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Juche 97 (2008): Joint New Year Editorial of Leading Newspap
Joint New Year Editorial of Leading Newspapers in DPRK

Pyongyang, January 1 (KCNA) -- Rodong Sinmun, Joson Inmingun and Chongnyon Jonwi today released the joint New Year editorial "Glorify This Year of the 60th Anniversary of the Founding of the DPRK as a Year of Historical Turn Which Will Go Down in the History of the Country" on the occasion of the New Year, Juche 97 (2008).

The following are excerpts from the editorial:

Today we are greeting the New Year Juche 97 (2008) with a great ambition and optimism in the hope-filled future of socialist Korea.
Our cause of building a great, prosperous and powerful country which made a vigorous advance under the leadership of the great Workers' Party of Korea has entered a new historical stage. At present, when a bright morning is breaking in this land dignified for Songun to promise prosperity, our soldiers and people are full of pride in being victors and of militant mettle, and the whole country is seething with an unprecedented spirit of creation and advance.
Last year Juche 96 (2007), a year of proud victories, the great vitality of our Party's Songun-based revolutionary line was fully testified and a great advance was made in building a thriving country.
Last year the firmness of our ideology and traditions and the political and military might of Songun Korea were demonstrated far and wide.
By commemorating the 95th birth anniversary of President Kim Il Sung and the 75th anniversary of the founding of the Korean People's Army in a grand way, we demonstrated to the full the unshakable faith of our Party and people to complete the revolutionary cause of Juche pioneered on Mt. Paektu and the might of the army which has been prepared as an invincible, elite force. The road we are taking is the road of Juche, the road of Songun, opened by Kim Il Sung; the objective of our advance is a great, prosperous and powerful socialist country; and our might is the single-minded unity of the soldiers and people rallied around the Party.
A prospect for a fresh leap forward was opened up in the building of an economic power.
Technological restructuring was actively undertaken in the mining, metal, chemical and light industries and various other fields of the national economy, and construction of large-scale hydropower stations was vigorously promoted, resulting in the consolidation of the raw-materials and power-generating bases and the consumer-goods production bases in the country. Through the effort for setting up a self-supporting production system that relies on our own resources and technology, the independent character of the industry was further strengthened. The great stride made last year in the socialist economic construction gives us confidence that our economy is pulling round with great potentials.
Last year the socialist culture of the Songun era was brought into full efflorescence, leading the whole country to become vibrant with a militant spirit and optimism.
The creation of genuine prototypes of mass-based culture and art by our soldiers and workers and the production of works of musical art of our fashion are a valuable success that ushered in a new heyday of the developing socialist culture. A revolutionary way of cultural and emotional life prevailed across the country, and wonderful successes were achieved in the sports field giving delight to the people.
The principled stand and will of our Republic to safeguard peace and security in the Korean Peninsula and the rest of Northeast Asia and follow the road of independence to the end was strongly demonstrated. The international prestige of Songun Korea was raised to an unprecedented level, and the number of countries establishing good-neighbourly and friendly relations with us is on the increase. Today's developments show that it was absolutely correct for us to have followed the road of Songun and the cause of justice will surely emerge victorious.
The proud victories and successes we achieved last year in the political, military, economic, cultural, diplomatic and all other realms are brilliant fruition of Kim Jong Il's outstanding strategy and tactics, his iron will and his tireless leadership.
Kim Jong Il put forward the revolutionary policy of bringing about a fresh upswing in economic construction by relying on the victories and successes achieved in the Songun revolution while further strengthening the might of the socialist country powerful in the political and military realms, and called the entire Party, the whole army and all the people to its implementation. The great personality of Kim Jong Il who brought about historical events with outstanding leadership ability and noble affection for the country and fellow people, events that excited all the compatriots, struck the world with admiration. The present eye-opening reality which is being created under his leadership instills in our soldiers and people great confidence and optimism in the fact that the day of victory in the building of a great, prosperous and powerful country is not far.
