Thursday 26 April 2012

Anders Breivik is not unique

From 'The Daily Mail' (July 2011)

Anders Breivik has already confessed to killing 77 people and to trying to kill hundreds more. However, facing the possibility of being judged insane and locked away in a secure hospital for the rest of his life, Breivik has, so far, been allowed to claim in court that:
  • he is not guilty of terrorist offences.
  • he is a one-man cell, and one of nine founder-members, of an international Order of neo-Templar Knights who are defending Christendom from Islamic invasion. 
  • he is, and was, perfectly sane.
  • the team of Norwegian forensic psychiatrists who (after months of observation) diagnosed him as being a paranoid schizophrenic, were acting under the influence of the Norwegian government, and/or were in shock, and/or lacked experience. 
  • the same psychiatrists compiled a fake report designed to make him seem crazy and of little intelligence.  
  • he deliberately trained himself to suppress his emotions in order to commit barbaric acts which, under normal circumstances, he would have found repulsive.
  • the young people whom he executed had all been brainwashed.
  • he was obliged to commit these acts to prevent even greater crimes.
  • he was motivated by his political views and his thoughts, and behaviour, were, therefore, logical, conscious and legitimate.
  • had the same barbaric acts been committed by Islamic extremists, there would have been absolutely no consideration of the perpetrators' sanity and, therefore, he is the victim of a racist plot.
  • since 1945, numerous Norwegians have been committed to psychiatric hospitals for ideological reasons.
I have previously stated on this Blog that elementary common-sense reveals Anders Breivik to be an absurd, but nonetheless dangerous, megalomaniacal psychopath (i.e. suffering from a chronic mental disorder, especially when resulting in paranoid delusions of grandeur and self-righteousness and the compulsion to pursue grandiose objectives).

At the heart of Breivik's trial is the question of whether he is, or was, able to judge the difference between right and wrong. Two, apparently conflicting, psychological reports (compiled by forensic psychiatrists) say that he is either suffering from paranoid schizophrenia (and, therefore, according to medical textbooks, psychotic), or suffering from severe and inflexible Narcissistic Personality Disorder (and, therefore, according to medical textbooks, not psychotic). The authors of the first report noted that, at various times, Breivik spoke of his intention to die in defence of Christendom, whilst at other times he spoke of his intentions to be named as the 'Regent of Norway' and to set up racially-pure, human breeding colonies. Self-evidently, no matter what puerile drivel he spouts, Breivik's behaviour has proved that he is, and was, living in a paranoid delusion of his own absolute moral and intellectual authority fundamental to the maintenance of his self-esteem/identity and related psychological function. He has rejected traditional morality and placed himself above the rule of law. Thus, Breivik now steadfastly pretends to be absolutely righteous even though all the quantifiable evidence proves him to be downright evil.

Anders Breivik a.k.a. 'Kight Templar Sigurd'

Breivik remains certain that he alone represents the truth, and he acts accordingly.

Although Anders Breivik has only imagined, rather than actually instigated, a cult, he is not unique, and I would recommend anyone wanting to delve into the twisted minds of such evil persons, to read  'Destroying the World to Save It,' Professor Robert Jay Lifton, New York Metropolitan Books, 1999. 

Chizuo Matsumoto (b; 1955) a.k.a 'Shoko Asahara' ('The Great Enlightened One'

In this important work, Lifton describes how an apparently absurd, convicted pseudo-scientific/medical charlatan, Chizuo Matsumoto (who pretended he could fly) was allowed (by the Japanese authorities) to instigate a pernicious cult dissimulated as a 'New Religious Movement,' which he labelled 'Aum Shinrikyo'  ('Aum Supreme Truth').

