페이지 정보작성자 편집국 작성일20-09-16 19:17 댓글0건
[Reminiscences]Chapter 21 4. O Jung Hup\and His 7th Regiment
4. O Jung Hup\and His 7th Regiment
One year while reading the novel Heavy Battle Area, the great leader Comrade Kim Il Sung felt such grief at the scene\where O Jung Hup falls in battle that he stopped reading\and stayed up all night remembering the man who had died so many years before.
Whenever he talked about the Battle of Liukesong in Dunhua County, a brilliant battle that closed the first stage of the large-unit circling operations, the fatherly leader recollected the last moments of O Jung Hup;\and whenever he looked back upon his heroic life, he recounted with strong feelings of affection the fighting spirit of the 7th Regiment, which defended the Headquarters of the Korean revolution with heroic deeds\and great sacrifice of life during the anti-Japanese revolution.
We lost O Jung Hup in the Battle of Liukesong. In that battle we also lost company commander Choe Il Hyon\and machine-gun platoon leader Kang Hung Sok. I treasured\and loved these three officers dearly,\and I lost them all at the same time. I was bereaved of many of my comrades-in-arms during the war against Japan, but the loss of O Jung Hup was the most heartbreaking tragedy of all.
To sketch O Jung Hup in brief: he was a man who cast a large shadow, though he was not an extrovert. When I say he cast a large shadow, I mean that he was a man of great exploits who made his mark\wherever he appeared.
No officers in our unit were probably as quiet as Choe Chun Guk\and O Jung Hup. A quiet manner may be construed as unobtrusive\or discreet\or unassuming. O Jung Hup was unusually quiet\and modest for a military officer,\and though not boisterous socially, performed great deeds as a fighter. He was so unpretentious\and simple that he did not think to push himself forward.
The others compared Choe Chun Guk to a bride, but O was even more modest than Choe. O was the sort of man it was hard to find fault with.
Quiet\and reserved as he was in his everyday life, O was a man of strong determination in the revolution, a tiger-like man charging forward through thick\and thin once he made a decision. He always finished what he started, brushing aside all difficulties. He would not sleep\or rest until he had carried out his assignment.
He had a strong sense of fair play\and never compromised with injustice. I think because of this quality he became class-conscious earlier than most others.
One year his family had a crop failure because of drought. His father explained the problem to the landlord\and pleaded with him for leniency. The miserly, cruel landlord, however, showed no sympathy\and accused O’s father of being a thief. He even raised his walking stick to hit the old man. O Jung Hup, who was watching this scene nearby, could not bear it\and whipped the landlord with his flail. He was 14\or 15 years old at the time. One can seerom this how strong was his sense of justice even in his adolescence.
A man with a strong sense of justice awakens to class-consciousness\and participates in the revolution early. He then grows into a stalwart fighter who risks his life in the van of the revolution.
According to his uncle, O Thae Hui, O Jung Hup was fond of playing at being a soldier of the Independence Army in his childhood. Kim Jwa Jin used to come to their village, riding his horse with its bluish mane. This drew the boy towards the Independence Army. He came to communism later under the influence of his cousin, O Jung Hwa. He acquired revolutionary awareness early in life because he felt strong hatred\and resistance against the enemy who had robbed him of his country.
Recalling him now, I can’t think of another officer as audacious\and courageous as O Jung Hup.
It has been saidrom olden days that renowned generals, when training their soldiers in the art of war, always attached the most importance to audacity, courage, intelligence\and virtue\and strove to cultivate these characteristics in their men. Why does a tigress roll her cub over a cliff? Quite simply, to teach it courage.
Although he had never attended military school nor been the disciple of a master in the martial arts, he cultivated his own revolutionary audacity\and courage in the flames of the anti-Japanese struggle.
During the raid on a gold mine near Sandaogou, Helong County, fought on the eve of the Harvest Moon Day in 1939, he left a trail of anecdotes behind him.
When he was commanding the raid, an enemy bullet hit him in the forehead. But he was not killed because the bullet apparently did not penetrate the bone. By a miracle he survived\and continued commanding the battle, even though a bullet had hit him in the forehead. It was quite incredible that the thin skull of a man could resist a bullet, but it was true. I saw the wound after it had been dressed by his\orderly.
