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In the process of preparing my latest answer for Travis (and yes, Travis, I'm still thinking about what you've said), I had occasion to re-review the LMT video of the Ursula Caberta press conference. I was a bit surprised to see that there was apparently no transcript available; I was even more surprised when a search of Usenet and the Web didn't turn up a transcript either. Video of events like this is extremely powerful, but in my opinion, transcripts are important as well; in particular, they're much more searchable than video is.
So I went ahead and wrote up a quick transcript of Ursula Caberta's speech. Does anyone else think that having transcripts of Scientology-related videos available would be useful? Or are these transcripts already available in some shrouded corner of the net? :)
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TRANSCRIPT OF URSULA CABERTA/LISA MCPHERSON TRUST PRESS CONFERENCE TUESDAY, JULY 25, 2000
Transcribed by Phaedrus (firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.lycanon.org)
Transcribed August 27, 2000; send any corrections to email@example.com
Transcribed from LMT video at http://www.lisatrust.net/Media/ursula-pr.htm
[Comments from transcriber are in brackets like this]
["SB:" marks remarks by Stacy Brooks]
["[word?]" marks uncertain word on tape]
["[xxx]" marks words that could not be understood at all on tape]
[Time marks given as minutes:seconds in parentheses; for example, "03:30" means 3 minutes, 30 seconds from beginning of that part]
[start of Part 1]
SB: Thanks to everybody for coming. And this is really an honor for me to be able to introduce Ursula Caberta, whoís a very dear friend of mine, um, from Hamburg, Germany. Um, Iím afraid her, uh, visit to the United States has not been... a very pleasant one in certain aspects. Um, thereís a little bit of video footage that I want to show you, uh, of what happened when Ursula arrived at the airport in Tampa. It was, um, something I have never seen before in my life. It was, uh, a very very very, um, I should say, uh, embarrassing moment for me as an American, for my friend from Germany to have this kind of a reception when she arrived in our country.
(01:07) [Video footage shown. Many simultaneous voices were not comprehensible on tape. Comprehensible remarks given below:]
UNKNOWN MALE : Nazi criminal! Go back to Germany!
UNKNOWN FEMALE : Go home!
UNKNOWN MALE : Nazi criminal! Go back to Germany!
UNKNOWN FEMALE?: This lady is a criminal!
UNKNOWN MALE: Go back to Germany!
UNKNOWN VOICE: Criminal!
UNKNOWN FEMALE: We like freedom of religion! Go back to...
UNKNOWN MALE: You are bad! Go home!
[End of video footage]
(01:22) SB: You know, when Robert and I went to Germany, um, we were very graciously welcomed. We had a wonderful stay in Hamburg, um, and we had hoped to be able to offer Ursula the same kind of welcome. And Iím very sorry that we werenít able to do it. But this morning, I would like for you to have a chance to hear Ursulaís own story. Um, I think everybodyís already seen on TV yesterday that Mike Rinder has called her a Nazi on public television, uh, on national television or local television, sorry. And, um, this is, um, an insult for anyone to be called this. In Germany, itís illegal for someone to be called a Nazi. Um, Certainly, I can tell you from my own experience that Ursula is anything but a Nazi or a Fascist. Sheís an incredibly compassionate person; sheís helped thousands of people; and I just think that you will, um, be very lucky to have a chance to hear it from her. Ursula.
[Statements by Ursula Caberta marked with "UC:"]
(02:38) UC: Okay, Iím sorry that my English is not good enough to tell you all the story in English, so I need a little bit of help. And he is here on my side.
[UCíS original German statements omitted; translated statements listed as "UC(T):". Translatorís pauses, "uh"ís, etc. not transcribed. Translated phrase points marked by slashes.]
(02:50) UC(T): It is a pleasure to be here, and I would like to introduce myself as [xxx] that I have been in, on this work since 1988. / My work started in Hamburg as a member of Parliament for the Hamburg SPD, Socialist, uh, Social Party, / and has been the governing party in Hamburg for many years and is today the governing party in Germany.
