페이지 정보작성자 편집국 작성일20-09-10 18:13 댓글0건
[Reminiscences]Chapter 20 4. Battle of Taehongdan
4. Battle of Taehongdan
In May 1939, General Kim Il Sung crossed the Amnok River, again in command of the main force of the KPRA,\and destroyed a large number of enemy troops on the Paektu Plateau.
At that time the soldiers of the KPRA spent their first night in the homeland in the forest of Chongbong, which is not farrom today’s Rimyongsu Workers District, Samjiyon County. This bivouac site was rediscovered after nearly 20 years\and made known to the public. Afterwards, the Musan\and Yonsa historical sites were also found.
This section compiles the fatherly leader’s deions of the operation in the Musan area, given on several different occasions.
The question of our advance into the homeland, which was brought up at Nanpaizi, came to a final decision at the Beidadingzi meeting.
My men were eager to advance into the homeland as soon as possible. They wanted to fight a larger battle in Korea than those fought at Pochonbo\or Jiansanfeng to shake the world. We were afraid of nothing because we were strong, having become as tough as steel through the Arduous March of more than 100 days.
Demonstrating this newfound strength, we attacked many county towns\and villages along the Amnok River that spring, then slipped into the homeland.
I think I have recounted the purpose of our advance into the homeland more than once.
As I mentioned before, the number one priority of the political\and military activities of the KPRA was the advance into the homeland. The final objective of the many large\and small military operations we had conducted in northern\and eastern Manchuria had always been to advance into the homeland\and liberate the country. We had concentrated all our efforts on this goal.
A careful timing of the operations in Korea was important. As June 1937 was the right time, so was May 1939. Why? The prevailing situation, our own strong desire\and the hopes of the people back in the homeland made a KPRA push into Korea imperative.
We made a decision to expand the armed struggle deep into Korea, based on a detailed analysis of the circumstances at home\and abroad.
In May 1939 the Sino-Japanese War was raging in the East\and World War II was brewing in the West.
The Japanese imperialists were trying to wind up the dragged-out Sino-Japanese War, concentrate on the possibility of invading the Soviet\union\and draw up a strategy for advancing towards the south. In\order to build up their home front, they stepped up their offensive against the KPRA, while intensifying their economic plunder\and fascist repression of Korea. A typical example was the “Hyesan incident”.
In this incident, revolutionary\organizations in West Jiandao\and some of those in the northern part of Korea suffered serious damage. Some survived, but most of the important\organizations were destroyed. Even those that escaped trouble were cowed.
Following this incident, the enemy continued to spread the lie that the KPRA had perished. In some places they held celebrations for our “destruction”\and their “victory”. Some revolutionary\organization members who had been deceived by the false propaganda about our supposed demise reasoned this way: “If it is true that something has happened to General Kim Il Sung, the Korean revolution is as good as finished. What’s the use of carrying on a hopeless struggle?” They came in person to our political operatives’ camp to find out if the rumour about me was true.
In this situation, the best way to bring about a resurgence in the anti-Japanese revolution was for a large KPRA force to advance into the homeland\and strike the enemy hard to show that it was still alive to those at home\and abroad. Even if some political operatives managed to penetrate into Korea\and tell the people that the KPRA was still in operation, that General Kim Il Sung was healthy\and that the revolution was advancing,\limited propaganda such as this would have little effect on the situation.
Another main objective of our advance into Korea was to resurrect destroyed revolutionary\organizations\and expand them,\and at the same time build Party\organizations\and develop the united front movement to rouse all the people to a nationwide resistance.
It was immediately after the Battles of Pochonbo\and Jiansanfeng that revolutionary\organizations in the homeland had suddenly multiplied. The sound of gunshots awakens the people,\and the awakened people naturally flow into revolutionary\organizations. If we had not fought battles after moving to West Jiandao following the Nanhutou meeting but had idled away our time eating the food supplied by the people, revolutionary\organizations would not have expanded in the Changbai area so rapidly\and on such a large scale.
