Kim Jong Un hinted at the need for possible changes in military and governmental structures prior to May’s 7th Congress of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK), an “enlarged joint meeting” taking place this week indicated.
Kim said the meeting, which included participation from both the Central Committee of the WPK and the Korean People’s Army (KPA) Committee, would provide “important momentum” for North Korea as it prepares for the May congress, the Rodong Sinmun reported Thursday.
“The Korean People’s Army must head only in the direction where the supreme leader points,” Kim said during the speech. “Having monolithic leadership and ideology is the definitive solution to every victory.”
In addition, the North Korean leader hinted at his intent to bring about changes in governmental structure.
“The whole of the party and our military must put up a struggle to exterminate the practices of seeking privileges, misuse of authority, abuse of power and bureaucratism,” Kim said during the speech. “This meeting is significant in further strengthening the party organizationally and ideologically.”
Kim Jong Un’s eight uses of the term “Kimilsungism-Kimjongilism” during the speech indicated who the joint meeting was aimed at, one observer said.
“The term Kimilsungism-Kimjongilism has almost the same meaning as the Juche ideology,” Kim Byung-ro, researcher from the Institute for Peace and Unification Studies told NK News. “But the former term is used as the most common way of describing the concept of Juche to North Korean locals, which tells us that the joint meeting was held for domestic purposes only.”
Despite East Asian tensions rising due to North Korea’s plan for a new satellite launch, Kim has not yet publicly addressed surrounding nations on the subject, though his New Year’s address from a little more than a month ago may have been a warning to those who attempt to deter the North from its satellite launches or nuclear program development.
“Our country’s revolution can only be achieved ourselves,” said Kim in the New Year’s address. “Our determination will only get stronger as we face more struggles throughout the path of revolution, and there is no one in the world that can stop us.”
Cha Du-hyeogn, a former adviser to President Lee Myung-bak, said the meeting also served as an inspection ahead of the U.S.-ROK joint training at the end of this month.
“Kim Jong Un’s emphasis on self-sustainability as well as improvements in the military show that he saw the meeting as the chance to consolidate the locals before facing the increased threat from the U.S.-ROK joint training at the end of February,” Cha said.
Meanwhile, around the same time Kim Jong Un made the speech, the United States Forces Korea (USFK) announced on Thursday that the United States Special Operations Forces have recently arrived in South Korea to train with the South Korean forces.
Featured image: Rodong Sinmun
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