Sun Myung Moon Forms New Political Party to Merge Divided Koreas. (People & Events)
Controversial evangelist and media mogul Sun Myung Moon has formed a new political party in South Korea that hopes to reunify the divided nation.
Officials with Moon's Unification Church held a mass rally of 2,000 in Seoul March 10 to announce the new Family Party for the Universal Peace and Unity. The Moon political unit will focus on reunifying North and South Korea as well as promote "family values."
"Our party will kick off campaigns to promote values of freedom, equality, peace and happiness around the country and the rest of the world," said Chung Hwan Kwak, president of the party. "The party will tackle various issues facing the world community, such as challenges to global security and morality and ethics, environmental protection and AIDS prevention."
Kwak also serves as chief executive officer of United Press International, a once-respected news service that Moon purchased in 2000. He also serves as chairman of the University of Bridgeport, which Moon also now owns, and in addition runs a number of other Moon-related enterprises.
Kwak said the party will not run candidates in the South Korean elections next year but will instead focus on publicizing itself and its goals. Chief among those goals is promoting the reunification of Korea. The nation has been divided since the Korean War into two countries--democratic South Korea and North Korea, a dictatorship run by Kim Jong Il.
Moon may be interested in using the new party to unify church and state as well as the Korean peninsula. During a March 2 speech in Arlington, Va., Moon called for theocracy, remarking, "To unify Korea we must unify church and state. We must establish a political party and then unify church and state. We must be able to unify the UN and deal with the Cain-type countries. The current administration in America must be guided by the religious leaders. If you follow Rev. Moon, you will not go down. In the future those who hear my words and believe will go to heaven, those who don't will not."
An official with the Korean National Election Commission said there is no reason why the new party could not be certified, and once the proper paperwork is completed, Moon's party could join 22 other political parties in South Korea.
In other news about Moon:
* A college professor in Pennsylvania says conservatives have not done enough to acknowledge their debt to Moon. …