The 28th of December is the 60th anniversary of the publication of the work “On Eliminating Dogmatism and Formalism and Establishing Juche in Ideological Work” by the great leader President Kim Il Sung.This is probably one of the most important documents of the 20th century. It was published at a time when modern revisionism appeared in the international communist movement and was being spread (or actually forced on others) through the medium of great-power chauvinism. It inspired the people of the DPRK to blaze a new path blasting away flunkeyism and dogmatism
During the mid 50s within the DPRK , a country sandwiched between great powers , the sycophants towards great powers, dogmatists and factionalists accustomed to swallowing up and taking their cue from foreign forces, indiscriminately slandered and opposed the original lines and policies that the Workers’ Party of Korea had put forward after the war, such as the original policy on agricultural co-operativisation and the line of socialist industrialisation and the building of an independent national economy . Instead the factionalists tried to advocate only the foreign ones. At the same time, the great-power chauvinists were attempting to keep the DPRK at their beck and call, forcing it to join the Warsaw Pact and Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (CMEA).
Historically the habit of fawning on great powers or flunkeyism or sycophancy had been a great problem within Korea . It literally cost the country its independence as the feudal rulers of Korea did not organise the defence of the country but instead believing relying on foreign powers. During the period after Korea’s liberation in 1945 and during the Fatherland Liberation War the need to establish Juche became ever more apparent.
Attaching primary importance to establishing Juche in ideological work, President Kim Il Sung made a historic speech to the Party propaganda and agitation workers in December 1955. In this speech, titled On Eliminating Dogmatism and Formalism and Establishing Juche in Ideological Work, he set out the important task of establishing Juche in the ideological work of the Party.
“What is Juche in our Party’s ideological work? What are we doing? We are not engaged in any other country’s revolution, but solely in the
Korean revolution. This, the Korean revolution, determines the essence of Juche in the ideological work of our Party. Therefore, all ideological work must be subordinated to the interests of the Korean revolution.”
In order to establish Juche in the Party’s ideological work, he stressed that it was imperative for them to eliminate any tendency towards national nihilism, become well versed in Korean history, geography and customs, and deeply study the history of the Korean people’s struggle and the revolutionary traditions of the Party, and give wide publicity to them. He added that they must do away with the sycophantic attitude towards great powers, diligently study Korean things, and master the Party’s lines and policies, by which they should educate the Party members and other working people. He continued to emphasize that Marxism - Leninism and foreign experiences should not be accepted dogmatically but be applied creatively in accordance with the specific situation of Korea.
Juche does not mean the total rejection of any foreign experience or the experience of the international revolutionary movement .
As President Kim Il Sung so lucidly explained;
“Hearing us say that it is necessary to establish Juche, some comrades might take it simply and form a wrong idea that we need not learn from foreign countries. That would be quite wrong. We must learn from the good experiences of socialist countries.
The important thing is to know what we are learning from. The aim we pursue in learning is to turn the advanced experience of the Soviet Union and other socialist countries to good account in our Korean revolution.
During the war, Ho Ga I, Kim Jae Uk and Pak Il U once quarreled stupidly among themselves over the problems of how to carry on political work in the army. Those from the Soviet Union insisted upon the Soviet method and those from China stuck to the Chinese method. So they quarreled, some advocating the Soviet fashion and others the Chinese way. That was sheer nonsense.
It does not matter whether you use the right hand or the left, whether you use a spoon or chopsticks at the table. No matter how you eat, it is all the same insofar as food is put into your mouth, isn't it? What is the need of being particular about "fashion" in wartime? When we carry on political work to strengthen our People's Army and win battles, any method will do so long as our aim is achieved. Yet Ho Ga I and Pak Il U squabbled about such a trifle. This only weakens discipline within the Party. At that time the Party centre maintained that we should learn all the good things from both the Soviet Union and China and, on this basis, work out a method of political work suitable to the actual conditions of our country”
I have quoted the above passage in order to demonstrate the baneful influence of flunkeyism in Korea even during the period of the Fatherland Liberation War when some factionalists indulged in pointless polemics when they should have been finding Korean style solutions to the problems of the day
It was from that very year that the Party’s struggle to establish Juche and eliminate dogmatism and formalism was combined with the struggle against modern revisionism. As President Kim Il Sung said
“In 1955, therefore, our Party set forth the definite policy of establishing Juche, and has been persistently urging an energetic ideological struggle to carry it through ever since. The year 1955 marked a turning point in our Party's consistent struggle against dogmatism. It was also at that time, in fact, that we started our struggle against modern revisionism that had emerged within the socialist camp. Our struggle against dogmatism was thus linked up with the struggle against modern revisionism".
At a session of the Presidium of the Party Central Committee held in February 1956, following the meeting of Party propaganda and agitation workers, he took measures to improve the form and content of the Party’s ideological work in a comprehensive way, and equip the Party members and other working people with the Juche idea. In January and March of the same year he set out a policy and ways for developing the traditional national art and culture in a Juche-oriented way.
As a result of an intense struggle to establish Juche in the ideological sphere, a fresh turn was effected in the ideological life and way of thinking of Party members and other working people. I think it can be truly said that the establishment of Juche was a revolution in itself which led to greater achievements in all fields .
Today People’s Korea stands out as the most independent country in the world was is not a copy of another country and does not read the face of another country.This is a result of the establishment of Juche.
Chairmán Juche Idea Study Group of England
President Association For the Study of Songun Politics UK
Official Delegate Korean Friendship Association UK