Controversial Korean evangelist Sun Myung Moon has unveiled plans for a far-fetched scheme to bring the world closer together by building a 51-mile bridge/tunnel over the Bering Strait to connect Russia and the United States.
“Some may doubt that such a project can be completed,” Moon said in a recent speech in Washington. “But where there is a will, there is always a way, especially if it is the will of God.”
Moon was in the nation’s capital as part of a worldwide 100-city visit that is scheduled to conclude at the end of this year. The aging Unification leader, now 85, is still forming front groups at a fast clip. In Washington he announced the formation of a new group, the Universal Peace Federation, which he says is similar to the United Nations.
The Moon-owned Washington Times reported that the Federation donated $1 million to victims of Hurricane Katrina through the Points of Light Foundation, a charity associated with former President George H.W. Bush and his son Neil. (Bush has spoken at Moon events since leaving office.)
A press release announcing the D.C. event contained laudatory quotes about Moon from clergy who work with him, including Archbishop George Stallings of the Imani Temple, a breakaway Catholic group, and political leaders, including the Rev. Walter Fauntroy, former congressional delegate for the District of Columbia. Also attending the D.C. speech was a former U.S. senator, Larry Pressler of South Dakota.
The press release announced that the “still dynamic” Moon would call for “a dramatic appeal to the world community to undertake the most ambitious civil engineering project in history a 51-mile bridge and tunnel connecting the United States and Russia, physically and symbolically uniting East and West….”
The project is estimated to cost over $200 billion, and while Moon insists that “Russian scholars and political leaders” have expressed interest in the idea, it has received scant attention in the United States.
Nevertheless, Moon’s clergy followers heaped praised on the scheme. Stallings, who has admitted to taking expensive gifts, including a gold watch, from Moon, praised the bridge-tunnel idea.
“Rev. Moon has been building bridges all his life to bring the races and religions of the world together,” Stallings said in a press statement. “It is natural that he would now launch this visionary appeal to physically unite the world in a project that demands peaceful cooperation.”
Moon, who now openly refers to himself as the messiah, teaches that all religions and governments must merge under his leadership.