페이지 정보작성자 작성일08-09-21 00:00 댓글0건
KIM IL SUNG
With the Century
The Anti-Japanese Revolution
Expansion of the Underground Front
7. A Written Warranty for a Good Citizen
In March 1937, on the eve of the Xigang meeting, I dispatched Kim Jong Suk to Taoquanli.
That year the organizations in various places were requesting that I send able workers; Ri Je Sun, Pak Tal, Kwon Yong Byok and Kim Jae Su all asked me to send them political workers. To honour such requests, I dispatched Kim Jong Suk to Taoquanli.
Whereas the underground network connecting Xinxincun, where Ri Je Sun lived, to the Khunungdengi village, where Pak Tal lived, was a route, which enabled us to expand the network of our underground organizations to the whole region of North Hamgyong Province and the eastern region of South Hamgyong Province, the underground network linking Taoquanli to Sinpha could be called the route we used to ramify such a network to the western and southern areas of South Hamgyong Province and the inland area of the homeland. Situated at the centre of the Xiagangqu area in
Sinpha, located opposite to Taoquanli, was a suitable place for establishing a relationship with the industrial region of
We also attached special importance to Sinpha, because we believed that it provided a chance to open with considerable ease a route to the underground organizations in the homeland.
Jang Hae U (alias Jang Hyo Ik) lived in Sinpha. Some visitors to our secret camp had told me that he seemed to have degraded into a petty bourgeois after his release from prison; however, this represented a subjective estimation of the people of other localities, who had a poor understanding of the underground world of Sinpha. Kwon Yong Byok informed me that Jang Hae U had not been reduced to a petty bourgeois and was in fact engaged in the revolution and had already made contacts with Kim Jae Su.
Jang Hae U had enjoyed the favour of independence campaigners. Maintaining close ties with my father, he had frequented
I had heard of his arrest in the mid-1920s for his links with the independence movement and prison term, but had not learned about the length of his imprisonment and the circumstances of his switch from nationalist to communist movement. I only discovered after liberation that he had been sentenced to seven years in prison, but had been released after two years by the “amnesty” to mark the accession of Hirohito to the Japanese throne.
The presence of Jang Hae U, a very experienced worker in the revolutionary movement and my intimate friend through my father, in Sinpha constituted a good omen for our future work. Later I heard of him from the underground organization in Taoquanli, which confirmed that his thoughts seemed to have remained unchanged and that there had been little change in his temperament. If we came in contact with Jang, we could open a reliable route to the homeland.
Who should we dispatch for work with Jang Hae U? Who could carve out with comparative ease a promising route to the homeland? Kim Phyong and I racked our brains to select the right person for the job. Kim Phyong, political commissar of the 7th Regiment, was at the same time in charge of the secret work of dispatching political operatives.
One evening, when it was snowing, I called Kim Phyong to the campfire at a bivouac. At that time we were marching northward, to the secret camp in Yangmudingzi,
“Have you decided which person is fit for opening the Sinpha route?” I was asking him the same question as a few days earlier. So far he had failed to provide a good response. However, this time he seemed to be brimming over with confidence.
“Yes, I have. ‘Black Jong Suk’ seems the best choice.”
His answer surprised me, as she was the same nominee as the one I had in mind.
“Black Jong Suk” means Kim Jong Suk. In my unit there were three girl soldiers with the name of Jong Suk—Jang Jong Suk, Pak Jong Suk and Kim Jong Suk. When someone called, “Comrade Jong Suk!” the three of them would commonly answer in chorus, “Here!” This frequently provoked merry laughter, but also created inconveniences and confusion. Consequently their comrades-in-arms distinguished them by calling them respectively “Gallant Jong Suk”, “Blue Jong Suk” and “Black Jong Suk”. “Gallant Jong Suk” was the nickname of Jang Jong Suk, named after her habit of breathing heavily when working and marching. Some veterans recall that she was nicknamed in that way, as she was always courageous and gallant. (The Korean words for “To be gallant” and “To breathe heavily” are pronounced the same—Tr.) I think both opinions are correct. Pak Jong Suk’s nickname of “Blue Jong Suk” originated from the blue skirt, which she had worn when she joined the guerrillas. The origin of Kim Jong Suk’s nickname, “Black Jong Suk”, is identical. She had worn a black skirt, the only one she had had during her life in the guerrilla zone, until the day of her admission to the revolutionary army.
