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"The people of North Korea are the same as the people of South Korea. All are loyal to the land of their birth with the very few minor exceptions of foreign trained and foreign directed communists. This war is not a conflict between North and South; it is a conflict between the few who are communists, who by an accident got control of half of our country, and the overwhelming mass of the citizens of Korea, wherever they may live."

Ilminism, also called the One-People Principle is an Authoritarian, Ethnonationalist and Egalitarian ideology that was the ruling ideology of The Republic of Korea under the First President, Syngman Rhee and later reformed & adopted by the Third President of South Korea, Park Chung-hee. He believes in creating a loyal and obedient citizenry through centralized state power & Authority, strong socio-culturally Traditionalist sentiment, brazen appeals to Ethnonationalism, and comprehensive / Developmentalism economics.


The term "Ilminism" is a Korean word meaning "One People Ideology (or principle)". The ideology emerged from the works of Korean philosopher Dr. An Ho-sang, who was the Minister of Education under President Syngman Rhee's administration, and prior to his promotion, he studied at the University of Jena in Germany during the late 1920s. He made a case explaining why even though civilian autonomy & agency are important, the interests of the collective Korean Nation/people as a whole should be a higher priority, especially considering the threat of the North Koreans overtaking them at the time.

Main Advocators & Practitioners

Syngman Ree

Syngman Rhee perceived the world in terms of the dominance of Western Protestant civilization versus a view of barbaric totalitarianism. Although he could be labeled as a nationalist, his focus aimed at integrating the Korean people into Western concepts of Christianity and liberalism, rather than embracing nationalism aimed towards Korean values and traditions.

During the early stages of the First Republic, there emerged the notion of Illminism, championed by the Korean National Youth Association, inspired by Lee Beom Seok’s involvement in anti-Japanese movements. This ideology sought to unify the nation under the myth of a single ethnic group, based on the idea of Dangun's lineage, striving for a unified family-state and a politically, economically, and socially integrated populace. Central to this ideology was the belief in the sovereignty of the single ethnic group, advocating independence from both external and internal influences, as reflected in the term "national democratic." Notably, the "The Political Turmoils in Busan” during the Korean War saw attempts by the Syngman Rhee regime to overthrow the legislature, with the Korean National Youth Association criticizing opposition forces seeking constitutional amendments for a parliamentary system. They condemned these efforts as supporting parliamentary dictatorship and denounced the interference of the UN and the US, who backed them.

However, they failed to anticipate the possibility of their leader, opposing external interference and parliamentary dictatorship, becoming an internal adversary. Syngman Rhee, known for his adoption of Christianity, American-style education, and marriage to an American, was perceived as a pro-American elite. Despite his opposition to American interference, his ultimate goal remained the transformation of Korea into a free liberal democratic nation. While Syngman Rhee’s regime emerged victorious in the Political Turmoils in Busan, the Korean National Youth Association which supported him found itself politically marginalized and ostracized. This was partly due to the post-Korean War era's intolerance towards ideologies critical of both liberalism and communism simultaneously (fascism). Symbolically, key ideologue, Ahn Ho Sang’s imprisonment for alleged “pro-communist” remarks illustrates this shift, where any critique of liberal or capitalist aggression was construed as pro-communist.

As a result, South Korea's national narrative centered around "freedom and democracy" and “anti-communism.”

In the 1st Republic, President Syngman Rhee developed & adapted the theoretical framework of the One-People Principle and made it much into the contemporary ideology used in his administration until his resignation in 1960, and later was reformed further and used under the Park Chung-hee administration for nearly 2 more decades after the 5.16.1961 Coup d'état.

