Wednesday, March 14, 2012


《To Prevent War and Preserve Peace Is the burning Task of Mankind》

Speech at a Banquet Given in Honour of the Participants in the Pyongyang International Conference for Denuclearization and Peace on the Korean Peninsula

(September 6, 1986)

I am very glad to meet you today and to know that you have visited the homeland and are going to return in good health.

I am not going to talk to you at length because I think you must already have heard about the situation in the homeland from the officials concerned.

As you know well from having attended the First Session of the Sixth Supreme People′s Assembly which was held a short time ago, in the homeland we embark on the Second Seven-Year National Economic Plan next year. I firmly believe that our people will fulfil the plan successfully by displaying to the full the revolutionary spirit of self-reliance, as they have done in the past.

The thoughts and purpose of our working class are presently very good and all the people are fully equipped with the Juche idea and rallied closely as one around the Party. Such being the case, if all the working people display their revolutionary enthusiasm and creative talents in their work, they will be fully able to fulfil the plan ahead of schedule, as they did with such credit in the Six-Year National Economic Plan formerly.

Because I believe that all the problems that concern you must already have been spoken about, I should like to say a few words about some problems relating to national reunification.

Many people in the world hold the mistaken view that our country must be divided into two states like Germany. Both the United States and Japan insist on this.

That was why at the Pyongyang City mass meeting to welcome the Party and state delegation from the German Democratic Republic, I stated that although the partition of Germany was reasonable, the division of our country was unwarranted. This speech has produced a major sensation in the press of Japan and the United States.

Germany, a country which ignited the Second World War, was partitioned as a consequence of the war. At present West Germany is a capitalist state with highly developed monopoly capital. In some scientific and technical branches she is more developed than the United States. Therefore, Germany may re-emerge as a force of aggression if she is reunified and grows stronger as a militarist state, and so the wish of the European countries is that she will remain partitioned.

However, the circumstances in our country are different and there is no reason for it to remain divided. Ours is a country which has never invaded another country, and which had to win liberation from Japanese colonial rule. The countries which neighbour us do not consider that our country may invade another country even after reunification. It will also be a good thing for them if our country is reunified, rather than remaining divided and in a state of conflict.

Our people were deprived of half of their country by the US imperialists for no reason. To regain it is the sacred national right of our people.

At present the progressive people the world over, to say nothing of all the Korean people, desire the reunification of our country. But the US imperialists, Japanese militarists and south Korean puppet clique are strongly opposed to the reunification of Korea. They are clamouring for so-called "cross recognition" and "simultaneous admission to the UN", a product of their wild ambition to divide our country in two permanently like Germany.

We could never legally perpetuate national division by entering the UN as "two Koreas" or allowing the large countries to make "cross recognition". If we tolerate the enemy′s scheme of "simultaneous admission to the UN" and "cross recognition", we will never achieve national reunification, and the enemy will be able to justify the division of Korea by saying to our younger generations and the people of the world that the division of our country into "two Koreas" had been made in accordance with the demands of the Korean people themselves. Therefore, we can on no account tolerate their moves to create "two Koreas".

We should make every possible effort to thwart the "two Koreas" plot of the US imperialists and south Korean puppet clique and to reunify our divided country.

You should work skilfully with the south Korean people, above all else, to encourage them to fight boldly against the scheme of the enemy for "two Koreas".

Since our country is small, it will be impotent if it is divided, and south Korea will become a permanent colony of the US imperialists. At present the south Korean people are not aware of this. Although we have stated on several occasions that we will not force communism on south Korea, they still believe that communism will be forced on them when the country is reunified.

Two different systems can exist in one country. The association of progressive mayors exists in Japan, even though it is a capitalist society, doesn′t it? In one case, even in a capitalist country some part of the country is occupied by a progressive group and the other by a right-wing group.

We do not intend to liquidate the south Korean capitalists after national reunification. In fact, there is no major capitalist in south Korea. If there are any, they are comprador capitalists, not monopoly capitalists.

