[Editor’s note: The following paper in 4 Parts was originally prepared to present before the 70th Anniversary International Symposium on the occasion of Kim Il Sung University Foundation in Pyongyang, DPRK in September 29 – October 1, 2016.
The 4th Media believes Dr. Chung’s paper might be beneficial for its global readership hopefully to understand better the “anti-imperialist” struggle DPRK has endlessly waged ever since the Korean peninsula has been forcibly divided by the Washington’s “Imperial Ambition” in 1945. However, the topic the author persistently dealt or wrestled with throughout the paper could be a non-issue or a less-readily acceptable issue to many.
But, since both the worst W Bush and Obama era ever since early 2000s, specifically with the disastrous and helpless experiences from the cases of former Yugoslavia (in Clinton era), Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, Libya, Syria, Yemen and many other defenseless nations around the world which had been either already destroyed into shatters and ruins or still being bombed daily for years, it seems many in the world today might have a better (or much better?) position finally to understand at least what the nonstop DPRK-US confrontation for over 70 years is all about.
Therefore, some of the core arguments Prof. Chung presented in his paper should be quite controversial and/or for many hard to swallow to agree with. The 4th Media however hopes its global readership to wrestle with a rather long paper which painstakingly dealt with certainly “the most (worst) demonized nation on earth” the “North Korea” of its “not-known-before (or probably never been introduced) -to the world issue”, called, the “Military-first Politics“. Best wishes!]
On Historical Significance of “Songun (i.e., Military-First) Politics”
Introduction Linguistic Analyses and Interpretations
The DPRK-US Struggle and a New Future for the Humanity
A New Russia-China Alliance and the Failed “Anglo-American Empire”
The Songun Politics is the Answer
“Parallel Strategy to Develop Simultaneously both Economy and the Nuclear Power”
Most Challenging, Unpredictable Task: “Leadership Succession”
“North Korean Collapsing Theories” Made in USA
The Game Is Over: “Collapse of Collapsing Theories” and the Peace Treaty Issue
Rapidly Growing Geopolitical Awareness on the DPRK’s Parallel Strategy
Military-First Revolution Continues Through Generations
An Undeniable Historical Fact: It’s the US Who Has Always Failed
The First-ever Defeat the US Imperialists Had in Its War History
The Korean Holocaust and Other Unrecognized Holocausts
Most Extreme Asymmetrical War, Cultural Imperialism, Great Suffering
Songun Politics, US President’s Admittance of Military Defeat
Part III: http://www.4thmedia.org/2016/08/102708/
The First-ever Defeat the US Imperialists Had in Its War History
The “Chosun People’s Revolutionary Army”, organized in April, 1932 in Andu, Manchuria, with the principle of late President Kim’s “gun-priority” as its core military strategy, had not only made his legendary anti-Japanese armed struggle continued for a dozen years until 1945 but also, together with other anti-imperialist military forces in the region such as Soviets’ Red Army and Mao Zedung-led Chinese Revolutionary Army, finally defeated the Imperial Japan and force them to unconditionally surrender in August, 1945. Even if DPRK was a newly-born nation founded in September, 1948, its newly-organized Korea People’s Army (KPA) in February 1948 nonetheless wasn’t in any way a brand new military force. For the KPA was a reorganized military organization as a regular army from an anti-imperialist guerrilla organization which had fought against the Japanese Guandong regular army for almost 20 years. But still the KPA at the time of war in June 1950 was poorly armed with very basic limited military hardware, supported by a sort of minimalist level of air and navy power.
However, the KPA, together with tens of thousands of Chinese Volunteer Army, was able to successfully deter or stop the war of US-led imperialist aggressions in 1950-53. In fact, the history should use the language defeat instead deter as a former (war-time) UN Commander Lt. General Mark W. Clark called himself in his memoir “the first general who lost the war” in the entire US history of war. By the way, as Galtung reminds, “from 1801 till today the US has fought 284 wars around the world.” Therefore, the Korean War was undoubtedly the first war the US had ever lost miserably. The defeat must have been then an unimaginable outcome for everybody. It’s sort of an impossible thing happened. A sort of like a speechless, helpless, motionless thing. However, as a payback, Koreans as a whole had to pay a very, very high price for the next 60 some years. The price I’d like to name is a Korean Holocaust.
