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December 2022
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Speeches

F. Rojas-Aravena: Address to Summit 2022, Session VIa

Address to Summit 2022 and Leadership Conference,
Seoul, Korea, August 11-15, 2022

 

Power relations between the nations have been disrupted. We are on the threshold of a new global war, which has nuclear threat as an option and from which there is no return. This would mean the destruction of the planet.

The international context shows significant changes. An international order of more than 75 years, based on rules, is coming to an end. Mistrust and global threats have grown. A new system has yet to emerge because power relations have not been decanted. What we perceive today is a great deinstitutionalization. The world is marked by the rise of various conflicts, crises and situations where the use of force is present. War is part of the panorama. Even nuclear danger is part of the agenda, and miscalculations—or accidents—can produce an atomic disaster.

The COVID-19 pandemic wreaked havoc. It aggravated the issues inherited from frictions of various kinds. It accentuated nationalist policies and protectionism. It highlighted the lack of solidarity in relations, at all levels.

Humanity is facing a global environmental crisis. A war in Europe, for the time being of a traditional nature, joins it, as does a financial and economic crisis that has the main economies on the verge of recession. Inflation is affecting the planet as a whole. All this generates significant instability and creates high uncertainties. This is what marks the political-strategic situation of the world.

Environmental emergencies have humanity facing the greatest danger to its own existence because of climate change, which is planetary in nature. This global crisis places us before the greatest danger for humanity: the Anthropocene, as it has been called, on the one hand, and war—the most serious being the European war—on the other. One must not forget the existence of other, longer-standing wars, including the ones in Syria, Ethiopia and the Middle East, as well as the militarized crises in Asia, among others. We have a responsibility to humanity for these crises, which are experienced locally, where the most serious and perilous impact is felt, but have a global nature and influence. The impact of water shortages, desertification, contamination and low yields with regards to food production are global, as is the atomic threat.

The bottom line is that meeting these challenges and threats requires cooperation. Without cooperation, we have no peace, and without peace, there is no development. In situations of war, no rights can be exercised. Through dialogue, negotiation and mediation, it is possible to exchange bombs for words. The force of words must prevail over the violence of force.

Understanding this set of situations and processes demands new knowledge. Cold War paradigms are no longer useful. It is necessary to develop new conceptual maps, new strategic guides, new designs and theories to apprehend the great changes of an interdependent and constantly changing world.

Where to Begin and Where to Look

We need to look closely at Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon’s teachings on perpetual peace and how to apply that global reflection to reality on the ground through reconciliation. Rev. Dr. Moon was a pioneer in the creation of peace institutions and global initiatives aimed at peaceful coexistence and the creation of a human community, enlightened by God, “One Family under God.” Under his and Dr. Hak Ja Moon’s leadership, countless institutions were created and developed, among others: the Universal Peace Federation; the International Association of Parliamentarians for Peace; the Interreligious and International Peace Council; and the Women’s Federation for World Peace, as well as many foundations. All of them constitute a large global movement for peace. A main objective has been the reunification of the Korean Peninsula and the reform of multilateralism, to seek, with a new spirit, to help others. It has been a lifetime journey for peace, one that leaves great lessons and will allow us to inherit a vision of a great model of peace.

Former Costa Rican President, Dr. Rodrigo Carazo, was a leader in the promotion of peace. One of his legacies is the ideation and creation of the University for Peace, established by the United Nations General Assembly in 1980 in pursuance of its Resolution 35/55.

The principles and values shared by both leaders, Dr. Moon and Dr. Carazo, united them in a great friendship. President Carazo directly supported the reunification and reconciliation efforts of the Korean Peninsula. In that capacity, he led missions to North Korea and arranged meetings with the leader at the time, Kim Il Sung, grandfather of King Jong-un. Mr. Carazo served as a leader on the World Peace Summit Council.

Values such as shared prosperity, altruism and compassion united them in the task of global peace. In the Latin American region, President Carazo’s concerns were inequality, social exclusion and the arms race.

They joined efforts in creating mutual understanding and building bridges for good global governance. They walked together to promote peace in the world.

The University for Peace is currently following the guidelines and vision of its first rector and founder: “If you want peace, prepare peace.”

In this, rethinking old paradigms is essential. We continue to focus on conflict resolution. To this task, we have added newer and equally pressing ones: innovation for peace (in conjunction with the Peace Commission, led by Ms. Barbara Winston); interreligious dialogue as a broad path to find the will for peace (meeting between World Muslim League, the Vatican, and the World Jewish Congress); illicit trade and its links with organized crime (sponsored by Phillip Morris International); and indigenous sciences and peace studies (in partnership with the Worldwide Indigenous Network).

To study the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula is to contribute to world peace.

The ideals of both leaders, Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Rodrigo Carazo, in favor of humanity, make it possible to visualize a better tomorrow:

A new dawn without weapons of mass destruction.

A new dawn without violence.

A new dawn of hope and peace.

The debates of this academic session will allow, in addition to the memory of leaders Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon and Dr. Rodrigo Carazo, to advance with ideas on how to follow the path outlined for a lasting and sustainable peace.

 

 


To go to the World Summit 2022 Schedule page, click here.