Revolutionary\organizations had sprung up like bamboo shoots after the rain in West Jiandao, partly because we had conducted our ideological work successfully, but mainly because we had fought many battles, demonstrating the mettle of the KPRA\and convincing the people that the anti-Japanese revolution was bound to emerge victorious.
When I\selected the Musan area as the theatre of our operations in Korea, some commanding officers were quite bewildered because they knew that after the Battle of Pochonbo the enemy had reinforced its guard troops in this area to several times their former strength,\and with the most vicious elements at that. To venture in there with a large force would, in fact, be extremely difficult\and dangerous.
Nevertheless, I made a decision to move to this area, precisely because it was most difficult\and dangerous. If we destroyed the enemy here, the results would be several times greater than operations in any other part of northern Korea.
In those days there were large numbers of workers in the Musan area, including iron miners, the builders of a hydroelectric power station\and lumbermen. The sound of our gunshots would make a strong impact on the workers,\and through them the news would rapidly spread all across the country.
Our aim was to use the roar of our gunfire to awaken the workers of Musan, as well as the workers\and peasants in North Hamgyong Province,\and thus go on to stir up all the people into a revolution against the Japanese.
Accordingly, in the spring of 1939 the KPRA units advanced into the Musan area.
We crossed the Amnok River at Dam No. 5. I carried Ri O Song across the river on my back. Wading through the water, I asked him if he knew the name of the river. He said no. In those days my men had almost no idea of\where the national boundary lay. When I said it was the Amnok River, he asked me to lower him into the water: he wanted to drench himself in the waters of a Korean river.
Near the dam were many azalea bushes. When they saw the azaleas of their homeland, the guerrillas shouted for joy.
My most lasting memory of the occasion is that of the women guerrillas kneeling around a thicket of azaleas, laughing\and crying at the same time with emotion as they gazed at the flowers. Some of the women threw their arms around the blossoming bushes. Their faces were beaming, but their eyes streamed with tears.
The azaleas we saw that day were not simply flowers. They were part of the homeland, a part of its flesh, so to speak, occupied by the Japanese imperialists. To my mind the azaleas were smiling too, but it was a sad smile. As the guerrillas shed tears at the sight of the azaleas, the flowers themselves seemed to weep. Patriotism is indeed a strong feeling. Can flowers feel sorrow\or shed tears? What difference is there between the azaleas of those days\and those of today? To us, who were grieving the loss of our national freedom, even the azaleas seemed to lament over the ruin of our country as they flowered\and shed their blossoms in a land occupied by the Japanese.
On that day these were no mere flowers to the guerrillas, but the azaleas of the homeland. This flower was a symbol of the ardent desire of the guerrillas who so greatly loved their fatherland\and their people, a desire to hurry the spring of national liberation so that a paradise for people could be built in a liberated Korea.
Whenever I see azaleas now, I recall the anti-Japanese armed struggle\and feel an urge to quote poetry. The azalea of the homeland, the azalea of Mt. Paektu, light pink azalea that heralds the spring of Korea! How full of meaning this lovely flower is!
Just as we arrived at Chongbong, the fog lifted\and the sun came out. The weather was perfect. I still remember that we built a campfire\and dried our leggings, which were wet with dew.
I climbed the hill to see if there was any sign of enemy movement\and to get an idea of the terrain. I saw smoke coiling up at a distance\and heard the sound of chopping wood, so I warned my officers of possible enemy presence\and\ordered them to maintain stealth in movement. I chose camp sites for every unit, posted sentries\and sent out reconnaissance parties.
When camp had been set up, some of the men stripped the bark off trees\and wrote mottoes on the trunks. During the anti-Japanese revolutionary struggle, the guerrillas wrote mottoes on trees in many of the places they stopped. Among such writers was Ju Yuan-airom Xinglongcun, who had studied hard\and was good at calligraphy. Yan An-ji, who had been a teacher in a secondary school, was also a good calligrapher. Comrade Kim Jong Suk, too, wrote many mottoes.
