Kim Jong Un: ‘Thanks to the anti-pandemic forces that protected us’

As the Workers Party of Korea turns 75, the country holds a huge military parade, celebrating its latest victories over covid, natural disasters and imperialist threats.

In October 2020, as the pandemic raged and under the ongoing strain of US sanctions, the Workers Party of Korea celebrated its 75th anniversary. Kim Jong Un took the opportunity to extend heartfelt gratitude and sympathy to the Korean people, and offered a vision of courage, determination and hope for the future of their revolution.

Comrade Kim Jong Un, supreme leader of the party, state and armed forces of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), delivered a speech at the military parade held to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the founding of the Workers Party of Korea (WPK) in October 2020. The following gives the main thrust of what he said.


Dear comrades,

The founding anniversary of our glorious party has come.

Greeting the 75th founding anniversary of our great party, I, on behalf of the central committee of the Workers Party of Korea, extend heartfelt congratulations to all those who have glorified this October holiday with great honour and pride.

Tribute to the Korean people

On this night of the great holiday, the streets in the capital city and this square are so splendid and seethe with pleasure and pride, but we must not forget that this glorious moment of today is being defended by the many party members, workers and service personnel of our revolutionary armed forces who are performing unassuming efforts and devotion across the country.

How many people have made devoted efforts overcoming harsh circumstances this year so as to bring about and defend this glorious moment of today!

How many challenges have we overcome to come as far as here!

Heroic role of the armed forces

In particular, our service personnel performed devotion on the anti-epidemic front and the front of removing the aftereffects of the natural disasters that we unexpectedly had to face this year. No one could look at their patriotic and heroic devotion without shedding tears of gratitude.

They would say that defending their country, people and revolution is a task inherent to the People’s Army, but the pains they have taken are great.

They have undertaken to perform so many tasks and have taken such great pains.

This is why I feel deep regret and pain in my heart that they are not all here with us on this glorious night.

At this very moment, many of our service personnel are courageously striving on the anti-epidemic front and at the rehabilitation project sites far away from this glorious Kim Il Sung Square in defence of the security of the state and safety of the people.

Our army is performing its mission as a motive force of national defence with such credit in the face of unforeseen challenges posed by the epidemic and the forces of nature, as well as by military threats from hostile forces.

I extend the highest tribute to their ardent, loyal and filial devotion to our state and people, and warm thanks to all service personnel.

Tribute to the cadres of the Workers Party of Korea (WPK) and other working people

I also offer my militant encouragement and thanks to my most dependable combatants of the divisions of the WPK members from the capital city, our hardcore force.

They are patriots who deserve to be present here, but they volunteered, after completing their tasks in rehabilitation projects, to other disaster areas instead of returning to their homes in Pyongyang.

My militant greetings and thanks go also to other working people across the country.

Wish for health and happiness

I hope that only happiness and joy will come to the families that have settled down in new villages and homes after getting rid of the aftereffects of the natural calamities, and to other families across the country.

I hope that our children’s happy dreams will come true.

Availing myself of this opportunity, I offer my heartfelt consolation to all those around the world who are still combating the disease caused by the malignant virus, and do pray from the bottom of my heart that the health, happiness and laughter of all people will be guaranteed.

I also send this warm wish of mine to our dear fellow countrymen in the south, and hope that this health crisis will come to an end as soon as possible and the day will come when the north and south take each other’s hand again.

Overcoming adversity

We have gathered on this October celebration square with valuable successes and fruits of labour, which we have achieved with our own efforts. It was not so easy for us to come as far as we have. We had to fight one arduous struggle after another and overcome countless ordeals.

Although the 75-year-long history of our party was fraught with difficulties, every day and every step was truly arduous and trying from the outset of this year in particular, as unexpected and grave challenges cropped up.
We have come to this meaningful place with the pride and honour of having braved them all.

This gathering, which the world’s people will admire, demonstrates that we have overcome all the calamities that blocked our way and that we have attained with success our fighting goals.

Celebration day is a day of gratitude

Today we are greeting the 75th founding anniversary of our party on a grand scale.

No other country in the world would celebrate a party’s founding anniversary as a happy holiday and a grand auspicious event of all its people in the way that our country does.

As I stand here tonight, which is emotive and delightful and brims over with the great joy of all our people, I am afraid that I don’t know what to say first to them.

I thought over what I would say first at this moment, when we will be looking back upon every page of our party’s 75-year history, so filled with glory, but my heartfelt, sincere word for our people is only one, thanks.

First of all, I thank them for being healthy and free from disease.

I wanted to say this without fail.