“Can she handle the serious task of breaking fresh ground in Sinpha?” I asked Kim Phyong, as I wanted to know what had made him pick Kim Jong Suk.
“When I carried out party work in Badaogou in
I voiced the same opinion. For all that, I still did not thoroughly understand the person in Kim Jong Suk. Only one year had passed since she had been assigned to my unit. She and I had lived in this ruined nation in different places and immersed ourselves in the revolution through different channels. I had first heard her name in Macun in Xiaowangqing. The children’s art troupe members from Beidong, Wangyugou, to Wangqing had mentioned her name now and then along with that of Yun Pyong Do. The butterfly-like children had harboured great illusions about the instructor of their Children’s Corps. In later years Ri Sun Hui, recalled from the post of the chief of the children’s affairs bureau in
When the art troupe of the Children’s Corps in
Kim Jong Suk was the only soldier of the 4th Company in the Maanshan Secret Camp, whom the Leftists could not rashly stigmatize as a member of the “Minsaengdan”. Nevertheless, the Leftists assigned her to the company of “Minsaengdan” suspects for no reason at all. They apparently thought that she should live with the “guilty” Koreans, as she was a Korean no matter whether she was under suspicion or not.
However, she accepted this willingly. She was determined to share her fate with her comrades-in-arms, who had been falsely charged. She did not feel ashamed to be living in the same quarters as the “Minsaengdan” suspects. Later on in life I came to realize why that little, ordinary girl guerrilla of inconspicuous appearance, won the favour of the whole company.
Kim Jong Suk lived for other people, not for herself. She devoted her entire life to others. She always took care of other people at her expense. Whenever she was served food, she would share it with soldiers with bulkier bodies or with young soldiers. The young curly-haired soldier of the 1st Platoon, 4th Company, who was said to have been a bosom friend of her younger brother, Ki Song, must have eaten her share more than anyone else. She would mend the torn uniforms and shoes of male soldiers, when everybody else had gone to bed. Devotion to her comrades and the common cause was the nucleus of her personality and personal charm.
Rim Chun Chu, Kim Jong Phil, Pak Su Hwan and other guerrillas from Yanji had told me on many occasions that in the days, when the whirlwind of the anti-“Minsaengdan” campaign was sweeping the whole of eastern Manchuria, a young girl had stealthily brought food everyday to the “Minsaengdan” suspects behind bars in Nengzhiying, and that the sufferers, who had been falsely charged, had escaped death from hunger thanks to her efforts. That young girl had been none other than Kim Jong Suk. If it had been revealed that she had brought food to the “Minsaengdan” suspects, she would have been stigmatized as a “Minsaengdan” member.
I had first seen her at the guerrilla zone in Sandaowan. In Mengjiang in spring 1936 I heard in detail the story of her life and family. One day I went out to the riverside, looking round the sentries, with a light heart as I had finished writing my report for the Donggang meeting. I could hear clear singing, full of nostalgia. I went upstream, where the singing voices were ringing out and found two women soldiers rinsing out the wash in a willow grove. One of them was Kim Jong Suk.
That day I learned that she had been born in Hoeryong, North Hamgyong Province, and that her family had left the hometown and emigrated to Manchuria when she was five or six years old.
The people in Hoeryong are proud that their native place is a scenic spot in
The Hoeryong people take great pride in the fact that such a talented cinema actor as Ra Un Gyu and a renowned poet as Jo Ki Chon were born there. They also speak highly of their hometown as the famous production centre of white apricots. All visitors of Hoeryong in the bloomy spring will see the whole town covered with white apricot flowers.
However, Kim Jong Suk had only lived in that beautiful place for a few years. As she began to understand the world, she would stare at the barren mountains and fields of north Jiandao, where the mounted bandits were roaming, raising clouds of dust.