Afflicted by glaucoma, Matsumoto (who came from a background of poverty), spent much of his young life in an institution for blind children. He was, by all accounts, a good student, but, because he was big for his age and not totally blind, he also acquired a reputation as a bully and a playground racketeer. He later trained as a masseur and acupuncturist, often angrily claiming he'd been rejected by medical school due to his handicap. Matsumoto's first brush with the law resulted in him being convicted of assault and fined. He then moved to Tokyo and married into money. In 1978, Matsumoto (aged 23) bought, and began running, a traditional Chinese pharmacy. In 1981, he was convicted of a fraud involving the re-labelling of a proprietary alcohol which he peddled at more than 1000% mark-up to elderly and confused persons, as a miraculous cure. In 1984, Matsumoto (the Japanese equivalent of Smith) legally changed his name to 'Shoko Asahara' ('The Great Enlightened One'). From a Tokyo bed-sitting room he then ran what he called the 'Aum Club' for 'Yoga and Meditation.' This type of benign, stress-relieving activity was already a craze amongst the bright and beautiful in Tokyo, and Matsumoto, who tailored his story to reflect the spirit of the times, attracted many graduates from elite universities. However, as a result of what was essentially a deception, Matsumoto began to subject his clients to co-ordinated devious techniques of social, psychological and physical persuasion, without their fully-informed consent.

levitation - paranormal abilities - supernormal abilities

Although it seems too ridiculous to be true, Matsumoto's acquired a reputation for being able to 'levitate' and to be able to teach others to 'levitate.' This chapter of his fairytale was largely-built on the dubious foundation of photos featured in the popular media, along with the testimonies of doctors, scientists, etc. The 'Blind, Yogic-Flying Guru, Shoko Asahara,' soon became a celebrity, and 'Aum Club membership' spread like a virus. 

In 1989, Matsumoto (aged 34) succeeded in registering his expanding, criminal enterprise as 'religious.' Unfortunately, the Japanese Constitution (which was drawn-up by American lawyers in the aftermath of WWII under the direction of General MacArthur) guarantees religious freedom, but, exactly like the US Constitution (upon which it is based), makes no common-sense attempt to explain in accurate deconstructed terms what exactly constitutes a 'religion.' 

Whilst steadfastly pretending absolute moral and intellectual authority, Matsumoto then pursued various clandestine criminal objectives (fraudulent, sexual and violent). He was particularly active in the extortion of money and property from the elderly whom he now could gain confidential information about, and access to, via their younger relatives who were his deployable agents. Although Matsumoto undoubtedly set off as a severe and inflexible narcissist, within a few short years, he became a multi-millionaire, megalomaniacal psychopath controlling a brutal totalitarian state in microcosm (which he claimed to comprise 9000 persons in Japan and 40 000 mainly in Russia) fronted by an international labyrinth of reality-inverting, legally-registered corporate structures, including: 'publishing and IT companies,'medical charities,' a 'political party', a 'radio station' and even a 'chain of restaurants.' The unconditional deference of his deluded core-adherents only served to confirm, and magnify, his own paranoid delusions. Eventually, acting under the frighteningly-familiar, self-gratifying belief that he was a righteous superhuman struggling to enlighten the world and save it from a force of absolute evil, Matsumoto, began to hatch a meticulous plot to usurp power in Japan and trigger WWIII. This involved directing his most fanatical followers to procure, and/or assemble, war materials and to silence anyone who represented a threat to his monopoly of information.

Image illustrative de l'article AK-74

After failing to acquire a nuclear device in post-'Soviet' Russia, Matsumoto's agents bought a secondhand Mil Mi-17 military helicopter as well as machinery to manufacture AK74 fully-automatic assault rifles and ammunition. These weapons were brought into Japan by a front-company controlled by the leader of 'Aum.' The crates were apparently labelled 'machine tools & agricultural equipment.' It is interesting to note that these banal descriptions were not entirely false, but they weren't entirely true. Matsumoto's agents also acquired chemicals and laboratory equipment to manufacture 'Sarin' and 'VX' nerve-gas.  Reminiscent of a 'James Bond' movie, Matsumoto planned to use his helicopter to wipe out the entire population of Tokyo (including the Japanese government and Imperial family) by spraying liquid nerve agent from the air at low-level, but then lay the blame for the barbaric attack on an International conspiracy involving Zionists, the US military, the British Royal family, etc. Matsumoto imagined that, in the ensuing confusion, he could step forward in his Messianic role of 'The Great Enlightened One' and, thus, he would be universally accepted as the new, Divine ruler of Japan.