I thank them for their good health without any one of them having fallen victim to the malignant virus.

The fact that we have defended all our people from the harmful epidemic disease sweeping the whole world can be said to be a natural duty and success of our party. However, I am moved by this success, and as I see their healthy appearance, I can find no word other than thanks.

Today’s victory, which is striking the world with admiration, is a great victory achieved by our people themselves.

For our party, the life of every one of our people is more precious than anything else, and their good health means the very existence of our party, state and everything on this land.

In this world, however, there are too many unstable elements threatening and trying to harm the priceless life of our people.

So, as a matter of fact, at the beginning of this year, I had big worries and fear owing to the onset of the world health crisis and unfavourable situation around us.

But our people rose to their feet with great perseverance in absolute support of the measures taken by the party and the state, and not only safeguarded their destiny resolutely but also bravely overcame severe hardships and trials.

But for such excellent people who worry, care and protect one another, and but for the socialist society, in which these people live in cooperation with a high sense of patriotism and a high level of self-consciousness, we would not have prevented the horrible catastrophe.

As all our people turned out as one in the struggle for defending their state, themselves and their children, becoming the motive force of the anti-epidemic work of their own accord, the country’s anti-epidemic sector, which was backward and lacking many things it needed, could be revitalised, and anti-epidemic stability, which is inconceivable to others, could be maintained.

It is very gratifying and encouraging for me that everybody lives in a large harmonious family, although life is not affluent yet, and they are healthy without even one of them having fallen victim to the evil virus.

There are no grateful people in the world other than ours, who truly understand the difficult situations facing the state and cope with them, regarding them as their household affairs.

Self-sacrificing patriotism of the Korean people

On this planet at present, our country is the only one that is faced with huge challenges and difficulties, like dealing with the anti-epidemic emergency and recovering from the catastrophic natural disasters, at a time when everything is in short supply owing to harsh and prolonged sanctions.

All these hardships are undoubtedly a heavy burden and pain for every family and every citizen in our country.

However, our people are grateful patriots who place national affairs before family concerns, share every difficulty experienced by the state, and firmly support their country with their sincere efforts.

That is why our party braves all sorts of national hardships by believing in and relying on the people, who always turn out as one if it unburdens itself of the situations facing the country.

Importance to the party of having the people’s unstinting support

Our people have always been grateful to our party, but it is none other than themselves who surely deserve a bow of gratitude.

Over the past 75 years our people have supported the party single-heartedly and defended our sacred revolutionary cause by shedding sweat and even their blood unsparingly and unhesitatingly.

The secret of how our party, which has followed the revolutionary road, most arduous and beset with trials, has adorned this bloody road with victory and glory is that our people have sincerely trusted and supported it and defended its cause.

No one can think about even a moment of our party’s glorious 75-year history without our great people, an omnipotent creator of history. They have always provided it with wisdom and resourcefulness as a wise mentor, infused it with inexhaustible strength and courage, defended it at the cost of their lives, supported it sincerely and turned its plans and lines into reality.

When it called on them to bring about a great upsurge, the great people responded to it with the mettle of Chollima (a legendary horse in Korean and Chinese mythology – famed for its extraordinary speed, it has given its name to the indefatigable work ethic of socialist construction); when it mapped out an operation for grand construction, they responded to it with the speed campaign; they thus translated the party’s decisions without fail going through fire and water.

As these great people have always been with our party, it has always been firm and able to record miracles in the annals of this land, no matter what the adversity.

Seeing the images of our people, who have won victory for this great October holiday, overcoming all manner of hardships with boundless, loyal and filial devotion, indomitable fighting spirit and sincere efforts, I feel with great pride the almighty strength with which they would follow and defend the party for another 75, 750 years or even 7,500 years.

Our people have placed trust, as high as the sky and as deep as the sea, on me, but I have failed always to live up to it satisfactorily. I am really sorry for that.

Although I am entrusted with the important responsibility of leading this country, upholding the cause of the great comrades Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il, thanks to the trust of all the people, my efforts and sincerity have not been sufficient to rid our people of the difficulties in their life.

Our people, however, have always believed and absolutely trusted me, and supported my choice and determination, whatever it is.

Even if it may mean suffering more, our people’s trust in me and in our party is always absolute and steadfast.

Such ardent and sincere trust and encouragement is the most valuable wealth for me, which cannot be bartered with any fame or for millions of tons in gold – an inexhaustible strength which encourages me to have no fear and know no impossibility.

As I enjoy this greatest trust, which no one in this world can ever expect, I have been able to confront without hesitation all manner of challenges, making devoted efforts for the good of the people, jumping into do-or-die battles that might even lead to war, and coping with unprecedented disasters.