Kim Jong Suk was bereaved of her parents, sister and brothers one after the other. Her father was an independence fighter, who had undergone trials in the enemy’s gaols; he had received serious frostbite during the arduous struggle. He suffered from the illness only to die an early death. At the last moments of his life, he requested that his dear youngest daughter, Jong Suk, open the window. Then he looked out at the southern sky with tears in his eyes, saying, “I wanted to be buried in
When she turned 15, the aggressors who had turned the whole of Jiandao into a bloodbath, pounced on Fuyandong, set the village on fire and cold-bloodedly killed her mother and the wife of her elder brother.
The wife of her elder brother left her a suckling baby. From that day she began to beg for breast milk for the baby. She would go round other people’s houses several times a day, carrying her nephew who was crying for milk, and even went to a neighbouring village more than four kilometres away to beg for milk.
She had to part from the nephew she had raised with such care. When she was going to the guerrilla zone, her elder brother, Kim Ki Jun, who had to go to a mine in Badaogou to conduct underground activities, took the baby from her bosom by force. She was determined to take her nephew to the guerrilla zone, but her brother did not allow her to do so. So she postponed her departure for a day. At dawn the next day the enemy’s “punitive” force suddenly swarmed into the village. At the gun fire, she carried the baby in her arms and ran up the mountain. She planned to go to the guerrilla zone on the way. Her brother followed her panting and scolded her for being ill-prepared for the revolution. He said: “You should think of the revolution before anything else, as you have embarked on the road of the revolution. How can you wage a revolution, when you think only of your family? Don’t worry about the baby.”
He took the crying baby in his arms and climbed down to the valley without looking back. Apparently he felt like crying so much, despite the harsh remarks, that he could not look back at his younger sister. This marked the life-long parting between sister and brother.
Kim Jong Suk never saw her brother and nephew. Her brother was arrested during his underground work in the mine; he was tortured to death. Her nephew disappeared without leaving his whereabouts. Her younger brother, Ki Song, her only flesh and blood, was shot dead by enemy bullets, while luring the enemy’s “punitive” force with a bugle of the Children’s Corps, in order to rescue the people of Cangcaicun on the move from Fuyandong to the guerrilla zone in Sandaowan.
Even after liberation she would shed tears at the thought of her younger brother. Whenever she saw teenagers on the streets, she would heave a silent sigh, thinking that her nephew, if he was alive, would have been that age.
After consulting Kim Phyong, I called Kim Jong Suk to Headquarters.
“Comrade Kim Jae Su has made several requests, through messengers, for more people skilled in underground work. Although agile and experienced in underground activities, he seems to be experiencing great difficulties as the area under his charge is so vast. He is extremely anxious about failing in his work with women. He says that, in order to involve the women in the underground organizations, he has to work efficiently with the elderly, who are controlling them, and that this is no easy job. You must base yourself in Taoquanli and provide guidance for the work with the women in the Xiagangqu area, offering active assistance to Kim Jae Su.
“After improving the work there, cross the river to Sinpha and, while maintaining relations with Jang Hae U, build up a solid network of underground organizations in the Samsu area. Then, try to rapidly expand the network of the organizations of the Association for the Restoration of the Fatherland in such industrial towns on the east coast as
“The creation of secret organizations in the homeland is far more dangerous and difficult than work among the masses in Changbai under the protection of the People’s Revolutionary Army. Take care and work efficiently.
“We are confident that you can carry out this challenging task. Whenever you face difficulties, please rely on the comrades and people.”
These are some of the things I said to Kim Jong Suk when dispatching her to Taoquanli.
The line of our operations had already begun to be stretched since late summer 1936 in Taoquanli area. According to Jong Tong Chol, when the news of the Berlin Olympic Games reached as far as the mountainous village of Taoquanli, a strange “gambler”, named Kim Won Dal, had appeared in the Xiagangqu area and begun to make gambling popular among young people; he had told gamblers mostly that the Koreans were first and third in the marathon event during the Olympic Games, but that the Japanese flags had been hoisted on the flag poles at the time of the prize ceremony.
