Tuesday, 25 February 2014

A Shining Star of Korea

By New Worker correspondent
Andy Brooks,Hyong Hak Bong and Dermot Hudson
LAST weekend Koreans marked the 72nd anniversary of dear leader Kim Jong Il, who steered the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea through the difficult times that followed the death of great leader Kim Il Sung in 1994. Democratic Korean leader Kim Jong Un headed the solemn tribute at the mausoleum dedicated to the two great leaders of the Workers Party of Korea in Pyongyang while other ceremonies were taking place throughout the country.
 Kim Jong Il devoted his entire life to serving the Korean people.in the cause of building a human-centred society, a cause which is espoused by the democratic and anti-imperialist forces the world over.
Following Kim Il Sung’s footsteps, Kim Jong Il led the Workers Party of Korea into the 21st century to build a strong and prosperous democratic republic. Kim Jong Il was a leading Marxist thinker who made an important contribution to the modern communist theory as well as an astute statesman who led the Korean people through thick and thin to overcome natural disasters, the imperialist blockade and diplomatic isolation.
While ensuring the DPRK’s defence against the threats and provocations of US imperialism and its lackeys, Kim Jong Il worked tirelessly to ease tension on the Korean peninsula to pave the way towards the peaceful reunification of Korea.
In Democratic Korea Kim Jong Il’s birthday has long been known as the Day of the Shining Star. This year it is being celebrated at a time when the Korean people are racing ahead at a new fast speed of socialist construction, upholding the slogan put forward by the new young leader, Kim Jong Un:  "Let us raise a fierce wind of making a fresh leap forward on all fronts of building a thriving country filled with confidence in victory!"
Across the world overseas Koreans, progressives and communists held their own events in honour of Kim Jong Il, who was born on 16th February 1942 and died at his post on 17th December 2011.
British and Korean women get together
And in London comrades gathered at the DPRK’s London embassy to join the Korean people to honour the achievements of Kim Jong Il by laying floral tributes in front of the portraits of the great leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il and meeting all the other friends of the Korean revolution.
 Andy Brooks, the chair of the Friends of Korea committee that had helped organise the reception, welcomed everyone to the event that had brought together so many of those actively involved in solidarity with Democratic Korea in London and the south-east.
In his opening the New Communist Party leader said Kim Jong Il had made an immense contribution to the arts as well as the theory and practice of the world communist movement. This was followed by a speech by DPRK Ambassador Hyong Hak Bong on the life and times of Kim Jong Il.
Dermot Hudson from the Korean Friendship Association talked about the meaning of Juché and Songun politics, then Michael Chant, the secretary of Friends of Korea and leader of the RCPB (ML) and Kath Cremer from the CPGB (ML) both spoke about the central role of the Korean revolution in the national liberation and world communist movement.
Finally Andy Brooks proposed a toast to the memory of the dear Korean leader to close the formal part of the proceedings and open the informal discussion that always flows between friends old and new at the bar and buffet.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Celebrating the achievements of Democratic Korea

 By New Worker correspondent
Shaun Pickford and Dermot Hudson
FRIENDS of the Korean revolution met to celebrate the 72nd anniversary of the birth of dear leader Kim Jong Il at London’s Marchmont Centre on Saturday 2nd February to hear a first-hand report from top DPRK diplomats about the current situation on the Korean peninsula and contributions from Korean solidarity workers who included New Communist Party leader Andy Brooks.
Shaun Pickford welcomed Thae Yong Ho from the DPRK embassy in London who recalled Kim Jong Il’s life in the service of the working people of Democratic Korea.  Comrade Thae also talked about the DPRK’s current peace proposals which were also raised in the interview given by Ambassador Hyon Hak Bong on Sky News last week. Comrade Thae said that the US war-games in south Korea were not defensive but aggressive. US imperialism has concentrated its nuclear submarine forces in the region and the Americans have repeatedly tried to blackmail and threaten the DPRK .
Comrade Thae said that the stories in the bourgeois media about the events surrounding the execution of the counter-revolutionary traitor in the DPRK were false. The US imperialists and their pawns were using the “human rights issue” as a second means of attacking and putting pressure on the DPRK while the British ruling class were attacking  the DPRK and Korean-style socialism because they want people to believe that there is no alternative  to capitalism. But there is and Democratic Korea upholds genuine socialism with free education and medical treatment for all, full employment and pensions, and full equality to all its citizens.
This was taken up by Dermot Hudson of the UK Korean Friendship Association who followed with contribution on the Juché and Songun politics that had transformed the DPR Korea into a modern socialist republic, while Alexander Meads spoke about the achievements of Kim Jong Il from his earliest days to his last at the helm of the Workers’ Party of Korea.
Dr Hugh Goodacre spoke about Kim Jong Il’s proclamation of the programme for modelling the whole society on the Juché idea 40 years ago. This was a demand of the times and completely essential to prevent the rise of a new bureaucracy and the restoration of capitalism. The Juché idea is turning everyone into revolutionaries to build socialism – a magnificent achievement, an example for the working and oppressed people of the world.
But there are always dangers as NCP leader Andy Brooks stressed in a condemnation of the loathsome Jang Song Thaek, a leading Workers’ Party official who was shot in December after he was unmasked as a traitor who had embezzled vast amounts of money to live the high life abroad and reward his followers who were helping him plan a coup.
But: “The Korean people have closed ranks around Kim Jong Un and the Workers’ Party of Korea. They have taken firm and decisive measures to deal with Jang and smash his group to safeguard the people’s government and ensure that the country continues to build a modern socialist republic dedicated to the welfare of all working people.”
The DPRK diplomats took up many of these points during the question-and-answer session and during the informal discussion that followed.
The meeting was organised by the UK Korean Friendship Association (KFA) and the British Juché Idea Study Group, which regularly organises solidarity meetings and protest pickets in London throughout the year. The KFA also works side by side with the NCP, RCPB (ML), Socialist Labour Party (SLP) and the European Regional Society for the Study of the Juché Idea on the Friends of Korea committee, which also holds regular events in London.