I will cherish it as the highest honour to have, serve and struggle for such excellent people.

I solemnly swear once again in this place that I will live up to the people’s trust without fail, even if my body is torn and crushed to pieces. It is our party’s and my first and foremost mission to firmly defend our people, hold them in greater respect and help them lead a happy life, envying nothing.

Military development

Our party has already built up the strongest military capability for safeguarding peace, to defend socialism, the dignity and lifeline of our people, and to help our people enjoy the benefits of prosperity generation after generation on this land, free from war.

Today’s ranks lined in gallant array in this military parade clearly show how the Workers Party of Korea has trained its revolutionary army and how powerful that army’s strength is.

As anyone can clearly see today, even when compared with the military parade held here to celebrate the 70th founding anniversary of the WPK just five years ago, the modernity of our military forces has improved remarkably.

We have a powerful contingent of faithful and competent personnel in the sector of defence science and technology, along with many workers in the munitions industry, all of whom are firmly equipped with their party’s revolutionary ideology and truly serve the interests of their revolution.

Our military capability has developed and changed to such an extent that no one can belittle it.

We have built a deterrent with which we can satisfactorily control and manage any military threats that we are facing now or may face in the future.

Our military capability is growing fast and improving both quantity as well as quantitu, in our own style and in accordance with our demands and our timetable.

Our party has set out the military capability we need in order to overpower in advance the forces that dare to threaten or infringe on the rights to independence and existence of our state and people, assuring that we have a most assured national defence capability. It has made every effort to possess military forces that can achieve the purpose and is now steadily attaining its new targets.

We will continue to strengthen our war deterrent, our righteous self-defence means, so as to contain and control all dangerous provocations and intimidatory acts by hostile forces, including their sustained and aggravating nuclear threat.

Military strength is a force for peace, not war

Our war deterrent, which is intended to defend the rights to independence and existence of our state and safeguard peace in the region, will never be abused or used as a means for pre-emptive strike.

But, if, and only if, any force infringes upon the security of our state and attempts to use military force against us, I will enlist all our most powerful offensive strength to punish them.

I never want our military strength to be aimed at anyone else. We clarify that our war deterrent is not being developed for aiming at others. We are developing it in order to defend ourselves.

If we don’t have our own strength, the only thing we can to do is to wipe the streaming tears and blood though our fists are clenched.

Our party, with powerful military strength, will guarantee the sovereignty of the country and the security of its territory, safeguarding the safety, peace and future of the state and people.

Thanks to our revolutionary armed forces, equipped with the revolutionary ideology of the WPK, unbounded loyalty and filial piety to the country and people, and powerful up-to-date weapons embodying the strength and soul of our people, no aggressive force dares to check the advance of the Korean people.

Plans for the future

What is left now is to ensure that our people enjoy a sufficient and civilised life to the full, free from difficulties.

Our party will continue to expand all policies and measures aimed at improving the people’s wellbeing and providing more benefits to them; we aim to bring about as soon as possible the prosperous society that our people are dreaming of.

Sharing destiny with the people in the face of severe trials and experiencing the united strength of our people, our party has come to know well what it should do in the future.

The eighth congress of the Workers Party of Korea will advance plans and detailed targets for this work, and our party’s struggle to provide the people with happiness will develop onto a new stage.

The further we develop, the more rampant the reactionary forces of all hues may become, and the more unexpected trials we may face. However, these will be nothing compared with what we have already overcome, and we have the strength and confidence to face and defeat them all.

The single-hearted unity of the party and the masses, consolidated in the long course of the struggle, along with the talent force and asset for self-sustenance provided by our socialism – these will surely become a powerful force that propels and accelerates our advance.

Our party and people, who have achieved things that others can only dream of by surmounting immeasurable trials and hardships, will start their advance towards new development and prosperity with greater courage and confidence, unusual passion and preparedness.

I will ensure that all party organisations, the government, and state and military organs make more and more strict demands on themselves, directing strenuous efforts and working with sincerity for our people so as to bring a better tomorrow to them.

The ideal of our people is great, and the day when it is realised will surely come.

I will direct all my efforts to realising the great ideal so as to ensure that innovations, development and substantial changes that benefit everyone are made in the course of our socialist construction.

Strength through struggle

Comrades, we have become strong and are becoming stronger in the midst of trials.

Time is on our side.

Let us all advance vigorously towards a bright future of socialism, towards a fresh victory!

Last, I once again extend thanks to all the people for being in good health, free from any disease.

And I also extend my heartfelt thanks to them for invariably trusting in our party.

Long live our great people!