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March 29th, 2010
11:59 PM ET

Scientology: A history of violence – Part One

Note to readers and viewers: The Anderson Cooper 360 series "Scientology: A History of Violence," which reported competing claims and denials about violence at the top of the Church of Scientology has attracted a number of complaints from senior members of the Church of Scientology (including Mr. Miscavige) and the Church of Scientology itself.

The series is now the subject of a letter of legal complaint in the United Kingdom. The complainants strongly dispute the allegations and the assertions made against them and covered in the course of the series by former members of the Church of Scientology.

AC 360°

Monday night we told you about Marty Rathbun.  He was a member of the Church of Scientology for 27 years before leaving in 2004. 

He rose through the ranks of the Sea Organization, the international management team that runs church operations world wide. 

Rathbun says he was the Inspector General and answered only to church leader David Miscavige, the same man who he says would use physical abuse against other members of the churches elite management team. 

Rathbun’s ex-wife says he’s lying, and other current Sea Organization members agree. They also say it was Rathburn who was the attacker, not Miscavige. 

They say there were a number of incidents where Rathbun would punch, choke or slap other members of the church and that because of his repeated attacks, he removed from his postion of authority at the Church. Rathbun says they are exaggerating. He admits to using physical force, but says it was Miscavige who not only created the culture of violence, he encouraged it. 

Tuesday at 10 PM/ET we hear from other former high ranking officials within the church who say they either witnessed or were physically assaulted by the church leader.  

Allegations the church strongly denies. 

March 29th, 2010
04:51 PM ET

Rage on the right: The year in hate and extremism

Tea party groups are 'shot through with rich veins of radical ideas, conspiracy theories and racism', says Potok.

Program Note: Don't miss Anderson's interview with Mark Potok tonight at 10 p.m. ET.

Mark Potok
Southern Poverty Law Center

The radical right caught fire last year, as broad-based populist anger at political, demographic and economic changes in America ignited an explosion of new extremist groups and activism across the nation.

Hate groups stayed at record levels — almost 1,000 — despite the total collapse of the second largest neo-Nazi group in America. Furious anti-immigrant vigilante groups soared by nearly 80%, adding some 136 new groups during 2009. And, most remarkably of all, so-called "Patriot" groups — militias and other organizations that see the federal government as part of a plot to impose “one-world government” on liberty-loving Americans — came roaring back after years out of the limelight.

Read More...


Filed under: Hate Crime • Republicans
March 29th, 2010
04:47 PM ET

Militia Accused of Plotting War Against U.S.: Join the Live Chat

We've got breaking news on the 'Christian warrior' militia accused of plotting to kill police to kick off its war against the U.S. government.  There are new details on the investigation we'll bring you tonight.  Plus, we begin our special investigation 'Scientology: A History of Violence.'

Scroll down to join the live chat during the program. It's your chance to share your thoughts on tonight's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules.

Here are some of them:

1) Keep it short (we don't have time to read a "book")
2) Don't write in ALL CAPS (there's no need to yell)
3) Use your real name (first name only is fine)
4) No links
5) Watch your language (keep it G-rated; PG at worst - and that includes $#&*)


Filed under: Live Blog
March 29th, 2010
03:57 PM ET

Haiti: The latest UN report

The UN is working to ensure displaced Haitians have temporary shelter.

CNN

The United Nations' Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs recently released its latest report on the situation in Haiti. The UN lists providing emergency shelter as a top priority, especially with the rainy season approaching. To date, 104,500 tarpaulins and 41,000 family-size tents have been distributed. The UN is also addressing malnutrition and violence against women. Read the full report here.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Haiti • United Nations
March 29th, 2010
03:51 PM ET
March 29th, 2010
03:23 PM ET

Beat 360° 3/29/10

Ready for today's Beat 360°? Everyday we post a picture you provide the caption and our staff will join in too. Tune in tonight at 10pm to see if you are our favorite! Here is the 'Beat 360°' pic:

Former US vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin reacts as she greets the crowd before speaking at a Tea Party rally in Searchlight, Nevada, the hometown of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, on March 27, 2010. Thousands of Tea Party activists attended the rally which kicks off their latest cross-country protest against big government and health care reform.

