The Korea Peace Movement is a gathering of people focused on bringing about a comprehensive definition of peace to the Korean peninsula. But while one may think that this revolves mostly around the conflict between North and South that has existed on the peninsula for half a decade, Dr. Lakhvinder Singh, the director of the Korea Peace Movement, has a different perspective.
"Peace is not absence of violence," he said in an interview, "Peace is man being able to live in perfect harmony and perfect happiness with nature." This comprehensive concept of peace is what the Korea Peace Movement is striving for, and they must then consider a wide range of subjects. Singh explained that the organization is focusing on not just the nuclear problem with North Korea, but also environmental problems in China, family problems in Korea, radiation leakage in Japan and many other issues affecting peace the world over. They are all related to each other, Singh says. "If there are clashes in the environment, they affect the family. If there are clashes in the family, they affect society. If there are clashes in society, they affect the country. So you can't solve a problem by singling it out," he explained.
A collection of professors, financial and legal professionals, businessmen, diplomats and other interested thinkers are getting together on March 12 for the first event of the Korea Peace Movement in Seoul. “All interested persons are most welcome to attend,” says Dr. Singh. He is formally the director, but he says he is just a coordinator of efforts. "We are trying to look at the problem from a very different perspective. We say any effort to solve the problem must come from a combined effort. In our movement everybody is equal. Nobody is arrogant enough to claim to know all the solutions off all these complicated, interconnected and interdependent problems. So we work as a team. Anybody can pitch in and give valuable advice. Everybody is equal,” Singh said. “Though our movement is called the Korea peace movement, it has members from all over the world.”
He gave an example of the kinds of problems that the movement considers by explaining about what he sees as the current breakdown of Korean family values. The country is seeing more single-member family situations. Older people, the ones that rebuilt this country after the Korean War, are living miserable lives alone. Their children don't make enough money to support them or don't want to support them for various reasons. He also says that more and more young women seem to be uninterested in marriage and raising a family, and soon Korea will be a super-aged society. He claims that this type of conflict can bring on serious social unrest and conflict in the Korean society. “The potential of damage to society by these social problems is as serious, if not more so, as the detonation of a nuclear bomb by north Korea, so you really cannot choose one problem over the other,” he says.
He also put forward the idea that this type of social unrest would not be an isolated event, but would be connected to many others. Social unrest in Korea is affected by China's expansion in the South China Sea, which is related to growing militarization in Japan, and the entire East Asia sphere is affected somewhat by the growing civil unrest in Europe stemming from the growing conflict in Syria and Middle East. One of the main tenants of the Korea Peace Movement is that these problems need to be viewed altogether and a solution should be presented for all of them comprehensively, rather than individually.
The organization's slogan is “PEACE is ONE.” Further explaining his concept of the oneness of peace, Singh said that the movement believes that “God is one, nature is one, man is one and thus peace must be one.... Peace cannot be divided. There is no shortcut to peace. We must take a comprehensive view of peace.”
He summed it all up by saying, "We are not an NGO, we are not a forum, we are a movement, a social movement, a peace movement."