페이지 정보작성자 편집국 작성일20-06-09 19:45 댓글0건
[Reminiscences]Chapter 5 4. Preparations for a Bloody Battle
4. Preparations for a Bloody Battle
After we had adopted the decision to wage an\organized armed struggle at the Mingyuegou Meeting, I was requested to play the pivotal role in the work.
“A start should be made by you, Kim Il Sung. In any work there must be a model\and an example.”
With these words my comrades partedrom me. I remained in Mingyuegou until those who had attended the meeting had all left,\and then I went to Antu after partingrom Dong Chang-rong. Antu was in all respects suitable for guerrilla warfare.
We decided to establish the basic forces of the\organization in Antu\and Wangqing, in view of the fact that in forming the armed groups priority should be given to work with the national salvation army, the Chinese anti-Japanese armed forces, formed in different parts of Manchuria after the September 18 incident, as was decided in December at the Mingyuegou Meeting. The national salvation army was massed in Antu\and Wangqing.
Returning to Xinglongcun, I stayed in Ma Chun Uk’s house for a while with my family\and then moved to Kalbat village in Tuqidian valley in Xiaoshahe. There I concentrated on the preparations for founding the Anti-Japanese People’s Guerrilla Army. The circumstances in Xiaoshahe were better than in Xinglongcun because the people of Xiaoshahe were enlisted in\organizations. Secret agents had no free access to the village\where the underground\organization had struck deep roots.
Because there were no running dogs sneaking about in Xiaoshahe, the army\and police rarely ever came there for “punitive operations.”
Our efforts to found the Anti-Japanese People’s Guerrilla Army faced difficultiesrom the beginning. The questions of cadres, weapons, military drill, provisions, the mass foundation\and relations with the national salvation army, as well as many other questions of a military\and political character, were raised\and awaiting solution.
In forming the armed units we considered cadres\and weapons as the most essential two elements. But we were short of them both.
By cadres we mean those who were prepared militarily\and politically. We needed young people who understood politics\and military affairs\and were ready to fight in arms for the country\and people for a long time.
We had lost almost all the core elements of the Korean Revolutionary Army in a year\and a half. The main force of the revolutionary army, including Kim Hyok, Kim Hyong Gwon, Choe Hyo Il, Kong Yong, Ri Je U\and Pak Cha Sok fell in action\or were thrown into prison within a year. On top of that, in January 1931 Ri Jong Rak who was a company commander was arrested together with Kim Kwang Ryol, Jang So Bong\and Pak Pyong Hwa by the police of the Japanese consulate when he went out to obtain weapons, carrying pamphlets concerning the Korean Revolutionary Army. Kim Ri Gap, who was versed in military affairs, was imprisoned\and Paek Sin Han fell in action. There was no knowing what had become of Choe Chang Gol\and Kim Won U.
There were so few among the rest of the revolutionary army who had military experience that they could be counted on the fingers of both hands. But because they were conducting mass political work, they could not be included in the armed units. When I was busy forming the guerrilla units in Antu, Cha Kwang Su was the only personrom the Korean Revolutionary Army who stood by me.
Those holding state power could easily find the military personnel they needed through a mobilization\order\or a system of obligatory military service, but we could not recruit men by such methods. The masses cannot be enlisted in the revolution by law\or by force. The Provisional Government in Shanghai included in its constitution an article stating that all the citizens were under an obligation to pay taxes\and undergo military service, but the people did not even know that such law had been adopted. It is self-evident that the decrees\and directives of a government in exile which exercised state power in one corner of a concession in a foreign country, without national sovereignty, were ineffective.
In the national liberation revolution in colonies it is impossible to make people take up arms by means such as a mobilization\order\or a system of obligatory military service. In the revolution the appeal of the leader of the revolution\or farsighted people replaces the law,\and the political\and moral awareness\and militant enthusiasm of each man decides his voluntary entry into the army. The masses take up arms for their liberation of their own accord without the request\or direction of anyone else. It is an act natural to the people who regard independence as their lifeblood\and are ready to devote their lives to it.
