By Alexis Tereszcuk – Radar Entertainment Editor
It’s war! The Church of Scientology has hit back against the Vanity Fair expose that claimed to reveal deep secrets of the church and Tom Cruise with a scathing letter to the magazine’s publisher in which they call the journalist a bigot and dismiss the allegations in the article as defamatory.
The eight-page letter was sent to Graydon Carter on August 16, 2012 in response to the story that Scientology began a wife-auditing process for Tom, that Nicole Kidman was an enemy of the church and detailed his alleged search for a new wife.
“We are writing regarding your, your editor’s and reporter’s shoddy journalism, religious bigotry and potential legal liability arising out of Vanity Fair’s upcoming story about the Tom Cruise divorce,” the letter states. “Significantly, while Maureen Orth was preparing her story, Vanity Fair ignored its staff and contributors who have firsthand knowledge of Mr. Cruise and of Mr. Miscavige and who would burden her story with the truth.”
The letter accuses Orth of hiding her intentions about the article, and said the list of 32 questions revealed “the tabloid nature of the article,” and her “reckless disregard of the truth and her religious bigotry,” and says the story is “false and contemptible.”
The letter defends the Scientology leader and his relationship with Tom Cruise.
“Mr. Miscavige is the ecclesiastical leader of a worldwide religion; a man of impeccable character who is dedicated to his faith and to the service of its parishioners. He respects the institution of marriage and those who enter into it. Not only is this highly offensive and grossly inappropriate question lifted from Andrew Morton’s 2008 unauthorized biography of Tom Cruise, but if Ms. Orth had done any research, she would know that Mr. Miscavige’s vocation requires him to travel extensively throughout the world and he is rarely even in the same cities as the celebrities with whom she suggests he spends virtually all of his time. Ms. Orth’s implications are demonstrably false. If she had considered for a minute the respective travel and work demands placed on both Mr. Miscavige and Mr. Cruise, she would have dismissed outright this “third wheel notion” concocted in Mr. Morton’s book.”
In a shocking comparison, the letter equates the Vanity Fair article’s claims to accusing the Pope of poisoning holy wine.
“Ms. Orth shows no sensitivity to Scientology’s religious beliefs as she apparently hasn’t a clue what those beliefs are. Scientology auditing is the most sacrosanct practice of the Scientology religion and the confidences of parishioners given in auditing are inviolate. Yet the very tenor of Ms. Orth’s questions concerning such matters, on the order of “By the way, do you take sugar in your coffee?” evidences her total ignorance and lack of respect for the beliefs of Scientologists.
“The allegations she forwards are akin to asking the Pope if he threw poison in the wine before failing to bless the Holy Communion during the Easter service. Your apostate sources know that is the nature of what they are insinuating and Ms. Orth, who hasn’t the vaguest clue about the practice of Scientology, has been duped into forwarding their anti-Scientology agenda.”
The letter threatens legal action against the magazine, writing “The disgraceful allegations Vanity Fair apparently plan to publish about Mr. Miscavige are defamatory. If Vanity Fair goes forward with publication of such defamatory allegations, now that it is on notice that the story is false, the stain on its reputation will last long after any reader even remembers the article. The sting of the jury verdict will last longer still; far longer than any pleasure from racing to publish a poorly researched and sourced story.”
Vanity Fair is standing by their story, releasing a statement to CNN saying, “We absolutely stand by Maureen Orth’s story. Vanity Fair has never paid sources and never would.”