Pacific Leaders Praise Moon at World Peace Summit

The UPF website reports on the recent “Summit for World Peace” in Seoul, which apparently brought together 220 “world leaders” and was timed to coincide with the birthdays of both Rev and Mrs Moon. Two presidents from the Pacific were particularly keen to praise Moon:

“I have been waiting for a long time to come to this International Leadership conference,” said the Prime Minister of Samoa, Hon. Tuilaepa Malielegaoi. “The UPF has done important work in Samoa, and I was interested to learn more of the peace principles taught by Rev. Moon.”

…The Prime Minister of Vanuatu, H.E. Ham Lini, promised the ongoing cooperation of the Vanuatu with the Universal Peace Federation to ensure that world peace prospers in the Pacific Rim: “On behalf of my wife and I, and representing all the people of Vanuatu, I would like to express our gratitude for the sincere investment that the Rev. and Mrs. Moon and the UPF have made to secure world peace for so many years,” he said. “The vision that world peace will begin in the Pacific Rim region is one that resonates in my heart and that of all the Pacific Rim peoples.”

As I noted here, both countries have been involved with Moon for a while, and in 2004 a “Peace Council for Oceania” was founded in Samoa with former Vanuatu head of state George Sokomanu (an “Ambassador for Peace”) in charge.

Moon’s activities in Vanuatu have caused some controversy, and there has been political cost to Lini. This November 2005 report from the local Indepdendent newspaper has the background:

…Early last week, a group of so-called ‘Moon representatives’ was threatened and told to leave Erakor. One of them was slapped in the face. They were visiting the village to distribute ‘blessing lollies’ to children and families on Moon’s behalf.

…During [a] church leaders’ meeting, Thursday, Prime Minister Ham Lini was the only one speaking in support of Moon’s coming next month…The prime minister’s statement was described as a slap in the face for most church leaders who said they were disappointed.

PM Lini admitted having attended a Moon conference last year in Japan, where he was awarded a medal.

Lini was among 12 Vanuatu parliamentarians who went to overseas conferences jointly funded and organised by the Inter-Religious International Federation for World Peace (IIFWP) and volunteers from Japan. Vanuatu was among 12 other Oceania nations to attend such conferences last March, April and May.

…Moon was accused of fraud in the 1970’s, serving a sentence in the early 1980’s in the United States, according to reports from the internet circulating between Port Vila residents. He was also accused of bribing ni-Vanuatu leaders to join his IIFWP.

Moon had hoped for “an official ceremony including a guard of honour at the international airport and red mats or carpets to walk on”, but following a delay on a visa decision he decided to cancel the visit altogether. The following August, the chairman of the Pastors Unity Assembly, Father Henry Crowby, denounced Moon’s teachings as “anti-Christ”.

A 2001 report in Pacific Magazine examines Moon’s strategy for the region in more detail:

In a December sermon, quoted on his Internet Web site, Moon says of his sudden interest in the Pacific: “One nation has only 2,000 people, but I want to save it and help it become a member of the world community. America and Japan abandoned such nations, but I work with them. Someone has to pay attention, because the Pacific Ocean is in the position of the mother’s womb for the two continents and for the planet Earth. There are many resources there. Who will be the owner? Let’s march to the Pacific Ocean.”

…Salonen and Joe A. Tully, President of Hawaii-based Pacific Rim Integrated Development, distributor of the Moon-owned Washington Times, said in a recent interview that Moon is committed to supporting educational developments in the Pacific Islands. They say that he is responding to needs rather than promoting his own agenda.


2 Responses

  1. The Unification Church and Sun Myung Moon does indeed have a “hidden agenda” with its activities on Pacific Islands, though the nature of that hidden agenda is more bizarre than sinister. For example, the “blessing lollies” being distributed by Moon followers are a part of a strange development in the cult in which the Holy Wine, which is said to remove the Original Sin from anyone who partakes of it, and which is rumored to contain drops of Moon’s own blood, is now given out freely to people who have little or no knowledge of the purported spiritual benefits of the wine. This has now been taken further, and the wine is either included in the ingredients of candy that is given out, or the candy is said to possess the same spiritual qualities. Originally, the Holy Wine was reserved for Moon followers who participated in Moon’s “Blessing” ceremony, which is to say, one of his arranged marriages and mass weddings, and was supposed to be partaken only once in a follower’s lifetime.

    I am a former follower of Moon, and I can attest that in the 1970s Moon’s goal was to pluck the ripest fruit of all, namely, the United States of America, which he openly claimed he would convert wholesale to its teachings. When this improbable conquest failed, Moon tried other nations, such as the United Kingdom, Russia and Brazil, all without making much headway. Now he is willing to settle for whatever low-hanging fruit he can gather, be it a gullible government official on a Pacific island or a pliable pastor of a Christian church who is willing to overlook the heretical nature of Moon’s teachings. These individuals are given modest bribes such as gold watches or trips to foreign conferences in exchange for praising Moon and his dubious purposes. It is all an increasingly pitiful effort to plump up Moon’s sagging image and view of his own self-importance.

    – K. Gordon Neufeld

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