Literary Forgery & Stolen Valor: L. Ron Hubbard falsely claimed that he had won two Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star, and 19 other combat medals in WWII. The fact is that L. Ron Hubbard never served one day in combat, never fought in combat, and was most certainly never wounded in combat.
The truth: Hubbard’s US Navy service record shows that he never received Purple Hearts or a Bronze Star. L. Ron Hubbard worked as a self-employed typewriter jockey cranking out pulp fiction for a penny a word until he went active duty US Navy on 22 Sept 1941. Then 32 years of age, Hubbard received a commission as a lieutenant jg and did not go through Officer’s Training School or any type of combat or weapons training. In particular, Hubbard had no amphibious warfare or jungle survival training. Hubbard’s first job on active duty was to review and annotate the hydrographic surveys of Puget Sound he had sent to the US Navy ten years earlier. Hubbard was not a combat soldier and had no special background training, no special skills, and only spoke English.
Despite Hubbard’s lack of qualifications or training in Intelligence, one of the Church of Scientology’s long-term propaganda projects has been to quietly perpetuate L. Ron Hubbard’s bogus claim that he was a secret agent with the Office of Naval Intelligence. The fact is L. Ron Hubbard was a low-level cable censor in the department of Naval Intelligence for a few months and then served in various other assignments. For more information on L. Ron Hubbard’s WWII career please see my article: Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard’s Fake Purple Hearts and Bronze Star.
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard from his work My Philosophy:
I have seen life from the top down and the bottom up. I know how it looks both ways. And I know there is wisdom and that there is hope.
Blinded with injured optic nerves, and lame with physical injuries to hip and back, at the end of World War II, I faced an almost nonexistent future. My service record states: “This officer has no neurotic or psychotic tendencies of any kind whatsoever,” but it also states “permanently disabled physically.”
And so there came a further blow . . . I was abandoned by family and friends as a supposedly hopeless cripple and a probable burden upon them for the rest of my days. I yet worked my way back to fitness and strength in less than two years, using only what I know and could determine about man and his relationship to the universe. I had no one to help me; what I had to know I had to find out. And it’s quite a trick studying when you cannot see.
I became used to being told it was all impossible, that there was no way, no hope. Yet I came to see again and walk again, and I built an entirely new life. It is a happy life, a busy one and I hope a useful one. My only moments of sadness are those which come when bigoted men tell others all is bad and there is no route anywhere, no hope anywhere, nothing but sadness and sameness and desolation, and that every effort to help others is false. I know it is not true.
The Truth: L. Ron Hubbard malingered at Oak Knoll Naval Hospital in Oakland, California near the end of WWII. There, he admitted to impersonating a medical doctor so that he could spend his days reading books in the restricted medical library. As the war ended, the self-proclaimed invalid L. Ron Hubbard was so healthy that — instead of heading north to his wife and two children in Washington State — he went south to Pasadena. There, he moved into Jack Parson’s boarding house and joined Jack Parsons in Parson’s Thelemic Sex Magick rituals.
The supposedly “blind and crippled” Hubbard was so sexually energetic that he stole Jack’s girlfriend Sara Northrup and married her — even though he was still married to his first wife, Polly. Hubbard then swindled Jack Parsons out of $20,970 on a phony yacht resale business and took off for Florida with Sara and Jack’s money. Jack Parsons sued Ron Hubbard and a judge ordered Hubbard to sell assets to repay Parsons. Parsons recovered on $2,900 from the con man L. Ron Hubbard.
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: “I happen to be a nuclear physicist; I am not a psychologist nor a psychiatrist nor a medical doctor.” — L. Ron Hubbard, in the 1952 lecture “Dianetics: The Modern Miracle.” Also found transcribed in the Research and Discovery series, Vol. 3 page 470, and New Tech Volumes, Vol. 5 page 143.
The truth: Hubbard flunked both high school and college, leaving after his sophomore year at George Washington University during which he failed a course of “Molecular and Atomic Physics.”
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: Hubbard was a “pioneering barnstormer at the dawn of aviation in America.”
The truth: As Jon Atack points out, Hubbard flew gliders in the early 1930s, which doesn’t really put Hubbard up there with the Wright Brothers (1903) or Charles Lindbergh, who crossed the Atlantic in 1927.
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: Hubbard claimed he was “returned home as the first American casualty of the war in the South Pacific.”
The truth: The US Naval Attache in Brisbane ordered Hubbard returned to the US for being meddlesome and quarrelsome.
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: Hubbard claimed he was a “commander of corvettes” in the North Atlantic.
The truth: Hubbard was assigned command of navy yard patrol vessel YP-422 in Boston Harbor. However, he was relieved of command before the vessel was commissioned after getting into an argument with the Commandant of the Navy Yard.
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: Hubbard fought German U-Boats in the North Atlantic.
The truth: No he didn’t. It never happened.
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: Hubbard claimed he was machine-gunned in the back by Japanese soldiers on the Indonesian island of Java.
The truth: Not even close.
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: Hubbard claimed to have escaped from Java with a fellow spy in a rubber raft and drifted 2,000 miles back to Australia — and this after having been machine-gunned in the back!
The truth: As if.
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: Hubbard claimed to have sunk a Japanese submarine after a battle that lasted 35 hours.
The truth: He actually launched depth charges at a magnetic deposit on the ocean floor off the coast of Oregon.
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: In a lecture, Hubbard described English occultist Aleister Crowley as his “good friend.”
The truth: Hubbard never met or corresponded with Crowley. Reading about Hubbard in letters from Jack Parsons, Crowley wrote to a friend, “Apparently Parsons or Hubbard or somebody is producing a moonchild. I get fairly frantic when I contemplate the idiocy of these louts.”
Literary Forgery by L. Ron Hubbard: Hubbard claimed that he was actually participating in Sex Magick rites as an undercover spy from US Naval Intelligence, sent in to break up Black Magic in America. The literary forgery Hubbard spun claimed, ridiculously, that Jack Parsons was convincing hyper-rational physicists and scientists to practice Black Magick.
The truth: Hubbard was never in the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI). In any case, the FBI would have handled domestic spy matters on American soil. The ONI would have no jurisdiction over the US Army rocket programs Parsons worked on.
More Literary Forgeries by L. Ron Hubbard and the Church of Scientology in our next installment.