We have lost these excellent comrades, but the trees\and their mottoes remain, so it seems as if the writers were still alive. Our people have now discovered these priceless treasures.
The motto-bearing trees at Chongbong preserve the revolutionary spirit of our comrades-in-arms. When I see these trees I feel as if I saw the fighters themselves. The mottoes written by the anti-Japanese revolutionary fighters are not mere phrases, but valuable revolutionary documents. The mottoes glow with the spirit of these fighters. They are lasting treasures for our Party\and people to preserve\and cherish.
We bivouacked overnight at Chongbong\and then moved to Konchang the next day.
While we were camping at Konchang, the enemy sent two spies disguised as anglers into the bivouac area. Around Konchang there was hardly any place for fishing, yet these “anglers” were sneaking around our bivouac area in broad daylight. Their demeanour was so suspicious that the sentry tried to arrest them to examine them. One of them ran away, while the other obeyed the sentry. The captured man was even carrying a pistol.
The spy confessed that the enemy had already caught wind of our presence in the homeland\and had sent out a large number of garrison\and police troops to search the forests thoroughly.
As we had anticipated, the enemy forces were concentrated in this area.
The best way in this situation was to slip awayrom their encirclement.
I made a tactical feint against possible enemy actions. I grouped two small forces\and sent one detachment to strike the enemy at Phothae-ri\and\ordered the other to make footprints towards Changbai across the Amnok River, then disappear. I did this to confuse the enemy by giving them the impression that the KPRA was operating at several different places.
At dawn the next day we left Konchang\and marched towards Pegae Hill. That day the fog was so dense that we could not see an inch ahead. The scouting party had a trouble trying to find its way, so I joined it\and decided the direction we should take by using a military map\and a compass. Our march was very risky. If an enemy search party suddenly appeared\and encountered us, it would mean trouble. We would have no problem in destroying them, but the sound of gunfire would lay obstacles to our future action. We were therefore very nervous while on the march.
On arriving in Pegae Hill, I\ordered the unit to bivouac\and sent out reconnaissance parties. They discovered a splendid, newly-built highway that ran through the primeval forest east of Pegae Hill. I confirmed that this was the Kapsan-Musan guard road, which I had already been informed of. It was a road for emergency use, connecting uninhabited areas between Kapsan\and Musan. This road was supposed to be for moving the “punitive” forces by mobile means to any spot on short notice in case the KPRA pushed into Korea. I was told that because the project had been finished only recently, the road was kept clear for inspection,\and no unauthorized traffic was allowed. The scouts said that “Off\limits” notices had been put up everywhere.
The Japanese imperialists created such “Off\limits”\and “No Admission”
zones in different parts of our country\and strictly prohibited Koreans access to them. Under Japanese rule, in the heart of Pyongyang were streets\where only Japanese lived. When Koreans appeared in these streets the Japanese policemen\or merchants scowled at them. Korean children were not allowed to hang around the gates of Japanese schools. If a Korean boy who was ignorant of such a rule happened to wander through the gate into the playground now\and then, he got his ears boxed\or was treated as a beggar. However, Japanese children were free to enter Korean school grounds\or the Korean sections of town,\where they did anything they pleased. One day a group of delinquent Japanese boysrom Pyongyang raided a melon field near the Changdok School, trampled all over the field\and made off with the melons a poor farmer had carefully cultivated all through the summer. I\and my classmates went after them, taught them a lesson\and drove them back to the city.
Though the enemy had made even the border area an “Off\limits” zone to Koreans, we would not tolerate this. I thought that in\order to challenge the Japanese rule over Korea we should demonstrate the strength of the KPRA by dealing a blow to the enemy who had built the Kapsan-Musan guard road.