As the initial steps in creating his big lie, the would-be 'Emperor' decided to try out his weapon of mass-destruction. At the end of 1993, 29 sheep were killed by nerve gas on a remote property in Western Australia. Then, in what has become known as the 'Matsumoto Incident,'  8 people were killed by a release of nerve gas, and over 200 harmed, in the Japanese city of Matsumoto, Nagano, June 1994. This is widely-claimed to be the first use of chemical weapons in a terrorist attack on civilians, in history. The Japanese police were baffled, and investigations focused only on an innocent local resident. Meanwhile, Matsumoto had discovered that, in the open air, his gas had quickly dispersed, so it was decided to try smaller-scale co-ordinated attacks in the confined space of the Tokyo Subway (the busiest in the world in the largest city in the world). 'Aum' adherents pumped liquid Sarin into plastic bags, and wrapped these with newspapers. Five 'Aum' adherents, including a heart surgeon and three physicists, carried the banal-looking packages on the subway . Each one boarded a different train and punctured his package with the sharpened point of an umbrella, just before disembarking. The liquid Sarin soaked through the newspaper, slowly transforming back into gas. The Sarin passed through its victims' skin, first causing breathing difficulties, then  loss of muscle control and finally seizures. The gas also caused blindness. Thus, Matsumoto really imagined that in the land of the blind, a one-eyed man would be King . These further 'tests' proved more successful, killing 13 people and harming more than 5000, March 1995. Today, there are still many people suffering physically, and psychologically, from these crimes.

After previously refusing to heed the timely-warnings of ex-adherents and cult specialists (partly out of respect for the Constitution and partly on the advice of co-opted 'religious scholars' who insisted that 'Aum apostates' could not be trusted and that 'Shoko Ashara' was a 'Buddhist-inspired, personal friend of the Dalai Lama'), the Japanese authorities finally looked beyond the end of the noses and accused 'Aum Shinrikyo' of complicity in these attacks as well as being behind various other incidents. The group's reality-inverting propagandists issued a statement from 'The Great Enlightened One' in which he insisted that he was the victim of a conspiracy and that the US military were trying to incriminate and destroy him. However, after several days of panic (in which a senior police officer was shot and wounded, and a package of burning cyanide was discovered near to a Tokyo subway ventilation-duct) 'Aum's' properties were raided by an army of Japanese law enforcement agents wearing chemical protection suits. More than 150 adherents were arrested. A warrant had also been issued for Matsumoto, but he had vanished. Ten days later, he was  found with a large quantity of cash, sat in the lotus position in a pool of his own stale urine, hiding in a underground chamber at an 'Aum' compound. He arrogantly ordered the arresting officers to take their 'impure mortal hands' off his 'sacred body.' 

In October 1995, the demonstrable fake known as 'Aum Shinrikyo' was  stripped of its legal status of a 'religion' and declared bankrupt the following year. However, the group continues to exist (albeit under surveillance), because of the thoughtless inclusion of the essentially-meaningless term 'religion,' in the Japanese Constitution. Matsumoto's mob is now officially funded by a 'computer business and donations.' A common-sense attempt to ban the peddling of his poisonous fiction as fact, under 'Subversive Activities Prevention' legislation dating from 1952, was rejected by a 'Public Security Examination Commission' in 1997.

Matsumoto stood trial on 27 counts of murder in 13 separate indictments. The prosecution's case included 150 tons of evidence. War materials recovered from 'Aum' headquarters in Kamikuishik (at the foot of Mt. Fuji), included a military grade laser, chemical and biological weapons, such as Anthrax and Ebola cultures. 'Aum' held stockpiles of chemicals to produce enough Sarin to kill between four and ten millions people. Police also found laboratories to manufacture drugs such as LSD, a safe containing millions of dollars in cash, and gold, and a group of starving adherents who had been imprisoned as traitors. 