We intend to reunify the country by means of instituting a north-south confederation under the name of a single state, leaving the socialist system in the northern half of the Republic and the present system in south Korea intact for the time being.

If our small country is reunified, it will be in a position to develop into a powerful country and all fifty million Koreans will be perfectly able to enjoy a happy life. Our country abounds in mineral and marine resources. The south Korean puppet clique is now trying to develop the continental shelves in collaboration with the Japanese reactionaries, but national reunification will enable the Koreans to do such things well by themselves. If we develop these shelves, we shall be able to obtain from them great quantities of a variety of resources, including crude oil. In addition, when measures are taken to prevent pollution, it will be possible to catch plenty offish even in the seas off south Korea. There are also large quantities of mineral resources in our country which have not yet been prospected.

You must offer a satisfactory explanation to the south Korean people, telling them that our country must not be divided into "two Koreas" and that national reunification is the only way to make all the people eat good food and live happily without being subordinated to another country. In this way, you should ensure that they fight boldly against the enemy′s "two Koreas" plot, with the clear understanding that division is the path of slavery and national ruin as well as the way to being deprived of half the country by the US imperialists.

At the same time, you should arouse international public opinion in support of Korean reunification so as to check and frustrate the "two Koreas" plot. This is the immediate task facing you in smashing the plot and achieving national reunification.

Next, you should help the south Korean people to launch a strenuous campaign to achieve national reunification based on our three principles for national reunification.

I put forward these three principles when I met the south Korean delegate who came to Pyongyang to attend the north-south high-level political talks. I met him personally to speak about them because he had told our officials that his side also intended that the question of national reunification should be solved by the Koreans themselves sitting around a table, without relying on the United States.

Firstly I told the south Korean delegate that the country′s reunification should be achieved independently by the Koreans themselves without relying on foreign forces and without any interference from them, secondly that great national unity should be promoted, transcending any differences in ideology, ideals and social system and thirdly that national reunification should be realized by peaceful means, without recourse to arms, and that any war between the north and the south would lead to the destruction of every building and to the death of numerous people, which, therefore, would be terrible.

At first, the delegate doubted if the two sides could be merged because one had a socialist system and the other a capitalist system. So, I said to him that our nation would prosper if it was united and the two sides cooperated, so there was no reason for us not to do this, and that we must achieve great national unity and national reunification, transcending any differences in ideology, ideals and social system, regardless of whether the people in the northern half espoused communist ideas and Marxism-Leninism and the south Korean people believed in "Christ" and "God".

After hearing me out, he said that my statement was very good and expressed his complete agreement with it. Hence the three principles for national reunification and, a short time later, the publication of the North-South Joint Statement.

Even after the publication of this statement, the main content of which was the three principles for national reunification, the south Korean authorities said that the "UN forces" were not foreign forces and that the "Anti-Communist Law" could not be repealed. Although they themselves proclaimed their agreement with the three principles for national reunification, they turned around and betrayed them.

Even after that, I met and talked with other representatives of the south Korean side when they visited Pyongyang. I said to them: "You are now trying to ′confront′, ′compete′ and ′coexist′, while on the other hand, holding talks but you should refrain from doing so; the north and the south should unite, instead of being in confrontation; there is no point in dialogue if we are in confrontation with each other because the aim of talks is to achieve unity; we must collaborate instead of competing; there is no need for us to compete, debating which is better, socialism or capitalism; and even if we wanted to compete, we could not do so anyway because our principle is to make everyone prosperous and yours is to make the poor poorer and the rich, richer." At the same time, I laid down the conditions for collaboration between the north and the south.

Firstly, we proposed the joint exploitation of mineral resources. I told them: "At present south Korea is selling a large number of people as slaves to West Germany, Brazil and many other countries in the world, and going to the lengths of selling children abroad. This must stop and instead you must send them to the northern half of the Republic; the north has. vast mineral deposits including iron ore and nonferrous minerals; the iron ore in Musan, Pungsan and other northern areas alone amounts to thousands of millions of tons; we could not mine all of it in several hundred years; so, let us exploit these mineral resources jointly, you providing the manpower and we supplying equipment; you have to buy iron ore from distant foreign countries because you are short of it having built an iron works in Pohang, so it is a good idea for us to develop iron-ore mines jointly and you will take the ore for your own use."