Park Chung-Hee

In the 3rd & 4th Republic, President Park Chung-hee's reign included many aspects of the Ilminist ideology, specifically including his highly controversial Yushin Constitution. It was a highly Authoritarian ratification of the Korean constitution, which gave the executive branch (him) the extremely Autocratic ability to act as judge, jury & executioner for laws, the economy, political organizing, media/press, etc. It also created extremely Ethno-nationalist & Traditionalist sentiment in South Korean society, such as cutting men's hair that was too long and forcing women to wear skirts (if they chose to wear skirts) that were at least 17 centimeters in length. This was done in order to reinforce the idea of gender roles (men being masculine, women being feminine, but also reserved and celibate). Ilminism also demanded that the Korean Nation (people) or Fatherland was the first and foremost priority & concern in all decisions and policies made by the government. To further prove this, during the May 16 coup when President Park Chung-hee seized power, the announcements used such rhetoric as: "We are a race of brilliant culture, with over 5000 years of history to realize this". In 1979, Park was assassinated, ending his 18-year reign.

It is still heavily debated whether President Chun Doo-hwan was truly a practitioner of the One-People Principle, but his staunch refusals to Democratize the country & newly amended constitution that was heavily biased in favor of his own political party made it clear that he was another Authoritarian leader and wanted to establish himself as a strongman military dictator in the footsteps of Park Chung-hee. The military suppression of the infamous 1980 Gwangju riots resulted in severely reduced approval ratings for Chun Doo-hwan, and by 1987 he resigned, with a newly Democratic constitution being ratified after his resignation, thus ending the 5th Republic and the last remaining practices of Ilminism in Korea to this day.

Core Beliefs

Main Principles

Ilminism is based around a 4-point political program: Eliminating discrimination between the nobility and the masses, the economic equalization of rich and poor through land reform & Corporatist economics under President Syngman Rhee, but was later reformed & transformed into a State Capitalist economy under President Park Chung-hee, political equity between men & women, and an end to discrimination between the Northern & Southern parts within the country, including ending discrimination between the Urban & Rural areas within the country as well. Ilminism believes in an end to pluralist politics, in favor of a united Korean people behind a de facto one-party state.

The New Village Movement

Saemaul Undong, or The New Village Movement, was an economic reform initiative created by President Park Chung-hee to modernize Rural villages for the national economy. The idea was based on the Korean traditional communalism called Hyangyak and Dure, which provided the rules for self-governance and cooperation in traditional Korean communities. The movement initially sought to rectify the growing disparity in the standard of living between the nation's Urban centers, which were rapidly Industrializing, and the small Rural villages, which continued to be mired in poverty. Diligence, self-help, and collaboration were the slogans to encourage community members to participate in the development process. The early stage of the movement focused on improving the basic living conditions and environments, whereas later projects concentrated on building rural infrastructure and increasing community income. It was also during these reforms that Misin tapa undong or "movement to destroy superstition" reached its peak. Old zelkova trees that had stood at village entrances and have traditionally served as guardian figures were cut down in order to erase superstitions.


Ilminism also believes strongly in Confucian philosophy & principles, including (but not limited to) the moral & ethics of loyalty which have elements attributed to the western philosophy of the Great man theory, belief in the Traditional family structure (a man, woman & X amount of children), and deep respect for ceremonies, old Korean culture & elders. An important thing to note is that Confucianism in Korea often refers to a specific version called Neo-Confucianism, a more Secular & less spiritual form of Confucianism that stresses a more logical & practical view of traditional Confucian practices, making Neo-Confucianism a philosophy rather than a Religion. This would allow for additional religious accommodations such as Dr. An Ho-sang being a Dangunist, Syngman Rhee being a Christian, and Park Chung-hee being a Buddhist, yet all of them simultaneously being a strong supporter of Confucian philosophy.

The Communist Question

And of course, the One People Principle is vehemently anti-communist, given the indefinite North (communist)/ South (anti-communist) split of the Korean peninsula since the 1950s (due to ideological conflicts & foreign intervention). In fact, under both President Syngman Rhee's & Park Chung-hee's respective reigns, many communists had been brutally suppressed and in extreme cases, executed outright.


The theoretical egalitarian underpinnings of Ilminism would be to herald a class-collaborating society under firm central leadership. In an Ilminist society, the upper and the lower classes would both work together to rid themselves of materialism & class conflict, in favor of a more metaphysically balanced & fulfilled society.


