dennis rodman's diplomatic visit to north korea

okay, so i know this is pretty late and the political climate in the korean peninsula is pretty tense right now, but i remember this thing.

early march this year, i learned from the new yorker that dennis rodman had visited north korea and was received very well by north korean supreme leader kim jong-un. it was a quite a colorful news item during a time that didn't really see any particularly juicy (or gossipy) items in a while (in my view). it was also somewhat mystifying, discombobulating, and fascinating all at the same time because north korea is known as something of a reclusive, passive-aggressive, belligerent regime and its leader, kim jong-un, is its poster child, while dennis rodman, on the other hand, a name known to even non-basketball fans (like me, maybe?), was a high-profile NBA star.

what was he doing vising north korea and rubbing elbows with kim jong-un? kind of weird and freaky, don't you think, and quite likely to grab headlines as might have been intended by the organizers of the event Vice magazine and HBO (they filmed it as part of a TV series).

so, dennis rodman was said to have said to kim jong un: 'you have a friend for life'. he was referring to himself. he's kim jong un's "friend for life". (and we can be like, really? kim jong-un can turn to you in times of war and international shunning? nice!)

during the visit, the new fast friends watched a game of basketball played by some North Koreans and some American players. it's evidenced by this picture:

 photo dennisrodmankimjongun_zps9876f06c.jpg

afterward, when rodman got back to the US, he met with a popular TV host and revealed what kim jong-un said to him: "i don't want to do war. i don't want to do war."

there were critics of the visit of course, like one news media site reporting on the topic juxtaposing pictures of the visit alongside pictures of north korean famine victims - a clear frown of disapproval.

but i'm just writing about it for future reference, actually. just 'cause i wanted to remember this inspired parody of the visit from the new yorker:

 photo dennisrodman_zps985905d1.jpg

it's from christopher weyant. lol. heehee! :D

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