"KIM IL SUNG and WFTU"
President Kim Il Sung, Eminent Leader of Workers
(Written by Jan Nemoudry,
Assistant to General Secretary of the WFTU)
Allow me to highlight one of the facts on this subject.
It happened one day in April 1946, one year after the liberation of the country from Japan's colonial occupation.
During his inspection tour in North Hamgyong Province, he arrived at an establishment in the city of Chongjin, where enthusiastic preparations were under way to solemnly commemorate May Day, the international day of unity, struggle and solidarity of workers. It was made much more significant by fact that it was the first time the workers, who had become masters of the country, were celebrating the event since the liberation of their country.
The President was informed that the May Day parade had been planned with the leading ranks of provincial and municipal officials on horseback followed by groups of workers, peasants and students. He made an important change to the plans, placing the workers, peasants and students at the head of the procession.
This instruction, far from concerning merely the question of the order of the participants, was significant, for it made clear the position of the workers and peasants in the revolution.
In Korea, people often used the expression "heroic working class". I tried myself to understand the full significance, as a former turner at the beginning of my working life.
My meeting with the militant trade unionists of Korea, deputies and labour heroes Ho Kum Song of the Pyongyang Textile Factory, Yun Sang Thaek of the Hwanghae Steel Complex and others was very enlightening. They were ordinary workers at their enterprises since the age of 20. To my question, they replied emotionally that they worked diligently and that their work had been highly appreciated by the President, who had awarded them the gold medal of Labour Hero: after that, they had been elected deputies to the SPA. It was a straightforward response to my question, but very eloquent.
I also visited the famous Taean Heavy Machine Complex. As I entered the plant, I noticed first of all the statue of the President and a monument commemorating his on-the-spot guidance to the factory. My guide explained that the President had made an important visit there in December 1961. He stayed at the factory for more than 10 days, and on the basis of his analysis of the inherent faults in the one-man management system by the director and mistrust in the method and style of work of the officials, where arbitrariness and bureaucracy were practiced, he put in place a new management system for socialist enterprises, now known as the Taean work system.
This system spread to all sectors of the economy, allowing the elimination of the subjectiveness and arbitrariness of one individual from the management of an enterprise, thus managing enterprises by the collective wisdom and cooperation of the broad masses of workers and giving full play to their consciousness.
The monuments dedicated to the President's visits which are erected in the grounds of enterprises throughout Korea reflect the affectionate personality of the President, always mixing himself with the workers, the masters of the factory and of production and embracing them with a regard that is as warm as it is paternal.
My conversations with workers and my visits to factories persuaded me that the Korean system of socialism built by the President was literally a workers' world.
Planned by the President, a modern library complex built in a traditional style, which carries the name "Grand People's Study House" stands in a pre-eminent position in the centre of the capital. It is a magnificent sight without equal.
It is not occupied by an administrative body of the state, but to make educational establishments of workers as the masters of society and creators of the country to bring their talents into bloom and make the progress of society.
The Study House receives tens of thousands of workers and young students every day. They come to be instructed free of charge. Another establishment, located next to the River Potong, is dedicated to the cultural recreation of the workers, and is called "The People's Palace of Culture". In fact, if one takes a trolleybus across the capital or if one enters a Korean grocery store or bakery, one can easily find an inscription commemorating a visit by the President.
The amusement parks and public gardens also display his love for the workers.
The President's hand can truly be seen in every aspect of the workers' lives.
At Kangson, he spoke with an open heart to workers sitting on a section of a wall that had been demolished. At Chongsan-ri he shared his place on a mat to converse with peasants.
All these examples show the commitment and devotion of President Kim Il Sung to his country and his people in the revolution. As an American pastor remarked, he was a messiah of the present times who had built a paradise on earth, where even Christ would have nothing to remake.
The flowers laid down in front of the monuments in the grounds of factories or in front of the pictures showing the President talking to ordinary people by the side of a road seem to whisper: our President is the benefactor of our life.
In the course of my stay in Korea, I also heard numerous stores about Kim Jong Il, General Secretary of the Workers' Party of Korea, and today, I realize all the more the importance of his task, his role and his responsibility.
For me, remaining committed to the defence of workers' interests, it is of great importance due to the fact that across the world we face more and more policies which are inhumane, anti-popular and unethical, introduced in the name of "globalization". These are economic and social policies which the workers and their unions regard as selfish and divisive, policies whose sole goal is the maximization of profits.
The fact is that the working people of the DPR Korea built a prosperous state under the eminent guidance of President Kim Il Sung, and Kim Jong Il, General Secretary of the Workers' Party of Korea, who embodies the President's ideas, are absolutely committed to continuing the strengthening of socialist Korea. All the measures and activities being simultaneously undertaken offer the best proof of this.
To illustrate this point, I will quote the declaration of Kim Jong Il: I am going to devote everything to people with belief in them as my heaven upholding high ambition of the President. To devote everything to the building of a powerful country and to the people's happiness, this is my life purpose and worth.
This affirmation and objective need no explanation.
So, on the occasion of the 90th birthday of President Kim Il Sung, eminent leader of the workers of the DPRK, our organization, the WFTU, wishes General Secretary Kim Jong Il and the Workers' Party of Korea the successes in the dynamic economic and social development of the DPRK, as well as in their endeavors for the reunification of Korea and for fruitful cooperation with other nations of the world.
(To be continued)