The road that had been constructed on the frontier\and was kept under strict guard was an apparent attempt by the enemy to make up for their ignominious defeats in Pochonbo\and Jiansanfeng.
I summoned my officers\and gave them the following briefing:
“We are now on the march within the enemy lines. The enemy is everywhere, in front\and rear\and on both sides of us. Suspecting that we are operating in the homeland, the enemy has mobilized large ‘punitive’ forcesrom border garrisons\and police troops in different parts of North\and South Hamgyong Provinces\and is preparing a large-scale encirclement\and search operation. Because the escaped spy saw us, the enemy may be following us now through Konchang after making a search for us at Chongbong. We must slip away quickly into the Musan area\and put into effect the operation plan we drew up in Beidadingzi, but the situation makes our advance difficult. There is danger that we may be caught in the mesh of complete encirclement. How can we advance with speed into Musan?”
The commanding officers made one suggestion after another. Some comrades said that we should dispatch a small unit to lure the enemy in the direction of Changbai before the main force advanced into the Musan area. Other comrades asserted that we should fight a big battle around Pegae Hill, as we did in Jiansanfeng, now that the way to the Musan area was blocked.
All their opinions sounded good, but none of them convinced me of the possibility of moving fast to Musan.
I heard all their suggestions\and\organized a debate before giving my own idea. My plan was to march in broad daylight along the new highway that was waiting for inspection.
The officers were taken aback at my proposal. This was natural, for my plan meant that a large force would march, not along a back lane, but a special highway the enemy had built solely for the “punitive” operations against us. Their faces showed that they had little confidence in my suggestion. This very fact rather proved that my plan to march boldly in the daytime along the highway was a tactically correct one.
I outlined for them the tactical intention of my plan\and the possibility of realizing it.
“Your own attitude proves that it is possible to march in broad daylight along the Kapsan-Musan guard road. When I suggested this plan you were stunned.
“The enemy, too, will never be able to imagine that a large KPRA unit would march along their specially-built guard road right in the middle of the day. This very fact makes it amply possible to carry out the march. Doing boldly what the enemy regards as impossible is a tactical guarantee of success in this move.”
The commanding officers all left Pegae Hill full of confidence.
So many azaleas were in full bloom everywhere, the faces of our guerrillas looked rosy.
On Lake Samji, too, there were many azaleas. Masses of them along the shore\and their reflection in the water made such a picturesque scene that I felt I would like to build a hut\and live here for ever. It was wonderful to see such rare scenic beauty in an alpine region like the Paektu Plateau.
Highland scenery has a peculiar attraction. The scenery around Lake Samji is as majestic as Mt. Paektu\and at the same time it looks delicate, as if spangled with jewels. The landscape of Lake Samji in which the scenic beauty of the highland blends in harmony with the serene plain, is worth its weight in gold.
That day I felt in the marrow of my bones how lovely was the land that had been takenrom us.
I was so fascinated with the picturesque scenery of Lake Samji that I made up my mind to build this place into a holiday centre for our people after driving the Japanese imperialists out of Korea\and show it off to the world. This ideal has been realized today.
Lake Samji has become a revolutionary battle site that attracts many visitorsrom different countries. It is also renowned as a health resort for its unique highland charm.
Until 1956, when Comrade Kim Jong Il visited the revolutionary battle sites in Ryanggang Province with the first expedition party in our country, only fallen trees\and piles of leaves were seen on the lake,\and most of the area remained untouched. There was only a worn-out skiff\and an old-style pavilion that the local people had built before the Korean war to enhance the beauty of the lake.
When I returnedrom my official visits to the Soviet\union\and the people’s democracies in East Europe, Comrade Kim Jong Il told me about the activities of his expedition. He recounted in excitement what he had learned\and felt during the visit to the revolutionary battle sites. He said he regretted that these historical sites, so alive with the spirit of the revolutionary forerunners, had not been laid out properly, but remained in a natural state without guides to explain their history to visitors.
