
|January 25 2008|
The Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet has an article today titled "Cruise video trigger hacker war" quoting from and linking to Operation Clambake press release.
Andreas Heldal-Lund, who runs the Scientology critical web site xenu.net, does not condone such activity.
- People should be able to have easy access to both sides and make up their own opinions. Freedom of speech means we need to allow all to speak - including those we strongly disagree with, he writes in a statement.
|January 23 2008|
The graph shows the web server traffic for www.xenu.net over the last week. The peaks are daily backups. Notice the 2mbit/sec increase starting last Tuesday, and hasn't slacked of since. Thank you Tom Cruise for creating all the attention!
|January 22 2008|
Operation Clambake releases a press release commenting on the recent alleged DDoS attacks on Scientology.
|January 19 2008|
Author of Operation Clambake is interviewed in The Sydney Morning Herald today in article titled "Sects, lies and videotape".
That is when the Europeans took over. Andreas Heldal-Lund runs the Norwegian website Clambake (www.xenu.net) which has become the leading repository for Scientology texts and criticism of the cult. He has not been taken through the courts. "They started seeing that the more they got involved with these crazy people on the internet, the more they sued them, the more trouble they had."
Heldal-Lund is not a refugee from the cult but the managing director of a big US corporation in Norway who comes to this issue as a champion of free speech. He has not emerged unscathed. Like many critics who have conducted research on Scientology, he complains of attempts by the cult to intimidate him.
"They are good at shaking up," he told the Herald. "When they want to attack me, they don't go directly at me. They go to my ex-fiancee. They go to my employer or they go to people in the company I work for. They go to the guy I rent the house from. They never make direct claims but ask weird questions. They do all this planting of small seeds of mistrust so that people think, hmm there's something weird about this Andreas. This has been going on for years. This is what they're very, very good at."
|January 15 2008|
Andrew Morton, famous for his biography on Lady Di, released his new book "Tom Cruise - An Unauthorized Biography" today. The book hit number one on Amazon.com's list of top sellers three days after it was published, and was number one on The New York Times Best Sellers list one week after publication.
The author of Operation Clambake is referenced in the book (page 257):
A month later, Scientology's poster boy was asked, together with Oprah Winfrey, to host a concert in Norway to honor the Nobel Peace Price winner, Kenyan environmentalist Professor Wangari Maathai. Before the event, Tom spoke not as an actor but as a man of religion. "One of the things that we believe in [as Scientologists] is peace, freedom. I'm just proud to be here, and very proud to be a Scientologist here and to be part of this."
If Cruise expected the kind of reception in Oslo that he had received at the Scientology gala, he wa mistaken. Noisy protests were staged against the choice of such a controversial figure for the occasion. The newspaper quoted one priest from Stockholm as saying, "They're a manipulative sect that takes over people's lives and finances." Another Scientology foe, Andreas Heldal-Lund, also spoke out: "It's very wrong to let Cruise lead the gala. I've met tons of people who have had their lives devastated by Scientology and this is such an important event."
|News from previous years:|