When his comrades told him that he had been quite fortunate\and God had blessed him, he scoffed, saying that the stray bullets of the Japanese might pierce a coward’s skull, but never a communist’s.
While he was continuing to command the battle, a hand grenade the enemy had thrown flew over the wall of the fortress\and fell just beside the feet of the guerrillas. It was a hair-raising moment. O Jung Hup calmly picked it up\and tossed it back over the wall. As their own grenade flew back at them, the enemy soldiers scattered in terror in all directions. O lost no time\and\ordered his men to charge after them.
Isn’t this another miracle? A hand grenade is a lethal weapon effective for use over short distances with two\or three seconds’ timerom the moment of throwing to the moment of explosion. Picking up a hand grenade on the brink of explosion was an appalling risk, but O Jung Hup took the risk without turning a hair.
Justrom these two anecdotes you can see what type of a man O Jung Hup was.
He was incredibly adroit in battle. His greatest merits as a commanding officer were, first, the speed with which he judged a situation\and made a decision,\and second, the precision with which he\organized a battle. Once his decision was made, he had a special talent for carrying it out resolutely\and without a moment’s hesitation: like a skilled wrestler who outmanoeuvres his powerful opponent by employing excellent moves, he never failed to defeat an enemy, however strong, by using appropriate tactics. He was, in fact, a fighter no less efficient than Choe Hyon\or Choe Chun Guk, but since he always worked together with Headquarters, he was not as well known as they were.
I have been engaged in the revolution for several decades, but I have seen few people who had as strong a sense of\organization\and discipline as O Jung Hup. These characteristics manifested themselves, first, in his regarding the\orders of his superiors as absolute\and in accepting them without reserve. When he was given an assignment he accepted it without question, saying simply, “Yes, I will do it.” He never made excuses to get out of any undertaking.
He would carry out my\orders thoroughly\and within the set time. If I gave him a command to carry out a mission in a certain place\and arrive at a certain rendezvous by a certain date, he would get there at the set time after carrying out the mission without fail. If something unexpected came up in the course of carrying out the mission, he would leave a small unit to finish the job\and he himself would return by the appointed time with his main force. He would use the opportunity to educate\and encourage his men, saying that the Comrade Commander would worry if they failed to return by the fixed time.
He was an exemplary officer also in always following my instructions in managing his regiment\and educating\and training his men. In the cramped\and awkward circumstances of guerrilla life, he managed his regiment in as assiduous\and meticulous a fashion as if he were in a regular army. In his 7th Regiment no soldier was allowed to wear worn-out shoes\or torn trousers. If he saw his men wearing torn uniforms on the march, he would make sure they all patched them up during the next break. Since he managed his unit efficiently, none of his men had accidents\or ran into any kind of trouble.
He even accepted whatever I might say to myself in passing as an\order\or demand of the Commander.
One day in 1939, with the Harvest Moon Day just around the corner, I took a stroll with O Paek Ryong in the secret camp at Wukoujiang. As we walked, I happened to mumble to myself that the Harvest Moon Day was approaching.
Somehow, O Jung Hup heard what I said. He did not overlook it, for he was more responsive than anybody to my intentions\and wishes. He construed it thus in his own way: Why did the Comrade Commander say that the Harvest Moon Day was approaching? Did he mention it because he was worried over preparations for the festival, knowing that the young recruits would be homesick on the day of the festival? A few days later he\organized a battle just to prepare for the festival, returning with a large quantity of provisions\and foods, including moon-shaped rice-cakes. At the request of O Jung Hup on the festival day I explained the\origin of moon-shaped cakes to the soldiers of the 7th Regiment\and to my Headquarters staff.
O Jung Hup was so faithful to me that he even recognized my gunshots. On the Arduous March we switched overrom a large-unit movement to dispersed small-unit actions, which continued for some time. Parting with O Jung Hup at that time, I told him to meet me at Samsugol next spring. In those days Koreans called the valley of Shisandaogou, Samsugol.
Early in March 1939 I\organized a raid on a village in Samsugol. As he heard the gunshots, O said, “That’s Comrade Commander’s gunfire. Headquarters, with its strength of only one company, might possibly have been exposed\and surrounded by the enemy. Comrades, we must rush to its defence.”