The New Year Juche 97 (2008) is a year of gigantic struggle, a year of jubilation in the national history, when a great change will be brought about in the history of our country and our revolution.
Kim Jong Il said:
"We must make our country, our motherland, ever more prosperous true to President Kim Il Sung's intention and cause."
This year we are commemorating the 60th anniversary of the DPRK, our glorious motherland.
Our Republic is a great people's country which embodies the Juche idea, the most dignified, invincible socialist power and the cradle of the eternal life and happiness of our people. The founding of the DPRK by Kim Il Sung was a historic event which made our people an independent and mighty revolutionary people and ushered in the building of a socialist state centred on the masses.
The 60 years of the Republic is a history of gigantic changes in which it has risen to a power independent, self-sufficient and self-reliant in defence, writing a heroic epic of creation and construction under the leadership of the Party and the leaders, and also a sacred course through which the country has demonstrated the superiority and invincibility of socialism of our own style in the crucible of the anti-imperialist struggle. The history of our Republic is adorned with the immortal revolutionary annals of our Party which has brilliantly carried forward the cause of building a prosperous and powerful country of Kim Il Sung, the founding father of socialist Korea and the Republic. It is a great honour and pride for our army and people to greet the 60th anniversary of the founding of the DPRK in the exciting period when the dignity and might of the country have risen to a high level and a heyday of prosperity and grandeur unprecedented in the national history has been ushered in by dint of Kim Jong Il's Songun-based politics.
In 2012 we will greet the 100th birth anniversary of Kim Il Sung. It was his lifetime wish and cause to build a great, prosperous and powerful socialist country on this land, a country in which the national power is strong, everything thrives and the people live envying nothing in the world. It is our Party's determination and will to raise our economy and our people's livelihood to a high level by relying on the strong political and military might consolidated in the tempest of the Songun revolution, and thus open wide in 2012 the gate to a great, prosperous and powerful country without fail.
Now is an era of great changes like the post-war days when our people built a socialist power in leaps and bounds through the grand march of Chollima in response to the call of the Party. In order to carry out in the near future the grand plan and objective set by the Party, we should make a fresh leap forward on all fronts of socialist construction, drumming up support for the general advance from the campaign of this year.
"Glorify this year of the 60th anniversary of the founding of the DPRK as a year of historical turn which will go down in the history of the country!"--this is the militant slogan that we have to hold high.
The political and ideological might, the quintessence of the national strength of Songun Korea, should be brought into fuller play.
The present general onward march is an ideological one, and the fundamental guarantee for building a great, prosperous and powerful country is to motivate the mental power of the soldiers and people. Holding fast to the Juche-oriented theory of the importance of ideology as a mighty sword, we should direct primary effort to bringing into fullest play the mental power of all the soldiers and people, which is more powerful than nuclear weapons.
The kernel of the mental power of our soldiers and people lies in defending the leader at the risk of their lives. We should make sure that the spirit of defending the leader at the cost of one's life and the spirit of single-minded unity are carried forward as the eternal soul and lifeblood of Kim Il Sung's nation. The whole Party, the entire army and all the people should firmly unite behind the headquarters of the revolution and single-mindedly uphold its ideology and leadership.
The Juche idea and Songun idea of our Party constitute a great banner for national prosperity and a basis of the mental power of our people. We should arm ourselves with the Juche idea and Songun idea more thoroughly and conduct the revolution and construction in our own style, in the mode of Songun politics, in any circumstances.
Socialism is the destiny and future of our people. Everyone should cherish the firm faith in the fact that Korean-style socialism our people chose and built is the best in the world and the noble view of life that no life is more fulfilling than the one devoted to society, collective, country and people. It is necessary to preserve the Juche character and national identity, thoroughly observe the revolutionary and class principles, and keep alive the true nature of socialism in all fields of social life. It is imperative to resolutely smash the enemy's reactionary ideological and cultural infiltration and psychological warfare and not to tolerate any elements that undermine our system and corrode our socialist morality and culture and our way of life.