UC: Yes. (chuckle)
(03:38) UC(T): My work really started when members of Scientology got involved in real estate purchases in Hamburg. / Today, I know that all these persons that started out at that time, were members of the so-called group WISE, which is the Scientology business association. /
(04:27) These people started by buying rental apartments, and harassing and throwing out the people that were renting these. And she got involved by those people coming to her, to the Senate and to the Parliament, and complaining about the procedure. /
(05:00) At the same time, Scientologists in and around Hamburg started to invade schools, and tried to introduce into the school systems and into young people their own studying system. / In all these places, all the parents of these youngsters in the schools were very concerned, came to her in the Parliament and complained about them. /
(05:51) Itís good to know that Scientologists have divided up Germany into various sectors for their political and business purposes. / In this regard, Scientologists in Hamburg are responsible for all of northern Germany, and since the reunification of Germany, also for the northern-eastern part. / So it became clear after a very short time that all the responsible Scientologists were sitting in Hamburg, and drawing all their conclusions out of there. /
(06:58) Up to that time, I was not and had never been involved, really, into Scientology. I knew the name, but I wasnít really able to even spell it. And after a short while, I really got involved in it. / In order to become more acquainted, in order to find out whether this matter of complaints by tenants and by schools and parents was really an affair that concerned the Senate or the Parliament, both at the Hamburg level or the national level, she had to get involved and dig into Scientology and get herself informed of that. /
(08:11) Thatís how she started, really, to do lots of research on Scientologists in Germany and Europe and worldwide. / So she started to ask herself whether people had directed their questions and concerns directly to the Social Party, thatís the government party in Hamburg. / There were only three files on this organization that she could find. / But those files obviously contained names, and these people were invited by her in order to find out where the problem really was. / And what happened after these conversations and these invitations led to experiences that she had never had before in her political career. /
(09:35) These people not only came by themselves, they came with two or three people they had invited with similar experiences. / Among these people were a lot of lawyers who had been trying to organize themselves a little bit against that organization. / (10:09) Many of those invited people already were journalists who had been put under pressure by the Scientologists. / And were afraid or would not know how to write and whether to write about this. / (10:37) And also there were parents of members of the Scientologist organization. / Overwhelmed by all of these experiences, she really started pondering of what she had to do and where to go and which route to take. / (11:11) The stories most often were so incredible that she could hardly believe that these things could have happened or could happen in a democratic country that she knows and has been professing democracy for the past fifty years. /
(11:44) So she started to read lots of files and books, and she obtained books, particularly on Ron Hubbard. / Itís called Dianetics, / and Introduction into the Ethics of Scientology.
[Omitted brief portion which was not translated]
(12:26) [UC(T):] After she read it, she really questioned herself, you know, what kind of ideology was behind this, / in particular, the book Introduction into the Ethics of Scientology / was a key book. / It was a key book because she read it with eyes of a politician and not of a general person. /
(13:10) In this book, Ron Hubbard describes that there are two kinds of persons. / The good ones, the Scientologists, / the bad ones, who donít want to know about it. /
(13:32) This book also describes what will happen after the technology, so-called "technology" of Ron Hubbard has taken place and has been effective and been put into place. / And describes exactly whatís going to happen in all sorts of, all levels of society in all countries [xxx]. /
(14:14) She had been warned a lot of times not to have anything to do with Scientology because of all, theyíll give you lots of difficulties, and she was not surprised then really when getting involved in it, she had those difficulties. / And everything that these people, these invited people, from the first day on had told her, everything really turned out to be true. /
(14:57) She was visited by members of the organization, / there were no problems to talk with her. / They wanted to explain to her what is good about Scientology. / Something else was striking that these people apparently did[?] want to discuss matters really, but they turned out that they couldnít. / Everybody repeated, everybody who she was talking to repeated the same phrases. /
(15:54) She was shocked because there wasnít a dialogue. / And that is normal in a parliamentary democracy where you have freedom of speech, and you have open discussions about your point of view. / It was not possible because these people apparently had been trained. /
(16:35) She has maintained since then, many contacts with Scientologists, and even before coming here she was called by the president of the Hamburg Scientology organization, but not to wish her a good trip but to warn her to come. / Upon her questioning what could happen to her going to Clearwater and to the country of freedom, the answer was no answer given. / She was asked whether she wanted to accompany her, and she denied to accompany [xxx].
[End of part 1; start of part 2]
UC(T): [We are?] in 1988 now. / Weíve had then, back in 1988, we started parliamentary discussions on what had to be done and what steps could be taken. / The results took about three years to come up with, back in 1991. /
(00:56) Then in 1991, the Hamburg parliament decided to introduce a separate department that would only take care of Scientology questions. / Itís important to know that this was a uniform decision taken by all parties involved in the parliament. /
(01:49) Mrs. Caberta started her work as head of the department back in October 1992. / It was thought that Scientologists would sue the Hamburg parliament, because they had been going around for a long time before that talking to people and telling the world and public that they had been pursued like Jews in Nazi Germany. / But they never sued. / Which was kind of surprising. / Surprising particularly because it was the only one and today still is the only department in parliament ---
UC: In state.