Based on this principle, we began to search for people to be enlisted in the guerrilla unit in Antu\and the surrounding area. In the paramilitary\organizations such as the Red Guards, the Children’s Vanguard, the worker pickets\and the local shock brigades there were many sturdy young people who wanted to join the army. Paramilitary\organizations grew fast\and young people were awakened ideologically beyond recognition in the stormy harvest\and spring struggles.
But it was impossible to enlist into the guerrilla unit anyone who requested to be enlisted in it without our considering his preparedness. The young\and middle-aged men of east Manchuria were not yet prepared militarily. To ensure a guerrilla reserve it was necessary to intensify the political\and military training of the young people in the paramilitary\organizations such as the Red Guards\and the Children’s Vanguard.
But I had no suitable drill instructors. I alone could not conduct military drill for all the young people in the Antu area. Though I had attended Hwasong Uisuk School for some time, I was not qualified to command a new type of army, a guerrilla army. Cha Kwang Su, who was freshrom school, knew less about military affairs than I did . As Ri Jong Rak was in prison, I had no one to whom I could look for help. If I had had the like of Ri Jong Rak, I could have devoted all my time to political work, entrusting military affairs entirely to him, but being unable to do so, I was anxious.
Whenever I had difficulties I felt the shortage of comrades. While we were experiencing these difficulties, we were
visited by Pak Hun, a promising graduate of the Huangpu Military Academy. Jiang Jie-shi was the commandant of the military academy\and Zhou En-lai was in charge of political affairs there. The academy was attended by many young Koreans. The Chinese people called the Guangzhou revolt the “three days’ soviet,”\and a leading part in it was played by the cadets of that military academy.
Pak Hun\and An Pung took part in the Guangzhou revolt\and, after its failure, fled to Manchuriarom China proper. Pak Hun was of sturdy constitution\and free\and open in his speech\and behaviour; he was every inch a soldier. He spoke Chinese more often than Korean\and wore Chinese dress more than Korean. He became my military adviser.
After the collaboration of the Kuomintang\and the Communist Party had broken down because of Jiang Jie-shi’s betrayal of the revolution in the April 12 incident,\and the first revolutionary war had ended in failure, Yang Rim, Choe Yong Gon, O Song Ryun (Jon Kwang), Jang Ji Rak, Pak Hun\and many of those who took part in the Chinese revolution after graduatingrom the Huangpu Military Academy, the Guangzhou Military Academy\and the Yunnan Military Training School came to Manchuriarom the southern area of China to avoid the reprisals of the Jiang Jie-shi clique.
Frankly speaking, I expected muchrom Pak Hun when I heard the name of the Huangpu Military Academy.
Pak Hun had the special skill of shooting with pistols in both hands in battle. His marksmanship was remarkable. He shot like a devil.
Another of his special skills was in giving commands. He had a splendid voice capable of easily commanding an army ten\or twenty thousand strong without using a megaphone. When he shouted commands on the tableland of Tuqidian the whole village heard him.
Intrigued by his commanding voice, all the young people of Antu looked on him with fascination.
“His voice is so stentorian that even the Japanese Emperor in Tokyo can hear it.\where did such a man comerom?” said Cha Kwang Su in admiration, when he saw Pak Hun conducting military training for the Red Guards. Cha Kwang Su took a great liking to him. The two men were close friends though there was a lot of theoretical argument between them.
Because Pak Hun imparted such good training in Antu, the unit we formed was later famed as a “student unit” in Wangqing. The members of our guerrilla unit were respected by the people for their good\order\and discipline, good manners\and good appearance throughout the whole of the anti-Japanese war. Yang Jing-yu, too, always admired our revolutionary army for its discipline\and cultured manners.
At such times I always thought of Pak Hun\and his words of command resounding across the tableland in Tuqidian.
His next conspicuous quality as a drill instructor was his rigid demands on his trainees. The trainees acquired military knowledge quickly due to his rigid demands.
But at times he punished the members of the unit.