In 1956 a campaign just started to eliminate flunkeyism\and dogmatism\and establish Juche in ideological work. Until that time Juche had not been firmly established in the ideological work of our Party. As a result, the materials\and relics associated with the revolutionary history of our Party had not been unearthed widely, the revolutionary battle sites were not laid out properly\and a full-scale study of revolutionary traditions had not been made. It was a significant event that in this situation Comrade Kim Jong Il decided to form an expedition to the revolutionary battle sites in the Mt. Paektu
area with his fellow studentsrom Pyongyang Secondary School No. 1.
After we had left Lake Samji, we marched as fast as we could to the Musan area by the Kapsan-Musan guard road. We called such a march tactic “one thousand miles at a run”.
During the anti-Japanese armed struggle, we employed this tactic several times, each time with good results. But never before had there been an instance of a large force of hundreds of soldiers moving over a long distance in broad daylight on a highway like the one they called the guard road. It was we ourselves who opened the guard road for the Japanese, so to speak. We marched in fine array along the straight highway in broad daylight, reached Mupho on the Tuman River on that same day\and pitched camp there.
I was told that when the enemy found out later that we had marched in the daytime along their guard road, they groaned in despair\and called our bold move an “unprecedent oddity”.
The march made a greater impact than the annihilation of several enemy regiments\or divisions.
At Mupho I gave my officers a briefing in which I reviewed our march\and set forth the task of pushing into the Taehongdan area. We decided to carry out military\and political activities first around Sinsadong\and Singaechok.
We left Mupho the next morning\and arrived at the Taehongdan tableland. On arrival we had lunch in the vicinity of a mountain shrine\and moved our forces in two directions, the 7th Regiment going to Singaechok by way of Tujibawi\and the Guard Company\and the 8th Regiment under my command to Sinsadong at the foot of Mt. Soroun.
At that time, we conducted political work at Sinsadong. I placed Headquarters on a small rise by a brook\and went with several guardsmen\and\orderlies to the biggest lumbermen’s residence in the village.
Seeing our sudden appearance in the Musan area, the people exclaimed in great excitement\and joy that it was a colossal lie of the enemy that the entire KPRA had frozen to death last winter. They wondered how it was possible for so many soldiers to appear suddenly in their midstrom nowhere.
Their barracks was no better than a cowshed\or a stable. I noticed a rope stretched low down the centre of the room like a wash-line. I asked one of the workers what the rope was for. He replied that they put their feet on it while sleeping. The room was so narrow that the men who were to lie on both sides of the rope could not stretch their legs, so they had to crisscross their feet on the rope.
The workers were treated worse than cows\or horses. A cow\or a horse at least has human protection.
That evening many people gathered in the barracks. Both the room\and yard were crowded. I made a speech before the people of Sinsadong\and conducted\organizational\and political work among them.
The warm hospitality the villagers gave us that night is still fresh in my mind. There were many slash-and-burn peasants in the village who were unable to do spring sowing for lack of seeds. Nevertheless, the village women prepared a meal of cooked glutinous millet\and potato-starch noodles for us “to treat the Korean army under the command of General Kim Il Sung,” they said.
Our men were so moved by their kindness that they unpacked\and shared out all their provisions among the villagers when they left Sinsadong. Comrade Kim Jong Suk cooked all her wheat flour into dough-flake soup for the host’s family\and applied her face-cream to his daughter’s hands. When we left, the villagers saw us off in tears.
I foresaw that the enemy who had been hit at Singaechok would naturally chase us,\and made a decision to destroy them in the Taehongdan tableland,\where the terrain features were in our favour. After leaving Sinsadong, we lay in ambush on a low hill on the tableland, waiting for O Jung Hup’s 7th Regiment to returnrom Singaechok. As I instructed, the 7th Regiment had struck the enemy in Singaechok\and were now coming back. But they were somewhat elated at their success in destroying the enemy in Singaechok\and in capturing several Japanese foremen, so they were not aware of an alarming fact: an enemy force was trailing close behind them in secret. The force was made up of border garrisons\and Changphyong police troops that had come running at the news of the defeat of their colleagues in Singaechok.