The short, agile, intelligent-looking young “gambler” was Kim Jae Su, a political worker we had dispatched there. He had a peculiar fighting history, reminiscent of an adventure story. First chairman of the Wangyugou soviet government, secretary of the Yanji County Party Committee, head of the organizational department of the East Manchuria Special District Party Committee—these positions marked his career moves in the first half of the 1930s, which can be condensed in a few words.
Then, an event had happened, which might otherwise have checked his normal career. When the East Manchuria Special District Party Committee moved to Luozigou, he had been arrested along with another member of the committee and dragged to the military police. They had made Kim Jae Su and Zhu Ming write letters of conversion and given them tasks, forcing them to help them in their work respectively.
They said, “Don’t tell anybody that you have been arrested by us, and continue your work in the special district party committee. Continue to form revolutionary organizations. We will not care. If you regularly hand over the lists of new members, we’ll be satisfied.”
The enemy was overcome with delight that cadres at the special district party committee had been converted. In fact, Kim Jae Su had merely pretended to convert and given a false pledge in order to resume his work in the revolution. He had taken secret documents and funds for his work from the enemy and frankly reported the particulars of the event to the committee. Zhu Ming, who had subsequently gone to the committee had cheated his organization, just as the enemy had instructed. In return the committee had duly punished him.
Kim Jae Su had been pardoned, but expelled from the party ranks. His political integrity had been undermined. He had also been debased in the moral aspect. Deprived of everything in a day and forced out of the fighting ranks, he had hidden himself away in a mountain village and groaned in agony, repenting of the false conversion, which was proving worse than death.
In the world of revolutionaries, who regard adherence to the faith, will, mental and moral integrity of communists in any adversity as the greatest honour and virtue, false conversion is recognized as an inexcusable crime. This is because, even if one makes a bogus conversion, it will provide the enemy with a clue for counterpropaganda, give the real betrayers a precedent and pretext for their betrayal. It is indeed true that, even if one maintains one’s conscience and loyalty as a revolutionary, declaration of conversion to the enemy does not merit praise.
Kim Jae Su had acted against the noble moral norm of revolutionaries, proceeding from the simple thought that it was OK, as long as he remained alive by cheating the enemy and then continued the revolution. On hearing how I had burned the bundle of the “Minsaengdan” documents at Maanshan and had relieved some 100 men and women from being suspected as guilty, he visited me after much mental suffering and told me that he wanted to prove his innocence in the practical struggle. At that time he had appealed in this way, beating his own chest, “Either kill me or spare my life; it’s up to you. But I want to be involved in the revolution. I can’t bear it any longer.”
I had trusted him. I had authorized him to conduct underground activities and sent him to the area on Xiagangqu in
He had infiltrated Taoquanli via Tianshangshui under a pseudonym. At first he had organized gambling to become acquainted with Jong Tong Chol, Kim Tu Won, and Kim Hyok Chol (alias Kim Pyong Guk), introduced to him as reliable men by Ri Yong Sul, head of an ARP chapter in Tianshangshui. No one in the Xiagangqu area could rival him in gambling. When gambling he would put wristlets on his forearms and hoodwinked the others by putting in and taking out cards from the wristlets with lightning speed. When he made the highest score, he would hum Orang ballad.
The elderly with no inside information had complained that the prodigal was spoiling the young men. However, while they made a fuss, the organization had grown in the gambling den. The organization had subsequently turned out to be a core organization of the Xiagangqu ARF committee,
Kim Jong Suk, dispatched to Taoquanli, made first contacts with Kim Jae Su at Ri Yong Sul’s house, which was called by the people in Tianshangshui as “inner village house”. Ri’s was an unusually big family of eight brothers and sisters. The Tianshangshui chapter of the ARF had been organized in this house, and was headed by Ri Yong Sul, the fourth brother of the family.
We owed a great deal to that family. Many of our comrades had received much help from them on their way to localities for work. I put up at their house on three occasions from the end of 1936 to summer 1937; on my first visit I stayed for three days. Although they were struggling to make both ends meet by slash-and-bum farming, they were very generous.
