Before I start this rant, I want to take a moment to clearly state my opinion on negotiations with our enemies…
I actually have the rather unpopular opinion that we absolutely should negotiate with our enemies. I think our leaders should meet with and talk to the leaders of North Korea, Iraq, and yes, even Al Qaeda.
The fact is, when you’re dealing with people who are prepared to be at war for generations, simply shooting back doesn’t work. Killing them doesn’t work. They aren’t interested in ending war. They’re interesting in using war to promote their agendas. War is good for them. They want it to continue indefinitely.
So when we shoot them or bomb them – no matter how justified we might think we are – we’re doing exactly what they want us to do. We’re arming them with propaganda. We’re giving them something to point toward when they look at their people and say, “See? This is what America is doing to us!”
You can’t win a war if you’re the only side who wants that war to end.
I understand many people say, “Negotiation won’t work. These people are extremists!”
Well, maybe it’ll work and maybe it won’t. But we know military actions don’t work. History has shown this time and time again, with Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam, and Korea. Besides, there’s another benefit to negotiations. It helps us win the minds of the people who support these governments and organizations. It removes their ability to use our military actions as recruiting propaganda.
Don’t get me wrong here. I understand that sometimes we have to fight back. Sometimes it’s necessary.
But a blind refusal to negotiate accomplishes nothing. 40 years of the Cold War proves it. Even if we do have to fight, we should always be open to negotiation. We should always be willing to find a peaceful way to end the hostility.
I find it fascinating that so many far-right Christians adamantly oppose the idea of negotiating with our enemies, especially since their refusal directly contradicts the most fundamental principles taught by Jesus.
So yeah… I just wanted to lay that out there. I’m actually in favor of cultural exchanges (like basketball games) with the North Korean people.
“Then why,” you might ask, “are you calling Dennis Rodman a piece of crap?”
Good question, fictional question-asker. I’ll explain…
Dennis Rodman is not advocating negotiations with the enemy. Dennis Rodman is not trying to open the door to peace through any kind of cultural exchange. Dennis Rodman is not trying to understand the enemy.
Dennis Rodman is siding with the enemy.
Here’s a quick rundown on Kim Jong-Un’s leadership style. In the past year, Kim Jong-Un has reportedly executed his ex-girlfriend and his own uncle. Kim Jong-Un currently runs a country that has over 100,000 people in concentration camps. And I’m not using the word “concentration camp” lightly. These are concentration camps in every possible way. Kim Jong-Un took an 85 year old American veteran (Merrill Newman) prisoner and made him read a “confession” of his “crimes” during the Korean War before releasing him. North Korea also arrested an American named Kenneth Bae for “crimes against the state.” Mr. Bae is still in prison. He’s been there for over a year. North Korea has given no specific details about Mr. Bae’s actual crime, yet they have kept him in a Korean prison for over a year.
Now… back to Rodman.
In a CNN interview yesterday, Rodman was asked if the opportunity to speak to Kim Jong-Un came up, would he say anything on behalf of Mr. Bea.
Rodman’s reply was angry and barely coherent, and while giving his bizarre answer, he inferred that Mr. Bea deserved to be in that Korean prison.
Here’s a video of that exchange:
Dennis Rodman is not over there to promote peace. He’s there to promote himself.
And he’s not trying to find a middle-ground between America and North Korea. He’s not there to try and understand Kim Jong-Un.
He’s there to support Kim Jong-Un.
The basketball game he put together was, he claims, a cultural exchange for the people of North Korea. It wasn’t, he claims, a “birthday present” for Kim Jong-Un. Supposedly, it was about bringing the people of the two countries together.
Then why, Mr. Rodman, was the game played on Kim Jong-Un’s birthday? And why did you actually sing “Happy Birthday” to him after the game?
The fact is, Dennis Rodman isn’t bringing our countries closer together. He’s not negotiating any kind of peace. He is actually defending Kim Jong-Un’s actions and he’s actively standing against the American people, all the way to the point that he’s suggesting Kenneth Bae deserves to be in that prison.
These aren’t the actions of an advocate of peace.
These are the actions of a self-absorbed, self-promoting piece of crap.
UPDATE: Rodman has since released the following apology:
“I want to apologize. I take full responsibility for my actions. It had been a very stressful day. Some of my teammates were leaving because of pressure from their families and business associates. My dreams of basketball diplomacy was quickly falling apart. I had been drinking. It’s not an excuse but by the time the interview happened I was upset. I was overwhelmed. It’s not an excuse, it’s just the truth.
“I want to first apologize to Kenneth Bae’s family. I want to apologize to my teammates and my management team. I also want to apologize to Chris Cuomo. I embarrassed a lot of people. I’m very sorry. At this point I should know better than to make political statements. I’m truly sorry.”
He issued this apology shortly before heading to a ski resort in North Korea with Kim Jong-Un… you know, his “good friend” whom he regularly defends as a good person.