When trainees failed to perform the drill as he required,\or violated discipline, he hurled abuse at them as he glowered at them, kicked them\or made them stand aside as a punishment. I said to him that punishment was unacceptable in a revolutionary army, but to no avail.
One day as I returned home with Pak Hun, whose voice had become husky after conducting drill, I asked him, “You have something of the warlords about you.\where did you get it?”
At this he looked at me with a smile\and said, “Our drill instructor was a German\and a martinet. It might be the legacy I acquiredrom him. Anyway, the rod makes a good soldier of a man.”
He retained many traces of his German military education. In his lectures he spent a great deal of time talking about the Prussian army. He talked much about the bravery of the British soldier, the promptness of the French soldier, the exactitude of the German soldier\and the stubbornness of the Russian soldier. Whenever he talked about them, he called on the trainees to become versatile soldiers with all these qualities.
Most of the military training he conducted was not suited to the special type of guerrilla warfare we planned. He explained to the trainees about the Napoleonic column formation\and the British line formation\and made a tremendous effort to make such formations with 20\or so trainees.
At the training I once said to him quietly during a break, “Comrade Pak, what about replacing the drill in the British line formation you just conducted with a short explanation? If we were to fight a battle such as Waterloo, it would be another matter. But we are intending to wage a guerrilla war in the mountains against an enemy armed with cannons\and machine guns. So what is the use of learning outmoded tactics?”
“But in\order to wage a war one must have at least some military knowledge, I believe,” he said.
“Of course, it is important to acquire a general knowledge of the military experience of other countries, but it is necessary to\select\and teach what is of immediate use. You would do better not to teach them all you learned at the military academy.”
By saying this to Pak Hun I meant that he should guard against dogmatism.
When I gave Pak Hun charge of ten\or so red guardsmen\and told him to make them practise their shooting, he had targets set up on the level ground\and told them repeatedly to shoot at the lower part of the centre of the enemy when he appeared.
I said to Pak Hun, “It will not do to conduct drill that way. We must put aside what does not suit the actual situation\and first teach what will be useful in a guerrilla war. Specifically, we must give priority to training in mountain warfare. Let us change what does not suit our condition\and, by pooling our wisdom, work out fresh tactics that are not found in the manuals.”
He listened to me attentively\and acceded to my suggestion.rom then on we conducted drill with the emphasis on what
would be useful in a guerrilla war. We began with imparting a practical military knowledge as to footdrill, the use of arms, camouflage, signalling, bayonet drill, reconnaissance, mountain walking, the handling of a club, capturing arms\and the discrimination between friends\and foe at night.
Pak Hun at first taught things in a happy-go-lucky fashion, but finally he drew up a teaching schedule\and conducted drill according to a plan.
Looking back on those days later, Pak Hun said, “At the Huangpu Military Academy I acquired the military knowledge accumulated by the five great military powers of the world. It was comprehensive knowledge crystallizing the tactics used in all ages\and by all countries. I took pride in having gained such a knowledge at the famous Huangpu Military Academy, an edifice of military education in modern China. If I disseminate that knowledge in east Manchuria, people will greet me with wild applause, I thought. But I was proved wrong. I was given the cold shoulder instead of wild applause. The young people regarded my lectures as imparting common sense, but not as having any vital\and essential significance. I realized that the military knowledge I had acquired over several years was useless for guerrilla warfare, although it was universal,\and was disgusted with myself for regarding it as a code of universal significance. I realized the need to create a new military theory for a guerrilla war. So I rid myself of dogmatism\and acquired a new way of thinking suited to the Korean revolution.”
Another conspicuous drill instructor in the Antu area was Kim Il Ryong. He had no knowledge of modern warfare to speak of, as Pak Hun did, but persistently trained the men by relying on the practical experience of war he had acquired in the Independence Army.
With the training in the Red Guards, the Children’s Vanguard, the Children’s Expeditionary Corps\and other paramilitary\organizations being intensified\and their ranks built up, dozens of reliable young people who were prepared politically\and militarily were rallied around us. We\selected those who were working in the various counties along the River Tuman\and the young people tempered\and seasoned in the harvest\and spring struggles\and called them together in Antu. Many young people came to usrom different parts of Manchuria, including Antu\and Dunhua.
