The Social and Political Chaos Reflected by the Unification Church

  Abe was assassinated near the north exit of the Kintetsu (Kinki Railway Company) Nara Yamato and Saidaiji Station. Yamato Saidaiji Station is a transfer station for the lines under the jurisdiction of the Kinki Railway Company, and the author has changed trains here many times. The train goes west to Osaka, east to Nara city, north to Kyoto, and south to Yamato Yagi and Kashihara Shrine. There is an izakaya near the north exit. The author once had a meal and chat with friends here, but it was only more than 20 meters away from the assassination site.
  The murderer Toru Yamashita also confessed that his assassination of Abe had nothing to do with politics, but out of dissatisfaction with the “Unification Church”. , the family goes bankrupt,” while he felt that Abe “has something to do with the church.” Yamashita expressed his dissatisfaction with the Unification Church many times on the Internet, “What I hate is only the Unification Church. No matter what happens to the Abe regime, I don’t care.” Former Prime Minister of Japan, the Unification Church was introduced to Japan during his time in power. I wouldn’t be surprised no matter how lawless Abe inherited his DNA.” In a letter to a reporter on the eve of the assassination, he made it clear: “Abe is not the real enemy, and I have no time to consider the political significance and consequences of Abe’s death.”
Approaching Japanese politics and being favored and sheltered

  The headquarters of the Unification Church of Japan is located in Shibuya, Tokyo. It has 284 branch churches located all over the country. It is said to have 560,000 members (including those who quit the church).
  The Unification Church is a right-wing religious organization founded by South Korean Man Mingxun in South Korea in 1954. Introduced to Japan in the late 1950s, the Unification Church of Japan was established in 1959. In 1964, he was recognized as a religious corporation, and the chairman was Shuki Kubogi. In January 1968, Moon Myung Sun founded the political organization of the Unification Church, and approached the Japanese political circles with an anti-communist attitude, winning the favor and protection of conservative members of the Liberal Democratic Party. In March of the same year, a corresponding organization was also established in Japan, with Kuboki Osamu as the president, and many key members of the Unification Church are also its members. Abe’s father, Shintaro Abe, who was Japan’s foreign minister in the early 1980s, also joined the group. In September 1970, the “World Congress” of the political organization was held at Tokyo Budokan with 23 promotion groups including the Shrine Main Office and the Friends of the Self-Defense Forces as sponsors. In 1974, the Unification Church of Japan hosted the “Day of Hope Dinner Party”, which was attended by more than 40 Japanese cabinet ministers and members of Congress. In 1984, Moon Myung was sentenced in the United States for tax evasion.
  During his tenure as Chief Cabinet Secretary and Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe sent congratulatory messages to the celebrations and related activities sponsored by the Unification Church on many occasions, arousing strong dissatisfaction among many Japanese, especially the victims of the Unification Church, and his relationship with the Unification Church has been controversial. . But Abe turned a deaf ear to objections. When Abe was prime minister, he held a “cherry blossom viewing party” at Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden in Tokyo every April, and people from the Unification Church were invited to attend. Abe and several senior Liberal Democratic Party officials also attended special gatherings and seminars held by Unification Church-related groups and delivered speeches. On September 12, 2021, at a large gathering held by the “Heavenly Peace United Church” affiliated to the Unification Church in South Korea, the host of the meeting introduced the relationship between Abe’s grandfather, Nobusuke Kishi, and father, Shintaro Abe, and the Unification Church. Abe delivered a keynote speech via video, expressing “high respect” to Han Hakja, the top leader of the Unification Church in South Korea and the widow of Moon Myung Sun. This is the first time Abe has publicly disclosed his close relationship with the Unification Church, which has sparked public criticism.
Bad track record since its establishment