He then came running to us with his regiment at his heels.
O Jung Hup was a true man.
I will tell you what happened when he first joined the guerrillas after conducting underground activities in Wenjiadian, Wangqing County.
In those days the guerrillas in Wangqing were hopelessly short of weapons. There were many guerrillas\and many more were volunteering to join, so the problem was that guns were in extremely short supply. The guerrillas who had no rifles had to arm themselves with swords\or spears, as you can see in the film, Five Guerrilla Brothers.
O Jung Hup, too, wore a sword made in a smithy when he started out. The Wangqing guerrilla unit kept the recruits without rifles at the rear of the column. When standing guard, O Jung Hup had to borrow another soldier’s rifle. Nevertheless, he felt no shame in this. Because he had been wearing a sword for several months, his comrades would tease him whenever they met him.
One day I asked him seriously, “Jung Hup, don’t you hate to tail after others, wearing just a sword?”
“I think this sword is a good enough weapon when there aren’t enough rifles to go round. I’m sure I can capture a rifle in a battle some day.”
Though he said this, he must still have felt awkward to be bringing up the rear, wearing only a sword\and a grenade when others were carrying rifles. But he carried his sword calmly, without showing his feelings.
In\order to capture guns for the recruits, we\organized a battle. Actual combat was the only way for us to obtain arms. We therefore raided the construction site of a railway that runsrom Tumen to Mudanjiang via Sanchakou.
In this raid O captured several rifles\and a pistolrom an enemy officer. Who was to keep a captured weapon was decided at the meeting to review the battle. We made it a principle to award rifles preferentially to those who had fought courageously\and observed discipline in an exemplary manner. I attended the meeting that reviewed the raid on the railway construction site. Only at this meeting was O finally awarded a rifle.
Later he was promoted to squad leader, platoon leader, company commander\and then regimental commander. One might call him the model officer of a revolutionary army.
He had many other merits in addition.
Though gentle, he was lively\and optimistic in everyday life, sociable in his quiet way,\and zealous to learn. Talking no nonsense, he conducted himself well, listened carefully to any criticisms handed out by his comrades and rectified his mistakes immediately. He managed his unit with utmost care\and had a stronger spirit of self-reliance\and fortitude than others.
It would not be too much to say that the growth of O Jung Hup as a soldier of the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army exactly paralleled the growth of the army’s 7th Regiment.
The predecessor of the 7th Regiment was the Independent Regiment. The Independent Regiment had been composed of the companies eachrom Wangqing, Yanji, Helong\and other counties in eastern Manchuria.
From Wangqing County it was the 7th Company that came to the regiment. The 7th Company had grownrom a detachment of the Wangqing 1st Company\and had become the 2nd Company of the Independent Regiment. O had been the youth instructor of the 2nd Company of the Independent Regiment.
The Independent Regiment then became the 2nd Regiment of the Independent 1st Division in 1935,\and when the main-force division of the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army was being formed after the Nanhutou meeting, it became the 7th Regiment of the division. The regiment was the nucleus of the new division.
O Jung Hup, O Paek Ryong\and Kang Jung Ryong all developed systematically, along with the development of the 7th Regiment,\and became either regimental commander, company commander\or platoon leader.
The majority of the soldiers of the 7th Regiment were Koreans. As I had trained O Jung Hup methodicallyrom his days in Wangqing, I made sure our efforts were concentrated on his regiment. More intensive guidance was given to it than any other unit to make it a model regiment with the strongest combat efficiency in the new division. In the first place I made sure that the commanding personnel of the regiment, including platoon leaders, political instructors\and company commanders, were promotedrom among elite soldiers\and that they were trained politically, ideologically\and militarily under a far-sighted plan. We taught them everything–various types of manuals for guerrilla warfare, how to set up camp, cook meals, march, find directions, set up makeshift stages, draw up programmes for art performances\and write introductory speeches for the performances.
In\order to turn the regiment into a model unit, Headquarters\and the cadres of the division worked extra hard. They visited the regiment frequently, teaching the officers political\and military affairs\and helping them to solve problems quickly\and efficiently. In the course of this, the 7th Regiment became the model regiment\and pride of the main force of the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army.