We\selected 18 of them as core elements, including Cha Kwang Su, Kim Il Ryong, Pak Hun, Kim Chol (Kim Chol Hui)\and Ri Yong Bae\and formed them into a guerrilla group. At the same time we saw to it that similar armed groups were formed in the Yanji, Wangqing, Helong\and Hunchun areas. As a result, armed groups comprising between 10\and 20 men came into being in succession in each county. This was the line adopted at the Mingyuegou Meeting, that of forming small armed groups, obtaining weapons\and accumulating experience through stealthy activities, increasing the ranks\and forming large armed groups in each county when the situation was right.
The formation of these guerrilla groups was attended with a bloody struggle to acquire weapons. The struggle was beset with great difficulties.
The Japanese aggressor army steadily increased the fighting ability of their ground, sea\and air forces by supplying them with modern arms\and other equipment mass-produced in their own country,\whereas we had no home front to provide weapons nor money to buy rifles. What we needed was not cannons\and tanks but, for the time being, rifles, pistols, grenades\and other light arms. If our country had had factories producing weapons, we could have acquired them with the help of the workers. But our country did not have such factories. Unfortunately, in arming ourselves we did not benefitrom the industry of our country.
That was why the grim slogan “Let’s take the enemy’s weapons\and arm ourselves!” was adopted.
On returning to Antu I dug uprom the ground the two pistols which my father had entrusted to my mother. I said to my comrades, as I held up the two pistols:
“Look, these are the pistols my father left for me. My father did not serve in the Righteous Volunteers\or in the Independence Army, but he had these pistols with him until the day of his death. Why? Because he considered the armed struggle to be the highest form of struggle to achieve national independence. My father’s desire was to launch an armed struggle. When he left me these two pistols, I made a firm resolve to do what he desired in his place. The time has come. Let us start our march for independence with these two pistols to help us. Now we have two pistols, but think that one day they will have multiplied to two hundred, two thousand\and then to twenty thousand. With 2,000 rifles, we will be fully able to liberate the country. Let us multiply these two pistols into two thousand\and then twenty thousand rifles.”
I felt a lump in my throat at the thought that my father had died an early death without realizing his aspiration,\and I could speak no more.
When the acquisition of arms was placed on the list of priorities, Pak Hun told me that he had heard that a son of a rich family in Fusong had given dozens of rifles to me\and asked me what I had done with them. Who he meant by the son of a rich family in Fusong was Zhang Wei-hua. When we were active in Wujiazi, he had visited us, bringing with him 40 rifles of the private soldiers at his house. We handed them out to the men of the Korean Revolutionary Army.
Pak Hun, on hearing of this, said that it was a great pity,\and that the only solution was to get money. He proposed to raise money by appealing to the peasants in the villages we had made revolutionary.
We did not agree. If we had raised funds by appealing to the rich people, it was another matter. But depriving the poor workers\and peasants of their money was not a good way to buy weapons. The easy way to obtain weapons was to raise money, but they should also be takenrom the enemy, at the risk of one’s life.
We chose the difficult way. I thought that we might buy weapons but I did not encourage this. To ask the people for money was the way of the Independence Army, not our way.
Even if we had raised money, it would not have helped us much. Once Comrade Choe Hyon had bought a machine gun for 1,500 yuanrom some mountain rebels.
One machine gun cost thirty oxen at market prices in those days when an ox was priced at about 50 yuan. We could not ignore such a figure.
After much discussion we went to Naidaoshan\and dug up some rifles buried there by men of the Independence Army.
In other counties, too, weapons which had been used by the Independence Army were collected in a similar fashion.
The Independence Army under the command of Hong Pom Do had buried many rifles\and a lot of ammunition in the Dakanzi area after the Battle of Qingshanli\and retreated across the border separating the Soviet\union\and Manchuria.
