|President Kim Il Sung addressing the Korean people, 26 July 1950.|
In the early hours of July 26, 1950, the President of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Kim Il Sung, delivered a radio address to the people of Korea, asking them to resist and fight the imperialist attack by South Korean and U.S. forces.
On the occasion of the 70 years since the beginning of the war in Korea, we publish the public address of Kim Il Sung as a document of historic significance in the long-time struggle of the Korean people for peace and prosperity:
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LET US MARCH FORWARD TO VICTORY!
Dear fellow countrymen,
Dear brothers and sisters,
Officers, noncommissioned officers and men of our People’s
Guerrillas operating in the southern half of Korea,
On behalf of the Government of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, I make this appeal to you: On June 25, the army of the puppet government of the traitor Syngman Rhee launched an all-out offensive along the 38th Parallel against the northern half of Korea. The valiant Security Forces of the Republic, fighting fierce battles to counter the enemy’s invasion, have frustrated the advance of the Syngman Rhee army. The Government of the DPRK, having discussed the situation, ordered our People’s Army to start decisive counteroffensive action and wipe out the enemy’s armed forces. On the orders of the Government of the Republic, the People’s Army drove the enemy back from areas north of the 38th Parallel and has advanced 10 to 15 kilometres to the south. It has liberated a number of towns including Ongjin, Yonan, Kaesong and Paechon, and many villages. The traitorous Syngman Rhee clique has launched a fratricidal war although all the patriotic people of our country have made every effort to reunify the country by peaceful means.
It is universal knowledge that the Syngman Rhee clique is dead set against the country’s peaceful reunification and has long since prepared for civil war. It made a frenzied effort to expand armaments and madly prepared its rear by bleeding the people in south Korea white. Through unheard-of terrorist suppression, it outlawed all democratic political parties and social organizations in south Korea, arrested, imprisoned and killed patriotic, progressive personalities, and ruthlessly suppressed the slightest manifestation of discontent against its reactionary regime. Hundreds of thousands of the best sons and daughters of our people who fought for national independence, freedom and democracy have been imprisoned and killed.
To cover up its design for civil war, the Syngman Rhee clique incessantly provoked clashes on the 38th Parallel to keep our people in a state of constant tension and sought to shift the responsibility for these onto the DPRK. In preparing for the so-called “push north”, the Syngman Rhee clique, on the instructions of the US imperialists, did not even hesitate to begin colluding with the Japanese militarists, the sworn enemy of the Korean people.
The traitorous Syngman Rhee clique has sold the southern half of our country to the US imperialists for a colony and a strategic military base and placed its economy under the control of US monopoly capitalists.
The US imperialists have seized the arteries of the economy in the southern half and completely dislocated the national economy. They are plundering rice, tungsten, graphite and many other natural resources which our country vitally needs. Middle and small entrepreneurs and traders in south Korea, under pressure from US capital, find themselves doomed to bankruptcy. The majority of factories and mills have been closed down, the number of unemployed people has reached several million, peasants have not yet been given land and agriculture is declining year by year. The people in south Korea are in a wretched plight and on the verge of starvation.
Dear fellow countrymen,
The Government of the DPRK, together with all patriotic, democratic political parties and social organizations and all the people, has done all it could to avoid a fratricidal war and the horrors of bloodshed and to reunify our country by peaceful means. As early as April 1948, the Joint Conference of Representatives of Political Parties and Social Organizations of North and South Korea made the first attempt to reunify our country by peaceful means.
The traitorous Syngman Rhee clique, however, frustrated this attempt and, on instructions from the US imperialists and their tool for aggression, the so-called “UN Temporary Commission on Korea”, staged separate elections in south Korea on May 10, 1948, and stepped up preparations for an armed attack on the northern half of our country.
With a view to attaining the peaceful reunification and full independence of the country, in June last year the 72 patriotic political parties and social organizations in north and south Korea affiliated to the Democratic Front for the Reunification of Korea proposed reunifying our country peacefully by holding general elections. All the Korean people enthusiastically supported this proposal, but the traitorous Syngman Rhee clique rejected it, too.
The Democratic Front for the Reunification of Korea reflected the will of all the people when, on June 7, 1950, it again made a proposal to expedite the peaceful reunification of the country. But the traitorous Syngman Rhee gang also prevented this proposal from being carried out, threatening to label anyone favouring it as a traitor.
On June 19, 1950, the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly of the DPRK expressed its unshakable will for the country’s reunification, independence and democratic advance, in accordance with the wishes of all democratic political parties and social organizations, and advanced a proposal for achieving peaceful reunification by uniting the Supreme People’s Assembly of the DPRK and the south Korean “National Assembly” into a single all-Korea legislative body.
The traitorous Syngman Rhee clique responded to the unanimous desire of all the Korean people for peaceful reunification and our just, sincere proposal by launching civil war.
What is this traitorous clique’s objective in the civil war it has ignited? Through fratricidal war, the traitorous Syngman Rhee clique seeks to extend its anti-people, reactionary system of rule to the northern half of Korea and rob our people of the achievements they have scored in the democratic reforms.
The reactionary Syngman Rhee gang aims at taking the land away from the peasants in the northern half of Korea who have become the masters of the land as a result of the agrarian reform carried out on the principle of confiscation without compensation and free distribution, and at returning it to the landlords. It wants to deprive the people in the northern half of all the democratic liberties and rights they have won. The traitorous Syngman Rhee clique seeks to turn our country into a colony of US imperialism and make all the Korean people slaves of US imperialism.