  In May 1994, the Unification Church changed its name to “United Family for World Peace and Unification”. Its most criticized issue was that it defrauded the property of believers or other social figures through the “Inspirational Commercial Law”, causing many believers to fall into poverty or even go bankrupt. Toruya Yamashita. Mother is one of them. The so-called “inspiration business law” means that members of the Unification Church pretend to have psychic abilities, subtly ask believers or counselors about their misfortune, distress or troubles, observe their words, and prescribe the right “medicine”. In order to eliminate bad karma and live a happy life, believers or consultants must buy the products promoted by the church at high prices. If believers or consultants hesitate or refuse to buy, they will be intimidated or even coerced.
  In the 1980s, “inspired business law” became popular in Japan, and there were related sales activities almost every day. The products that the Unification Church sells are often 10 or even hundreds of times the original price. According to the statistics of the “National Lawyers’ Federation” (National Association of Inspiration Business Law Countermeasures Lawyers), from 1987 to 2021, a total of 34,537 “Inspiration Commercial Law”-related cases occurred in Japan, with more than 32,000 victims and an amount of more than 123.7 billion yen. “Inspired Business Law” also spread to Unification Church hospitals, where doctors deliberately exaggerated patients’ conditions and took advantage of patients’ unease to over-treat. The Unification Church’s “Inspirational Business Law” was later imitated by Aum Shinrikyo. For example, Aum Shinrikyo stipulated that believers pay 1 million yen per month to rent helmets “with” the brain waves of Shoko Asahara, while purchasing helmets requires payment of 1 million yen per month. 10 million yen, etc.
  Another thing that the Unification Church is criticized by the society is the “community wedding (marriage)” that presides over religious ceremonies for believers, claiming that men and women should marry according to God’s will (in fact, the will of the patriarch). Unmarried believers send their photos and resumes to the church, and the patriarch will marry them. Of course, this kind of messy marriage will not be happy. The purpose of the Unification Church’s “mass wedding” is to attract believers and defraud them of money.
  In 2010, Japanese scholars Yoshihide Sakurai and Koko Nakanishi published the book “The Unification Church: The Strategy of Mission in Japan and the Blessing of Korea and Japan”, which provided insights into the mission strategy of the Unification Church in Japan, the spiritual control of believers, and “collective marriage”. After conducting a comprehensive empirical study, they found that the Unification Church had thoroughly brainwashed Japanese female believers who had married into South Korea. Many women believed that they were atonement and that the real world was a “training house” for entering the kingdom of heaven. The Unification Church claims that a marriage that transcends borders, ethnicities, and religions is an ideal marriage, and that intermarriage between countries and ethnicities with historically bad relations is more valuable. Therefore, the marriage combination of Japanese and Korean people is an “ideal combination”. This is using historical issues to provide legitimacy for its absurd “collective marriage” theory.

Entrance and exit of Yamato and Saidaiji Stations in Nara, Japan. The place where Toruya Yamashita lives is only one stop away, about 2 kilometers away; the Nara branch of the Unification Church is located in Honcho, Nishidaiji, only about 300 meters away from the place where Abe was assassinated.

  The source of funds of the Unification Church is mainly divided into four parts, one is the operating income of the affiliated enterprise; the second is the sales income of “Inspiration Business Law”; the third is the income of “collective wedding”, each participant must provide 170 in the name of payment and donation. 10,000 yen, the total of 3.4 million yen for the marriage parties, and sometimes the number of participants in a wedding can be as high as 20,000 to 30,000 or even more; the fourth is the donation of believers, they are required to donate a part of their income to the church, the more the better, Some believers even take loan sharks in order to give.
  Another consequence of “collective marriage” is the disappearance of a large number of Japanese women, resulting in a social tragedy. Believers attending weddings cannot choose their marriage partners according to their own wishes. Almost all the participants do not know the nationality, name and age of their marriage partners until the wedding. It is impossible for such a man and a woman to build a happy family. Such weddings are merely a means of making money for the Unification Church. The Unification Church deceived Japanese believers into marrying foreigners of the opposite sex such as South Korea and naturalization, just to allow Japanese believers to engage in unpaid labor in South Korea and other countries, without forming an actual family. More than 7,000 Japanese female believers were stranded in South Korea to participate in “mass weddings”. Many people have been deported because of false marriages, and some Japanese women have committed suicide because they have been “sent” to South America because they have cut off contact with their families. Hundreds of victims sued to punish the church, who, because of the church’s lies and coercion, borrowed money from financial institutions to donate to the church, and then suffered from being unable to pay it back. Many victims have filed lawsuits to call for annulment. In April 1993, a Filipino man (34 years old) in Chiryu City, Aichi Prefecture strangled his Japanese wife (35 years old) to death at home. The two got married through this “group wedding”.
Exchange of interests with conservative forces in politics

