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Ambassadors for Peace

In Memoriam: Baroness Margaret Thatcher

Lady Thatcher Meeting Dr Thomas Walsh UPF PresidentFrench

It was with deep regret that all at Universal Peace Federation learned of the passing on April 8 of our renowned former Prime Minister and dear friend Baroness Thatcher, after a stroke. We join with so many others around the nation and the entire world in mourning her passing and expressing our heartfelt condolences to her family - particularly her two children, Mr. Mark Thatcher and Mrs. Carole Thatcher. Our thoughts and prayers at this sad time are with Lady Thatcher herself (may she truly rest in peace!) and with her surviving family! (Photo on left is Lady Thatcher meeting Dr. Thomas Walsh, Universal Peace Federation International President, to receive a Leadership and Good Governance Award.)

Although a certain sense of sadness is inevitable, we feel it is nevertheless far more a time to celebrate the remarkable life and accomplishments of someone who was truly a figure of global and by no means merely British or European influence and, by common consent, one of the greatest ever British Prime Ministers. Although every person has their flaws and not all her views would reflect UPF values, Lady Thatcher was a great champion of freedom around the world, both through her tireless opposition to Soviet-backed communism and to tyranny in all its forms. Also her insistence on the importance of the responsibility of the individual as the basis for building a free, just, and prosperous society, values that UPF very much shares and seeks to realize in all that it does.

Lady Thatcher Group Photo
Lady Thatcher with Leadership and Good Governance Award
Lady Thatcher with Leadership and Good Governance Medal

What was not commonly known to most was that Lady Thatcher held UPF's Founder, Rev. Sun Myung Moon, and many projects and activities of his in high regard. There is no doubt that she felt a  profound empathy and respect towards him based on his tireless devotion to exposing the wrongs of global communism and in promoting the core values of "family, faith and freedom." That empathy was strengthened by her own often deeply painful experience of working desperately to change things for the good of all and finding that all kinds of negative forces came against her and that she was vilified for her efforts. This, as she surely realized, was a recurring theme in both of their lives!

In 2007, on the 25th anniversary of The Washington Times (also founded by Rev. Moon) she sent a touching DVD tribute to be shown to the distinguished audience at the celebration in that city. This included, among many others, the 41st U.S. President, George H.W. Bush. In it she acknowledged the newspaper's important role in combating global communism, a contribution that had moved President Ronald Reagan to credit the paper on the occasion of its 10th anniversary in 1992 by saying "Oh yes, and together we won the cold war." She also lauded the newspaper's core journalistic and other values.

In 2008 Lady Thatcher was proud and visibly moved to receive UPF's Leadership and Good Governance Award, one instigated by Rev. and Mrs. Moon and received by many other prominent world leaders over the years. She can be seen to the right the citation and wearing the accompanying gold medal with UPF-Europe Secretary General, Mr Mark Brann at the award ceremony in London. She expressed herself as being always willing to help. "If ever you need me, just give me a call," she said with real feeling.

And she was always as good as her word. Thus in 2010, being informed of Rev. Moon's 90th birthday celebrations she composed a special birthday greeting letter in her own hand expressing the hope that it would be a "splendid occasion."

Baroness Thatcher will be deeply missed by many, but there can be no doubt that her legacy will live on for generations and be an important part of the world of lasting peace that UPF is committed to help build!

Credit for Photos: Mr. Andy Johnson

The Leadership and Good Governance Award is presented by the Universal Peace Federation to people manifesting standards of excellence in leadership, integrating professional expertise and practical wisdom with moral and spiritual principles. Candidates from all fields and realms of governance are considered, including leaders from religion, government, non-governmental organizations, corporations, and educational institutions. Recipients include current and former heads of state and government, parliamentarians, and significant religious leaders throughout the world.

 
 

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