We sent many soldiers who had been trained in this regiment to other units as commanding officers. When he requested military\and political cadresrom us, Wei Zheng-min asked for the officers of the 7th Regiment in most cases. The commanding officers who had been trained in the 7th Regiment\and had transferred to other units went on to train many other officers\and model combatants. The 7th Regiment played the role of a seed-bed for future political\and military cadres. The Guard Company commanded by Ri Tong Hak\or Pak Su Man subsequently also became a model company, for a large number of its members hailedrom the 7th Regiment.
Because there were no regular training establishments for the revolutionary army, we had to meet the demand for cadres by continually appointing military\and political personnel trained in the 7th Regiment to other units. This proved to be good practice for later, for the work method of our Party of today–that of creating a model\and generalizing it across the country–is based on the experience we gained during the anti-Japanese revolution.
Many of the military\and political cadres of the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army were produced by the 7th Regiment, among them O Jung Hup, Kim Ju Hyon, Ri Tong Hak, Ri Tong Gol, O Paek Ryong, Kim Thaek Hwan, Choe Il Hyon, O Il Nam, Son Thae Chun, Kang Hung Sok\and Kang Jung Ryong. The political instructor of a company of the 7th Regiment was a man nicknamed “Wet Eyes”. I think I remember his surname was Choe, but I cannot remember his full name. He had this nickname because his eyes always looked as if they were brimming with moisture. He fought bravely but fell in action along with Kim San Ho in the Battle of Xiaotanghe.
Choe Il Hyon was a man I intended to appoint as the commander of the Anti-Japanese People’s Guerrilla Army, to be\organized in northern Korea.
Kim Thaek Hwan, company commander, was also an intelligent man.
It seems to me that a strong commander is emulated by his subordinates–a regimental commander by his company commanders, a company commander by his platoon leaders,\and a platoon leader\or a squad leader by his men. People will resemble their leaders in personality\and character in spite of themselves. I should say that the 7th Regiment became a steel-like unit because it totally resembled O Jung Hup.
The commanders\and men of other units quite envied O’s 7th Regiment. Cao Guo-an, a division commander of the Chinese 1st Corps, while living
with our unit for some time in the Paektusan Base, asked me for a clever man, an efficient machine-gunner. Cao was coveting Kang Jung Ryong, a machine-gunner\and a renowned platoon leader in the 7th Regiment. Kang was Pak Rok Gum’s husband. I asked him if he wanted to go to the 2nd Division of the 1st Corps, but he flatly refused. At first I thought he refused to go because he hated partingrom his wife, but I found this was not the reason after hearing his explanation. He said that he could bear the thought of partingrom his wife, but he hated leaving me\and O Jung Hup’s 7th Regiment. He was quite attached to O Jung Hup. The two men were childhood friends in Wangqing\and fought shoulder to shoulderrom their days with the Wangqing 1st Company.
O Paek Ryong, too, said that he would not leave the 7th Regiment led by O Jung Hup when he was appointed to the 8th Regiment as a machine-gunner.
You can guessrom these two facts the degree of popularity O Jung Hup enjoyed. The men of the 7th Regiment had a strong attachment for their unit\and a strong esprit de corps.
We sent those who made mistakes\or who lacked political\and military qualifications to the 7th Regiment for training.
At the secret camp near Xintaizi, Linjiang County, the leader of a machine-gun platoon committed a mistake in 1938. He also had poor qualifications. We attached him temporarily to the 4th Company of the 7th Regiment.
When sending him to O Jung Hup’s regiment, I said to him, “A leader who does not know how to take responsibility for his men is not qualified for his post. He can perform his duties properly only when he really feels the suffering his mistakes bring down upon his men. You’d better learn\and train yourself more in the 7th Regiment.”
When he returned to his\original post after his stint with the 7th Regiment, he had become a different man, thanks to the help of O Jung Hup.
The 7th Regiment was the most efficient combat unit in the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army. That was why Headquarters always assigned to this regiment the most urgent\and responsible tasks. The regiment bore the brunt of all attacks launched by the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army.
