Abstracts from President Kim Il Sung’s Reminiscences “WITH THE CENTURY”

On May 5th 2007, the 71st anniversary of the foundation of the Association for the Restoration of the Fatherland (ARF)

 

 

President Kim Il Sung draws up the 10-point program of the ARF

 

 

Since the Nanhutou meeting, our united front movement concentrated on activities to organize a nationwide united front. The establishment of a permanent united front organization and unification of wide sections of the anti-Japanese patriotic forces constituted urgent tasks, which brooked no further delay, in the light of our revolutionary progress and domestic and international requirements. Ever since the early years of our activity we had maintained that the surest way to our independence and sovereignty involved a mass resistance campaign based on great national unity, and that great national unity was the key to achieving indepen­dence solely by our own efforts. The united front constituted, together with the establishment of Juche, one of the most important ideals we had adhered to, since the early days of the anti-Japanese revolutionary strug­gle.

On the basis of the ideal of great national unity and a united front, we had made tireless efforts to achieve the coalition with various nationalist forces and anti-Japanese patriotic forces; we also intensively developed our joint struggle with wide sections of the Chinese anti-Japanese forces and communists, as we were fighting in China. The remarkable success­es and experiences we had achieved during this struggle marked a valu­able foundation for the large-scale development of the united front movement. We created a postulate for continuing the united front move­ment on a nationwide scale on the basis of these successes and experi­ences and also made every possible effort to train as quickly as possible the nucleus and form our own forces, who would be able to take charge in future.

                                              (From volume 4)

 

The historic inaugural meeting of the ARF was held on May 1. Although the flowers were not yet in full bloom, the whole mountain was in the thick of spring.

As the meeting lay ahead, the hearts of all the delegates throbbed with strong emotion and excitement.

The Donggang meeting lasted for 15 days.

First Ri Tong Baek read out messages of congratulations sent to the meeting, and then I delivered the report.

In my report I referred to the need to rally the entire nation as one political force under the banner of national liberation and establish in the border area a new base which the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army could rely on, in order to conduct the anti-Japanese national united front movement dynamically and further expand and develop the anti-Japanese armed struggle by advancing into the border area and the homeland. Subsequently this report was published in book form under the title, Let Us Further Expand and Develop the Anti-Japanese Nation­al United Front Movement and Take the Korean Revolution as a Whole to a New Upsurge.

I also submitted the Ten-Point Program of the ARF and its Inaugu­ral Declaration to the meeting for consideration.

In the ten-point program we defined the character and task of the Korean revolution, as well as its strategic and tactical principles, on the basis of a correct analysis of the revolutionary situation in the 1930s, the socio-economic conditions of our country and mutual relations between different classes, and also elucidated the prospects of the Korean revolu­tion, taking into strict consideration the interests of the workers, peasants and other working masses, as well as the common interests of the patri­otic people of all walks of life.

The participants of the meeting expressed full support and approval for the program and expressed their joy that they could now advance confidently for the victory of the Korean revolution with a clear fighting goal; they also firmly resolved to work hard to implement the tasks set forth in the program.

                                                (From volume 4)

 

After heated discussion I agreed to become one of the sponsors on condition that the alias Kim Tong Myong was used. When he obtained my concession, Ri Tong Baek also consented to be sponsor.

Thus, the names of three people—Kim Tong Myong, Ri Tong Baek and Ryo Un Hyong—were put down as co-sponsors in the Inaugural Declaration of the ARF published on May 5.

Ri Tong Baek supplied me with the alias of Kim Tong Myong. When I said that I would agree to become sponsor, only on condition that an alias be used, he could not insist on his own suggestion any more and became engrossed in his thoughts for some time, before adding that it would be a good idea to keep Kim as it was as the surname of my alias and name me Tong Myong, Tong meaning the east and Myong implying brightness.

He said that if the name “Kim Tong Myong” was used for me, it would constitute a significant name in various aspects, in the sense of representing the nation. Everyone expressed their approval with warm applause. Thus, the alias “Kim Tong Myong”, like the name “Kim Il Sung”, was provided by other people.

