In the spring of 1936 during the arduous period of the anti-Japanese armed struggle Commander Kim Il Sung on his way to the Mt Paektu area was slated to drop in at the secret camp in Mihunzhen situated in the primeval forests.
At that time, the guerrillas begged him not to go there as typhoid fever was rampant there.
Then the Commander said. “As typhoid is borne by man, it can also be controlled by man. Man can defeat epidemics. Epidemics cannot defeat man.”
But they continued to persuade him as it was a critical issue connected with the destiny of the Korean revolution. Having known that company commander Choe Hyon had been bedridden with typhoid for weeks in Mihunzhen, Kim Il Sung resolutely said that if so, all the more reason for him to go and see him.
Despite the persuasion of his soldiers, he unhesitatingly entered the ward which housed scores of fever patients including Choe Hyon. He took the hands of Choe Hyon and other patients and felt their foreheads, consoling them.
Each of our revolutionary comrades can never be bartered for 100 or 1,000 enemy soldiers. Therefore, we should treasure them decisively.
With this intention he made devoted efforts to take warm care of his soldiers. He regarded them as the revolutionary comrades-in-arms sharing the same idea and will with the commander, rather than the military position of the commander and his soldiers, and the valuable beings that could never be bartered for anything.
Once, the soldiers of the guerrilla army destroyed a Japanese “punitive” force which made a sudden attack on them, and made a forced march to escape far away from the battle site to have a rest.
At that time, he said to his soldiers as follows: We have one thing more to do. We failed to bury the body of a fallen comrade. Let us go back to bury his corpse.
And he forced his way through waist-deep snow in the van.
When camping, he would sew the worn-out shoes of soldiers and dry their foot-wrappers over the campfire. During the march he would shoulder the rifles and haversacks of exhausted soldiers. And he would give a young soldier his share of some maize grains.
His warm comradeship became a source for the guerrilla army to brave the biting cold and snowstorm, fierce battles and starvation and win victory in the anti-Japanese war.