UC(T): In state --- that concerns itself only with this question of Scientology. /
(03:20) She insisted that this department had to report directly to the Minister of the Interior. / The reason for this request was that during these state parliamentary discussions for three years, it became apparent that there was a security problem for the inner security of Germany. / And all the ministries of the Interior are the ones that take care of the defense of internal problems. / So her immediate boss is the senator for interior affairs in Hamburg. /
(04:42) So the first task of this department was to gather as much information on Scientology as possible, not only to inform the public but also to help people involved and trying to get out of it. / It was surprising to see that, after three months only, so many people came in to talk to her about their concerns. / These people were very glad and recognized this particular work that was done, had been done and was to be done. /(06:08) The word came around that finally the state had captured the idea of what Scientology is all about. / Thatís how we really got --- developed a detailed information about the Scientologistsí organization. /
(06:46) Most important on these information --- gathering this information were former members of Scientology. / Everybody of these former members knew exactly about all the information about their particular areas they had been working with in the organization. / Additionally, all these members brought in lots of materials on the organization. / (07:39) The final breakthrough, however, came through a person that was a former member from the organization here in America, and gave them basically most inside information. / Warren Young, his name was.
(08:10) He was invited to Germany, to Hamburg, because his testimony in front of American courts was known. / And he brought along the so-called "Snow White" program. / While it had been suspected before by her and the Parliament, with this document "Snow White" it became very clear that this is a new form of political subversiveness. Extremism, Iím sorry. / Mr. Young talked to members and representatives of the State, as well as the secret service. /
(09:22) In 1997, these discussions with Mr. Young led to a union or a meeting of all the ministers of the interior, of the federal states, which is one of the highest meetings you can imagine in Germany. / This conference or meeting of ministers of the interior only leads to uniform decisions. / They had to make a decision on the information which proposed to regulate the organization. /
(10:46) Based on that information, they also became convinced that it was a new political movement of extremists. / And they decided to have in all federal states in Germany, Scientologist organizations be watched by the secret service. / So it became clear for her what she had suspected before, that this technology and organization run by Ron Hubbard belongs into the political scene and into the political extremism scene. /
(12:07) Scientologists never sued or protested against this type of decision. / They only tried in two federal states to sue directly against the local constitution. / These suits are still pending. / But they never sued against being watched. / Because that would have implied that they would have to sue the [xxx] of the conference of the ministers of the interior, which is possible to do. /
(13:11) Since then, these situations for Scientology organizations in Germany is different. / The work to obtain information on the organization becomes easier. / She was also surprised that some of the members, where she had thought that they might be come in with a little protest because that might be going too far, / not only refrained from complaining but were very happy to see these procedures continue. / And thatís very encouraging to continue on this path. /
(14:27) So my main motivation / was and has been / to help those people who have been members of the organization and desire to leave them. / Our department, my department, is open for anybody who wants to come and leave the organization. / And therefore, we are of the same opinion and doing the same work as the Lisa McPherson Trust. /
(15:17) Many people who want to leave this organization, and she has gotten to know in the past years very young people, sometimes children 13-14 years old. / Because they do prefer to finish up their school, whatever school that is, and not become members in the Sea Organization. /
[inaudible question from audience]
Translator: Sea Organization, Scientologist organization.
UC: They know, thank you. (chuckle)
UC(T): (16:18) This is a very healthy decision taken by these children. / They need a lot of help. / And if the parents are Scientologists, they do not accept their childrenís decision just like that.
