Thursday, October 12, 2006

Defend Democratic Korea!

FRIENDS of the Korean people gathered in Southall’s Saklatvala Hall last Saturday to celebrate two of the most important landmarks in modern Korean history. The formation of the Down with Imperialism Union on 17th October 1926 marked the beginning of the struggle to free Korea from the brutal yoke of Japanese colonialism.
The foundation of the Workers Party of Korea on 10th October 1945 was the culmination of 19 years of struggle against the might of the Japanese Empire that ended in victory in August 1945. It also heralded the new era for the working people of Korea who were breaking the chains of feudalism and capitalist exploitation in the north of the peninsula.
Throughout the year a preparatory committee, that includes the members of the NCP, RCPB (ML), CPGB (ML), SLP and others, organises meetings across London to promote solidarity and friendship with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.
Chaired by Zane Carpenter of the CPGB (ML), NCP leader Andy Brooks spoke on behalf of the committee and Ha Sin Guk, from the London embassy of the DPR Korea. Both comrades spoke of Kim Il Sung’s immense contribution to the struggle for Korea’s liberation and Democratic Korea’s determination to defend its independence and socialist system.
Andy Brooks listed the unrelenting provocations of US imperialism against the DPRK from the day the Korean war ended in 1953 to Washington’s refusal to respond to north Korea’s realistic proposals to end the crisis on the peninsula.
“In face of these renewed threats the DPRK has had no alternative but to develop a nuclear deterrent to defend its socialist system. At the same time it has pledged that it will never use nuclear weapons first and it had also vowed never to threaten the use of nuclear weapons or allow the transfer of nuclear technology to other countries.” he said. “These are the circumstances that forced the DPRK to resume its nuclear programme and the development of its own long-range missiles.
“These are the reasons why Democratic Korea announced this week that it would test its first nuclear weapon in the near future. It was as inevitable as it was justifiable”.
This was echoed by Ella Rule who moved a solidarity message on behalf of the committee that was adopted unanimously.
The meeting then heard a report back from one of the CPGB (ML) comrades who had recently returned from the DPRK and saw some of their photos displayed on the walls as well as a video about the capture of the US spy-ship Pueblo in 1968.
But all these meetings are celebrations and as Southall is in the heart of London’s Asian community the formal part of the proceedings ended not surprisingly with a performance of Indian progressive songs and Indian food and drink.

pic: Ha Sin Guk, Zane Carpenter and Andy Brooks