Secret of Invincibility of the Korean People’s Army


The Korean People’s Army has achieved only victory throughout its 70-odd-year history of confrontation with the US forces. This is a mystery for many people who regard the latter as the “strongest army” in the world.

Then what is the secret to this mystery?

One of the answers is the war doctrine unique to the KPA.

Many military experts of the world have developed their theories for winning victory in war, most of which are centred on military equipment. Such well-known theories as “fleet-centred theory,” “tank-centred theory,” “plane-supremacy theory” and “theory of all-powerful nuclear weaponry” were all oriented to proving that modern military equipment is the decisive key to victory in war. But reality tells otherwise.

The KPA, from the initial days of its founding (February 8, 1948), has attached importance to the political and ideological preparedness of its soldiers and paid primary efforts to making all its service personnel have a firm ideological resolve to fight to the death for the freedom and independence of the country and the safety of the people. And their political and ideological superiority served as a fundamental source of the unparalleled bravery and mass heroism they displayed in the Korean war (1950-1953) ignited by the United States.

When the KPA was founded, its combat equipment was far inferior to that of the allied forces of the United States and other imperialist countries. Rifles and heavy machine guns mounted on wagons can be said to be all the KPA had at the time. Its Navy, when founded on August 28, 1949, had only small ships including a few torpedo boats.

However, their political, moral and ideological superiority overpowered the numerical and technical superiority of the aggressors.

A clear proof of this was the battle in the sea off Jumunjin on the East Sea of Korea which a group of four 17-ton torpedo boats of the navy of the KPA fought on July 2, 1950 against a US Navy group composed of the 17 300-ton heavy cruiser Baltimore, dubbed a floating island, a 14 000-ton light cruiser and a 3 500-ton destroyer.

The battle was out of the question by the existing military criteria. But the KPA navy won the battle by sinking the heavy cruiser and destroying the light cruiser.

Another example was the battle on Height 1211. Whereas the KPA soldiers, though armed poorly, fought death-defyingly with a determination to defend every inch of their motherland, the well-equipped soldiers of the United States and its vassal countries cared more about their lives than the battles.

The whole course of the Korean war clearly showed that the political and ideological superiority of soldiers can create a military miracle.

The KPA continued to channel efforts into consolidating its political and ideological superiority after the war, the result of which was fully displayed in the post-war confrontations with the United States. Typical examples were the KPA’s capture of the US armed spy ship Pueblo, shooting down of the US reconnaissance plane EC-121 and the Panmunjom Incident. The latter half of the 1990s and the years that followed were the most arduous period for the DPRK. And this period was characterized by the United States resorting to military intervention and invasion in various parts of the world. But it did not dare to ignite a war against the DPRK because it was firmly guarded by the KPA.

The KPA’s politico-ideological superiority was not merely an outcome of its soldiers’ resolve to defend the security of their country and people. Absolute loyalty to their Supreme Commander, unshakeable faith in socialism, boundless love for their country and people and revolutionary comradeship are the ideological and spiritual mainstay of the KPA soldiers whose core is absolute loyalty to their Supreme Commander, that is, absolute obedience to his orders. But this has nothing to do with mechanical obedience under military command system. The Supreme Commander and his men are linked in kinship-like ties, and this is the basis of the inexhaustible strength of the KPA. The world has witnessed on many occasions how strong is the spiritual might of the KPA soldiers based on this special relations.

The military hardware of the KPA is now on the world’s level. As Igori Kortchenko, editor-in-chief of the Russian magazine Bezopasnosty Oborony, estimated as a military expert, the DPRK has achieved the status of a main military power in terms of missiles and nuclear weapons. Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said that the KPA is now the world’s strongest army. But it is the invariable stance of the KPA that war is a confrontation of ideas, ideals and moralities, not merely that of technologies and equipment.

On August 27, 2023, Kim Jong Un, Supreme Commander of the armed forces of the DPRK, paid a congratulatory visit to the Navy Command to mark the Day of the Navy and made a meaningful speech congratulating all the service personnel of the Navy.

In the speech he said: If our Navy is to fulfil its mission, its military technical growth should be accompanied and prioritized; as the history has proved that a war is a political and ideological showdown, what is still the most important thing before this is to firmly maintain the political, moral and ideological superiority of our army and further promote it. He added that what is actually necessary in battlefields is not the numerical and technical superiority of weaponry but the overwhelming ideological and spiritual might of the soldiers who handle them, and that this is the revolutionary philosophy and war doctrine unique to the heroic KPA.