By: Robin Murray-o'hair
Re: AUM CULT LEADER
AUM CULT LEADER MAY BE INDICTED
by Conrad F. Goeringer
Charges may be filed today, June 6, against Shoko Asahara,
leader of the Japanese Aum Shinri Kyo cult implicated in a series
of sarin gas attacks through the country. The religious group
captured world headlines on March 20, when toxins released into
the Tokyo subway killed 12 people and injured over 5,500. The
attack was traced to the Aum group, an apocalyptic religious
sects which mixed Christian, Buddhist and New Age mysticism and
was led by self-proclaimed guru Asahara. Although he has denied
involvement in the incident, cult underlings have reportedly
identified him as the mastermind. The group allegedly also
plotted a airborne gas attack on Toyko, and had stockpiled
chemical and biological weapons along with conventional arms.
Asahara taught that civilization would collapse in 1997, and
organized the Aum sect to establish a "shadow government" to take
over after the apocalypse.
One witness implicating the partially blind religious
leader is Ikuo Hayashi, a medical doctor who claims that he was
one of five cultists ordered by Asahara to release the toxic gas
on the Tokyo subway. He told Japanese authorities and media that
he would not have done it "if it hadn't been our supreme master's
order." Hayashi also told officials that Hideo Murai, the Aum's
Minister of Science and Technology, said that his role in the
sarin incident was an "assignment" from Asahara.
In a strange twist of events, Murai was fatally stabbed
out front of the Aum's Tokyo compound. While police say he was
executed by a gangster, media speculates that the "hit" was
really ordered by Asahara, since Murai was a key figure in
implicating the guru.
The Aum cult has captivated the public imagination in
Japan, raising questions about how so many intelligent young
people accepted the bizarre teachings and rituals of the sect.
Cultists paid $200 for the "privilege" of drinking Asahara's old
bathtub water and over $10,000 to wear a leather helmet wired
with electrodes which allegedly tuned their brains "in sync" with
the thoughts of their leader.
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* WCE 2.0/2394 * One man's religion is another man's belly laugh.