We should constantly increase the military strength of our Republic by holding fast to the Party's Songun-based revolutionary line.
Strong defence capabilities are symbolic of the independent dignity of Songun Korea and a basic guarantee for its prosperity. Our Party is consistent in its revolutionary stand to hold the idea of giving prominence to the military affairs as the basic strategy in building a great, prosperous and powerful nation.
The Korean People's Army is the backbone of self-defensive capabilities, and the might of the socialist military power is precisely that of the KPA.
Under the slogan of "Defend the leadership of the revolution headed by the great Comrade Kim Jong Il at the cost of our lives!" the KPA should intensify the campaign to win the title of O Jung Hup-led Seventh Regiment so as to demonstrate the might of the strong revolutionary army of Mt. Paektu fully prepared as the ranks of human bullets and bombs guarding the leader at the risk of their lives.
Building up the national defence capacity is a nationwide, all-people undertaking. Priority should be given to the development of the defence industry as required by the line of developing the economy in the Songun era in order to consolidate the material foundations of the self-defensive military capacity. It is important to make the spirit of giving priority to the military affairs prevail in the whole society, strengthen militias including the Worker-Peasant Red Guards and the Young Red Guards and turn the whole country into an impregnable fortress. The army and people should secure unity of idea and fighting morale and continue to give full play to the spirit of supporting and helping each other in order to consolidate rock-solid the army-people unity, the pride of Songun Korea.
The entire Party, the whole country and all the people should launch a general offensive to build an economic power.
Today, the economy is the front of main efforts in the building of a great, prosperous and powerful nation. The main orientation in the building of an economic power in this period is to steadily strengthen the Juche character of the national economy and update it on the basis of latest science and technology so as to give full play to the advantages and vitality of our independent national economy. We should step up the building of an economic power by adhering to the principle of technically modernizing the economy while preserving the specific features of our economic structure, the principle of making people enjoy substantial benefit while ensuring the greatest possible profitability and the principle of developing external economic relations while putting main stress on tapping all domestic resources and potentials.
This year we should make decisive efforts to shore up the basic industries, the vanguard sectors of the national economy, which constitute the lifeline of the socialist economic construction.
The power industry sector should push ahead with the construction of large-scale hydroelectric power stations and minor power plants and raise the level of modernization of generating equipment to boost electricity production. Investment in the coal industry should be increased and precedence be given to prospecting and tunnelling to produce and supply enough coal needed for the economic development and the people's living. The metal industry sector should perfect and positively apply the iron-producing method of our style to turn out more iron and steel. The rail transport sector should keep the means of transport in good condition and reinforce them, establish strict discipline like the army and organize and command transport scrupulously to meet the growing demand for transport. Everything should be subordinated to shoring up the power, coal and metal industries and railway transport, production and technical modernization in the vanguard sectors be planned and directed in a unified way, and cooperation between these sectors be promoted.
Efforts should be channeled into the geological prospecting and mining industry to develop and make the most of the country's resources, and an upswing be brought about in production in the machine, chemical and building-materials industries and forestry.
The people's-living-first policy should be pursued.
This policy reflects our Party's firm determination and will to make our people, who have pushed their way through trying ordeal and hardship, lead an affluent and cultured life to their hearts' content and give fullest play to the advantages of the people-centred socialism of our style. We should make this year, which marks the 60th anniversary of the DPRK, a worthwhile and delightful year which sees a substantial change in improving the people's standard of living.
At present there is no more urgent and important task than solving the problem of food. The agricultural sector should radically increase grain output by planting high-yielding varieties on a wide scale and introducing advanced farming technology and methods as required by the Party's policy of bringing about a drastic change in agriculture. It should consolidate the achievements made over the past decade in implementing the Party's policy of improving potato farming and cultivate beans well as the KPA does. Agricultural officials and working people should make great efforts to do farming by themselves with the attitude of being masters.
The light industry sector should continuously increase the items of consumer goods, ensure their high quality and thus fully satisfy people's demand for them. All the sectors of the national economy should increase the production of daily necessities by tapping the latent reserves to the maximum.
