I know my remarks in this regard are small solace for those affected but I think they can offer a little hope. It is shunning in particular that is leading to ultimate defeat of the Watchtower cult.
How so? Well, any policy followed to an extreme results in the opposite consequences. This is just a rewording of the 'law of unintended consequences'. A repressive nation forbids most everything - and so triggers rebellion. You protect your kids by not permitting them to play in the dirt - and they develop weak immune systems. The government orders every entitlement imaginable - and then goes bankrupt and can't protect anyone.
So, what happens when shunning is taken to a collective extreme? History can quickly tell you: the Jews of Jesus' day positively reveled in shunning and even developed complex rules to encourage it, depending on what sect you belonged to (The Dead Sea Scrolls have a lot about this).
And what was the result of all this endless social exclusion? Two things: entrenched hypocrisy and deep social decay.
"Disfellowshipping" did NOT make them morally clean! Quite the contrary! All that shunning strongly encouraged fake religious devotion, as Jesus kept pointing out. A whole nation was 'play acting' their faith to avoid exclusion.
Nor did this orgy of shunning create a viable unity as shown by the collapse of the Jewish system in 70 AD. They were often as eager to turn on each other as to fight the Romans.
So, what do we find in the Watchtower today? Open, honest opposition that might lead to ethical reform of the organization? No, instead you have endless cutbacks in literature, magazines, Bethel staff and Branch Offices. Millions of Jehovah's Witnesses are 'play acting' their faith because they don't wish to be shunned by "friends" or family. They prefer to close their wallets - where they can't be noticed.
7 million Jehovah's Witnesses speak glowingly about their God Directed leaders but men aren't reaching out to become elders. So, they stay with it and maintain appearances but avoid the shunning.
And what else happens as a result of this extreme collective shunning? Well, one long term Bethelite put it this way, "they're always watching us, looking for an opportunity". He was speaking about his fear and discouragement in that so many opposers - as ex-Witnesses - seek to harm the organization.
Thanks to shunning, the Watchtower can enjoy a ceaseless guerrilla war that drains them, day and night, year after year against opponents who replenish their ranks out of an endless pool of the aggrieved. No brothers, you don't need to invoke Satan to explain this fact.
The summary of this? Thanks to shunning, the Organization can face being chipped away without letup, while wasting their resources on congregations of people who secretly wish they'd just go away - and "contribute" accordingly.
If they had any brains, they would rethink the whole matter more carefully - but since they see only the surface, the shunning and cruelty continues.