Have fun with it. We're looking forward to your captions! Make sure to include your name, city, state (or country) so we can post your comment.

Beat 360° Winners:

Staff:

Clare O'Connor

"Not content with her new reality show, Palin signs on for Celebrity Boxing as the ‘Thrilla from Wasilla’."

Viewer:

Craig, Northern California

"Guy in back: Mrs. Palin, please unclench your fists, you're going to smear your opening remarks...."


Filed under: Beat 360° • T1
March 29th, 2010
03:04 PM ET

The Church of Scientology

Note to readers and viewers: The Anderson Cooper 360 series "Scientology: A History of Violence," which reported competing claims and denials about violence at the top of the Church of Scientology has attracted a number of complaints from senior members of the Church of Scientology (including Mr. Miscavige) and the Church of Scientology itself.

The series is now the subject of a letter of legal complaint in the United Kingdom. The complainants strongly dispute the allegations and the assertions made against them and covered in the course of the series by former members of the Church of Scientology.

AC360°

This week we begin a four-part investigation into allegations made by a number of former high ranking members of the Church of Scientology. The allegations are about physical abuse they say took place within the Sea Organization, the international management branch of the church.

To learn more about the Church of Scientology, visit its website here...


Filed under: Church of Scientology
March 29th, 2010
02:54 PM ET

Timeline: Two decades of violence in Chechnya

A Russian emergency worker carries a stretcher to one of the two Moscow subway stations hit by a suicide attack on Monday.

CNN

Female suicide bombers detonated explosions that rocked two subway stations in central Moscow during rush hour on Monday morning, killing dozens of people, officials said.

A Web site associated with Chechen separatists, who have long fought for independence from Russia, claimed responsibility for the attacks. Immediately after the explosions, officials had cast suspicion on the separatists.

Chechnya is a southwestern Russian republic, in the Caucasus Mountains region. Years of conflict have been devastating for its infrastructure.

Keep Reading...


Filed under: Russia • Terrorism
March 29th, 2010
02:44 PM ET

Afghan war remains 'absolutely essential,' Obama says

Afghan president Hamid Karzai, who met with Obama on Sunday.

Afghan president Hamid Karzai, who met with Obama on Sunday.

CNN Wire Staff

President Obama rallied U.S. troops and pledged continued partnership with Afghanistan during a previously unannounced trip to the country Sunday.

Speaking to about 2,000 U.S. and allied troops at the major U.S. base in Afghanistan, Obama said, "Those folks back home are relying on you."

"I know it's not easy," he said. "You're far away from home. You miss your kids, you miss your spouses, your family, your friends." But he added, "If I thought for a minute that America's vital interests were not served, were not at stake here in Afghanistan, I would order all of you home right away."

Keep Reading...


Filed under: Afghanistan • President Barack Obama
March 29th, 2010
02:10 PM ET

Why no subway is safe from terror attacks

The aftermath of London's subway and bus bombings of 2005.

The aftermath of London's subway and bus bombings of 2005.

Barry Neild
CNN

The deadly rush hour carnage which hit Moscow's subway on Monday highlights a potential danger that millions of people around the world are exposed to on a daily basis as they enter transport networks, say security experts.

Suicide bombers have been blamed for the bombings at two stations on the same underground rail line, with separatists from Russia's Chechnya region, linked to previous transport system attacks, claiming responsibility.

While authorities say it is too early to confirm who is behind the latest outrage to target Moscow, it matches a modus operandi previously employed not only by Chechen rebels, but other groups worldwide, usually to potent deadly effect.

Keep Reading...


Filed under: 360° Radar • Russia • Terrorism
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