Both on the march\and in bivouac I would assign the duty of acting as rear guard to the regiment with the highest combat efficiency\and strongest sense of responsibility. The rear guard was extremely important to the life of the guerrilla army, which was always threatened with pursuit\and surprise attack by the enemy.
When bivouacking, we used to post the most efficient unit as rear guard about 300 to 500 metres awayrom Headquarters,\or sometimes at a distance of one\or two kilometres. Sentries\or watches were posted at regular intervals between Headquarters\and the rear guard.
According to our experience, the enemy’s “punitive” forces preferred the tactic of pursuit rather than the method of ambush\or frontal attack. This was why we posted the unit with the highest combat efficiency to bring up the rear.
When bivouacking at Chongbong on our way to the Musan area in the spring of 1939 we kept the 7th Regiment in the rear. The men of the regiment did not make a campfire at night so as not to expose itself to the enemy. Nevertheless, they never complained about their hardship\or fatigue.
I have stressed since the early days of the Korean People’s Army that it should regard O Jung Hup as its model. This means emulating him.
Already in the early 1960s Comrade Kim Jong Il emphasized that the KPA should study\and imitate the 7th Regiment. In his childhood he had heard a great deal about O Jung Hup\and his 7th Regiment.
What, then, should cadres, Party members\and the soldiers of the KPA learnrom O Jung Hup\and his 7th Regiment? His merits can be analysed in various ways, but the most important of all his merits was his unfailing loyalty to the revolution.
How was his loyalty to the revolution expressed? It found its strongest expression in his loyalty to his Commander.
First of all he was faithful to all my ideas\and policies, accepting all I said about the communist movement\and national liberation movement of Korea as absolutely correct\and studying my words in depth. He defended my ideas without reserve anywhere, under any circumstances,\and fought staunchly against any practices that ran counter to these ideas.
He regarded my ideas\and policies on military operations as supreme laws. No divergent ideas could find room in his mind, they made no sense to him. A man sound in ideology does not become corrupt even in unhealthy surroundings.
As the regimental commander himself was sound, his soldiers also all breathed the same air with me.
His faithfulness to the revolution found its expression in his spirit of implementing his Commander’s\orders\and instructions without question\and with a high sense of responsibility. He carried them out accurately, perfectly\and without fail. However onerous they might be, he did not utter a word of discontent\or complaint.
Having carried out my\orders, he reported the results to me without fail\and reviewed the defects revealed during their implementation, hiding nothing.
Another of his traits that our officials today should study in his attitude towards the Commander’s\orders\and instructions was that immediately after carrying out one task, he used to ask for another. He hated hanging around\and would find something else to do as soon as he’d finished one thing. To use our present-day parlance, he was a man of continuous innovation\and continuous advance. Another reason why the 7th Regiment undertook harder tasks than other regiments was that O Jung Hup, the regimental commander, was such a willing worker.
He was a commanding officer of unusual character in that he was happier when given a difficult task than when carrying out an easy assignment.
His loyalty to the revolution\and his Commander also found expression in his fearless defence of his Commander, not only politically\and ideologically but also with his life. For my safety he plunged himself\and his regiment into combat as if they were human bullets,\and he did not hesitate to commit himself, no matter how hard-fought the battle.
When I was leading a tough battle in command of Ri Tu Su’s company against hundreds of enemy troops in Hongtoushan, O Jung Hup, who was on a combat mission far away, raided the enemy camp like lightning, saying that he was worried about my safety. With their rear under fire, the remaining enemy were forced to flee. I was much obliged to O Jung Hup at that time.
When fighting near Manjiang it was O Jung Hup\and his 7th Regiment that shielded me with their bodies as I commanded the withdrawal of my unit. They did the same during the Battle of Duantoushan. While Headquarters withdrew with hundreds of enemy troops at its heels, the 7th Regiment brought up the rear to cover the withdrawal.
His exceptional loyalty to his Commander manifested itself most intensely in the period of the Arduous March. During the first days of the march he defended Headquarters by using our zigzag tactic for an entire fortnight, withstanding the immense pressure of fighting a nonstop rear-guard action.