Then, I proposed that we should help them to undertake irrigation projects in south Korea. I told them: "You are replacing the straw-thatched roofs of farmhouses with plastic tiles under the plea of conducting the ′new village movement′, funded by a loan of two billion dollars from Japan, but if you were to conduct that movement in good earnest, you would give the land to the peasants and carry out irrigation projects, in order to make them prosperous; how will you pay off the loan of two billion dollars from Japan once you have spent it?; so, you should abandon this movement and let us undertake irrigation projects in south Korea so as to enable the peasants to raise good crops; because these projects are not carried out in the south, even light rainfall causes flooding and a short spell of dry weather brings about a drought every year, doesn′t it?; we have vast experience in irrigation and are now helping with irrigation projects in many African countries; we shall provide the technicians and equipment, so you should supply the manpower; then we shall be able to construct irrigation systems in south Korea rapidly."

I also explained the way to improve the living conditions of the south Korean fishermen. I said: "The East Sea of our country is teeming with fish because cold and warm currents meet there; in winter there are several million tons of pollack there alone, but we can catch only a few hundred thousand tons; therefore let us allow south Korean fishermen to enter our fishing grounds to catch fish; we will provide them with adequate protection; when they are overtaken by a storm, we shall evacuate them to somewhere safe, and we will provide them with food and water when they have run out; their living conditions will improve if they are allowed to catch fish in the fishing grounds of the northern half of the Republic."

I told them that if the north and the south were to cooperate in a variety of projects one by one, beginning with those things that are possible, national reunification would be hastened.

The south Korean representatives said that the cooperation we had proposed between the north and the south was fine. But, after their return to south Korea, they abandoned all our proposals and instead proposed the joint development of Mt. Kumgang for tourism.

At present the south Korean authorities are clamouring that they have earned one hundred million dollars or two hundred million dollars every year through their tourist industry. As for what they call tourism, it is to raise money by offering kisaeng girls to foreigners.

The south Korean people and democrats are not familiar with the proposed collaboration between the north and the south. It is because the south Korean puppet clique has not informed the people there of it and instead conducts false propaganda that states it is all untrue.

The south Korean puppet clique is now conducting false propaganda among the people in the south that nothing has been built in Pyongyang, that the streets are swarming with beggars.

As you have seen, Pyongyang has been built up into an excellent, modem city, and in our country there is no unemployed or starving person nor are there any shoeshine boys in the streets. Of course, as yet we cannot live prosperously. In the northern half of the country, however, none of the people have any worries about food, clothing and housing, and they can study to their hearts′ content, and receive free medical treatment when they are ill. If the south Korean people witness such things here in the north, they will all say that our socialist system is fine.

At the time of the north-south Red Cross talks1, there was some affair about the south Korean representatives and their company who had come to Pyongyang trying to give fountain-pens and notebooks to our primary school pupils. But our schoolchildren said, "We have all the school things we need and so you must give them to the south Korean children who are unable to study because they have no money and have to polish shoes." On hearing this, the representatives and their company from south Korea were greatly moved, so I am told.

The head of the delegation of the south Korean Red Cross Society who came on the visit to this city, was a former resident of Pyongyang, and asked to go and see the spot where his house had formerly stood. His house had been somewhere on the present Chollima Street, so he visited the site but could not find it because the street had been rebuilt so well.

When in Seoul to hold talks, our Red Cross representatives cleaned their hotel rooms, polished their shoes and put their bedding in order, themselves. The servants at the hotel who saw this, changed their opinion of we communists. They said that the communists were all good people upon witnessing their behaviour.

