The Words of the Anderson Family
Rev. Kwak gives internal guidance to members.
Rev. Chung Hwan Kwak and Dr. Anderson traveled to Eastern Europe in mid-October of this year to attend the PWPA conference on "Education in Europe," held in Hungary from October 20-24, 1989, and to visit the three countries of Poland, Hungary, and the Soviet Union.
It turned out that Reverend Kwak and I were in Eastern Europe during very dramatic times. We went to Poland, Hungary and the Soviet Union. We met Lech Walesa in Poland just at the time Eric Honecker stepped down from his rule of East Germany. While we were interviewing people in Hungary, the new Hungarian Republic was proclaimed. As our flight touched down in the Soviet Union, their foreign minister acknowledged that they had violated international law by invading Afghanistan. All of these exciting things happened as we were moving through Eastern Europe.
Throughout our trip, everywhere we went we made holy grounds. When we met with people, the conversation almost always turned to the possibility of legalizing the Church in their country -- what the reactions might be and what procedures we would have to take. Rev. Kwak was also giving internal guidance to members who had never met anyone close to Father. Connections between South Korea and Eastern Europe were also established. If you look at a map, the Soviet Empire with Siberia is enormous. Yet little South Korea is producing a huge amount of economic goods in comparison to this empire. From a geographical standpoint it doesn't make any sense. It is clearly a difference in culture and system. The Eastern European economy is in a crisis which forces them to reach out to other countries. They are especially reaching out to South Korea because of its huge accumulation of capital. When we told Mr. Walesa that South Korea had quickly repaid its national debt, he was shocked.
Along with that, Rev. Kwak met with representatives of the news media. Rev. Kwak was introducing Father in a positive light to all the leaders we met. I believe these high-level connections will help lay a foundation for the Unification of North and South Korea. North Korea is becoming more isolated while what the South can offer becomes more attractive to Eastern Europe.
The key purpose of our trip, however, was to further the work of IRF and ICF. Rev. Kwak immediately decided to sponsor an Introductory Seminar on the Unification Movement in Poland before the end of 1989 which would include all of Eastern Europe.
There was indemnity which various people paid to make this trip successful.
We had to prepare very carefully. We worried about our visas up to the last minute. In addition, conditions over there were not always easy. But with the right conditions met, everything seemed to work out. Rev. Kwak proclaimed very confidently what Father is doing. We now have much follow-up work to continue the momentum he began.
Meeting with professors in Krakow, Poland.
We arrived in Warsaw on October 16th. The schedule in Poland had us going from four in the morning until 11 at night every day. When we arrived at the Warsaw Airport, we were immediately greeted by members, some of whom came from a hundred miles away to greet us with an offering of flowers.
We went to the grave of the Unknown Soldier, dedicated to victims of World War II, and presented the flowers at the grave.
We prayed there as a condition for our work in Poland. We then arrived at the house of an ICUS professor who is really on top of everything in Poland and knows Poland's situation very clearly. He is a very good man and took very good care of us. He gave us detailed advice about who to meet and what their interest would be to what we said.
Laying flowers and praying at the Solidarity Monument.
That first night we had dinner with a number of professors from the Warsaw area, some of whom were brand new to PWPA. Rev. Kwak testified about his life with Father. I'm not sure how they received all of it, but the main points of his speech to the professors concerned Father's lifestyle. He said, "I've followed Rev. Moon for 32 years, and he has taught me basically a lifestyle where three points are essential. First, you must get by with less sleep." He explained this is important so you can accomplish more. Secondly, he talked about fasting or getting by without food. Hunger is the strongest physical urge, so if we can control our body with respect to hunger, then we can control all our relations with the material world. The third point regarding lifestyle concerned sexual relations, which are the basis of human relations and which must be kept within monogamous marriage. Rev. Kwak's internal message in Poland was, "If you can't exercise control over yourself, you can never control the affairs of your country." It is very clear that Poland is now very chaotic and many people are looking to outside governments banks to bail them out. But Rev. Kwak implicitly cautioned them: "You must control yourself or you can't solve Poland's problems."
At the home of the PWPA Vice President in Poland.
