L. Ron Hubbard — A Galactic Case of Stolen Valor

Lafayette Ronald Hubbard, more popularly known as either L. Ron Hubbard or LRH, is most famous for founding the sci-fi cult that eventually became the Church of Scientology. However, according to the so-called “church” he founded, L. Ron was also a war hero who was “highly decorated for duties under fire.” Not only that, he was left “partially blind and lame from injuries sustained in combat”—a situation he completely reversed by healing himself with what ended up being the foundation of his book Dianetics and then the future Church of Scientology.

Now, it is important to know that Scientologists claim that every word Hubbard wrote is infallible; the writings of L. Ron Hubbard are completely and utterly correct, being based solely on facts. This is an extremely important aspect to keep in mind for one very important reason that the Church of Scientology explained themselves: “Of course, if it’s true that Mr. Hubbard was never injured during the war, then he never did heal himself using Dianetics principles, then Dianetics is based on a lie, and then Scientology is based on a lie,” said Tommy Davis, then-chief spokesperson for the Church of Scientology.

As early as 1985, the Church of Scientology had claimed that Hubbard was “honored with 21 medals and palms.” According to the “Notice of Separation from the U.S. Naval Service” that the Church of Scientology has handed out, these awards consisted of a Purple Heart with palm device, the Victory Medal, a Letter of Commendation, a Distinguished Marksman, a Unit Citation, an Expert Rifle badge, an Expert Pistol badge, a European Theater Medal with 1 star, an American Theater Medal with 2 stars, a Marine Medal, an American Defense Medal, a British Victory Medal, a Dutch Victory Medal, and an Asiatic-Pacific Theater Medal with 3 stars. A “Lt. Cmdr. Howard D. Thompson” signed this document. This is worth mentioning, if only to point out that this man doesn’t exist in any naval records from this time.

In 1994, the awards count by the Church of Scientology had risen to 29, according to the church-published The Church of Scientology: 40th Anniversary book. According to LRH himself, he had been awarded 27 times. In an internal memorandum from May 28, 1974, he claimed that he had been awarded a Navy Commendation Medal with 1 bronze star device, a Purple Heart, a Naval Reserve Medal, an Organized Marine Corps Reserve Medal, the British 1939-45 War Medal, the French Medaille Commemorative 1939-45, the Bronzen Kruis from the Netherlands, a Philippine Defense Medal with 3 silver star devices, an American Defense Service Medal with 1 bronze star device, an American Campaign Medal with 2 bronze star devices, the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with 2 bronze star devices, the European African Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with 1 bronze star device, the World War II Victory Medal, the National Defense Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, the Naval Expert Rifleman, and the Naval Expert Pistol Shot.

“Consider this officer lacking in the essential qualities of judgment, leadership, and cooperation. He acts without forethought as to probably results,” wrote Rear Admiral F.A. Braisted in L. Ron Hubbard’s fitness report from 1943.

The fact of the matter, according to the Department of the Navy’s Bureau of Naval Personnel, is that war hero L. Ron Hubbard received exactly four total medals and awards. These are the American Defense Service Medal, the American Campaign Medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal. All four of these medals were automatically awarded to any service member who was serving during very specific time periods and/or in very specific areas. So this means that the only thing the old LRH was ever awarded for was that he showed up to a recruiting station. The man that the Church of Scientology calls a war hero actually only received a participation ribbon for being born at the same time as the rest of the Greatest Generation.

“You don’t get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion,” said L. Ron Hubbard, responding to a question from the audience during a meeting of the Eastern Science Fiction Association on November 7, 1948.

“To celebrate Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard’s March 13, 1911 birthday, each year Scientologists from sixty countries gather at the religion’s spiritual nexus in Clearwater, Florida in a weekend celebration of their founder’s life. This year, they acknowledged Mr. Hubbard’s seemingly endless accomplishments and cast their eyes toward a limitless future, inspired by the life and works of L. Ron Hubbard.” (Credit: Facebook/Scientology)

The Church has made a considerable number of stupid claims about why the official record is so different from the clearly forged copy they have produced (which utilized a font that hadn’t even been invented at the time the document was allegedly created). They have claimed the records were deleted to protect the secrecy of the missions that Hubbard supposedly conducted…even though the only action he got into was firing artillery into Mexican territory, resulting in an investigation that didn’t reflect very kindly on old Ron.

“The only way you can control people is to lie to them. You can write that down in your book in great big letters. The only way you can control anybody is to lie to them,” offered L. Ron Hubbard in the lecture “Off the Time Track” (June 1952) as quoted in Journal of Scientology issue 18-G, reprinted in Technical Volumes of Dianetics & Scientology Vol. 1, p. 418.

Let’s look at some of the obvious lies that are exposed solely on the facts regarding the awards themselves. Like when they claimed that LRH had two Purple Hearts, signified with a “palm.” If Hubbard had been in the Army, he definitely could have received an oak leaf cluster…which is kind of like a palm device, if you don’t know what you are talking about…and you are trying to make up a lie to impress your friends. However, he was in the Navy…which awards a star for subsequent awards, not a palm or oak leaf cluster. That being said, it isn’t like LRH to let the facts get in the way of a good story.

(Credit: Facebook/Wayne S Pierce)

“Yesterday, you might have been a pirate,” L. Ron Hubbard wrote in “Master Mariner: At The Helm Across Seven Seas”.

Maybe that’s why he didn’t hesitate to claim to have received a British War Medal 1939-45…which was only awarded to subjects of the British Commonwealth. Same for the French medal, which is only awarded to soldiers serving under French authority. What about the National Defense Service Medal? That award wasn’t even created until eight years after Hubbard got out of the military. Who knows—maybe Ronnie figured out time travel? That might explain the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, which was created five years after LRH exited military service.

Oh, and as for LRH’s claims about being injured, nearly blind and hopelessly crippled? Complete and total fabrications. Hubbard’s military medical records mention a few minor illnesses. And remember what the Church embodiment said. If this claim is false, all of Scientology is false.

“He is a fraud and has always been a fraud,” recorded Ron DeWolfe (born L. Ron Hubbard Jr.), the oldest son of L. Ron Hubbard in a court affidavit:

  1. Ron Hubbard has made many, many claims that have turned out to be completely false; he has claimed to be a nuclear physicist (he wasn’t), a college graduate (nope), and various other easily disproven silly stories (just Google him). However, maybe Hubbard deserves the benefit of the doubt. Perhaps L. Ron isn’t lying to all of us. Maybe like John Kerry throwing his military awards over a fence to protest the Vietnam War, LRH just threw his medals into a volcano and dropped some hydrogen bombs on them for good measure. So maybe, just maybe, L. Ron Hubbard isn’t a Sith Lord of Stolen Valor. Perhaps, despite all of the evidence that points to him being the most vile of Stolen Valor scumbags, this is just a Jedi Mind Trick and he isn’t the malingering PX Ranger that the facts show him to be. I actually have it on very good authority that Hubbard was the one who killed Bin Laden; Bryan Williams can confirm, he was there.
The opinions expressed here by contributors are their own and are not the view of OpsLens which seeks to provide a platform for experience-driven commentary on today's trending headlines in the U.S. and around the world. Have a different opinion or something more to add on this topic? Contact us for guidelines on submitting your own experience-driven commentary.
Adam P

Adam is an Army Special Operations veteran, with over ten years of active duty service and multiple combat and training deployments to various locations throughout the world.

Join the conversation!

We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, vulgarity, profanity, all caps, or discourteous behavior. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain a courteous and useful public environment where we can engage in reasonable discourse.

Watch The Drew Berquist Show

Everywhere, at home or on the go.