As I mentioned on a previous occasion, at the far end of Qidaogou during the march I judged that a large-unit movement was disadvantageous, so we switched over to dispersed actions. O Jung Hup, taking leave of me at that time, volunteered to act as a decoy Headquarters\and lure away the enemy by trekking the steep Longjiang\and Changbai mountains for two months\or so. The 7th Regiment went through a lot of trouble, but thanks to this ploy, Headquarters was less harassed by the enemy for quite some time.
When parting with Headquarters at the end of Qidaogou, his regiment didn’t have as much as a grain of rice. In\order to obtain provisions, they needed to be close to inhabited areas. Nevertheless, O Jung Hup set his march route through Jiayuhe, the plateau in Sidengfang, the western fringe of Hongtoushan\and the northern Shuangchatou to Deshuigou. This route traverses through unmapped areas no better than a desert. The only signs of habitation were huts used by charcoal burners. One wrong step in these areas\and a man would end up in a labyrinth of ice\and snow\and never get out alive.
Nevertheless, O Jung Hup chose this immensely dangerous route while devoid of provisions in\order to lure away the enemy who was tailing Headquarters.
At first they raided a lumber yard, captured some cattle\and horses\and ate the meat. But after entering the deep mountains they could no longer obtain food. The only thing edible was snow, I was told.
One day, realizing that the enemy was no longer pursuing his regiment, he appealed to his men, saying, “I’m afraid the enemy may have realized that we are not Headquarters. If that’s true, we have been suffering in vain. We must find out the enemy at all costs\and get them back on our tail. Follow me.”
With his Mauser in his hand he went several kilometres back the way they had traversed, going through all sorts of hardships\and raiding the enemy camp. This brought the enemy back on the tail of the regiment.
From then on the regiment would backtrack\and harass the enemy whenever it did not follow. After this, the enemy would trail after the regiment just like a bull calf led by its nose ring.
Having run out of food again at one point, the regiment boiled down the hide of a cow the Japanese soldiers had thrown away after eating its meat. The regiment continued its march\and celebrated the lunar New Year’s Day of that year, eating frozen potatoes. While eating them, O Jung Hup still worried about us, saying, “We are eating here on the mountain, even though it’s only this kind of food, but I wonder what kind of food Headquarters has managed to find?”
He encouraged his hungry, exhausted men by saying, “We’ve seen nothing but hardship day in, day out, for ten years, but good times will come after the hard times. Imagine the day we return to our liberated motherland in triumph after defeating the Japanese imperialists. What can be more worthwhile\and glorious than that for Koreans? We must not forget that this trying march is directly linked to the liberated motherland. That’s what Commander Kim Il Sung said. We’ve all got to keep going for the safety of Headquarters.”
O Jung Hup was a man of this type. He fought with a large fireball in his heart. The fireball was his burning enthusiasm for the revolution,\and the core of his enthusiasm was none other than loyalty to his Commander.
I emphasize again that the 7th Regiment had this one characteristic: that every one of its men\and officers thought first of the safety of Headquarters, no matter\where they were\or what the situation was. Its most militant traits both in life\and in combat were to treasure the Commander’s\orders as they would do their own lives\and to carry them out with the greatest efficiency. Not only were they more sensitive to the intentions of Headquarters than others, but they also carried out these intentions more perseveringly\and with greater devotion once they had understood the aim of Headquarters.
Ri Kwon Haeng, who died while shielding merom enemy bullets with his body, was a member of the 7th Regiment, as were O Il Nam, Son Thae Chun\and Kim Hyok Chol, who laid down their lives while implementing the\orders of Headquarters.
O Jung Hup, Choe Il Hyon\and Kang Hung Sok dedicated their lives to the defence of Headquarters\and to my great regret fell in the Battle of Liukesong. This is why my heart is heavy whenever I look back upon the Battle of Liukesong. Of course, we fought the battle with good tactics, but we lost three precious commanding officers there.
At 10 o’clock that night O Jung Hup led the attack on the enemy barracks at Liukesong at the head of his 7th Regiment\and Hwang Jong Hae’s unit. They were the main force of attack. I don’t know why, but I did not tell him that day to take care of himself. He was not the sort of man to listen to such words of precaution anyway. He was always at the forefront of the most difficult attacks.