Informed of this through its secret agents, the Japanese garrison carried away a lot of rifles\and ammunition, loading them on to dozens of lorries. Our comrades in Wangqing sent people to Dakanzi after the Mingyuegou Meeting to recover about 50,000 cartridgesrom the place\where the Japanese garrison had been digging.
Having acquired some rifles, we went over to taking weapons awayrom the enemy with their use.
The house of landlord Shuang Bing-jun was chosen as the target of our first attack. He had a guard of about 40 men. Its captain was Ri To Son who later became the notorious captain of the Sinsondae Band which was routed by Comrade Choe Hyon’s unit.
The guardroom was both inside\and outside the earthen wall which surrounded the landlord’s house.
We formed an assault team with the members of the guerrilla group\and Red Guards\and took over ten rifles in a raid on the landlord’s house in Xiaoshahe after preliminary scouting.
The struggle to obtain arms was waged vigorously in a mass movement all along the River Tuman. The revolutionary masses, irrespective of age\and sex, with members of the guerrilla group, the Red Guards, the Children’s Vanguard\and the local shock brigades in the van, waged a brave battle against the Japanese aggressor army, the Japanese\and Manchukuo police, the pro-Japanese landlords\and the reactionary bureaucrats to take their weaponsrom them under the slogan “Arms are our lifeblood. Arms for arms!”
At the time the phrase “Yochang puyomin” was in vogue. It means: Off with your gun not your head! When one shouted “Yochang puyomin,” pointing a gun at a customshouse, guardhouse, police station\or landlord’s house, the timid officials, reactionary landlords\and police offered their weapons, trembling.
The phrase “Yochang puyomin” was used widely\and spread across the areas by the revolutionary\organizations in east Manchuria.
O Jung Hwa’s father O Thae Hui\and his uncle, too, took weaponsrom policemen\and guardsmen, threatening them with a bogus gun made of a table’s leg\and shouting “Yochang puyomin!” at them; these weapons they sent to the Red Guards. News of this spread to Antu. On hearing the story, we admired the old men’s wit\and boldness.
When I met old man O Thae Hui later in Wangqing, I asked him, “How did you come up with such a good idea?” The old man said with a smile, “At night a table’s leg looks like a gun. We have no rifle\or grenade. So I used a bogus gun made of a table’s leg. At my wit’s end, I hit on the idea. There is the saying ‘A thirsty man digs a well,’ isn’t there?”
He was right. Then we threw ourselves boldly into the fight to take weapons like thirsty men digging a well. It was an arduous struggle requiring the highest degree of creativity\and wisdom.
The revolutionaries\and revolutionary people of east Manchuria took weapons by cleverly disguising themselves as military police, men of the national salvation army, officials of the Japanese consulate, rich men\or merchants, as the situation required. In some places women attacked soldiers\and policemen with their laundry paddles\or clubs\and seized their weapons.
The struggle to obtain arms was a prelude to an all-people war of resistance. All the revolutionary\organizations\and the entire people roused themselves to the struggle\and enlisted in it. As the revolution required arms, the masses came out in the struggle to obtain them without hesitation. In the course of this they were awakened ideologically,\and they came to realize how great their strength was.
Our slogan that one should obtain weapons for oneself proved its great vitality everywhere.
Needless to say, in the course of struggle we lost many revolutionary comrades. Each rifle we obtained was imbued with the warm blood\and the ardent patriotism of our revolutionary comrades.
At the same time we launched the struggle to make weapons for ourselves under the slogan of self-reliance.
At first we made spears\and swords at smithies. Then we made pistols\and bombs.
The most elaborate\and useful pistol we made was the “pijikkae pistol” which was manufactured by the members of the AIYL in Nangou, Wangqing County. People in North Hamgyong Province called a match a “pijikkae,” like the Russians. They made powderrom matches\and put it in the cartridge chamber. Hence the name of the pistol they made.
They also made the barrels of rifles with sheet steel.
Famous among the arsenals of east Manchuria were the Suribawigul Arsenal in Xincheng Hill in Jingu, Helong County, the Nangou Arsenal in Wangqing County\and the Jugagol Arsenal in Nanyang village in Yilangou, Yanji County.
