February 8, Juche 37 (1948) is the founding day of the Korean People’s Army.
The founding of the KPA meant the strengthening and development of the Korean People’s Revolutionary Army, which had played the leading and core role in putting an end to the Japanese imperialists’ military occupation (1905-1945) and achieving Korea’s liberation, into revolutionary regular armed forces.
Right after the country’s liberation, the Korean people had no experience of building regular armed forces and lacked competent military cadres equipped with due military technology. Worse still, they had to lay economic foundations of their country from scratch as the Japanese imperialists had destroyed everything so wantonly in their flight from Korea.
At this juncture, President Kim Il Sung convened a meeting of the military and political cadres of the KPRA on August 20, Juche 34 (1945). In his speech, titled, On Founding the Party, State and Armed Forces in the Liberated Homeland, he stressed the need to build a revolutionary regular army by mobilizing the efforts of the Korean people themselves, whatever the difficulties.
Later, he made public several works, in which he advanced a policy of building revolutionary regular armed forces equipped with proper political and ideological qualities and modern military science and technology by enlisting the Koreans’ own efforts, and clarified the ways for their successful implementation.
He ensured that a regular military educational institution was established, expanded and strengthened for the training of military and political cadres and that anti-Japanese revolutionary fighters were dispatched to different parts of the country to play the leading role in founding parent units of various services and arms.
With this as a momentum, the Pyongyang Institute, the Central Security Officers School, the Naval Security Officers School and others were set up as the bases for training military and political cadres, and the security officers training centre was organized as a hard-core unit of regular armed forces.
The Maritime Security Force was formed in 1946 to be followed by an aviation corps at the Pyongyang Institute in 1947. The work was also promoted to organize the artillery, military engineering and tank and signal corps, along with other major units of the arms.
A munitions factory, the first of its kind in the country, was built, and the foundations of self-supporting munitions industry were laid.
Thanks to the leadership of Kim Il Sung, the long-cherished desire of the Korean people to have powerful regular armed forces of their own came true.
It took less than three years for the Korean people to found their regular revolutionary armed forces after the liberation of their country.