Scientology TV show blames psychiatry for turning Osama bin Laden into a terrorist

In this clip from a Scientologist TV show, the host and his guests explain that psychiatry led to both the Holocaust and Osama bin Laden's masterminding of the 9/11 attacks. Y'see, bin Laden was led astray by al-Zawahiri, a psychiatrist*, whose therapy** caused ObL to turn into the most committed anti-aviation activist the world has ever seen.

Scientologists Try to Explain how Psychiatrists caused 9/11 and the Holocaust (via Denialism)

*Not actually a psychiatrist
**No therapy took place


  1. While you don’t need Lord Xenu to tell you that the pharmacological-psychiatric complex has its problems, this guy’s arguments are full of FAIL.

    Last I checked, religious people don’t need drugs to convince themselves to commit irrational acts. It kind of comes with the territory or being religious.

  2. That sounds about what you might expect from the “church” of $cientology.
    If you’re not with them, you’re a pawn for the psychs.

  3. It’s like he’s walked out of some crappy TV movie…

    Why are scientologists hell bent on destroying psychiatry anyway – are they just trying to get rid of the competition? Isn’t their practice of ‘auditing’ basically just psychiatry?

  4. I couldn’t even listen to that. The ponderous, pompous way they were both talking about the subject, without ever actually SAYING anything, and the tone of predetermined conclusions… ugh. Made my skin crawl.

  5. Your skin crawling, 13strong? that was actually the thetans trying to get out. You need an audit STAT.

    Send me a few $k and I’ll set that up for you.

  6. wow…. just…. wow.

    typically i’d say “can’t argue with that logic” to mean that it was airtight, but this logic is so faulty from the ground up that i’d say it applies.

    #2, i’d say in a way you’re right. Many religions involve heavy psychological conditioning, and Scientology is no different. But the discipline of Psychiatry is typically characterized by the administering of medication, vs the analysis-based problem solving of psychology. They’re not decrying psychology, but rather the idea of giving people medication. And to do it, they’re painting this picture of al-Zawahiri as this Frankenstien/Himmler mad scientist psyciatrist, funnelling pills into the otherwise not-so-bad Bin Laden’s gullet to turn him into his puppet of destruction. Americans will buy that, right? what could be more evil than an Al Quaeda mad scientist?


  7. I have for a while said of conspiracy theorists that “They make some good points, and a lot of sense, until they start blaming everything on Nazi Aliens.”

    Seems to me these guys skipped step one and went straight to the Nazi Aliens.

  8. Tony @ #7:

    Scientology teaches its followers that Psychiatrists are evil beings who’ve plagued the galaxy for eons. Practically all evil comes from them. L Ron Hubbard said so.

    They don’t distinguish themselves much between psychiatry and psychology. And you’re naive or uninformed if you think it’s only the medication aspect of psychiatry that Scientology opposes. They attack whatever aspect they think will give them the most traction.

    And Scientology isn’t really a religion. Ask a Scientologist who’s trying to recruit you. They’ll say it’s not. Hubbard originally claimed it was all ‘science’.

    The short of it is that it’s a dangerous cult. Not a religion. And a cult devious enough to instill its members with fear and hatred for the professions most able to help people get out of cults.

  9. #9 When scientologists are recruiting, scientology isn’t a religion, but they will rapidly change their minds on that subject when they’re told to pay taxes.

  10. I know a lot of people who have gotten so much help from psychiatrists, and myself I’ve been going regularly to therapy for several of the most difficult times of my life. These are people with a real passion for helping people, who want nothing more than to guide people away pain and into a healthy lifestyle.

    These scientologists should be ashamed of themselves. They’re scum.

  11. Am I a scientologist? No. What do I know about scientology? Just about nothing. Do the arguments in the above video sound credible? Not to me.

    Is it accurate to claim Dr. al-Zawahiri is a psychiatrist? Well, sorta kinda. According to his Wikipedia entry: “His father, Mohammed Rabie al-Zawahiri, was a pharmacologist and a chemistry professor[7] coming from a large family of doctors and scholars….” and “At Cairo University, Al-Zawahiri studied behavior, psychology and pharmacology graduating in 1974 with gayyid giddan. Following that he served three years as a surgeon in the Egyptian Army after which he established a clinic near his parents.[12] In 1978, he also earned a master’s degree in surgery.[13]”

    A person with such an education and connections to pharmaceuticals might very well be called a psychiatrist in some parts of the world; not in my part of the world but then again, what qualifies one to be called a “doctor” is different in different parts of the world.

    Did Dr. al-Zawahiri ever treat Mr. bin Laden as a patient? Unless one was there one cannot say. I wasn’t there so I don’t know.

  12. Taking a course in psychology at an undergraduate or even graduate level does not make one a psychiatrist. Psychiatry is a medical specialty, just like surgery. There is nothing connecting Dr. al-Zawahiri with a residency in psychiatry or any training in psychiatry. Instead, he has specialized in surgery, has his training in surgery and a degree in surgery.

    Personally, I think he’s probably a surgeon.

