Vanity Fair Asks Cult Expert How to ’Deprogram’ Trump Followers

On Thursday, Vanity Fair published an interview with cult expert Steven Hassan detailing how to go about “deprogramming” Trump supporters, while arguing for a “massive education” effort involving the participation of schools, mental health professionals, law enforcement, media, politicians, and intelligence agencies.

The edited transcript of the interview, titled “‘So Many Great, Educated, Functional People Were Brainwashed’: Can Trump’s Cult of Followers Be Deprogrammed?,” has Hassan, author of The Cult of Trump, describing his past as a former Moonie [member of the Unification Church] and his techniques for rehabilitating cult members.

“When I talk about the cult of Trump, I’m talking about a destructive authoritarian cult,” Hassan begins. 

“As a mental health professional, we think of that as a dissociative disorder.”

Hassan then discusses “fourth-generation warfare” which he describes as “psychological warfare aimed at confusing, disorienting, numbing, delegitimizing leaders and institutions.” 

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