Kim Chaek

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This is a Korean name; the family name is Kim.
Kim Chaek
Kim Chaek
Native name Chosongul: 김책 or Hanja: 金策
Born (1903-08-14)14 August 1903
Sŏngjin, Haksong County, North Hamgyong Province, Korean Empire
Died 31 January 1951(1951-01-31) (aged 47)
Monuments Songjin City was renamed to Kim Chaek City to commemorate his life.[1]
Nationality Korean
Citizenship North Korean
Occupation North Korean general and politician
Awards North Korea's National Reunification Prize

Kim Chaek (Chosongul: 김책, Hanja: 金策, 14 August 1903 – 31 January 1951) was a North Korean National resistance activist, general and politician. His real name was Kim Hong-gye(김홍계, 金洪啓).


Kim Chaek (1920's)

Born in Sŏngjin, early years Kim joined the guerrilla war against the Japanese occupation in 1927 and fought alongside Kim Il-sung in Manchuria. He joined the Korean People's Revolutionary Army in 1932. He defected to the Soviet Union to escape the Japanese conquest of the partisans in 1940. He lived in Khabarovsk where he met with Kim Il-Sung and formed the 88th Special Brigade. He returned to Korea along with the Soviet Army. He was appointed number 2 Committee Vice Chairman in the Korean Workers Party. Kim Chaek became industry minister and deputy prime minister under Kim Il-Sung in 1948. In the Korean War, he was commander of the North Korean troops on the front lines.

Kim was purged when he was found responsible for the failure at the Incheon Landing. He died in January 1951. Some scholars believe that his death was an assassination after a power struggle, and caused by gas poisoning rather than a heart attack as officially claimed.[2]

Posthumous honours[edit]

The Kim Chaek University of Technology in Otan-Kangan Street, Pyongyang

After his death, Kim Chaek's birthplace Haksong County combined with the neighboring Songjin City was renamed to Kim Chaek City to commemorate his life.[1] The Kim Chaek University of Technology, Kim Chaek Iron and Steel Complex, and Kim Chaek People's Stadium[3] are also named after him. The stadium is located at 40°41'0"N 129°11'47"E.

He was posthumously awarded North Korea's National Reunification Prize in 1998.[4]


  • Song "Song of General Kim Il-sung" 《김일성장군의 노래》
  • Feature-length epic "Mt. Paektu" 《장편 대서사시 백두산》


  • Korea, a century of change by Jürgen Kleiner page 275
  • Korea Web Weekly Remembering Kim Chaik
  • Kim Jong Il Biography. Pyongyang: Foreign Languages Publishing House for Literature, 2005.