Ri’s eldest brother had two seals of our unit prepared on Kim Jae Su’s request and sent them to us. We used the seals for a fairly long time.
Staying in the “inner village house” for about 15 days, Kim Jong Suk helped the work of the ARF chapter and at the same time prepared to work under the guise of a civilian.
Assuming the pseudonym of Om Ok Sun, she went to Taoquanli as a member of a family immigrating from Musan. A black red jacket, long, serge skirt and knee-high padded socks were the trademarks of the first appearance of Om Ok Sun, the “baby of Musan house”, in front of the Taoquanli people. People hailing from
Taoquanli was a mountainous village about 12 kilometres away from Sinpha. According to Wi In Chan, who had lived since birth in one place in Taoquanli for over 20 years, the independence fighters, who had crossed the river from
Until the beginning of 1930, it had been under the influence of the Independence Army. Later on, following the mass immigration of the pioneers of the peasant union movement from the homeland, the ideological trend of communism began to gain the upper hand in the area of Taoquanli. From the latter half of 1936, small units of the KPRA frequented the area, exerting revolutionary influence on the inhabitants. Taoquanli and the surrounding area were covered with ARF organizations.
Frequent visits by the People’s Revolutionary Army and its successive victories in Taoquanli and its vicinity heightened the spirits of the people and imbued them with fighting zeal. Indeed, they struck terror in the hearts of the enemy.
Here is one episode to illustrate how frightened the enemy were.
There was a spring in front of the school in Taoquanli. The spring water was so cold that if you drank it on a boiling summer day, you could feel your teeth chatter. On hearing that the spring water was especially good, the Japanese police weighed it on scales to explain why. It was heavier than ordinary water.
“Such spring makes the eyes of the Taoquanli scoundrels dark and sparkling. They are all associates of the guerrillas.”
The enemy attempted to close up the spring. On learning of this news, Jong Tong Chol, the village head, said to the policemen, “The guerrillas drink this spring water on their way. If they find out that the spring has been closed up, won’t they bring you to account?”
The enemy did not dare close up the spring.
In brief, the mass foundation of Taoquanli was favourable and the revolutionary force enjoyed the upper hand.
Although busy with farm work, Kim Jong Suk visited other people’s houses at nights to become acquainted with them. Then she familiarized herself with the names of the houses—Pukchong house, Kapsan house,
“After taking charge of a class, teachers familiarize themselves with the names of their pupils, from the roll call, in order to mix with the pupils. I felt that political operatives are no different from the teachers. How can they mix with the people, when they don’t know their names?”
This is what Kim Jong Suk said to Kim Phyong, after finishing her task in Taoquanli.
As instructed by Headquarters, she placed most emphasis on work with the women and made frequent contacts with them. Up until that point there was no women’s organization in Taoquanli. Absorbed in household affairs, most women did not know what was happening in the world. To make matters worse, the old men and women severely restricted them. When any woman glimpsed into night school out of a desire to learn letters, the old men raised a fuss, as if a great disaster had happened.
Kim Jong Suk concluded that the revolutionary transformation of women in Taoquanli could only be expedited via efficient work with the elderly. Compared to the young, who were sensitive, the old people were bigots. Although they bemoaned their fate, they never thought about carving out their own destiny. Unless the old people were brought to their consciousness, the rallying of young people to organizations could not be conducted without a hitch. In fact, she had considerable trouble, owing to the old people and women on several occasions.
The experience of our activities in
Kim Jong Suk naturally respected and treated old people warmly. When I heard of her experience of work with the elderly in Taoquanli, I did not feel that the work had been deliberate. Kim Jong Suk did not regard people as one to be educated; she looked on them as simple and common men and women. Even if she met an individual she had to win over for her work, she did not consider him or her to be educated and herself as educator; she treated him or her just as she would attend to her tender neighbour. In this way she became the people’s daughter and their neighbour trusted by them. These were the basic characteristics of Kim Jong Suk as an underground operative.