It seems to me that at the time of the Red Cross talks, the south Korean journalists and hotel staff were greatly impressed by our people. After compiling the information on the Red Cross talks, the south Korean puppet clique believed that all the south Korean people would be won over by us if the talks were held in the north and the south alternately, so they proposed holding the Red Cross talks at Panmunjom2. These facts show that in the talks and contact between the north and the south, we can exert as favourable an influence as we want on the south Korean people.

It is not true that the failure to reunify our country is due to any sharp antagonism between the north and the south. The reason lies in the fact that the south Korean puppet clique is not trying to reunify the country, and the US imperialists prevent it anyway.

You should explain in full to the south Korean people that the country must be reunified based on the three principles for national reunification. By doing this, you should ensure that everyone who wants to see the country reunified will turn out as one man in the struggle to accomplish this cause, regardless of property status, religious belief and ideology.

Next, you should help the south Korean people to understand the need for unity with the communists for national reunification.

Last year I held talks with a compatriot who visited the homeland from the United States. At the time, I told him: "The south Korean authorities should not oppose the communists in their efforts to reunify the country; in the northern half of the Republic the communists have taken power and there are two million members of the Workers′ Party and, if their families are included, the number totals as many as eight million; ′reunification by prevailing over communism′ means to kill more than half the population of the northern half, so, in that case, reunification will be pointless; therefore, reunification presupposes unity with communists; although there are differences in our political views because you believe in ′God′ and we adhere to communism, we share the same purpose of reunifying the country, don′t we?; you have no reason to oppose us because we follow communist ideology and we have no reason to stand against you because you believe in ′God′; so let us unite to reunify the country." Christian as he was, he said that my statement was absolutely correct.

The south Korean puppet clique is currently conducting an anti-communist campaign, insisting on "peaceful reunification". In the final analysis, this means to achieve "reunification by prevailing over communism". This testifies to the fact that there is no "threat of aggression" from the north, as the enemy says, but that the south Korean authorities have the wild intention of a northward invasion.

You must explain this evil ambition of the south Korean puppet clique properly to the workers, peasants, young people and students, intellectuals and democrats in south Korea. In this way, you should persuade them to become completely familiar with the cunning moves of the south Korean puppet clique and to have an understanding of the need for a combined effort with the communists to achieve national reunification. When they rise up with a clear understanding of the matter of reunification, the country′s reunification will be brought ever closer.

I believe that you will fight vigorously to hasten national reunification and defend your socialist homeland, as our Party and our country expect.

I hope that on your return you will convey to the Comrade Chairman and other Chongryon officials and all our compatriots in Japan, my desire for them to wage a more vigorous campaign, enjoying good health, for national reunification and to safeguard the socialist homeland.


1. North-south Red Cross talks— talks between the Red Cross organizations from the north and the south of Korea which were convened on the initiative of the Red Cross Society of the Democratic People′s Republic of Korea, with a view to the rapid easing of the sufferings of the separated families and relatives on both sides because of the artificial division of the country by the US imperialists′ occupation of south Korea and, further, to the creation of favourable conditions for national reunification.

The agenda from the first (August 30-September 2,1972) to the seventh talks (July 11-12, 1973) included such matters as finding addresses of those separated families and relatives and making enquiries about their safety and passing this information on, enabling them to visit and meet each other freely, free communication between them, their reunion by their free choice and other humanitarian matters.

The talks resumed afterwards, but have gained no success up to date owing to the anti-communist hue and cry of the US imperialists and the south Korean puppet clique and the insincere attitude of the south Korean side.

2. Panmunjom—the historic place where the US imperialist aggressors who unleashed the Korean war on June 25,1950, signed the Military Armistice Agreement on July 27,1953, thus surrendering to the Korean people.

It is situated in the Demilitarized Zone which is adjacent to the Military Demarcation Line, a spot about ten kilometres northeast from the Panmun County seat, Kaesong City. At Panmunjom are the buildings where armistice talks were held and the Armistice Agreement was signed. The Military Armistice Commission meetings are held here.

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