The construction sector should push ahead with the building of Pyongyang, the capital of revolution, in such a bold way as it built Kwangbok and Thongil streets and construct a great number of rural houses as excellent as those at a village in Migok-ri. It should firmly maintain the principle of giving precedence to the building of infrastructure and enhance the sense of responsibility and role of city management officials. Land development and environmental protection, like afforestation, should be undertaken in a far-sighted way, so as to be of lasting significance.
The policies of the Party and state for the people should be better implemented. Health officials should work as devotedly as the health officials in the Chollima era to promote the people's health, and thus give full play to the advantages of the people-oriented public health system of the country. They should arrange the rest centres and sanatoria, run them on a normal basis and lay out the scenic places as cultural resorts for the people.
The role of science and technology should be decisively raised in building an economic power.
Science and technology precisely means an economic power. The climate of attaching importance to science and technology should be created across the country, and the high-tech production system be set up in industrial establishments. Scientists and technicians should actively solve pressing scientific and technological problems arising in building an economic power, and all the sectors and units should launch a vigorous mass drive for technological innovation. Men of talent decide everything. A great number of personnel capable of taking a share in building a thriving nation should be trained by effecting a radical change in education as required by the Songun era and the IT age.
Guidance over and management of economic affairs should be conducted in a responsible manner. It is necessary to establish the strict order and discipline of concentrating all economic work on the Cabinet and organizing and carrying them out under its unified command.
The basic way to win victory in the general offensive for the building of a great, prosperous and powerful country is to regard the exploits of our Party in the Songun leadership as guidelines and do everything the way Kim Jong Il does.
Kim Jong Il's exploits in the Songun leadership contain the invincible revolutionary philosophy our army and people should regard as their motto, and embrace in a comprehensive way the strategy and ways for the building of a great, prosperous and powerful country.
All the people should stir themselves up with extraordinary patriotic zeal and creativity in order to bring about a great change in this year's socialist construction.
Our people are a heroic people who built socialism on the ruins and a stout-hearted people who turned the "Arduous March" into the march to paradise through severe ordeals. We should all become standard-bearers of struggle and heroes of creation to leave remarkable trace of life in the efforts for the prosperity of the motherland and greet with dignity the grand festival in September with proud labour achievements made for the motherland.
Our officials should stand in the van holding aloft the banner in today's general offensive. They should be genuine commanding personnel of the revolution to be appreciated by the people and remembered by the leader by working with greatest effort at their revolutionary posts as the officials did in the period of laying the foundations of the Party for inheriting the cause of Juche in the 1970s.
All the Party organizations should enhance their militant function and role.
They should hold fast to the work with people as their main task and intensify Party work to rally all the people around the Party more firmly and make the whole society filled with an atmosphere of enhanced political awareness. They should concentrate all their efforts on economic construction and the improving of the people's standard of living, and steer the administrative and economic work as required by the developing reality.
Young people are the reliable successors to our Party's Songun revolutionary cause and the most vital combat unit in socialist construction. Youth league organizations should put primary effort to ideological education to thoroughly prepare young people as youth heroes and human bullets and bombs in the Songun era who will defend the headquarters of the revolution at the cost of their lives. Young people should actively learn from the revolutionary spirit and style of work of their previous generations. They should display their youthful resources and valour at labour-consuming sectors of socialist construction as befit the Party's Songun youth vanguard.
Organizations of trade unions, agricultural workers' union and women's union should intensify their role as ideological educators to ensure that all their members and other working people perform great feats in the general march for the building of a great, prosperous and powerful country.
Last year witnessed a turning point in achieving national reunification.
The historic inter-Korean summit meeting was held in October and the Declaration for Development of North-South Relations and Peace and Prosperity adopted at the meeting amid great interest and expectation of all the compatriots. This was a significant event in advancing the cause of national reunification onto a new stage under the banner of the June 15 Joint Declaration. With our nation's enthusiasm for reunification mounting higher than ever before, the inter-Korean high-level negotiations took place and the road to many-sided cooperation was opened. The present reality gives us firm conviction that no force on earth can check the current of the June 15 reunification era and, when the nation united as one launches a vigorous struggle, the cause of national reunification will be realized without fail.