Actually the Korean Holocaust was one of the many unknown, untold, and unrecognized Holocausts around the world. To name some globally well-known holocausts are Native American, African, Vietnamese, Palestinian Holocaust, etc. The Korean Holocaust can be plainly described as in the following way: In less than 3 years of the US-led imperialist war of aggressions, it took all together about more than 4-5 million innocent lives from both north and south, i.e., then about one sixth of its entire population of 30 million. The notorious Sinchon Massacre committed by invading US troops who briefly occupied the North Hwanghae Province of the north in late 1950 was one of the most gruesome examples why the world has to recognize the US-led imperialist war of aggressions the Korean Holocaust.
The Korean Holocaust and Other Unrecognized Holocausts
Throughout the war, there were a countless number of atrocities committed by US imperialists. Washington’s numerous “crimes against humanity” and “war crimes” should be able to suffice enough why the world should recognize the Korean War as another hidden, unrecognized and forgotten Holocaust just like the above-mentioned unrecognized holocausts of hundreds of millions of Native Americans, Africans, Palestinians, etc., etc. For example, close to the end of war, US had a secret criminal agenda through which they attempted to wipe out the northern population as much as possible. This agenda was put into place when US imperialists humiliatingly realized that they can’t win the war. So they had to do something or anything to damage the north as much as possible before they sign the then already-heavily negotiated Armistice Agreement.
The depopulation plan of the north was on the Washington’s one of the hidden agendas. Complete destructions of any remaining industrial bases, social infrastructures, rice fields, schools, kindergartens, hospitals, etc. including the then largest Soophoong Hydroelectric Dam in the north were some of the major examples. All that criminal atrocities which should have been already brought to appropriate international bodies such as the Hague-based International Criminal Court. However so far that sort of global justice in the present world’s power politics hasn’t happened yet. As expected, those terribly apparent war crimes and crimes against humanity the US imperialists committed haven’t been brought to justice yet.
Washington’s hidden agenda such as the depopulation strategy of the northern population as low as possible didn’t stop there however. As many Korea experts and scholars have already abundantly written on this issue, then Washington had another hidden agenda. It was indeed another viciously criminal strategy as if that was their last resort to make their hidden agenda to be accomplished at any cost. It was the nuclear card. Close to the end of the war, while engaging with the North working on the ongoing Armistice Agreement negotiations then already about almost two years, on the other hand, from behind the scene, Washington had made repeated threats to drop nuclear bombs in the north.
In order to further scare a more number of population as much as possible, Washington even dropped ‘dummy nuclear bombs.’ It’s another well-known war crimes Washington willfully but frantically committed that they used some of internationally-prohibited weapons of mass destruction, such as the ‘biological and chemical weapons.’ Again as expected, a more number of people would have frantically run away from the north. And Washington then was terribly right. Their hidden depopulation agenda did work great. Ever since the temporary pause of the war in July 1953, the size of the population of the north has been about a half of that of the south all along to this day.
As one of the worst symbols of human tragedy is the separation of loved family members by force and will. What Washington imperialists created then was the 70 years-continued saga of 10 million divided family members’ tragedy. It was another most naked, unavoidable, and telltale proof to uncover a countless number of Washington’s ‘crimes against humanity and war crimes’ numerously committed during the war. In fact, Washington’s nuclear war threats began as early as in November, 1950. It should be noted it began only less than half a year after they started the war of aggressions in June 25, 1950. The degree of destruction in the north was beyond imagination. It was complete. Period!
The human loss in the north was unspeakably immense. It wiped out about one third of the northern population. The imperialists’ war of [white] racism turned the whole nation in general, the North in particular into a complete ruin. Major cities like Pyongyang turned into just like the old stone age. After signing of the Armistice Agreement in July 1953, that was the very reason why Washington boastfully dared to predict the North won’t be able to rebuild it from the ashes at least “next 100 years.” The ashes they meant wasn’t untrue. It’s true. There weren’t any buildings, not even a single building left intact in major cities in the north, most specifically Pyongyang, the Capital City of DPRK, and of course other major industrialized cities like Hamhung, Wonsan, etc. in the east coast.