Older-generation Ilminists (Old-Right) frequently exhibit these characteristics:

  • Hates it when people say: " North Korea is the real Korea".
  • Is very socially conservative, and reminisces about the '60s-'80s.
  • Only maintains alliances & international cooperation opportunistically.
  • Gets very angry and emotional when the colonialization of Korea is brought up.
  • Praises & worships his Dictators (almost as much as North Koreans worship their Dictators). This practice was then adopted by Ilbe Storehouse by referring to their approved presidents (Lee Myung-bak, Park Chung-hee, Park Geun-hye) as Gakha (가카, corrupted from 閣下 각하 "Their Excellency", an obsolete title associated with dictatorship, or 레카 Rekha, short for 레이디 가카 ("Lady Rakha") in the case for Park Geun-hye).
  • Keeps denying the Gwangju Uprising, claiming that North Korean forces were involved in that uprising.

Younger-generation Ilminists (New-Right) stay mostly consistent with the older-generation Ilminists, but with the utilization of the Internet and Satirism. They mostly conducted troll operations and browsing in Ilbe Storehouse (일베저장소), the Korean equivalent of 4chan. However, compared to the older-generation Ilminists, they hold positive views on Japan, especially their anime culture, having hatred towards Honam Region, known for having a 98% vote for a regional left-wing party candidate Kim Dae-jung. They were known as the Korean equivalent of the Alt-Right movement[4], where the latter was called as the "American Ilbe" by left-leaning Koreans, due to the allegations of extreme xenophobia, sexism (Ilbe users called feminists and gold-diggers as Kimchi Bitches), homophobia, satirising political dissidents (especially liberal-leaning Presidents such as Roh Moo-hyun, which he was trolled with "Noala", an image of Roh Mu-Hyeon with a photoshopped koala face or call May 23 'The day of Gravity', making fun of his death (Suicide by jumping) saying that gravity killed him) and incidents (victims of the Sewol Ferry Tragedy, Ilbe users launched a gluttony strike in front of family members of the victims who are on hunger strike) and hacking activities.

How to Draw

Main design

The ball design for Ilminism is based on several flags of South Korea, officiated during the 20th century.

Flag of Ilminism
  1. Draw a ball
  2. Color the ball with white
  3. In the middle, draw a circle-shaped "Yin-Yang" (taeguk) symbol with the upper half colored orange-red, and the lower purple-blue
  4. Add 4 sets of trigrams surrounding the symbol, facing toward it diagonally
  5. Draw eyes on the ball

You are finished!

Color Name HEX RGB
White #FFFFFF 255, 255, 255
Black #141414 20, 20, 20
Orange Red #DA251D 218, 37, 29
Purple Blue #29166F 41, 22, 111

Alternative design

Flag of Ilminism
  1. Fill a ball with dark blue.
  2. Cut in half and fill top/left half with red.
  3. Cut in the middle horizontally and fill it with white.
  4. Add the eyes.


친구 (Friends)

  • Illiberal Democracy - I can change the constitution whatever I want it to be but I'm still democratic! Maybe.
  • Police Statism - The only way to eradicate rioters and communists!
  • State Capitalism - Park Chung-hee's economic reforms saved Korea!
  • Stratocracy - The revolution can only be maintained if we keep our military strong in the event those Northern traitors try and invade us again. WE MUST DEFEND OUR ANCESTRAL HOMELAND!
  • Irredentism - He has no right to that territory, and we will unify under my flag. Oh and Southern Manchuria was also ours a long time ago, right?
  • Manosphere - Ilbe storehouse and angry young men are the future, and the last line of defense to save Korea from feminism!
  • Particracy - I pledge allegiance to the (Liberal/Democratic-Republican/Democratic Justice) Party!
  • Corporatocracy - Chaebol gang!
  • Tridemism - Taiwan is the Real China! And a fellow ally against Fake China! Also, the Kuomintang helped Korea greatly in the Korean Independence Struggle. It’s such a shame that you lost control of Mainland China.
  • Triequism - Kim Gu is a Founding Father of Korea. Such a shame that President Rhee disagreed with him on a lot. May he rest in peace.
  • Person Dignity Theory - South Vietnam is the REAL Vietnam, and an ally against Fake Vietnam!
  • Christian Right & Buddhist Theocracy - President Rhee was a Christian and President Park a Buddhist, much respect. Down with progressivism!
  • Satirism - He laughs at my Noala and Unji memes. I even made an ad on New York Times Square for the cause.