                                                (From volume 4)

 

In accordance with the unanimous will of the participants, I took office as president of the ARF at its inaugural meeting.

This is how a standing anti-Japanese national united front body, the first of its kind in the history of the anti-Japanese national liberation struggle in our country, came to be born.

                                                (From volume 4)

 

The founding of the ARF as the first anti-Japanese national united front body in our country, constituted a milestone, strengthening the mass foundation of the revolution. Following the founding of the ARF, the anti-Japanese national united front movement developed rapidly in a more organized and systematic way on a nationwide scale, closely com­bined with the anti-Japanese armed struggle; it was able to dynamically organize and mobilize all the anti-Japanese forces to the struggle for national liberation.

Unification of all the efforts of the nation for the liberation front marked the supreme task we had set ourselves since we started out on our struggle. We had spent many years to ensure that we achieved this aim.

The foundation of the ARF represented the fruit of the active efforts of our young communists, who had tirelessly trained our revolutionary forces. It marked a historic moment, when our people again solemnly declared their will to fight more dauntlessly against the Japanese imperi­alists with their own efforts: it also marked a turning-point in taking the general Korean revolution, with the anti-Japanese armed struggle as the keystone, to a new upsurge.

The foundation of the ARF enjoyed active backing at home and abroad, as it met the requirements of the development of the Korean rev­olution itself and the currents of the time. In various parts of the home­land and abroad loud voices were raised in its support.

                                               (From volume 4)

 

The birth of the ARF at the northern foot of Mt. Paektu in May 1936 constituted a historic event, which ensured a new turning-point in the development of the Korean revolution and heralded the dawn of national liberation. Thus, the new brighter era of the Korean revolution began to dawn at the foot of Mt. Paektu.

                                                (From volume 4)

 

In the struggle to build the ARF organizations, the Korean commu­nists created for the first time in the long history of our nation a truly united front, one that was unfailingly patriotic, revolutionary and pow­erful. The anti-Japanese national united front, with Mt. Paektu as its axis, started the tradition of the national united front movement in our country and demonstrated the undaunted spirit of our people.

The entire process of building the ARF organizations confirmed that our people preferred unification and harmony to division and confronta­tion, and that they had the willpower to fight by uniting under a single banner, regardless of the differences in party affiliation or religious belief.

Our people, living in the era of the Workers’ Party, have long achieved the single-hearted unity of society as a whole, the highest form of unity. What remains is the reunification of the country which has been divided into north and south.

The reunification of our country is the one inflexible belief running through my life. It is our stand on the national reunification that our nation, which boasts 5,000 years of history, can, and must, live as one unified country. What guarantee do we have when we say that the reunification of north and south is feasible? We have a powerful weapon, the great national unity, and the rich experience of a national united front, gained through the building of the ARF organizations.

                                                 (From volume 6)

 

The movement to build up the organizations for the Association for the Restoration of the Fatherland, which started at the foot of Mt. Paektu, went into full swing throughout Manchuria and Korea.

Each clause of the Ten-Point Program of the ARF, the text of which was woven out of an ardent love for the country and its people, breathed fresh life into the soul of the nation and inspired the whole country with a burning desire for independence. All the patriotic com­patriots—communists, nationalists, workers, peasants, intellectuals, stu­dents, craftsmen, religious believers and non-comprador capitalists— joined in a single front for liberation.

The brisk campaign to build the ARF organizations was first launched in Changbai and other parts of West Jiandao and Manchuria.

The ARF was able to build its organizations quickly in Manchuria because in this region the anti-Japanese movement had been under way for many years, and the masses were in favour of the revolution. Each of the nearly 900,000 Koreans living in Manchuria was a “high explo­sive”, so to speak, which could explode any moment.

                                                (From volume 6)

 

Meanwhile, we strove to build the ARF in the KPRA areas of opera­tion, and using them as stepping stones, to expand the organizational network into the neighbouring areas and deep into the homeland.