Korea was invaded by the international forces led by then the only nuclear power which, fully armed with the then most sophisticated military hardware such as napalm and other biological, chemical weapons of mass destruction. So it won’t be a much exaggerated description of the Korean War, as most Korea scholars like Bruce Cumings, together with globally recognized geopolitical (and Korea) issues experts like Michel Chossudovsky, Christopher Black, Finian Cunningham, Stephen Gowans, Andre Vltchek, and even a worldwide-known great painter Pablo Picaso, it was one of the most criminal, genocidal, and racist wars of aggression.
Many have argued war like the Korean War had never existed in the history of large scale international war of aggressions. Thus a claim that the Korean War should be remembered as one of the worst human holocausts, together with the above-mentioned other holocausts, in the world history isn’t much exaggerated or bloated. Of course, for the last quarter century of Songun period, the entire 25 million population of the North had immensely suffered from the shortage of almost everything, particularly food and energy. They had to pay the unimaginably high price for them to choose the path of Songun Politics.
Most Extreme Asymmetrical War, Cultural Imperialism, Great Suffering
In order to justify a military invasion, almost without exception, the West has used its most effective, covert but powerful lethal strategy, i.e., Cultural Imperialism (hereafter, CI) as a preset tool to prepare military invasions. One of the most predominant tools in the CI operations is the psychological warfare. Today it’s usually called the “demonization campaign.” Alvin and Heidi Toffler cite the demonization as one of its most prominent tools to justify imperialist wars in their book, War and Anti-War: In most cases it’s hardly comprehensible to figure out what’s going on in the world correctly in general, the D-U struggle in particular in the context of an inexplicable degree of great suffering the Koreans in the North had to endure for 70 years or for at least the last quarter century during the entire Songun era.
After the WWII, behind the great human suffering experienced not only in DPRK but also around the world, there have been always the US-led global imperialist wars and military interventions. The imperialists’ wars of aggressions had been also accompanied by sanctions and blockades, in other words, the nonstop war of CI. Particularly both omnipresent and all-powerful USCI, in the form of psychological warfare accompanied by demonization campaigns together with global scale economic blockades, financial sanctions, international isolations, etc., is the main culprit to have caused unimaginable degrees of great sufferings onto the hundreds of millions of peoples around the world, particularly those 25 million Koreans in the north. DPRK could be undoubtedly one of the worst victims of the CI strategy endlessly instigated by the US imperialism.
The unforgivable crime DPRK committed was to defeat the US-led international imperialist war of aggressions in the 1950-53 Korean War. For the crime of the non-negotiating principles of anti-imperialist and self-determined socialist position DPRK has defiantly taken, the population in the north had to pay a price. The price DPRK had to pay ever since the war temporarily ended in July 1953 was Washington’s endless war of CI for the following several decades.
Yes, the continued crime Koreans in the north further committed was, as briefly mentioned above, the never-back-down position on those non-negotiating principles under any circumstances even during the 2nd Arduous March period. For the sake of the record, the US-led anti-DPRK demonization campaigns, coupled with the severest degrees of economic blockades and financial sanctions, always accompanied by nonstop nuclear war threats for over 60 some years, are unprecedented in human history. It’s a never-heard-of thing in history. Since 1990s after the former Soviet Union collapsed and its satellite Eastern European socialist block as a whole had disappeared once for all, the degrees of the US-led global economic and financial sanctions and blockades had gotten even much severer.
The Washington’s coldblooded anti-DPRK CI strategy did work immensely. The 25 million Koreans in the north suffered unimaginably! However, it was still much lesser than the immediately-following period from 2006 for the next 10 years when even China and Russia had joined the US-led UNSC sanctions, in other words, the anti-DPRK USCI strategy. Since then, the scale of US-led and China- and Russia-sponsored economic and financial sanctions and blockades has been literally extended to the whole globe.
The coldblooded CI strategy for about a quarter century seemed to have made definitely the Washington’s worst enemy indescribably suffer. So, in the eyes of everybody, the final victory for the US war of CI seemed finally look so close. For the last quarter century, the US Soft Power strategy apparently seemed to have worked a lot more effectively than the Hard Power strategy against DPRK for the previous half a century. Nonetheless, no matter what US did, its worst enemy DPRK is still there at the same location. Rather, in the new world’s map of global power politics, DPRK isn’t at the same location anymore. Why and how?