The Suribawigul Arsenal made bombs with powder obtained by the revolutionary\organization in a mine in Badaogou, Yanji County.
At first they made noise bombs. They exploded with a thundering sound, but their killing capacity was slight. Next they made chilli bombs, an improved version. They were better than the noise bombs but they merely emitted a disgusting smell\and were not very effective.
Later comrades in Helong made some effective bombs with iron shrapnel instead of chilli powder. These were the famous Yanji bombs. After the appearance of the Yanji bombs we summoned Pak Yong Sunrom Helong\and held a two-day bomb-making course in Dafangzi in Xiaowangqing to disseminate bomb-making techniques to different parts of east Manchuria. The short course was attended by peoplerom the arsenals\and the commanders of guerrilla units in different counties.
On the first day of the short course I gave a lecture on the manufacture of gunpowder. The arsenals of the guerrilla units were using powder which was obtained secretlyrom mines to make bombs.
This method of acquisition was always dangerous because the enemy exercised rigid control over powder. We succeeded in manufacturing powder with the powder materials that were readily available in private houses. The short course taught the skill of powder-making to those attending it so that it could be widely introduced in different areas.
Pak Yong Sun lectured on the manufacture, use, keeping\and handling of bombs. The story of how they made bombs for themselves in Helong aroused the admiration of the people attending the short course. Pak Yong Sun\and Son Won Gum who managed the Suribawigul Arsenal were particularly talented. Later the arsenal became a reliable weapons-producing\and repair base for the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army\and made a great contribution to the anti-Japanese war.
If a writer were to collect episodes about the unexcelled spirit of self-sacrifice, boldness, wit\and creativity our people displayed in their struggle for arms\and give a vivid portrayal of them, it would make an epic story. A simple people who had been worked hard as cheap labour for tens of thousand years, plunged in the darkness of ignorance\and illiteracy\and were suffering the sorrow of a stateless nation shedding tears of blood, deeming it to be their fate, finally embarked on the path of the noble liberation struggle to forge their own destiny.
Whenever I saw the weapons the local\organizations acquired\or manufactured I noted with pride that our determination to clear the way for the Korean revolution by believing in the strength of our people\and depending on it was quite right.
We paid special attention to laying a mass foundation for the anti-Japanese armed struggle while pushing ahead with the preparations for building active revolutionary armed forces. It was an essential demand of our developing revolution to awaken\and ceaselessly temper the masses in the practical struggle\and prepare them thoroughly for the anti-Japanese war. Their voluntary enlistment across the country in the anti-Japanese war was a guarantee for ultimate victory in the war.
The unprecedentedly bad harvest\and ensuing famine in 1930 created the conditions for us to launch a new mass struggle following the harvest struggle in east Manchuria. We saw to it that a new spring struggle was launched against the Japanese imperialists\and the pro-Japanese landlords as a continuation of the heightened fighting spirit shown in the harvest struggle. The spring struggle which began with the struggle to borrow cerealrom the landlords rapidly developed into a struggle to confiscate the cereal of the Japanese imperialists\and pro-Japanese landlords\and a violent struggle to eliminate the lackeys of the Japanese imperialists.
The work to make the people of east Manchuria revolutionary in the flames of the spring struggle developed to a new high. The Korean communists persistently enlightened\and educated the masses by going among them in spite of the intensified offensive of the counterrevolution against our revolution. The mass\organizations kept the door to the masses wide open\and steadily tempered them in a practical struggle.
But the work was not smooth sailing everywhere. In one case several revolutionaries laid down their lives to make a village revolutionary. At times revolutionaries had to tolerate intolerable insults\and the mistrust of the people, without revealing their identity.
Such was my experience in Fuerhe village.
Fuerhe is an important village occupying a key position on the roadrom Antu to Dunhua. Free travel between Dunhua\and south Manchuria was impossible without passing this village. Without making the village revolutionary it would have been impossible to ensure the safety of Xiaoshahe, Dashahe, Liushuhe\and other nearby villages.