As I myself have keenly experienced throughout my life, a man must think of himself as a son, servant and friend of the people to mix with them and at the same time regard them as his parents, brothers, sisters and teachers. Anyone who purports to be the teacher of the people, a bureaucrat reigning over them and leader governing them, cannot mix with them or enjoy their trust. The people do not open up their minds to such individuals.
Kim Jong Suk did not leave the house without doing anything, even if she had only dropped in for a minute; she chopped firewood, brought water and pounded grain with a mill for the family. Her devotion to the villagers was earnest enough to bring a flower into bloom on a rock. In this way, the old people began to follow her. She achieved the breakthrough in transforming Taoquanli in a revolutionary fashion.
One day the landlord in Liugedong banished his young kitchen maid, suffering from typhoid, into a hut on the mountain. Nobody dared to take care of that pitiable girl. On hearing this news, Kim Jong Suk went to the hut without hesitation and nursed her, sharing bed and meals with her.
Her comrades rushed to the hut on learning the news and tried to dissuade her, saying, “If you get infected in this risky humanitarian venture for the hopeless girl and something happens to you, what will happen to the important task assigned to you by Headquarters and who will be responsible? You can nurse her, but do not share her bed and meals.”
Smiling, Kim Jong Suk comforted them, saying, “Don’t worry, and please go back. If we can’t save a child for fear of our lives, how can we restore the country and rescue our fellow countrymen? I am determined to sacrifice my life for the sake of the people, so I fear nothing.”
Her comrades could not bring her out of the hut.
Kim Jong Suk rescued the young girl in the long run. At last the people in Taoquanli began to call her “our dear Ok Sun”. When they happened to get salted mackerel, they called for “our Ok Sun”; when a ceremony for a one-hundred-day-old baby was held, they asked for “our Ok Sun”. Kim Jong Suk was their daughter, granddaughter and sister and indispensable in their lives.
When she took tender care of the villagers, she paid deep attention, ensuring the safety of Kim Jae Su, who was busy accelerating the transformation of Xiagangqu in a revolutionary way.
In February that year, while distributing among the ARF organizations the Samil Wolgan we had sent from the mountain, Kim Jae Su was caught by the enemy holding one last copy. In the police station, he pretended to be illiterate and kept repeating, “I got it on the mountain, when I collected firewood. I’m going to roll tobacco with it. Why do you take it away? Please give it back to me immediately.”
Thinking that he was an ignoramus, they set him free for a while. However, they continued their investigations in secret.
After covering Xiagangqu area under the pseudonym of Kim Won Dal, Kim Jae Su had settled in the house of Ri Hyo Jun in the main hamlet of Taoquanli and changed his full name to Ri Yong Jun based on the common part of the name of Ri Hyo Jun, in order to disguise himself as his cousin.
Kim Jong Suk discussed with Kim Jae Su an effective way to put an end to the enemy’s secret investigation. They reached agreement that the best method would be to demonstrate to the enemy “Ri Yong Jun’s stupidity”.
According to their script, a fuss was raised the next day in Ri Hyo Jun’s house, disturbing the whole village. Ri Hyo Jun’s young wife committed a scandalous act, beating with a paddle her husband’s “cousin” dependent on her family, and expelling him. She wailed loudly, saying that her family was now as poor as a church mouse, because her husband’s stupid cousin had constantly stolen her family’s property for gambling.
At the same time as his wife’s fuss, Ri Hyo Jun called in at the police station and said that his family had been ruined by his stupid cousin, who knew nothing other than gambling and implored them to strike his brother’s name off the census record and expel him.
Meanwhile, the “stupid cousin” called in at the police station carrying a copy of the Samil Wolgan proudly and asked, “I’ll give you this book you are fond of. But, for God’s sake, dissuade Hyo Jun and his wife from beating and expelling me.”
Wide-eyed at the Samil Wolgan, they asked him where he had got it.
Kim Jae Su replied that he had picked it up at Sanpudong, where the guerrillas and Japanese army had fought the other day, and said, “Frankly speaking, I got the book you took away from me the other day on that battlefield, but I cheated you into thinking that I got it on
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