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29 January 1997



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      On the eve of the release of the 1996 Human Rights Report of the U.S. State Department, the Church of Scientology International struck back at “hate rhetoric of the German government,” charging that Germans’ reaction to the impending report “delivers the proof of the parallels between present day human rights violations and the Nazi campaign against Jews and other minority religions in the 1930’s.”

      Church international president Rev. Heber Jentzsch attacked the German political reaction to the State Department charge about the “campaign of harassment and intimidation” against Scientologists in Germany as “the ultimate irony and admission of guilt. The German officials ignore the evidence of massive and daily human rights violations. Instead they justify their outrageous actions by making absurd allegations that we seek money and world domination. Their paranoia has blinded them. That is precisely what they said about the Jews to justify their outrageous actions in the 1930s,” charged Rev. Jentzsch.

      “Even Nicholas Burns, the State Department spokesman who called such comparisons ‘historical amnesia’ cannot help but wake up to the fact that history is being repeated in Germany,” added Rev. Jentzsch, in reference to a statement made by Burns at a State Department briefing and reported on by the media this past week.

      “Mr. Burns is dead wrong if he thinks the comparison cannot be made because Germany is a democracy,” said Rev. Jentzsch. “It certainly isn’t a democracy for the Scientologists who can’t join a political party or enter civil service or who get thrown out of teaching jobs, all on the basis of their religious belief.

      “If this situation is allowed to continue,” he continued. “In 50 years people won’t be saying, ‘it’s like the Nazis.’ They will say, ‘It’s like the Christian Democrats.’ I ask the leader of the Christian Democratic Union in all sincerity, ‘Is this Christian? Would Jesus Christ conduct such a hate campaign?’

      “There is a reason for what the State Department report says. There is discrimination. We appreciate the State Department’s support and public exposure of these injustices. The cases are real,” said Rev. Jentzsch, who also noted that “no official or politician has denied any of the specific human rights allegations.”

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