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Freedom Magazine 30th Anniversary Special Report


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30 Years of Freedom



by Gail Armstong

I
n a rural village of West Sussex, England, two men moved swiftly through the overcast morning streets, posting newspaper sheets on lampposts as they went.

The year was 1968. Scientologists had been probing deaths, abuses and fraud in certain of England’s psychiatric asylums, and the response was volatile. The Minister of Health used the full weight of his ministry to instigate arbitrary and baseless governmental actions and political tirades against the Church of Scientology, and through colleagues who published two of London’s largest dailies, waged a vicious campaign to oppress a voice of human rights.

The newspaper sheets were called Freedom. As the single-page journal rolled off the press, copies were distributed by hand from the Church’s then headquarters in East Grinstead, West Sussex to the bustling squares of London.

Three decades and hundreds of editions later, Freedom – with its flagship magazine in the United States and 18 more editions worldwide—celebrated its 30th anniversary at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. in the fall of 1998.


30 years of Freedom

The day-long series of commemorative events included two panel discussions with noted human rights activists and journalists who broke new ground in addressing the issues of child drugging and the media’s treatment of human rights issues.

Freedom editions

The anniversary celebration culminated in an evening event honoring the work of human rights leaders in the fields of social justice, religious liberty, civil rights and international human rights. (See “In Support of Human Rights”.) With actress Anne Archer as Mistress of Ceremonies, the program included speeches by Freedom’s editor in chief and the president of the Church of Scientology International. An extraordinary performance by Oscar-winning rhythm and blues composer Isaac Hayes and nine-time Grammy winner and jazz great Chick Corea highlighted the event.

Freedom’s coverage over the years has focused on societal and government corruption, investigating to determine sources and causes, and bringing their findings—and solutions—to the public.

Some of the issues on which Freedom has taken the lead include the use of chemical and biological warfare agents on unwitting citizens and the notorious behavioral experiments conducted by military and intelligence agencies; domestic intelligence operations against law-abiding U.S. citizens for the purpose of political advantage—including the infamous enemy lists of the IRS and the counter-intelligence program of the FBI; Nazi involvement with the international criminal police organization Interpol; the oppression of religious liberties; true stories behind Jonestown and Waco; abuses, deaths and insurance fraud in the mental health system.
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