The US, in a simple comparison with DPRK, is by itself an already asymmetrically incomparable power. The OGS itself is asymmetrically and unprecedentedly huge, gigantic and mammoth already. Such a gigantic therefore immeasurably overwhelming global power has never existed in human history. So a simple comparison itself is unnecessary.
For example, according to Wikipedia, US GDP is $17,419 trillion dollars (2014), while that of DPRK about $15 billion (2013). US population is about 322 million as of 2015 while that of DPRK about 25 million. US land size, the 3rd in its rank in the world, is about 3,800,000 square mi, while that of DPRK about 46,000. One of the main reasons why the D-U struggle is considered “historically unprecedented” is the asymmetrical differences in everything between the two most extremely different nations from each other. When we talk about the 70 years of D-U struggle, therefore, I believe the above-mentioned extremely two different asymmetrical sizes, numbers, volumes, etc. particularly in those visible or tangible matters between “the most anti-imperialist nation” and “the most imperialist nation” on earth should be taken into consideration.
Songun Politics, US President’s Public Admittance of Military Defeat
On January 22nd, 2015, surprise to everybody, Obama declared its military defeat against DPRK in his White House interview with the Youtube. He publicly admitted US has no more options to deal with DPRK militarily. Again for the sake of record, it was the first time ever in US history a sitting US president publicly acknowledged its military defeat in a war it’s still presently engaged with. Right after that surprising pronouncement of its military defeat, however, as if the “naked emperor” was trying to cover his naked body, again quite surprisingly to everybody, he made a sort of war declaration, i.e., the above-discussed war of CI.
When he made it, however, he seemed not look serious. It was like a talk for the talk type of gesture. Therefore, he in a way looked even childish, immature, careless or mindless when he boastfully guaranteed, US will be able to destroy DPRK from within using the above-mentioned CI (Soft Power) war. This second public announcement actually seemed to have made the world much more surprised than his public admittance of US military defeat to DPRK. When he boastfully exaggerated the so-called soft power war declaration against DPRK, I am sure even if he didn’t specifically mention in his interview, nevertheless, he exactly meant in his mind the following such as all sorts of CIA’s notoriously infamous dirty tricks like the smuggling of porno films, dirty magazines, and full of all sorts of stereotypical drug, sex and violence Hollywood movies, and so on. At the Youtube interview, he wasn’t in anyway the all-powerful Emperor of the OGS anymore. He just looked like a street thug or a youth gang.
As we’ve discussed above on the extremely asymmetrical difference between the two most arch enemies, I believe another simple comparison would be also beneficial to gain hopefully a holistic understanding of the often mysteriously incomprehensible D-U struggle. The military dimension in the history of D-U struggle would be probably the most prominent aspect in terms of the two nation’s extremely asymmetric backgrounds of military hardware. Here, again, this asymmetric factor would be able to provide people some clues to understand a DPRK’s idiom like the “impossibility turns into possibility” a bit better.
After the imperialists’ global war of aggression paused in July 27, 1953, the whole nation, particularly the North was laid in ruin from the relentlessly nonstop 3 yearlong “carpet bombings.” For example, in case of Pyongyang, there were about more than 400,000 some populations during the war. The US dropped about 420,000 bombs upon the city of Pyongyang. This criminal history alone reveals the history of a countless number of abominable US atrocities against the millions of Koreans.
Nevertheless, no matter what’d happened in the past, a series of successful both nuclear and H-bomb tests and satellite/missile launching tests and all other successful nuclear power-related tests since August 1998 till this day in July 10, 2016, seemed to have furthermore cemented the place of DPRK undoubtedly: 1) Scientifically one of the most developed, 2) Militarily one of the strongest nations on earth. With its several successful SLBM test fires in 2015 and 2016, particularly a successful launching of (both IRBM and ICBM-capable) Hwa-sung (Mars) 10th which reached all the way up to the 1413.6 km on June 23rd, together with its successful atmospheric reentry test, the level of DPRK’s most sophisticated military and scientific technologies are believed to have been further elevated to the upper highest 4-5 global nuclear superpowers club.
The principles of independence, self-reliance, self-determination, and self-defense are like the most important code words for the Koreans in the north. There is a saying: “They’ll die for the right to self-determination.” In any case, they’ll never kneel down before the imperialists or any other foreign forces. Instead they’ll fight for independence till they die. In September 9, 1948, DPRK built their nation upon the “people-oriented socialist principles.” The word Juche (self-reliance) is identified with the most sacred word late President Kim, founding father of DPRK following his over 20 years of defiant anti-Japanese guerilla warfare.
