But North Korea’s current leader Kim Jong-un rejects these versions of events, and passes on a myth surrounding the state’s founding father and Kim’s grandfather, Kim Il-sung, to the country’s state dictated schools.
Wrestling legend and TV producer Eric Bischoff visited the reclusive state in 1995 for the wrestling show Collision In Korea and encountered the bizarre myth after being taken aside during his trip to be educated on North Korean history.
He said: “We heard how the North Korean government was able to end World War 2 by defeating the Japanese.
“People who were born after the 1940s have no idea that the US ended the war by dropping nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
“In their educational system and the way they are conditioned and brainwashed, the North Koreans ended World War 2 and nobody has any idea that nuclear weapons were used by the US.”
Kim Il-sung is portrayed to be the central figure in the defeat of Japan by the freedom fighters who were trying to liberate occupied Korea at the end of the Second World War.
North Koreans are taught that Kim launched a terrifying campaign against the Japanese occupiers from his base on Mount Paektu, a 2,744m mountain which now has sacred value for North Koreans.
The peak is referred to by North Koreans as the “sacred mountain of the revolution” and Kim Jong-un reportedly climbed the mountain in December last year.
The founding father of the nation is also said to have fathered Kim’s father Kim Jong-il from his mountain base, who is said to have fought against the Japanese alongside his father as a toddler.
Records actually show that Kim Il-sung was not even in Korea during World War 2 and was instead working as a major in the Soviet Union’s Red Army.
Kim Il-sung only returned to Korea with the advancing Russian army after spending the war in Russia and before that as a guerrilla in China.
He spent close to two decades away from his homeland and reportedly had a poor grasp of the Korean language when he returned.
Bischoff commented on the North Korean version of events, saying: “Having conversations with governmental officials there, I don’t think they knew or know what really happened − that’s how brainwashed they are.”
North Koreans are today celebrating the Day of the Sun in memory of Kim Il-sung, and will pay tribute to the founding father by visiting monuments and statutes across the country.