At first my men, lying in ambush, took the soldiers coming at the heels of the 7th Regiment for a friendly force. They could not distinguish between friend\and foe partly because the fog was so thick, but mainly because the enemy was so close behind the 7th Regiment.
I realized instantly that the helmeted soldiers coming in the wake of our regiment was an enemy force. The situation had developed as I expected, but the 7th Regiment was in a very dangerous position, right in front of the muzzles of enemy guns. Because of this situation, the 8th Regiment\and Guard Company were going to have to fire with special care at the open-fire signal, otherwise there was the possibility of their killing their own troops. But we could not wait indefinitely until a wide enough gap was created between friend\and foe. If we delayed, the enemy might attack the 7th Regiment first. In such a case, the supply-service men\and the lumbermen who were carrying packs for us, might suffer great losses.
As soon as the 7th Regiment had passed by the area of our ambush, I signalled the supply-service men\and lumbermen to throw themselves on the ground, then\ordered my men to open fire.
Hundreds of rifles opened up with a deafening roar. The guerrillas were in a fever of excitement at the time. They were charged with emotion\and energy at the thought that the whole country would hear the sound of this particular gunfire. I, too, was every bit as excited as my men. We mowed down the enemy troops. Those who survived, however, resisted desperately. The army\and police troops of the enemy on the border were much more tenacious\and ruthless than those in other areas. Their resistance was really formidable. Apparently the Japanese deployed their elite troops in the border regions.
The supply-service men of the 7th Regiment\and workers between us\and the enemy could not raise their heads under the blanket of fire. The workers were at a loss as to what to do. Among the supply-carriers there were some Japanese.
At that time a somewhat peculiar thing happened on the battlefield. The workers were divided into two sides, with Koreans running towards the KPRA with the supplies on their backs\and the Japanese crawling towards the Japanese troops, tossing away their loads.
No Korean worker went over to the Japanese.
At this sight, I keenly felt that the heart of the nation was beating as it should.
Most of the enemy who encountered us in Taehongdan were killed.
One of us was killed\and two wounded. Kim Se Ok fell in action. He was the fiance of Ma Kuk Hwa, younger sister of Ma Tong Hui. He was shot through his chest while guiding the supply-carriers to a safe place with the sergeant-major of the 7th Regiment. Seeing his wound, I knew it was hopeless. Apparently Kim Song Guk carried him on his back. I remember that Kim Song Guk’s uniform was soaked with blood.
I intended to send back the lumbermen before crossing the Tuman River. But they followed us, saying that they could not return while Kim Se Ok was in a critical condition after saving their lives.
Kim Se Ok was in a coma as we crossed the Tuman River.
When he finally died, all of us cried. The supply-carriers who followed us could not keep back their tears either.
He was buried at the foot of the Changshan Pass. After liberation we moved his grave to Taehongdan.
On the day when we buried Kim Se Ok we evacuated Nam Tong Su, also seriously wounded, to a nearby secret camp. It turned out that in that camp he lived alone for over one hundred days, like Robinson Crusoe. Some people may not believe that a seriously wounded man who could hardly move stayed alive for one hundred days without a regular supply of food in an isolated situation without any contact with the unit, but it was a fact.
The man who was supposed to nurse him was a Chinese called Old Man Zheng, who had recently come to usrom a mountain rebels’ unit. Fooled by the Japanese propaganda that the People’s Revolutionary Army was a “bandit group” he had joined our unit to earn money. He thought that robbery with the “communist bandits” would give him a better chance at making money than with the mountain rebels. When he realized that the People’s Revolutionary Army was an honourable army, not a gang of bandits, he decided our unit was not the place for him, an idler. He made up his mind to kill Nam Tong Su before he returned home, thinking that he would be safer if he killed a communist before going back.
