Rev. Moon’s Answers to Questions About Hungnam
April 28, 2000
Today I was blessed to be able to go fishing with Father on the Hudson. The river was magnificent, the fish came thick and fast. Mr. Kim had received a letter from an author who is writing a book on the Hungnam Evacuation, inquiring whether Father would answer some questions for him. I was lucky enough to be involved in the exchange with Father. Below are my notes that I emailed back to the author. I give them to you for your information, especially re the unification of N.K and S.K. It is also interesting to know that this Oct 14 will be the 50th anniversary of that event.
Was Rev. Moon surprised at the invasion of S. Korea?
Yes, totally surprised. He was in N. Korea when they started the war, so he could see that they were making preparations to invade. Yes, they were told that the south attacked the north. Life was miserable in N. Korea, as the entire country was mobilized for war.
How was Rev. Moon able to escape from the camp?
Before Hungnam was overrun by the U.S. forces rumors spread that they were coming soon. Rev. Moon escaped on 10/14. On the 12th, guards started to take the prisoners and execute them. Rev. Moon was just about to be called and shot when a US airforce bombing raid began. The guards all ran away and Rev. Moon and some other inmates escaped on foot.
What part of Hungnam was the prison in?
The prison camp was on the outskirts of the city.
Could he hear or see the bombardment?
Yes he could. It was frightening.
Did he think he might get caught between the Americans and the Chinese?
Yes. But there were many N. Korean soldiers fleeing from the advancing US troops. They killed many civilians as well.
Why did Rev. Moon walk to Pyongyang instead of getting evacuated on an American ship?
In the middle of October there were no ships in the harbor, so he walked south to Pyongyang.
Did he leave family behind?
Yes, he left them all. He tried to gather some of his early followers. Two walked with him to S. Korea, some others went separately.
Did he ever see them again?
Not until his visit in 1991.
In his walk out of Hungnam did he see many dead civilians?
Yes, he did. Men, women and children. Most killed by fleeing N. Korean soldiers. He was often searched by them.
How long did it take him to walk to Pyongyang? Did he observe Christmas?
One week. He observed Christmas in S. Korea.
Has he been back to N. Korea?
In 1991, he visited N. Korea and met Premier Kim Il Sung. He also met some of his relatives, 2 sisters, a sister-in-law and some nephews and nieces. Both his parents were dead by then. N. Korea is still a very poor, miserable country.
What does he expect to happen to Korea in the future? Will it ever be reunited?
Reunification of Korea is a providential necessity. It is inevitable. Kim Il Sung was called Father, Rev. Moon is also called Father by his followers, thus there is a Cain-Abel relationship. Rev. Moon in February after his 80th birthday, launched a nationwide campaign to inspire the Korean people for reunification. But reunification is also the responsibility of world Christianity. US Christianity and Korean Christianity must work together to bring it about. Rev. Moon has devoted his entire life for reunification.
Does Rev. Moon have any message for the American people?
Please read the booklet of four speeches that he has recently published, entitled To Him I Offer All the Glory and Honor.