All compatriots in the north and the south and abroad should conduct the national reunification movement more strenuously under the slogan of "Open up a new era of independent reunification and peace and prosperity by pooling the efforts of our nation!" The October 4 declaration for the development of north-south relations and peace and prosperity is an inspiring banner that propels the independent development and reunification of the nation and an action programme for applying the June 15 joint declaration to practice in an all-round way. By implementing the October 4 declaration thoroughly, we should shake off the hangovers from the age of confrontation, convert north-south relations into the by-our-nation-itself relationship not only in name but in reality and make a new history of peace and prosperity.
The main agent of the national reunification movement is the Korean nation, and dependence on the outside forces will never settle the country's reunification issue at any time. In any case the dignity and interests of the nation should be placed above anything else, and the issues related to national reunification be settled from a viewpoint of national independence and by our nation itself.
Pro-U.S. sycophancy and treachery of turning the back on the trend of the times towards reunification and hindering the reconciliation and unity of the nation should not be tolerated. Legal and institutional mechanisms should be adjusted in the interests of the development of inter-Korean relations and reunification.
The source of war should be removed and lasting peace be ensured. Peace is most precious for the Korean nation that has been living in the constant danger of war for more than half a century. All the Koreans should launch a vigorous anti-war, peace campaign to foil the war moves of the hawks at home and abroad. An end should be put to the U.S. policy hostile towards the DPRK and the Armistice Agreement be replaced with a peace pact. The aggressive joint military exercises and arms buildup should be discontinued and the U.S. military bases be abolished in south Korea. The idea of confrontation regarding the fellow countrymen as the archenemy should be discarded, the military tension be eased, and the elements of dispute be removed.
Inter-Korean cooperation is a noble patriotic undertaking for promoting the reconciliation and unity of the nation and achieving peace, prosperity and reunification. Inter-Korean economic cooperation should be encouraged in such a way that it is promoted in a diverse way and on the principle of serving the common interests and prosperity and satisfying each other's needs. Cooperation and exchanges between the north and south should be expanded and developed to make them contribute to national reunification substantially. Anyone who loves the country and the nation and wants reunification should make a characteristic contribution to the co-prosperity of the nation.
The political parties and organizations and people from all walks of life in the north and south should subordinate everything to achieving the fellow countrymen's desire for reunification by uniting firmly for the great cause of the nation regardless of their political ideals and principles or their political interests and policies.
All the fellow countrymen in the north and the south and abroad should make a vigorous nationwide effort for independent reunification, peace and prosperity under the "by our nation itself" banner to achieve national reunification at the earliest date.
At present, defending global peace and security and advancing along the road of independence are the irreversible trend of the times. The reality shows the strong-arm policy and arbitrariness of imperialism do not work anywhere. Under the banner of independence, peace and friendship, the DPRK will continue to make earnest efforts for stability on the Korean Peninsula and peace in the world and further develop relations of friendship and cooperation with all the countries that are friendly toward it.
Korean-style socialism that has tided over the storm and stress of history under the WPK's Songun leadership is vibrant with great vigour winning victory after victory, and the day is coming towards us when the building of a great, prosperous powerful country will emerge victorious. In the 60-year annals of the DPRK never has there been such a time as today when its dignity and power have reached the highest stage and the soldiers and people are full of confidence in the future and are burning with the enthusiasm for bringing about an upswing.
As there are the experienced and seasoned leadership of the WPK, the strong political and military might and the fervent patriotic zeal of all the soldiers and people, a great, prosperous and powerful socialist country of Juche will surely be built on this land and shine to the world.
Let us all work harder for the prosperity of the country and the completion of the revolutionary cause of Juche rallied closely around the headquarters of the revolution headed by Kim Jong Il.

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