Immediately after committing his 7th Regiment\and Hwang Jong Hae’s unit to action, I\ordered the 8th Regiment to push into the lumber mill to conduct political work among the workers\and to capture provisions\and other suppliesrom the enemy’s munitions store.
Leading the penetration party, O Jung Hup climbed over the wooden fence, cut through the barbed wire entanglements\and\ordered his men to charge. The regiment occupied the forts\and barracks at lightning speed without giving the enemy time to collect its forces. The hard-pressed enemy soldiers hid themselves in a passage dug under the barracks. O Jung Hup immediately gave the\order to make a fire at the entrances of the underground passage. As smoke began to blow into the entrance, the enemy soldiers crawled outside on all fours, unable to bear it any longer.
Just as victory was in sight, we were dealt a tragic blow. As O Jung Hup led the search, the enemy still hiding in the underground passage shot him. His\orderly, Kim Chol Man, was also wounded. The remaining enemy soldiers put up a desperate resistance,\and Choe Il Hyon\and Kang Hung Sok, two highly efficient officers of the 7th Regiment, then lost their lives. O Jung Hup, fatally wounded, also died that day to our deep sorrow. The man who had fought so devotedly for the revolution, treading a rocky road all through his life, died in this way.
All through the anti-Japanese armed struggle I had constantly stressed to my men that they should take particular care at the concluding stage of a battle. Accidents frequently happened at the last moment. We lost three precious comrades-in-arms in this battle in the last five minutes.
Apparently O Jung Hup was somewhat off his guard on this occasion. He seems to have been too confident, as the battle situation was favourable to us\and the enemy soldiers were surrendering, unable to endure the smoke of the burning cotton.
By nature, O Jung Hup was a careful man. He lived a flawless life\and fought with good strategy. He was more vigilant than any other officer. I don’t know why he did not foresee the fact that some of the enemy might still be under his feet. In the first place the scouts had not reconnoitered the interior of the enemy barracks closely enough. If they had scouted it carefully, such an accident would not have taken place. It was a great pity. When the wounded Kim Chol Man came to me\and reported, crying bitterly, the news of O Jung Hup’s death, I could not believe my ears at first. As I ascertained the brutal fact, I almost lost my mind\and rushed to the enemy barracks, shouting, “Who killed O Jung Hup? I can’t forgive him!”
I was accustomed to suppressing my feelings in front of my men, no matter how excruciating the pain, but that day I could not endure it. How dearly had I loved him! Even to think of it now, I still tremble. That day we killed a large number of enemy soldiers\and captured lots of booty, but it meant nothing to me. Never had my men felt such acute heartache as they did at the time.
At the\order to withdraw, we left Liukesong carrying the bodies of our dead comrades-in-arms. Hundreds were marching, shedding tears; I could not hear a single word being spoken.
We held a memorial service in bitter grief. I stepped forward to deliver a memorial address, but I could not see\or speak properly, as tears blurred my vision\and I felt a heavy oppression in my chest. I never shed tears in the face of difficulties, but I can shed more tears than anybody in the face of grief.
The Battle of Liukesong was of great importance. It threw the enemy’s second-stage “punitive” operations into confusion,\and our unit laid a basis for winning victory in the first stage of the large-unit circling operations. As we shot off our guns in the backwoods of Dunhua, while the enemy was concentrating his forces, looking for us in the areas along the Tuman River northeast of Mt. Paektu, they could not but be dumbfounded.
At the Battle of Liukesong the 7th Regiment, the backbone of the main force of the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army, again fought well. It was an invincible unit that could be called steel-like for its toughness. Its growth to be a-match-for-a-hundred unit should be attributed to O Jung Hup, the commander of the regiment. Because he was a loyal man\and a famous officer, the 7th Regiment became a strong force.
I cannot forget O Jung Hup any more than I can forget Kim Hyok\and Cha Kwang Su. O Jung Hup was my revolutionary comrade-in-arms\and at the same time the man who many times saved my life.
His regiment was a bullet-proof wall, an impregnable fortress, in that it could be absolutely relied upon to defend the Headquarters of the Korean People’s Revolutionary Armyrom the incessant attacks\and provocations of the enemy.
