On the night of 30 May, JTBC’s “It’s true when you hear it” introduced the life of Kwon Joong-hee (1936-2007), who chased down Kim Jong-un’s assassin, Ahn Doo-hee, with a club called the Justice Bong. The report of citizen journalist Park Do, who covered Kwon Joong-hee during his lifetime and travelled with him to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) in the United States with readers’ donations, played a major role in the broadcast (Related: Baek Bum, I’m going to say goodbye http://bit.ly/19AUfx).
Kwon Joong-hee (right) and citizen journalist Park Do unfurl Kwon Joong-hee’s banner, ‘The National Soul is Alive’ (2004).
ⓒ Oh My News Kwon Woo-sung
Although the programme is about Kwon Joong-hee, the pursuer, it is essentially about Ahn Doo-hee, the fugitive. However, the programme cannot be limited to Ahn Doo-hee. In the past and now, the Korean public’s gaze does not rest on Ahn Doo-hee, but looks through him to find out what is behind him.
It is difficult to say that the question Koreans are asking is whether Ahn Doo-hee is the sole perpetrator or an avatar. As Kwon Joong-hee’s actions and statements show, Koreans have always been suspicious of the Syngman Rhee regime and the United States when it comes to this issue. It could be argued that they are interested in whether Ahn Doo-hee mentions Syngman Rhee and the United States or not.
Ahn Doo-hee claimed to have acted alone. On 20 October 1955, in the preface to The Troubles of a Poet, written in the form of a ‘father’s biography’, he wrote, “Father, on that day, 26 June, five years ago, Doo-hee, the real Doo-hee, not in a dream, took my gun and shot Teacher Kim Gu with my own hand”.
“Doo-hee, my father’s child, killed Teacher Baek-beom, whom my father also worshipped in his early years, with his own gun and with his own hands,” he added, aiming at the suspicion that there were huge forces behind him. After “with my own gun” and “with my own hands,” he added the phrase “in his right mind. This emphasises that the assassination was carried out by his own will and plan.
People who rushed to Gyeonggyo Bridge after hearing the news of Baek Beom’s death are wailing. This is a window on the second floor of Gyeonggyo Bridge that was shattered by a bullet fired by Ahn Doo-hee.
Baek Beom Memorial Hall
In his preface, he repeatedly emphasised that he acted alone. Referring to the fact that he was sentenced to life imprisonment and then given a stay of execution in February 1951, he lamented, “What can I do about the fact that some people in society are spreading distorted rumours, such as ‘the crime was committed by a high-ranking person,’ ‘the crime was ordered by the military,’ and ‘the illegal release’?”
He emphasised that his motivation for publishing the book was to make it clear that he acted alone. He said he could not ignore the “slanderous language that stigmatises the reputation and honour of an innocent third party” and therefore “decided to publish the book”.
Although it took the form of my father’s biography, it actually borrowed the form of a ‘national biography’ and claimed sole responsibility for the crime. He published the book because he could not bear the stigmatisation of “innocent” America and Syngman Rhee. Even though he borrowed the format of his father’s biography and claimed sole responsibility for the crime, he was unable to stand up to the public and avoided it. His book is at odds with that.
Ahn Doo-hee claimed to be the sole perpetrator in his book, but his statements were greatly shaken by the pursuit of Kwon Joong-hee, who held the baton. A firm statement turned into a ‘shaky statement’.
After finding his hiding place, Kwon moved in next door to Ahn Doo-hee and approached her casually. He succeeded in striking up a go friendship with the 19-year-old. Then, using the art of silencing, she stabbed him in the buttocks with an acupuncture needle and hit him with a stick. He pressured her to “reveal the truth behind the move. This finally rattled him. The United States and the Syngman Rhee regime began to be mentioned.
▲ Episode 11 Trailer of the identity of ‘Ahn Inspiration’ who was relentlessly pursued for 10 years
According to a headline in the Dong-A Ilbo dated 13 April 1992, Ahn Doo-hee stated, “I committed the crime at the behest of Kim Chang-ryong (then chief of counterintelligence at the Yukbon Intelligence Agency),” in a meeting with the newspaper’s reporters and Kwon Joong-hee’s group. Ahn Doo-hee testified that Kim Chang-ryong, the head of the intelligence service under Syngman Rhee, even praised her after the attack, saying, “You did a good job.”
Ahn also mentioned the US connection. She recalled that a U.S. military lieutenant colonel attached to the intelligence agency OSS (Office of Strategic Services) told her that “Kim Gu was a cancerous presence that hindered national unity,” which she took as a strong indication that she should “kill the white beast.
An’s meeting with the US military intelligence officer came after the OSS had been reorganised into the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) (1 October 1945). Therefore메이저놀이터, it is inaccurate to say that she met an OSS officer.
On this basis, one could argue that Andouhey’s “American behind the scenes” comment is false. However, since the OSS had just been reorganised into the CIA, it is possible that Andouhey at the time of the assassination thought of it as the OSS out of habit, or that he deliberately mispronounced the name to reduce the impact of the revelation of the US plot. The part about the CIA being the OSS is not a big deal.
But the testimony didn’t last long. He reversed himself when he mentioned the United States and the Syngman Rhee regime, claiming that he had been coerced into doing so. This happened again and again. So Ahn Doo-hee’s statement about who was behind the assassination remains uncertain. However, the fact that the previous claim of a sole perpetrator has been shaken and the US and Syngman Rhee have been mentioned is a significant change.
In particular, she was quite specific about Syngman Rhee. The front page left column of the 24 September 1992 edition of the Dong-A Ilbo reported that Ahn Doo-hee, in an exclusive interview with the newspaper, said, “On 20 June 49, six days before the assassination of Baek Beom, I was called to the office of President Lee Kyung-moo-dae and received encouragement from him, saying, ‘I have heard a lot from Defence Minister Shin Sung-mo. Do as you are told by those in high places.'”
Kim collapsed in a pool of blood at Gyeonggyo Bridge while protesting the second independence movement, the division of Korea into North and South, and the Cold War on the Korean Peninsula. As the Jeju 4-3 Uprising (4-3 Incident) showed, the US and Syngman Rhee regime brutally massacred opponents of the division and Cold War order.
Because of this, many South Koreans felt that the US and