    What’s really interested to me is why Scientology would make these outlandish claims. Did L. R. Hubbard have some psychiatric problems?

  13. Psychiatrists dumped broken beer bottles all over my lawn!

    Psychiatrists deleted my MP3 playlists when I wasn’t looking!

    They stayed outside my window howling at the moon until 4am!

    They sent indecent pictures to my grandmama!

    Psychiatrists got that one show I really like cancelled!

    Psychiatrists painted my car to look like a giant boob!

  14. It’s said that Hubbard had some deep psychological issues and that a psychiatrist (or several) gave home some unwelcome diagnoses which led to him blaming all of modern society’s ills upon psychiatrists. Classic delusion – if you don’t believe him then you’re in on it.

  15. I think it makes sense to take out the one profession most likely to discourage your members from getting and staying involved in your cult.

    Scientology rented out a storefront near my neighbourhood and had an anti-psychiatry “exhibit” there. They start you off with basic arguments against Prozac and Ritalin and then work you into how psychiatry made Hitler evil and caused 9/11.

    But yeah, the stuff they do uses a lot of psychological concepts, just minus the ethics board and obligation to do no harm. No competent shrink would fuck with people like that.

  16. You know you’re a feminist when you read that headline as:

    Scientology TV show blames patriarchy for turning Osama bin Laden into a terrorist


  17. Hey, everyone knows, if you go to a psychiatrist you must be crazy. (rimshot, scattered polite laughter)

    However, Scientologists prove the exact opposite.

  18. @15
    ” Well, when you’re batshit crazy it makes sense to lash out at those attempting to purvey sanity.”

    Maybe they’re not so crazy? I suspect they are calculatedly trying to divert revenue from shrinks towards themselves. Here in London for example therapists usually charge between 50 and 100 GBP a session, and this is for therapy that typically involves several sessions a week. It doesn’t surprise me that a money driven group like the Scientologists see possibilities, for example by attempting to hijack the psychiatrist’s often vulnerable clients and fill their head with shit instead.

  19. Firstly, the modes and techniques delivered by those in the field of psychiatry are not archaic forms of mind control, nor or they modern forms of mind control. They represent nothing more than the advancements in the understanding of the psyche’s web. To say that conditions and developments are recently coming to light is bogus because the field of psychiatry is not a secret agency that few have access too. Infact, most discoveries in the field are publicized and given to the general person by many medians. So, mystifying the field into something other than a sophisticated facet of science is a fallacy.

    Making a point to express that psychiatry is a method of mind manipulation forcing innocent people to perform tasks and fall under adverse mentalities against their will and course of nature, is also a blatant fallacy. Mind control was never a great feat within the field, as seen by the countless atrocities undertaken by scientists testing the mental susceptibility of individuals on LSD and other psychedelic compounds alike. In all honesty, the suggestions made by David Figueroa seem to do nothing more than denounce the acknowledgement that humans have a tremendous amount of power of influence and articulation amongst others. In many facets of society, modern and archaic, you see humans convincing others that certain modes of thinking are more valid and more logical than others. Whether this be in the legal or political arenas or on the streets in the circles of gangs, humans have a great power over each other. Similar to that great power, we also possess a power to destroy each other…these are components that are not news breaking, its common knowledge. So, to equate the sins of man to psychiatric notions and drugs induced mind manipulation is absurd.

    A more logical approach to delving into the topic would be to dissect the actual powers of philosophy and namely, religion, on men. Point being, man is easily malleable to thought processes. He is easily programmable by belief systems and to give men belief systems that segregate each other and train them to point the finger at infidels, then the by product will be mass violence. We are talking about extreme sects of religion that still believe violence is the catalyst to heaven.

    I am not denouncing the notion of we are what we eat, and in all actuality, I’d like to know more about the influences that drugs have had on notable people in our past and present, but to say that the entire campaign of terrorism is sourced to drug abuse…that’s just absurd.

  20. According to his Wikipedia entry: … “At Cairo University, Al-Zawahiri studied behavior, psychology and pharmacology graduating in 1974 with gayyid giddan.”

    Note, however, that his Wikipedia entry does not cite any source for that claim, which means it really shouldn’t even be there.

  21. I once read an excellent short horror story by the great Edgar Allan Poe where the hero goes to a remote asylum to do some research, only to find out the staff is imprisoned in the padded cells and the inmates are now running the place.

    Just look at this objectively:

    Scientology was made up by Hubbard, who was a walking bundle of schizophrenia with a penchant to share his delusions by organizing them into semi coherent systems barely fit for bad sci-fi.

    One thing that a rampant, very public schizophrenic who makes a career out of being a rampant, very public schizophrenic might see as a menace is a psychiatrist, whose job it is to help those people with schizophrenia to lead productive, meaningful lives if possible, or at least help them not to become a danger to themselves or others.

    So OF COURSE the nutcase uses his bad sci-fi to demonize psychiatrists and neutralize this menace he perceives. This also gives him a pretext to enroll other fragile minds in his delusional cult.

    Don’t look any further, it’s that simple.

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