Book about the history and life of Kim Il Sung, the founder and leader of North Korea.
Kim was the son of parents who fled to Manchuria during his childhood to escape the Japanese rule of Korea. He attended elementary school in Manchuria and, while still a student, joined a communist youth organization. He was arrested and jailed for his activities with the group in 1929–30. After Kim’s release from prison, he joined the Korean guerrilla resistance against the Japanese occupation sometime during the 1930s and adopted the name of an earlier legendary Korean guerrilla fighter against the Japanese. Kim was noticed by the Soviet military authorities, who sent him to the Soviet Union for military and political training. There he joined the local Communist Party.
During World War II, Kim led a Korean contingent as a major in the Soviet army. After the Japanese surrender in 1945, Korea was effectively divided between a Soviet-occupied northern half and a U.S.-supported southern half. At this time Kim returned with other Soviet-trained Koreans to establish a communist provisional government under Soviet auspices in what would become North Korea. He became the first premier of the newly formed Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in 1948, and in 1949 he became chairman of the Korean Workers’ (communist) Party.
Hoping to reunify Korea by force, Kim launched an invasion of South Korea in 1950, thereby igniting the Korean War. His attempt to extend his rule there was repelled by U.S. troops and other UN forces, however, and it was only through massive Chinese support that he was able to repel a subsequent invasion of North Korea by UN forces. The Korean War ended in a stalemate in 1953.
Kim Il Sung was leader of North Korea from 1948 until 1994 when he died. He outlived Stalin by 4 decades, Mao Zedong with 2, and stayed in power long enough to outrun 6 South Korean presidents, 9 USA presidents and 21 Japanese prime ministers. After his death his son Kim Jong Il became the leader of North Korea.
The North Korean goverment to this day refers Kim Il Sung as the Supreme Leader and the Eternal President.