It seems what’d had been the most critical aspect in the repeatedly failed US imperialist war of aggression against DPRK is the area of Juche strategy. No matter how US imperialists argue, when they finally sit with DPRK and sign the over half a century-delayed Peace Treaty will be definitely considered as Washington’s Official Acknowledgment of Defeat to Pyongyang. In the world of imperialists, everything is decided by the logic of power. This truth has never changed throughout human history. The power decides which is right, which is wrong. The so-called ‘history’ in most cases is written by the powerful. The powerful is the authors of almost all of the written histories ever recorded in human history. Whoever grabs the power makes the history.
The concept of DPRK’s “Songun” seems one of the most straightforward language which tells the power decides everything particularly in the world of anti-imperialist and self-determined wars against the imperialism. Power decides a nation’s destiny and its relations to others. No matter how big the size, how many the population, how much the wealth, how great and diverse the cultures are, etc., however, if that nation is defenseless with its own self-reliant, independent and self-determined power to deal with any foreign forces, all that great cultures, histories, peoples, lands, national resources, and so on could be nothing. It’d be meaningless once for all. All that great values can be taken away at any moment, if not destroyed by the greedy outside forces.
After all, the 60 some years-long the US-led global economic blockades, financial sanctions, and ongoing nuclear war threats has however made DPRK paradoxically stand high at the center of today’s world’s power politics. How and why? It seems the historically-unprecedented people-centered Songun politics we’ve discussed throughout the paper is the answer. This most proud DPRK tradition for almost a century long seemed to have also created another historically-unprecedented human miracle, called the Il-sim-dan-gyul, the miracle of “all for one, one for all.” It’s no wonder why DPRK is a global nuclear superpower now while it’s continuing its undisruptive self-reliant economic development simultaneously. The author has no doubt even the Washington imperialists themselves will be able to hardly refute the following most undisputable historical fact for over 70 years: DPRK’s Songun Politics has thoroughly defeated another historically-unprecedented only global super (psychopathically great monster-like) empire!
By sharing another excerpt from Dr. Galtung, let me finally close this in many aspects incomplete therefore partial and yet-unfinished paper:
“On the Korean reunification, Galtung has suggested a confederation of the two states as a first step, followed by a federation and eventually complete incorporation as a neutral power. Despite the evolving security landscape surrounding the peninsula, he said he still believes in the idea. ‘I stand by unifying the nation with open borders and equitable cooperation, for the latter DPRK has to develop more, as they will.’ He continued, ‘I stand by first confederation of the two states, then federation, then possibly one state in the future, not based on any collapse — not a good base as we can see from Germany. And I stand by neutrality for a peninsula in the intense power field of four major powers.’” (From his June 17, 2016 interview with Korean Central Daily in Seoul)
Prof. Kiyul Chung, Editor-in-Chief at The 4th Media, in addition to a PhD he earned in the United States, also earned another doctoral degree, called, Doctor of Sociopolitics (SPD) from DPRK in 2014. Before he joined the Tsinghua University in Beijing, China as a Visiting Professor since September 2009, he’d been teaching in the States, South Korea and China ever since mid 1980s. While still working in China, however, since 2011, he’s been also invited to several universities in Japan such as Keio, Rikkyo and Korea University in Tokyo, Kyoto, Doshisha and Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto where he’s been lecturing as either Visiting Professor or Guest Lecturer. After obtaining a DPRK doctoral degree in the area of social science, he’s been also called into teaching at Kim Il Sung University in Pyongyang, DPRK since March 2015. His articles have been published around the world since 1990s in addition to his prolific Korean articles which have been published in both North and South Korean medias including independent medias in overseas Korean communities throughout the world. Since December 1994, he’s published about 300 some articles in several Korean-language medias in both Koreas. His first English book (The Donghak Concept of God/Heaven: Religion and Social Transformation, Peter Lang Publishing Inc.) was published both in the United States and Europe in 2007. His first two Korean books were published in the South in 2009 and 2012 respectively. His two latest Korean books were also published in the North in 2015 and 2016 as well.
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