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.