I would like to express my gratitude to President Tokuno of the Federation of Families for World Peace and Unification, President Ota of the World Peace Federation, and all of you for the great support you have given to us, the Liberal Democratic Party.
This was the speech made by Tomohiro Yamamoto, a member of the House of Representatives of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), at the “10,000 People Rally” held by the Unification Church on Mother’s Day, May 14, 2005, at the Ariake Colosseum (Koto-ku, Tokyo).
The overly close relationship between a member of the Diet and the Unification Church has become a public controversy. At this point, the number of Diet members who are known to have had some kind of relationship with the Unification Church exceeds more than 100 in total. Not only have they been interviewed by Unification Church-affiliated media or sent congratulatory telegrams as requested, but since the second Abe administration in 2012, a number of lawmakers have actively participated in events organized by the church.
Let us introduce here some of the “highly contacted” lawmakers who have particularly close ties to the Unification Church.
Yamamoto, who began his speech by expressing his gratitude on behalf of the Liberal Democratic Party, continued his praise for the cult. He even referred to the president of the church, Han Hak-chul-ji, as “Mother Moon,” and said, “I have given this to my own mother.
I presented her with a magnificent bouquet of carnations, which I have never given even to my own mother,” he said from the podium.
From the podium, he received a thunderous ovation from his followers.
In July 2005, Mr. Ryota Takeda, a member of the House of Representatives, traveled with Mr. Yamamoto to the U.S. as a member of a Diet delegation that included leaders of the Unification Church and related organizations. He attended the “Korea-Japan-U.S. Diet Members Conference” at the U.S. House of Representatives building in Washington, D.C. He later served in key positions in Abe’s fourth cabinet, including Chairman of the National Public Safety Commission and Minister of State for Administrative Reform. He has held a number of important positions.
The relationship between Senator Yamamoto and Takeda with the Unification Church does not end there.
In February 2005, the Unification Church’s affiliate, UPF (United for Peace in the Universe), hosted a meeting at the National Assembly Hall and Lotte Hotel in Seoul, South Korea, to discuss the Unification Church’s relationship with the IAPP. In February, they attended the World Assembly of the Inter-Assembly Parliamentarians for Peace (IAPP), which was held at the National Assembly Hall and Lotte Hotel in Seoul, Korea, under the leadership of the UPF, an affiliate of the Unification Church.
At the meeting, the two were told by President Han Hako that “each of us is a member of the clan Messiah in our own country.
Please be the clan messiahs of your own country. I congratulate you on becoming proud national messiahs who will educate the teachings of True Parents in a substantial way, saving and saving the people of your country.
(a.k.a. “national restoration” directive).
On October 5, 2007, at the “Japan Summit & Leadership Conference (JSLC),” an international leadership conference held by UPF in Nagoya, Japan, he was invited to speak at the then Kiyomizu Conference. The keynote speaker at the “Japan Summit & Leadership Conference (JSLC)” held by the UPF in Nagoya on October 5, 1919, was Hiroyuki Hosoda, then chairman of the Seiwa-kai.
LDP Upper House Representative Kiyoshi Ejima, who also attended that conference, presented a bouquet of flowers to the guest of honor, President Han Hakko. In the same month, Mr. Ejima also attended the “Gathering of Peace Ambassadors and Local Councilors” held by a Unification Church-related organization at the Keio Plaza Hotel in Shinjuku, Tokyo. It was noted that this gathering was a meeting to introduce politicians to young believers and to arrange for mobilizers and staff to support their election and legislative activities.
The UPF’s “Peace Road” project, in which young believers travel across Japan in a bicycle relay. Numerous Diet members chaired the organizing committee and encouraged the believer riders at Peace Road events held throughout Japan. Some members of the Diet even rode bicycles with believers. They were Takuya Hirai, a member of the House of Representatives, and Ichiro Aizawa, a member of the House of Representatives. Hirai participated in the Peace Road event in ’16, ’17, and ’19, and Aizawa in ’20.
Rep. Aizawa is a regular participant in Unification Church-affiliated events.’ In July ’18, he, along with Councilors Norio Kitamura and Takashi Yamashita, a member of the House of Representatives, and others, participated in a 10,000-person rally of the church in Okayama Prefecture, “Prayers for Reconstruction, 2018 Kojo He was a guest of honor at the 10,000-strong “Cultural Peace Festival in OKAYAMA” held in Okayama Prefecture, and delivered a congratulatory speech from the platform.
At the rally, then World President Moon Sun-Shin, the fifth daughter of Oyasama and her husband, read the “Word” of President Han-Hakko on their behalf.
The burden of excessive donations (commonly known as “responsibility sharing”), which is imposed on Japanese believers after instilling in them a sense of atonement for Korea, was once again made visible.
I would like to say to Japan. In order for us to become one, we must admit that we have made mistakes in the past and join hands to make things better for the future. From a human perspective, we are an unforgiving people. However, in the providence of Heaven, True Parents blessed Japan as the nation of Mother, the nation of Eva, who lives for the world. The characteristic of Mother is that she gives everything generously without regard for herself.”
Senator Aizawa is energetic.’ In October 2006, he also attended the 50th anniversary convention of the International Union for Victory and Co-operation, a Unification Church-affiliated political organization, held at The Capitol Hotel Tokyu (Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo), which stands behind the Diet Members’ Building, with the aforementioned Diet Members Yamamoto and Takeda.
Many Diet members attended the convention, but most of them only showed up and quickly returned to the Diet building after about 30 minutes. However, Senator Aizawa, after returning to the Diet Members’ Building, came back to the venue later in the evening. Apparently, he was there for the dinner party.
Still, why do so many Diet members continue to associate with the Unification Church and its affiliated organizations?
The advantage on the part of the Unification Church is internal control and protection of the system. Even if believers question their religious life due to harsh requests for donations, they are convinced that the church is such a wonderful organization that such a prominent Diet member attends as a guest of honor. The religious organization can then go on with its missionary work, managing the organization and collecting funds without fear of police raids or parliamentary scrutiny.
The advantage for the politicians, on the other hand, is the manpower. Not only does the Unification Church provide an inexhaustible supply of staff free of charge, not only during elections, but it has even formed a supporters’ association to give its full support.
The fact that politicians have been able to continue their relationship with the Unification Church is partly due to the fact that the media has rarely reported on it. The author has continuously reported on this inappropriate relationship since the second Abe administration took office in ’12, but the seriousness of the problem has been slow to reach the public.
The heinous acts of the suspect, Tetsuya Yamagami, cannot be forgiven. However, we must not forget that behind this is the fact that a member of the Diet has continued his relationship with the Unification Church, hiding from the eyes of the public.
In order to prevent similar incidents from happening again, we would like politicians to straighten their collars.
From the August 12, 2022 issue of FRIDAY
Interview and text by： Eight Suzuki
PHOTO： Takeshi Kinugawa (Rep. Hagiuda, Rep. Shimomura, former PM Kan) From the Facebook page of former Environment Minister Yoshiaki Harada (Table 2 photo) From the website of the Institute for Global Strategic Studies (Table 3 upper photo) (Table 3 upper photo) From "Peace Road Okayama" Instagram (Table 3 lower photo)