The next day we went to Krakow, Poland, which is the center of Polish civilization. A line of kings who ruled Poland from the tenth century had their headquarters there. Then the Jagiel Dynasty established Jagiel University, which is the intellectual center of Poland. When the communists took over, Krakow was the city that would not yield. In spite, the communists built a steel mill just 15 kilometers west of the city, so the pollution would affect the city. New people were brought in to change the political balance of the district toward Marxism. A number of professors were killed. This was one of the reasons our Polish chapter of PWPA decided to make a senior professor in Krakow the president of the Polish PWPA chapter. Through this action, we would be more directly restoring historical conditions in Poland.
We met with a number of professors there, including the rector of Jagiel University. Rev. Kwak and I gave talks to a group of about 20 professors who were very interested in working with PWPA. We toured a number of important historical sites and Rev. Kwak met with members in that area.
In front of the Solidarity Monument.
The next day we took the train north to Gdansk, the home of Lech Walesa and the Solidarity Movement. We began by presenting flowers at the base of the Solidarity Monument and praying. We met with the vice-president of PWPA in Poland, who actively helped the Solidarity Movement in 1981 and has served as Mr. Walesa's translator. He gained the interview with Mr. Walesa for Rev. Kwak. Mr. Walesa didn't really know what Rev. Kwak was coming to say, but I believe that happily both Mr. Walesa and Rev. Kwak felt that the meeting was important.
At 11 a.m. we went to meet Mr. Walesa at the Solidarity Headquarters building. Solidarity received overwhelming votes in Poland, so as the president of the party he is leading the top power in Poland. He declined to take the position of president or prime minister of the country; rather he appointed a prime minister. He said that since Solidarity is at his heart, it is a conflict of interest to both rule a country and lead a labor union.
Visiting the site where the Germans first invaded Poland in 1939.
He still works in his jeans in the same office he had before the Solidarity camp took power. He comes in like a labor union leader but meets top people from around the world.
Rev. Kwak initially began by talking about Father, his projects in China and around the world. We had prepared questions about relations with South Korea and Mr. Walesa said he planned to move things ahead in establishing diplomatic relations with South Korea. Indeed, Poland established diplomatic relations with South Korea within two or three weeks after our visit. I believe Mr. Walesa is motivated by Christian principles. When asked what he would do with the communists who didn't give in, he replied, "I'm a Christian. We must forgive them all. Many of them will be productive in our new society while others won't be able to adjust. We'll eventually find out. I am not worried as long as we don't allow any monopolies to take over Poland." He was obviously pushing pluralism. Out of their fear of a monopoly by the Catholic Church the intellectuals in Poland do not want the Catholic Church to be the only church in Poland. So they are all promoting pluralism. A huge Jehovah's Witness rally was recently held in Poland, and now all religions can operate freely. Walesa said, "We looked at the communist victory in 1949 and saw what happened when the leader of the party took power and had a monopoly. Our problems today are a result of that. So if I as the Solidarity leader would try to rule the country the way the communists did, I would do no better than they."
Just before we came, a Polish delegation of journalists had returned from North Korea after attending their annual Communist World Youth Rally. They were shocked to see hundreds of monuments to Kim Il Sung, who together with his son acted like a demagogue. It was very clear to the Poles that North Korea seemed to be the last Stalinist nation. They were shocked that such a country could still exist in the modern world. They ran a one-hour special twice on the Polish television and it was done like a satire on North Korea. I think the Russians feel the same way and that they are embarrassed by North Korea's leadership.
On the last day in Poland, Rev. Kwak spoke to church members for six hours about the importance of Father's life course leading up to 1989, and explained how it is providentially time for East and West to unite. He gave them renewed confidence to work to legalize the church and go out confidently in their society. I believe an ISUM meeting will also help them to do that.
The Republic of Hungary was announced the same day as our arrival in Hungary.
When we arrived in Hungary, we immediately went to the PWPA conference at the Ramada Hotel. The topic was "Education in Europe". Western Europe will form a common market by 1992 and is also forming common educational standards to enable European workers to move about freely based on these standards. The East Europeans are very worried because they feel left out of something important happening and they want to be part of it.
Rev. Kwak listens to a leading Hungarian writer and poet.
Rev. Kwak gave a keynote address at the conference which was very warmly received. If I have any complaint about the conference, it was that the capitalist/socialist debate overshadowed things, creating a tendency to lose the issue of education at times. But I think we made a good foundation. We had many highly qualified participants who prepared good papers.
