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T. McDevitt: Address to World Summit 2013

PhotoConsider the value of a global network of colleagues and friends that you can trust, who share common values you uphold, and who have lived their lives to make a difference. Each session of World Summit 2013 has been like attending a post-graduate honors seminar in international relations and human development.

Let’s think back about nearly 70 years ago at the end of World War II, when US General Douglas MacArthur, on the battleship Missouri, completed the signing of the treaty of surrender with Japan. In talking about the future, General MacArthur said something that’s quite prophetic:

"We’ve had our last chance. If we do not now devise some greater and more equitable system, Armageddon will be at our door. The problem is basically theological and involves a spiritual recrudescence and improvement of human character that will synchronize with our almost matchless advances in science, art, literature and all material and cultural developments of the past 2,000 years."

General MacArthur, at that poignant moment when war had ended, said "it must be of the spirit if we are to save the flesh." And to that end such instrumentalities of peace must be integrated, holistic, and an innovative blend of both public and private partnerships."

One of my favorite quotes from the Old Testament is from Proverbs: "Where there is no vision, the people perish. But he that keepeth the law, happy is he." Proverbs 29:18.

So what is the vision for the Americas for the next decade and beyond? A roadmap is needed that promotes peace, security, and human development. We represent 35 nations in the Americas, about 14 percent of the human population, over 900 million people. The prominent faith, of course, is Christianity, with Islam and Judaism and many other religions represented.

It is a vital part of the world in this Pacific era, and Dr. Sun Myung Moon invested enormous time and effort in the Americas over the past 30 years, starting during the Cold War, with a tremendous educational system to teach people the differences between the Marxist-Leninist proposition and the free-market proposition. He developed media and built incredible education and moral institutions. He saw fantastic potential in the harmony between North and South America. At the same time, he launched The Washington Times, which in its 30 years of existence has become truly a distinctive source of news and opinion throughout the world.