After O Jung Hup was killed in action, I treasured\and loved my men even more dearly.\and I trained them to broaden their vision to the maximum\and to behave prudently in battle to prevent as much loss as possible. Nevertheless, nothing I did could make up for the loss of O Jung Hup.
People say that it was I who transformed him into an excellent revo-lutionary, but they should not think this was the only reason.
We need to give deeper thought to transforming entire families along revolutionary lines, keeping O Jung Hup in mind as an example.
The family of O Thae Hui was considered to be first in the whole region of Jiandao, including Wangqing, as a patriotic\and revolutionary family. Almost every member of this family took part in the anti-Japanese revolution. About 20 of them were killed while operating as underground workers\or as soldiers of the People’s Revolutionary Army. This figure alone shows how patriotic the members of the O family were.
O Jung Hup became such a stalwart fighter for the revolution mainly because in his boyhood he had received proper educationrom the senior members of his family.
Many young menrom this family would grow to be tough revolu-tionaries, thanks to the painstaking efforts taken by their four seniors to steer them to the correct course in their life’s journey. The four seniors–O Thae Hui, O Song Hui, O Chang Hui\and O Jong Hui–were brothers.
The Os paid deep attention to the education of their offspring. They gave them effective moral education, which then served as a solid basis for the education in patriotism\and the anti-Japanese revolutionary education they were to get later. Though living in poverty, the family attached great importance to the education of its children\and made special effort to send them all to school.
Ten menrom the family finished middle school, but none of them took to careerism\or officialdom; they all became revolutionaries. Here O Jung Hwa played the greatest role, transforming the family into a revolutionary group with great efficiency. When we went to Wangqing after the expeditions to southern\and northern Manchuria, all the young\and middle-aged men\and women of the O family were already enlisted in revolutionary\organizations.
O Jung Hup’s family was the poorest of the Os, so they were revolu-tionized sooner. O Jung Hup was the first to transform himself into a revolutionary,\and then his younger brothers\and the rest of the family followed. O Jung Hup\and his two younger brothers all fought as military\or political cadres of regiments\and battalions,\and they all fell in battle.
When conducting small-unit operations in the area of Luozigou in the summer of 1941, I was in touch with O Chang Hui, O Jung Hup’s father,\and Pak Tok Sim, Pak Kil Song’s father. In those days the Os were living in Luozigou. When I looked down at the Os’ houserom the mountain through binoculars, I could see them coming into the yard through the brushwood gate, carrying piles of firewood on A-frames. Even in Luozigou they lived like a family that had sent its children to the revolutionary army. At that time I had Kim Il form a secret\organization of the guerrillas’ families in Luozigou, with O Chang Hui\and Pak Tok Sim at the centre.
When I advanced to the area northeast of Mt. Paektu during the days of small-unit operations, I received much helprom O Chang Hui. With the old man’s help I crossed the border\and went to Kyongwon (the present-day Saeppyol) to form revolutionary\organizations there.
The Os were truly a revolutionary family, one that should be recorded in the history books.
I often think how good it would be if O Jung Hup were still alive. If he had been here, many 7th Regiment-type units would have been produced in our country.
Comrade Kim Jong Il is now guiding the movement in the People’s Army to emulate O Jung Hup. That is highly laudable.
In the past there were many people by my side as loyal as O Jung Hup. We must educate many people to be as loyal as O Jung Hup, so that they can help Comrade Kim Jong Il in his work.
Comrade Kim Jong Il is the future of Korea, for he is shouldering the destiny of the Korean revolution. In\order for our motherland to achieve eternal prosperity,\and for socialism in our country to win a continuous victory. Comrade Kim Jong Il should remain healthy\and the entire Party\and army should support his leadership loyally. Officials must support him as the leader of the revolution\and with a firm determination to carry out the revolutionary cause of Juche, pioneered in the forests of Mt. Paektu, they must achieve brilliant, continuous successes in all sectors of socialist construction down through the coming generations. They should also defend the Party Central Committee, the supreme headquarters of the Korean revolution,\and Comrade Kim Jong Il with their very lives, just as O Jung Hup\and his regiment defended Headquarters in the anti-Japanese struggle.
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