At the conference I was immediately met by journalists from two very important publications. One was from the major government daily newspaper and the other was from the number one cultural weekly -- a more reflective magazine on intellectual trends in Hungary. They asked very detailed things about our work, Father and PWPA. The next day the head of a division of Hungarian TV met with us and decided our conference should be covered on television. Two professors (one from Norway and one from Poland) and myself were on Hungarian TV for 15 minutes.
The Ramada Hotel hosted our conference in Hungary.
One morning we were invited to breakfast with the president of the Academy of Sciences. From him we learned a lot about the reforms in Hungary. We met the senior Catholic at the Peter Pamzany Catholic University in Budapest and discussed IRF activities; we also had lunch with the Secretary General of the Hungarian Council of Churches. We met many important figures and even had to turn down a few interviews. Rev. Kwak met with members of our church in Hungary and encouraged them to practice openly. The recent reforms in Hungary are dramatic.
Moscow State University.
Finally, we arrived in Russia which is the country in greatest crisis. You immediately sense the heaviness there after visiting Poland and Hungary. In Poland the atmosphere is wide open -- people who once fled from there to the West can now go back without any problems. But in the Soviet Union, the atmosphere was very different. They have had communism for 70 years. As a result, everyone is conditioned to be dependent on the government. In Poland and Hungary, the older generation still remembers responsibility, tradition and religion. In Russia, religious programs can now openly broadcast on TV because of glasnost, but I believe to actually change the character of the people is going to be very difficult. Without such a change, their crisis is going to get deeper and deeper. They are looking to be bailed- out. Since their own government can't help them, they are looking to other governments for help, but they are not going to achieve their goals that way. They are a huge military power with a large empire. Now they are forced to talk about shedding this empire; but then the question is, "What happens to the relations between all the countries that made up the Soviet bloc?"
I was a bit shocked in Hungary because the people wanted to Westernize, to bring in a market economy, but they also wanted to keep the Warsaw Pact. Why? Rumania borders Hungary and now occupies Transylvania which is Hungarian speaking. Hungary occupies some territory that originally belonged to Rumania. There is a lot of tension between these two countries. The Hungarians are afraid if the Warsaw Pact goes, Rumania is going to invade Hungary, which has only one fourth as many people. Rumania is pretty powerful and still a "Stalinist" state, so people are worried about its expansion.
Gorbachev is trying to promote peace both with the West and with China. But the Soviet people are asking, "What is he doing flying around when we have such serious economic problems at home?" He is in a pretty precarious position inside the Soviet Union because of the failing economic situation. While we were there the ruble was devalued by 10 times. People are spending their rubles on jewelry or anything they can buy because hard currency is the only thing with purchasing power. They now depend on US dollars and German marks for their "second" economy.
PWPA Conference on Education in Hungary.
I want to give you an example of how our work in one part of the world can help that in another. Recently PWPA published a book, "Political Change in South Korea." An academic institute in Moscow had been sent a complimentary copy of that book and they wrote us a letter saying, "We are interested in this book; it is very informative." We sent them another book along with a letter saying, "How would you like to co-sponsor a conference on the unification of North and South Korea or on an Asian development conference in Moscow?" They wrote back saying they were quite interested and wanted to talk more about PWPA.
When I went there, I handed them three books on China which we had produced from the Third International Congress of PWPA. It was just the right thing to do, because they are interested in Asian affairs. I could just see them ready to pore over those books. They are quite impressive; we can be proud of them.
One of their main concerns is about Father: "All we've heard is negative -- about Rev. Moon's anti-communism." However, Rev. Kwak had recently hosted five journalists from Moscow in South Korea. These journalists were just returning when we were there so we met with one of them. He said that they were planning to put a positive one- hour special program about our movement on Soviet TV. We called up our friends at the institute and told them to watch that program before making a decision about whether to co-sponsor the conference. I hope they watched the show and will decide to work with us. They could bring North Korean and Russian scholars and we could bring South Korean and Western scholars to a conference. They would also feel very good as Russians if they could help bring peace to the Korean Peninsula.
We also met with many Russian scholars who have suffered under the previous regimes. They had been involved in underground anti-Stalinist movements while maintaining positions in the academic institutions. One professor introduced me to several leading intellectuals of reform. Another invited me to a theater in the suburbs where a professional production of The Gulag Archipelago was performed openly. I was able to go to the homes of Russians and talk to them about their lives. While Rev. Kwak was with members in the Soviet Union, giving the same guidance as he had done in Poland and Hungary, I was trying to develop our professors' network. It was exciting and very interesting to share in the life of the Russian people.