Immediately after the founding of the ARF we convened a meeting of the officers and men within the main force of the KPRA at the secret camp. At the meeting we took measures to admit all the men and offi­cers of the KPRA into the ARF in response to their unanimous request that we do so. They said that as their Commander had been elected Chairman of the ARF, they should also become its members and make contributions to the united front movement. So we admitted all of them into the ARF and encouraged them to become propagandists and organizers for rallying the people behind the anti-Japanese national united front.

                                                (From volume 6)

 

The major target in the campaign to build the ARF organizations was, to all intents and purposes, the homeland and our 20 million com­patriots. This was in line with the spirit of the Nanhutou meeting, which had laid a special stress on building both the party and the ARF organi­zations, and on developing an armed struggle in which the homeland was the main theatre and its people were the main force.

The political operatives from the KPRA played a decisive role in expanding the network of the ARF deep into our native land. Great contributions were also made by the hardcore revolutionaries in West Jiandao, whom the KPRA had trained with so much care, and by the pio­neers in the northern border areas, who had thrown themselves into the united front movement as a result of our direct influence.

The building of the ARF organizations in the homeland had to be conducted under very arduous and complicated circumstances, owing to the merciless oppression by the Japanese aggressors and the mistaken line put forward by the factionalists.

The Japanese imperialists feared the expansion of the ARF organiza­tions in the homeland more than anything else, and they made desperate efforts to check the tide of the united front movement rushing deep into Korea.

                                                (From volume 6)

 

The ARF, which pressed on for an all-people resistance with its more than 200,000 members, is a monument put up by the Korean com­munists during the struggle for the liberation of the Korean nation. Its organizations rendered truly great contributions in rallying and enlisting the broad sections of the patriotic population to the cause of national liberation under the banner of the restoration of the fatherland.

Their first and foremost contribution is that they increased the revo­lutionary consciousness of the popular masses. Through the united front movement our people had become firmly equipped with the ideas that the liberation of Korea could be achieved only by the united efforts of the Korean people, that an armed enemy must always be countered with arms, and that in order for the Korean people to win national indepen­dence, they must unite as one. Moreover, this unity had to transcend differences in class, sex, age, party affiliation and religious belief, and form an allied front in cooperation with the oppressed masses through­out the world. The rapid development of the ideological consciousness of the masses was a factor that gave a strong impetus to the national lib­eration struggle in the latter half of the 1930s.

In the transformation of the people’s ideological consciousness, it is worthy of special mention that they regarded the Korean People’s Rev­olutionary Army, which was fighting bloody battles against Japanese imperialism as the main force for liberating the country. They also real­ized that by casting their lot with us, they supported our leadership more faithfully. From the latter half of the 1930s on, the national libera­tion struggle and communist movement in Korea was conducted with Mt. Paektu, the central base of the activities of the KPRA, as an axis.

                                                (From volume 6)

 

Another achievement made by the Korean revolutionaries in build­ing the ARF organizations was to further consolidate the organizational and ideological basis for building the party organizations. With the hard core trained in our ARF organizations, we formed party circles in every part of the country. These circles in the long run provided guidance for both the ARF organizations themselves and for the mass struggle. The party organizations, born out of the struggle and trained ceaselessly by it, became the cornerstone on which a powerful political party of the working masses could be built after liberation.

                                                (From volume 6)

 

In addition, the building of the ARF organizations gave the Korean revolutionaries a chance to gain a rich experience in building mass organizations. Had it not been for this experience, they could not have built in such a short period of time after liberation such mass organiza­tions as the Democratic Youth League, the Trade Unions, the Women’s Union and the Children’s Union.

(From volume 6)

 

 

The significant lesson of the united front for national reunification

There is no reason why our nation, which admirably realized the cause of the united front already half a century ago, cannot achieve the great national unity.

We must achieve the united front at any cost wherever we live, in the north, in the south or overseas. Only the united front is the way for the survival of our nation in this world, where the law of the jungle pre­vails, the eternal way for us to live and prosper and survive as one. This is what I want to tell our compatriots at home and abroad.

                                                (From volume 6)