[End of part 2 / start of part 3]
UC(T): The department consists of five people. / And itís, Iím very proud to say that I continue this work and that Iím happy to continue this work, because every person that comes out of there is worth the effort, despite harassment and attacks by Scientologists on her person, on the senatorís person who is her boss, and all the four people [xxx] who they work with her. Shameless. /
(00:58) And another motivation is the acceptance, not only the acceptance but also the support, the department and this lady receives from people worldwide, who have known about Scientology and know what itís all about / Thatís why weíre very happy and pleased to come here. /
(01:32) The reception was not the best you could imagine. / But maybe one of the reasons for that reception is that the organization shows a little bit of fear, on this organization and the Trust. / These people screaming at the airport, / are not the people, you know, that we are worried about. / (02:11) All these people I would like to help, / they were there because they had been told to come, / and to harass her and offend her. / But maybe theyíre a little bit afraid of something she has to tell about something that has happened here, right here in Clearwater. /
(02:52) Here and in your folders, you will see copies of all these writings on the person Antje Victore who has been in Germany. / A very famous magazine called Stern in Germany picked up that story on her, and you will find a copy of this article in your folder. / (03:34) When she heard and learned that Mrs. Victore had received political asylum here in the US, / she immediately thought about all the tricks that these people could have used in order to [xxx]. / Mrs. Victore had no problems to live in Germany, / except that she had some difficulties with some public institutions. / Not because she was a Scientologist. / But because of a tax evasion scheme that she was involved in with her boyfriend. / (04:49) This tax evasion, you know, she never talked about here. / Or any other problems, she never mentioned, like, for example, having financial difficulties, but that is known for many of the members of the organization. / It sure was surprising to know that because of those reasons, you can get political asylum in the US. / (05:30) Lots of people have financial difficulties; maybe on that reason they can come here. / It seems to be easy. /
(05:42) Today we know what tricks the organization used, from information of former members of the organization, what was used in order to get this person into [xxx] . / And that was really spectacular. / And you see here, interestingly enough, all of these letters have been written right away in English, not in German. / German companies, writing to a German employee, supposed employee, writing in English, sounds kind of strange. / At least in Germany, not usual. /
(06:43) Now if you know what it was supposed to be used for, then you understand why it was written in English. / All these persons, signed signatories to these letters, / are members of Scientology and of WISE. / (07:09) And they, all three, confirm that unfortunately because of Mrs. Victore being a member of the Scientology, she is unable to obtain a job. / Because that is, in Germany, so difficult. / Thatís nonsense. / But you have to produce proofs if you donít have them. /
(07:47) Certainly you may have heard about all the campaigns and attacks that Scientologists wrote against the German government, and her department in particular. / So if you want to make believe representatives of the House or the Senate that these difficulties in Germany exist, you will have to produce these types of proofs. / And this is one of the absolute proofs the House said, that Scientology uses in order to go against the German customs and German laws and regulations. /
(09:14) In Germany, there are many people who look for political asylum. / If it becomes known that one of these asylum-seekers has lied to the courts, / he will most likely be deported within a week. / We still donít know yet how it will work here. /
(09:54) There are many things still to be said that could be said, you know, what kinds of things Scientology uses in order to put down her country, Germany. / One example is John Travolta. / This person runs around to all official [agreements?], to Congress and Senate and whoever wants to hear it, that his movies are prohibited in Germany. / The movies are so bad that you might have that idea. / Thatís not the case. / (11:03) The newest movie of John Travoltaís has just started in Hamburg, [translator, to Ursula:] whatís the title of it...
UC: Battlefield Earth.
UC(T): Battlefield Earth. (chuckle) / Itís supposed to be a bad movie. / Weíll go and see it nonetheless. / [xxx] /
(11:39) It has become clear that John Travolta is lying to the Congress. / That seems incredible. / The same is true for Chick Corea. / Who claims the same thing, that he has no possibilities to have his concerts in Germany. / That is untrue. / He can have his concert. / This one rule in Germany, that there are certain types of concerts that are supported with federal aid, / or from one of the federal states in Germany. / (12:48) So if the federal governments, state governments, pay for or support these concerts, they reserve the right to decide who will receive that aid or not. / Just as members of the rightist groups of neo-Nazis are not allowed to have their concerts / in these federally-supported [xxx] be invited, / the same way other organizations will not be invited who are known to confess points of view that are against the German Constitution. They will not be invited either. /
(14:10) There is no right --- human right --- nowhere in the world to receive federal aid in any country in the world. / Otherwise, Chick Coreaís group is very welcome to do his concerts wherever they want to in Germany, but not with federal aid. / And nobody in Germany will greet them in the same way that this lady has been greeted here in America. /
(15:00) Chick Corea , in addition to all this, Chick Corea sued the state government of [xxx] in Germany, / and lost. / The court decided that the parliament, the state government can invite whoever it wants to to their federally-aided concerts and shows. / In this respect, it would be welcome to use any of these statements from John Travolta or Chick Corea or any group like this in front of the Senate or the Congress, to use a more critical eye, because not everything they say is true. And if there are questions and doubts, Miss Caberta would be more than happy to answer any questions if she is contacted. /
(16:58) I believe that the very good relationships and friendly relations between the two nations, Germany and the United States, should not be influenced negatively by an organization like Scientology. /
(17:22) Finally, I would like to make a very personal remark, before we open for any questions you may have. / I was born in Germany in 1950, / in a very social and democratic home. / I was raised and grew with the idea and the knowledge that the United States of America is a country of freedom. / Iím about to learn that this is not the case, maybe, / in this particular case for me. / Thank you very much.
[end of part 3; end of transcript]
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