Thus, it was proved beyond all reasonable doubt that Matsumoto had given orders to acquire weapons of mass-destruction and to attack the citizens of Tokyo as part of a meticulous plan to kill and/or maim, and/or terrify the entire Japanese population, including the government and the Head of State, and install himself as Emperor of Japan. . In February  2004, Matsumoto was found guilty of most of the charges. He was sentenced to death by hanging. His lawyers appealed on the grounds that their client was mentally unfit, and psychiatric examinations were ordered. However, Matsumoto then refused to speak to psychiatrists, although he did communicate with prison staff. The psychiatrists concluded that Matsumoto displayed the capacity to exercise free will. Even so, in 2006, because his lawyers had failed to submit a required statement naming the exact reason for the appeal, the High Court decided not to grant Matsumoto leave to appeal. This technical decision was upheld by the Supreme Court, 15th September, 2006. Two other re-trial appeals were declined by the Appellate court. However, Matsumoto's death sentence has yet to be carried out.

For obvious reasons, the external presentation of the'Aum' fairytale was radically modified in the aftermath of its author's arrest and trial. At first, Matsumoto's two young sons were presented as the new enlightened child-Gurus. 'Aum' was then re-labelled 'Aleph' in 2000 and a 'change of religious doctrine' was announced. All reference to controversial 'Buddhist' texts which had previously been used as the false justification for murder, were removed. 'Aleph' apologized to 'Aum's' victims and created a 'compensation fund.' 

In 2000, Russian police arrested five 'Aum/Aleph' adherents, including Dmitri Sigachev, an ex-KGB agent. They were suspected of gathering weapons to attack Japanese cities as part of a plan to free Matsumoto. 'Aleph' immediately issued a statement denying any connection between the group and Sigachev.

In 2011, confirmation of the death sentence on Seiichi Endo, brought to a close 16 years of courtroom drama in which 189 members of 'Aum' were prosecuted for all-manner of heinous crimes. Only one was found not guilty. Seiichi Endo had been the cult's so-called 'Health and Welfare Minister.' He is the 13th adherent of  Chizuo Matsumoto who faces execution for murder. 

More than a decade before the Olso attacks, in  'Destroying the World to Save It,' Robert Lifton warned of the almost inevitability of devious psychopaths (like Chizuo Matsumoto and Anders Breivik) who will again go unrecognised, and who, eventually, might succeed in acquiring a nuclear device. Even though it beggars belief, rebranded 'Aleph,' Matsumoto's mob is today still listed by the Japanese authorities as a 'religious movement with more than 1000 followers.' Various investigations have proved that these people remain intellectually castrated and that they all still need to believe that 'The Great Enlightened One' is the innocent victim of a conspiracy In 2005, the Japanese authorities declared that 650 members of 'Aleph' lived communally and that the group had '26 facilities in 17 prefectures, as well as about 120 residential facilities.'  Not surprisingly, the Japanese public generally considers 'Aleph' to be an extremely dangerous organization, and its adherents have often been targeted by local residents demanding that they go away. Local government agencies have sometimes refused 'Aleph' adherents resident registration, but this form of social exclusion has been declared unlawful by the Japanese courts

Aum Shinrikyo Most Wanted

Whilst posters can still be seen in Tokyo subway stations showing a man and a woman still sought in connection with the Sarin attack of 1995, 'Aum/Aleph' cannot be listed as a pernicious cult, because, officially, this phenomenon does not exist. Consequently, the group is officially listed as a 'terrorist movement' in most countries outside of Japan (including the USA and member States of the European Union), but to give some idea of the general misunderstanding of the cult phenomenon, readers of this Blog might be interested to learn that 'Aum/Aleph' is currently listed on Wikipedia as a 'New Religious Movement' and a 'Terrorist Organization' . 

Elementary common-sense reveals that  'Aum/Aleph' was, and is, nothing more than the made-up name for the deluded dream of a megalomanical psychopath, but which he was allowed to turn into nightmare reality. 

David Brear (copyright 2012)