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Digital Archive International History Declassified

September 29, 1950

CIPHERED TELEGRAM FROM DPRK LEADER KIM IL SUNG AND SOUTH KOREAN COMMUNIST LEADER PAK HEON-YEONG TO STALIN (VIA SHTYKOV)

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    Telegram from Kim Il Sung and Pak Heon-yeong telling Stalin of the losses they have incurred following American air and ground attacks in South Korea and of their general lack of supplies and trained personnel.
    "Ciphered Telegram from DPRK leader Kim Il Sung and South Korean Communist Leader Pak Heon-yeong to Stalin (via Shtykov)," September 29, 1950, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, APRF, fond 45, opis 1, delo 347, listy 41-45 and APRF, fond 3, opis 65, delo 828, listy 5-8. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/113658
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Sent from Pyongyang by wire on 09/30/50 at 20:35 p.m.

Received in Moscow on 09/30/50 at 23:32 p.m.

Arrived in the 8 MDGS on 09/30/50 at 23:30 p.m.

Deciphered by Mikhaylenko on 10/01/50 at 0:35 a.m.

Distribution list - 12 copies:
Stalin - 2, Molotov - 1, Malenkov - 1, Beria -1, Mikoyan - 1, Kaganovich - 1, Bulganin - 1, Gromyko - 1.

Extremely Urgent

MOSCOW

To Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the USSR

Comrade GROMYKO

I herewith relay the text of a letter addressed to Comrade STALIN which I received
from KIM IL SUNG and PAK HEONYEONG (translation from the Korean).

This letter was handed over to me by PAK HEON-YEONG in person.

S H T Y K O V

No. 1351

Enclosure: 4-page letter.

This letter was cabled to Comrade Stalin on 10.01.50 at 12:50 p.m.

Typed by Shcherbakova on 10/01/50 at 1:45 a.m.

* * * * *

Moscow, Kremlin.

DEEPLY RESPECTED Iosif
Vissarionovich STALIN.

On behalf of the Workers' Party of Korea, we express to You, the liberator of the Korean people and the leader of the working peoples of the entire world, our profound gratitude for compassion and assistance which You constantly provide to our people struggling for the freedom and independence of its Motherland.

In this letter, we would like to brief You on the current situation at the fronts of the liberation war of our people against the American aggressors.

Prior to the assault landing at Incheon (Jemulpo) one could not judge the situation at the fronts as unfavorable to us. The adversary, suffering one defeat after another, was cornered into a tiny piece of land at the southern-most tip of South Korea and we had a great chance of winning a victory in the last decisive battles.

Such a situation considerably damaged the military authority of the United States. Therefore, in those conditions, in order to restore its prestige and to implement by any means its long-held plans of conquering Korea and transforming it into its militarily strategic bridgehead, on 16.9.50, the U.S. performed an assault landing operation and landed a considerable number of troops and armaments in the vicinity of Incheon after having mobilized almost all its land, naval, and air troops deployed in the Pacific ocean. The enemy took over Incheon and is engaged in street combats in the city of Seoul itself. The military situation became perilous.

The units of our People's Army heroically fight against advancing assault landing units of the enemy. However, we consider it necessary to report to You about the emergence of very unfavorable conditions for us.

The enemy's air force numbering about a thousand airplanes of various types, facing no rebuff from our side, totally dominate the air space and perform air raids at the fronts and in the rear day and night. At the fronts, under the air cover of hundreds of airplanes the motorized units of the enemy engage us in combat at their free will and inflict great losses to our manpower and destroy our armaments. Moreover, by freely destroying railroads and highways, telegraph and telephone communications lines, means of transportation and other facilities, the enemy's air force impedes the provision of supplies to our combat units and bars maneuvers by our troops, thereby making their timely redeployments impossible. We experience this difficulty on all fronts.

Having cut off all the communications lines of our troops and joined the assault force that landed in Incheon with the units of their southern front that broke through our frontline, the adversary has a real opportunity to take over the city of Seoul completely.

As a result, the units of the People's Army that are still fighting in the southern part of Korea have been cut off from the northern part of Korea, they are torn into pieces and cannot receive munitions, armaments, and food rations. Moreover, some units do not have any communication with each other, while some of them are surrounded by enemy troops.

After taking over Seoul completely, the enemy is likely to launch a further offensive into North Korea. Therefore, we believe that if in future the above-mentioned conditions unfavorable to us continue, then the American aggression ultimately will be successful.

In order to provide troops with all the necessary supplies and to feed the frontline without any interruption, first of all, we need to have an appropriate air force. But we do not possess well-trained pilots.

Dear Comrade STALIN, we are determined to overcome all the difficulties facing us so that Korea will not be a colony and a military springboard of the U.S. imperialists. We will fight for the independence, democracy and happiness of our people to the last drop of blood. Therefore, with all our energy we are taking decisive measures for the formation and training of many new divisions with the aim of using more than 100,000 troops mobilized in South Korea
[captured in South Korea - AM] in the most advantageous operational areas, as well as arming the entire people so as to be prepared to fight a protracted war.

This notwithstanding, if the enemy does not give us time to implement the measures which we plan, and, making use of our extremely grave situation, steps up its offensive operations into North Korea, then we will not be able to stop the enemy troops solely with our own forces.

Therefore, dear Iosif Vissarionovich, we cannot help asking You to provide us with special assistance. In other words, at the moment when the enemy troops cross over the 38th parallel we will badly need direct military assistance from the Soviet Union.

If for any reason this is impossible, please assist us by forming international volunteer units in China and other countries of people's democracy for rendering military assistance to our struggle.

We request Your directive regarding the aforementioned proposal.

Respectfully, The CC of the Workers' Party of Korea

KIM IL SUNG, PAK HEON-YEONG

29 September 1950