Dear brothers and sisters,
Our country and people are in great danger.
In this war against the Syngman Rhee gang the Korean people must defend the DPRK and its Constitution with their lives, wipe out the traitorous puppet regime and liberate the southern half of our country from the reactionary rule of the traitorous Syngman Rhee clique, restore the people’s committees, organs of genuine people’s power, in the southern half and win the cause of the country’s reunification under the banner of the DPRK.
The war we are fighting against the fratricide provoked by the traitorous Syngman Rhee clique is a just one–a war for the country’s reunification, independence, freedom and democracy.
If they do not want to become the slaves of foreign imperialists again, all the Korean people must rise as one in the national-salvation struggle to overthrow and smash the traitorous Syngman Rhee “regime” and its army. We must, at all costs, win ultimate victory.
All the Korean people must heighten their vigilance and keep sharp watch on every movement of the US imperialists who stand behind the traitorous Syngman Rhee clique.
Our People’s Army must prove itself brave and devoted in our just struggle to defend the successful democratic reforms in the northern half of Korea, liberate our compatriots in the southern half from reactionary rule and reunify the country under the banner of the People’s Republic.
The officers, noncommissioned officers and men of our People’s Army have come from the people. The People’s Army, made up of best sons and daughters of our people, is the true armed force of the Korean people. The People’s Army men have been trained and educated in the love of the country and the people. They are equipped with highly efficient modern weapons and armed with a lofty patriotic spirit with which they fight and sacrifice their lives in the interests of the country and the people. All the People’s Army officers and men must fight to the last drop of their blood for the country and the people.
The people in the northern half of Korea must reorganize all their work to put it on a war footing and muster all their strength for victory in the war and wipe out the enemy in a short space of time. We must organize all the people to support the People’s Army, send it replacements and reinforcements continually, quickly transport all necessities and munitions to the front and care for the wounded with consideration and affection.
In order to ensure victory at the front, the rear of the People’s Army must be made an impregnable fortress. In the rear, an implacable struggle must be waged against deserters and rumour-mongers, and work must be promptly organized to detect and wipe out spies and subversive elements. The cunning and sinister enemy will make every effort to spread misleading rumours. People must not be fooled by the enemy’s vicious demagogy, and the organs of state power of the Republic must mercilessly execute traitors who aid the enemy.
Workers, technicians and office workers in the northern half of Korea must defend the factories, mills, transport and communications from enemy encroachment, faithfully carry out all production plans and all tasks assigned to them and meet the needs of the front promptly.
The peasants in the north must increase farm production, supply the People’s Army with enough food and give it every assistance to ensure victory.
Men and women guerrillas in the southern half of Korea must wage guerrilla warfare more fiercely and bravely and establish liberated areas and extend them by enlisting the broad masses of the people in the guerrilla detachments. They must attack and wipe out the enemy behind the lines, raid enemy headquarters, cut and destroy railways, roads, bridges, telegraph and telephone lines, etc., cut off communications between the enemy’s front and rear by every possible means, and everywhere finish off traitors, restore the people’s committees–the organs of people’s power–and actively cooperate with the People’s Army in its operations.
Compatriots in the southern half should not obey the orders and instructions of the puppet Syngman Rhee government but sabotage them and disrupt the enemy’s home-front organizations.
Workers in the south must organize strikes and raise riots everywhere. They must stop the fleeing enemy from destroying factories, milk, mines, railways and other workplaces, and actively aid the People’s Army to ensure victory.
Peasants in the southern half must not give food to the enemy. They should take good care of this year’s crops, take an active part in the guerrilla movement and spare nothing in cooperating with and assisting the People’s Army in all ways.
Middle and small entrepreneurs and traders in the southern half must cooperate in the struggle to extricate our country’s national economy from the clutches of US monopoly capital by opposing the Syngman Rhee “regime” and assisting the People’s Army.
Cultural workers and intellectuals in the southern half must actively cooperate in the war against the traitorous Syngman Rhee clique to achieve reunification and freedom and to secure conditions for the development of national culture. They must thoroughly expose the crimes of the traitorous Syngman Rhee gang to the masses of the people and play to the full the role of motivation workers in organizing mass revolts.
Officers and men of the “National Defence Army” of the puppet south Korean government,
Your enemy is none other than the traitorous Syngman Rhee clique. In the interests of the country and the people, you must lose no chance to turn your guns upon this gang of traitors.
You should come over to the side of the People’s Army and the guerrillas and join in the nationwide struggle for the reunification and freedom of the country. You must take an honourable place in the ranks of fighters for the country’s freedom and independence by coming out against the enemy of our people.
Dear compatriots, brothers and sisters,
I call upon all the Korean people to unite more closely around the Government of the DPRK in order quickly to destroy the armed forces and the police system of the traitorous Syngman Rhee clique.
The history of mankind shows that a people that defies death and rises in the struggle for freedom and independence is always victorious. Ours is a just struggle. Victory for our people is certain. I am confident that our just struggle for the country and the people will triumph.
The time has come to reunify our country. Let us march forward valiantly with firm confidence in victory!
Go all out to assist our People’s Army and the front!
Go all out to defeat and wipe out the enemy!
Long live the Korean people who have risen in a just, all-people
Long live the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea!
Let us march forward to victory!