프레너미 (Frenemies)

  • Antijap.png Anti-Japaneseism - I like that you hate the Fish people, but you're a cringe Anarchist.
  • Japan LDPism - This young Ilbe userbase likes you and your anime, and we can work together against fake Korea but I will never forgive what your predecessor did before because you refuse to apologize. Btw I heard that Shinzo Abe died, lol. Rip bozo.
  • Catholic Theocracy - Thanks for having diplomatic relationship with me, not him. However I should note that 264th pope was very annoying and so are those """liberal""" priests in my country.
  • Corporatism - Eh, state capitalism works far better.
  • Nazism - We may have some things in common, but I will never forgive you for supporting those Japanese scums.
  • National Capitalism - Abomination. President Park would never do this.
  • Neoconservatism - I appreciate the help against those Northern scum, but you're very of similar to him, so let's not be friends. And why did you abandon my Vietnamese pals?
  • White Nationalism - Thanks for the Honorary White status, but I have to cut ties with South Africa as you take things too far!
  • Ba'athism - Okay, so your Iraqi side loves me meanwhile your Syria side hates me, weird. Socialism is very cringe.
  • Right-Wing Populism - Good job defending me, yet, you won't be mad that oligarchs pay a part in my econoy?

적 (Enemies)

  • Juche - My abhorrent, commie twin brother. GIVE ME BACK THE OTHER HALF OF MY COUNTRY!!!
  • Ho Chi Minh Thought - Even though we had to retreat, we still wrecked you during the Vietnam war, fear the fierce tigers!
  • Maoism - If you would have just minded your own damn business, all of the Korean peninsula would be rightfully mine!
  • Pol Potism - Genocidal maniac. This is a perfect example of what communism leads to.
  • Marxism-Leninism - Thanks a lot for creating him, jerk. Your 5-year economic plan model is pretty cool though...
  • Castroism - An educated revolutionary like you, still chose him over me. Pathetic.
  • Kim Dae-jung Thought & Anti-Authoritarianism - The airborne brigade is the best in the Republic of Korea Armed Forces, and If those citizens are not afraid of the Airborne brigades, they are no longer citizens! THEY ARE RIOTERS & TERRORISTS, AND WE NEED TO IMPOSE THE IRON FIST ON THEM!!!
  • Conservative Liberalism - Authoritarianism is good for fighting communism and Yun sure deserved the coup. Also, laissez-faire economics is gay.
  • Feminism - Ah yes, a """liberated""", short-haired Kimchi Nyun[Note 1]. Aren't you just Totalitarianism???
  • Gays - You don't exist. You're literally just mentally ill. Quite possibly the only issue I agree with him on.
  • Progressivism - Men cannot have long hair! Women cannot wear skirts that aren't at least 17 centimeters! This is ridiculous!
  • Showa Statism - YOU'RE A RAPIST, GENOCIDAL MURDERER!!! The Americans should have nuked you far more than just twice! What do you mean you formulated my identity
  • Imperialism - You're a very bad influence.
  • Ochlocracy - See? This is what democracy leads to.
  • Monarchism - Korea is still better as a Republic!
  • Monarcho-Socialism - Juche without the mask.

Further Information





  1. Many conservatives in South Korea frequently claim that all women with short hair are "feminists".


  1. After Rhee's release in 1904, he moved to the United States, where he obtained degrees from American universities and met President Theodore Roosevelt.
  2. "Ilminism#Ideology",
  3. "Fascism in Asia#South Korea",
  4. "Inside Ilbe: How South Korea's angry young men formed a powerful new Alt-Right movement",