  In order to safeguard the rights and interests of believers, the dignity of the law and the protection of human rights, in February 1987, some lawyers in Tokyo established the “Inspiration Lawyers Liaison Association for Victims of Commercial Law”. In May of the same year, the “National Inspiration and Commercial Law Countermeasures Lawyers Liaison Association” (referred to as “National Lawyers Federation”) composed of about 300 lawyers from all over the country was established and set up a firm to collect evidence, receive consultation, and accept related cases. The National Lawyers Federation has brought criminal charges against Unification Church officials for violating the specific business transaction law, fraud, and organized tax evasion, and brought the culprits to justice. On January 18, 2010, the Oita prefectural police forcibly searched the Oita prefectural branch of the Unification Church and arrested a store salesperson and his wife, both of whom were Unification Church believers, deceived consumers with lies and forced them to sign a contract to buy seals. In January 1984, the Aomori District Court sentenced three Unification believers (two men and one woman) to two years and six months in prison, with a five-year reprieve. The three took a 47-year-old woman to the hotel on the pretext of being haunted by evil spirits, and intimidated her for 10 hours in a row, threatening the woman that “the child you killed and the husband who died of illness can’t become a Buddha. It’s very painful.” 12 million yen was withdrawn.
  Since Unification Church’s missionary activities, “Inspirational Business Law” and “group weddings” have long caused controversy, the number of victims and the amount of money involved are huge, and there have been many incidents of family breakdown, why is the Unification Church still safe and sound?
  One is because of political asylum. To some extent, the Unification Church and conservative forces in Japanese politics have formed a relationship of exchange of interests, that is, the church assists politicians in elections, mobilizes believers to actively canvass votes for politicians, ensure their election, and provide funds to politicians. In the upper house election held two days after Abe was assassinated, a Liberal Democratic Party candidate won most of the votes controlled by the Unification Church and was elected. The church held a rally for him, and the atmosphere was extremely warm. When introducing the candidate, a church cadre said that he had become a member of the Unification Church. “We must win! Victory is good, and defeat is evil!” A reporter sarcastically said: “I feel that fanatical believers have become a vote-collecting machine for Liberal Democratic Party lawmakers.” In return, politicians use their power and personal influence to shelter the church and obstruct the investigation and punishment of church scandals by relevant departments. Banmu Ohno, the former vice president of the Liberal Democratic Party, once famously said: “A monkey who falls from a tree is still a monkey, but a member of parliament who loses in an election is an ordinary person.”

Abe’s death will have a certain impact on the results of the 26th Japanese House of Representatives election. The picture shows Abe’s poster being posted in the election office of the Zimei Party somewhere.

  The second is because the Unification Church is not a simple church. It has a huge number of enterprises, schools, hospitals and media. It has a large number of private secretaries installed around members of Congress and politicians. It can use public opinion and money to suppress opposition, intimidate critics, and even sue Violence, cover up scandal. In September 2019, 13 members of the restructured Abe cabinet joined the cabinet for the first time, and six of them were closely related to the Unification Church and were called “Ministers of the Unification Church Department”.
  The third is because of the government’s inaction. A Japanese scholar pointed out: “The government and the people are very indifferent to the anti-social activities of various religious groups and have no sense of responsibility.” The
  Japanese government decided to hold a state funeral for Abe this fall, “to show that our country will not succumb to violence and firmly defend democracy. the determination to be socialist”, but some public opinion disagreed. Because the Abe assassination case was an act of personal revenge unrelated to a political terrorist attack, raising it to the level of defending democracy is obviously political manipulation by the Japanese government.
  Yamashita Toruya’s assassination of Abe had nothing to do with politics. His mother donated her entire estate to the church, causing the family to go bankrupt and he was forced to drop out because he couldn’t pay for college. Yamashita, who has no education, can’t become a regular employee no matter how hard he struggles. He has participated in the Maritime Self-Defense Force. After retiring, he has been working in precarious temporary jobs. He is over forty, alone and carrying debts, so he vented his hatred on the Unification Church. and the former prime minister who maintained close ties to the church. The residence of Yamashita Tetsuya is only one stop away from Yamato Saidaiji Temple, about two kilometers; the Nara branch of the Unification Church is located in Saidaiji Honmachi, about 300 meters away from the assassination site. Yamashita can often see the logo and activities of the Unification Church, and his mood must be very complicated and angry!