Nam Tong Su guessed his evil design\and crawled out of the hut at night. He hid himself for two days, covering his body with fallen leaves. After Old Man Zheng had left, he kept himself alive eating tree leaves, grass sprouts\and the meat of squirrels\and snakes, waiting to meet our liaison man. But to make matters worse, the liaison man himself was killed in a “punitive” attack.
He had to live again in isolation. While wandering about, looking for our unit, he went to Kapsan\where his mother was working in an underground\organization. Afterwards, he moved to eastern Manchuria to help the Chinese revolution. I cannot remember clearly when he came to the homeland in response to our call.
When he arrived, he burst into tears\and said, “General, I come to you only now. I even lost the blanket you gave me.”
Our comrades-in-arms left traces in many parts of the Musan area. Jong Il Gwon, nicknamed “shorty”, once worked around Pulgunbawi with Pak Song Chol.
The Japanese imperialist invaders were astonished at the news that the KPRA had appeared in the Musan area, annihilated a large number of their troops at Taehongdan\and crossed back over the Tuman River safely. The mere fact that the KPRA had appeared on Korean soil was enough to drive the enemy mad.
After the Nanhutou meeting the main theatre of operations for the KPRA was the West Jiandao area southwest of Mt. Paektu.
Following our advance into the Mt. Paektu area, our guerrilla actions in West Jiandao often hit the headlines of newspapers\and news services in Korea\and Manchuria. The Japanese army\and police, deployed along the Amnok Riverrom Hyesan to Junggangjin via Singalpha, were constantly on the alert\and desperate to block a KPRA “border invasion”.
The police department of South Hamgyong Province collected information about our actionsrom every angle under the title of “The Movement of the Bandits on the Other Side of the River”\and sent it regularly to the police affairs bureau of the Government-General of Korea, the headquarters of the Japanese Korea army, the police departments of North\and South Hamgyong, North Phyongan\and other provinces along the border area\and the headquarters of the Ranam 19th Division.
The intelligence services of the Japanese army\and police often predicted\where we would appear\and what we would do next.
However, the fact that we appeared at the foot of Mt. Paektu, especially in the Musan area, which was strictly guarded by their border garrison,\and annihilated the “punitive” troops at one blow, then disappeared like a whirlwind–this was completely beyond their powers of imagination. They were left aghast.
The enemy made the mistake of thinking that the KPRA was on the verge of collapse because of its losses in the Arduous March\and the failure of the Rehe expedition. They thought that only a trifling remnant of our force was struggling for survival in Changbai, Linjiang\and other areas along the Amnok River,\or in Mengjiang, Fusong\and other northern Dongbiandao areas.
Along with the Battle of Pochonbo, the operation in the Musan area was the largest-scale action of the greatest significance in the military operations we performed in the homeland. The Battle of Pochonbo demonstrated that Korea was not dead, but very much alive,\whereas the Battle of Taehongdan was an event of historical significance in that it showed in a concrete way that the KPRA was not only still alive, but also had grown stronger\and was dealing a crushing blow to the Japanese imperialists even as the enemy was going around claiming that it had been destroyed.
The gunshots of the KPRA in the Musan area gave hope to the dispirited people in Korea with proof that our revolution was back on its feet\and invigorated the revolution in the homeland, which had suffered a temporary setback because of the “Hyesan incident”. Our military triumph in the Musan area exposed to the world the lie of the enemy propaganda that the KPRA was totally destroyed. After this battle our people no longer believed the enemy about anything they said. Following the battle in the Musan area the workers, peasants\and other broad massesrom all walks of life in the homeland joined in the current of the anti-Japanese revolution, each more convinced than the other that as long as the KPRA remained alive, the day of national liberation was close at hand.
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