The\organization sent several able political workers there, but all of them, one after another, met with failure. Those who went there to ensure that the\organization took root there were all arrested\and lost their lives, but no one could come up with a solution. Kim Jong Ryong was angry, qualifying Fuerhe as a reactionary village,\and said that spies\or some white\organization seemed to be there, but it was impossible to discover them. Whenever the village was mentioned, I could not dismiss my doubts.
In Fuerhe there was an\organization member called Song, but he alone could not discover the reactionary elements\or make the village revolutionary. Someone had to go to the village at the risk of his life\and reshape the village into a revolutionary onerom a reactionary one by removing certain people\and forming\organizations.
So I volunteered to go to Fuerhe.
I summoned Comrade Song to Xiaoshahe\and made prior arrangements with him. I said to him, “When you return to the village, spread a rumour that you have sent for a young farmhand as you are short of hands. Then I can act as a farmhand at your house.”
Comrade Song said, staring at me with his eyes goggling, “The village is very reactionary. How can you go on such a venture? It would be nonsense for you to act the farmhand,”\and he shook his head. The\organization, too, disapproved of my going to Fuerhe.
Comrade Song\and I rode in an ox-drawn sleigh to Fuerhe village, in spite of the disapproval of my comrades.
I slipped into the “reactionary den,” assuming the appearance of an uncouth simpleton with long hair\and a dirty face.
Several hours later, when Comrade Song\and I were at supper, some mounted policemen unexpectedly galloped into the village, raising clouds of dust behind them. The authorities in Antu had already dispatched police to the village. I did not know how they were informed of my arrival.
When the children playing outside shouted that some mounted policemen were coming, I went out to the yard\and began to split firewood with an axe. The situation was similar to that I had experienced at the house of the unknown woman in Jiaohe.
The mounted policemen pointed at me\and asked who I was.
Comrade Song said that I was his farmhand.
One of the mounted policemen said, tilting his head to one side dubiously, “A head of the communist party has come to this village to give guidance, I have heard.” They had come rushing, expecting to find a gentleman arrayed in good Western clothes,\and they seemed disappointed at having had a wasted journey, seeing me in a shabby overcoat with my face smeared with soot.
I wondered whether an alien element communicating secretly with the enemy was in our ranks, for only a few responsible people knew that I had slipped into the village.
When the mounted policemen had left, I found Song looking terribly pale, perspiration standing in beads on his forehead.
Getting up early in the morning the next day, I fetched water, chopped firewood, swept the courtyard\and boiled cattle feed. Every day Song\and I went up a mountain on his ox -drawn sleigh. On the mountain I examined documents, collected firewood\and discussed matters, while giving Song assignments.
The rumour went round the village that I was good at my work. The people in Fuerhe took me for a meek farmhand. When the well iced over, the village women waved to me to come\and break the ice. I did what they asked with good grace. I did so because if the village people gave me more work to do, I would look more like a farmhand. If I did what they asked of me creditably, it would have been harder for secret agents to recognize the revolutionary in me.
One day a wedding was held in the house opposite Song’s. That day the village people came\and asked me to pound some steamed rice to make rice cakes. As I was a “farmhand,” they seemed to think that I would be good at it.
My grandfather who was a farmer all his life used to say that only when one is able to plough, chop fodder\and pound rice can one be called a real farmer. But I had never before pounded steamed rice into rice cakes. Our situation at home did not allow us to live in luxury eating rice cakes. I feared that if I complied with their request I might give myself away. But it did not seem becoming of a farmhand to refuse their request. So at first I hesitated\and said that I could not help them because I was doing domestic chores.
People came repeatedly\and pressed me with requests, so finally I had to agree.
When I appeared in the courtyard of the house\where the wedding was to be held, the master\and mistress of the house were delighted. Taking a malletrom the hand of their slender, middle-aged neighbour, the mistress gave it to me, saying, “Look here, the quality of today’s rice cakes depends on your skill. Prove your worth.” The way the mistress bustled about bringing me steamed rice in a wooden dish was strange\and ludicrous. The village people stood around to see the “farmhand’s” skill. It was a spectacle for people in
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