Wednesday, 24 February 2016

The Shining Star of Korea

Michael Chant, Andy Brooks and Dermot Hudson
by New Worker correspondent
Friends of the Korean revolution celebrated the 74th anniversary of the birth of dear leader Kim Jong Il at a number of events in February, including a reception and ceremony at the London embassy of the DPR Korea in London on the 12th and a meeting at the John Buckle Centre on 13th February.
  In Democratic Korea Kim Jong Il’s birthday has long been known as the Day of the Shining Star and comrades paid tribute to the Korean leader’s immense contribution to the theory and practice of the world communist movement at a Friends of Korea meeting at the headquarters of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Britain (ML) in south London.
NCP leader Andy Brooks opened the meeting by paying tribute to Kim Jong Il, who steered the DPR of Korea through the difficult times that followed the death of great leader Kim Il Sung in 1994. He devoted his entire life to serving the Korean people in the cause of building a human-centred society, a cause that is espoused by the democratic and anti-imperialist forces the world over. He followed the footsteps of great leader Kim Il Sung in leading the country into the 21st century. Now the torch has passed to Kim Jong Un and under his leadership the DPRK has made giant strides in science and technology over the past few weeks with the test of a thermos-nuclear bomb and the successful launch of a satellite into space. 
 This was followed by other tributes from Michael Chant of the RCPB (ML), Dermot Hudson of the Korean Friendship Association and  DPRK Ambassador Hyong Hak Bong who answered questions from the audience on the current tense situation on the Korean peninsula. This was followed by Kim Jong Un guides Satellite launch! a DPRK film about last week’s tremendous space launch.
Comrades and friends joined diplomats and many others actively involved in solidarity with Democratic Korea across the country for the reception to mark the Day of the Shining Star at the DPRK embassy in London.
 Last week, on 16th February, Andy Brooks, the NCP leader, joined others in laying floral tributes in front of the portraits of the great Korean leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il at a ceremony at the DPRK embassy in London.
The Co-ordinating Committee of the Friends of Korea brings together all the major movements active in Korean friendship and solidarity work in Britain today. It is chaired by Andy Brooks and the secretary is Michael Chant. The committee organises meetings throughout the year, which are publicised by the supporting movements and on the Friends of Korea website.

Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Day of the Shining Star

By Andy Brooks

Millions of workers in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) have been celebrating the giant strides their people’s government has taken in recent days. Last month the DPRK tested its first thermo-nuclear bomb. Last week they successfully launched a satellite into space. Next week they will pause to mark the anniversary of the birth of Kim Jong Il, who led the nation in overcoming the natural disasters and defeating the renewed imperialist offensive that came soon after the death of great leader Kim Il Sung in 1994.
In Democratic Korea Kim Jong Il’s birthday has long been known as the Day of the Shining Star. Across the world overseas Koreans, progressives and communists will hold their own events in honour of the DPRK leader who died at his post on 17th December 2011.
Communists in Britain will be joining them in holding events in solidarity with the Workers’ Party of Korea, which has led the Korean people to victory after victory in a struggle that began in the 1920s and continues to this day across the divided Korean peninsula.
The modern Korean communist movement was founded by Kim Il Sung and the young militants around him to fight the Japanese colonialists and to build a revolutionary movement that would give the Korean workers and peasants a new life under socialism. Building a guerrilla army that took on the might of the Japanese Empire, Kim Il Sung mobilised the masses in a struggle that ended in victory in 1945 and the establishment of a people’s government in the north of the country. Kim Jong Il was born in the midst of that struggle, in a Korean guerrilla camp on Mount Paektu, on 16th February 1942.
Kim Jong Il’s early days were of hardship and struggle that ended in victory in 1945 and the liberation of Pyongyang. Five years later the country was plunged into new horrors when the US imperialists and their lackeys attempted to crush the DPRK and plunged the peninsula into war.
The American imperialists and their lackeys were fought to a standstill and the guns fell silent in 1953. Like millions of Koreans of his generation Kim Jong Il dedicated his life to the Workers’ Party of Korea and the socialist system that they were determined to build to create a better life for the Korean people.
Kim Jong Il went to university where he developed his ideas in the political, economic and cultural fields. But like all Korean students Kim Jong Il took his turn at manual labour with the people in the fields and on the construction sites.
The Workers’ Party of Korea, with Kim Il Sung at the helm, led the battle for land reform, education and socialist construction in the 1950s and 60s, and then pushed forward on the engineering, technical and scientific fronts to build a modern socialist republic, where every individual worker is master of his or her own life. The DPRK stood shoulder-to-shoulder with the peoples of the Third World struggling to break the chains of colonialism, and gave technical and economic aid to help them defend their freedom and independence.
This was Korean-style socialism. Kim Il Sung stressed that Marxism–Leninism goes far beyond simple economic formulae and the Soviet “model”. He not only grasped Marxism–Leninism but he applied it to the concrete conditions of the Korean people. He knew that once the masses realised their own strength they would become unstoppable. He knew that serving the people was the be-all and end-all for the Korean communists. Kim Il Sung developed Korean-style socialism into the Juché idea – which elevates the philosophical principles of Marxism–Leninism as well as its economic theories – and focuses on the development of each individual worker, who can only be truly free as part of the collective will of the masses.
  Kim Jong Il developed the Juché idea, applying it to all spheres of economic construction and for the promotion of north–south dialogue for the independent peaceful reunification of Korea. His modesty, faithful service, tireless work, total loyalty to Kim Il Sung and the Korean revolution, and undoubted ability meant that when the Workers’ Party of Korea considered the question of the succession – and this was decided long before Kim Il Sung’s death – Kim Jong Il was the unchallenged candidate to be the successor to great leader Kim Il Sung.
When Kim Il Sung passed away, Kim Jong Il told the Korean people and the world that they could “expect no change from me” and under his leadership the Workers’ Party of Korea won further victories. Natural disasters were overcome. Imperialist diplomatic isolation was broken and the intrigues of US imperialism exposed.
 Now Kim Jong Un is following in the footsteps of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il to lead the DPRK into the 21st century. Democratic Korean citizens enjoy full employment, free education and medical care, virtually free housing and a vast array of consumer goods largely made in the DPRK itself.  Democratic Korean scientists have mastered the secrets of the atom to guarantee the DPRK’s defence and energy needs, and Korean rockets now reach for the stars.
The tragedy of Korea is that it has been divided since the Second World War and that division is entirely due to the United States, which has propped up a puppet regime in south Korea to maintain American imperialism’s military, strategic and economic dominance of north–east Asia.
A monstrous concrete wall divides Korea. Tens of thousands of American troops remain in the south, backed by a US nuclear armada that threatens the DPRK and its neighbours. The communist movement is outlawed in the south and contacts with the north are tightly controlled by the puppet regime.
The Democratic Korean government has worked tirelessly to end the partition of the country. It has called on the United States to normalise relations with the DPRK. A proposal for the re-unification of Korea based on the principle of “one country-two systems” – similar to the one that led to the peaceful return of Hong Kong and Macau to the People’s Republic of China – remains on the table.
Democratic Korea threatens no one, but the imperialist campaign to demonise and isolate the people’s government continues as a smokescreen to cover US plans to dominate the entire Pacific basin.
Whilst we join the Korean people in their celebrations we must redouble our efforts to build solidarity with the DPRK and raise the demand for the withdrawal of all American troops from south Korea, the release of all political prisoners and an end to the partition of the country.

Down with the puppet regime!

By New Worker correspondent
Korean solidarity activists returned to the puppet south Korean embassy in London on 4th February to protest against the latest round of repression against trade unionists and peace activists in the occupied south of the Korean peninsula. London comrades, including NCP leader Andy Brooks, took part in the Korean Friendship Association (KFA) demonstration together with other supporters of Democratic Korea to demand the release of all political prisoners in south Korea, and an end to the suppression of labour movement and pro-unification forces.

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Solidarity with Juche Korea

 by New Worker correspondent
Comrades and friends marked the Day of the Shining Star, the 74th anniversary of Korean leader Kim Jong Il, at a meeting in central London on 30th January called by the Korean Friendship Association (KFA) and the British Juche Society. Chaired by Dermot Hudson of the KFA, the meeting began with brief contributions from NCP leader Andy Brooks, Alex Meads, Theo Russell and others, as well as an opening by Thae Yong Ho from the London embassy of the DPR Korea on the recent successful H-bomb test.
            After questions and discussion the meeting ended with a film on Korean sports, refreshments and informal discussion, which many continued in a nearby café for some time.