VIDEO: Dennis Rodman's Take On North Korea: Kim Jong-Un Wants A Call From Obama
Dennis Rodman's trip to North Korea with three members of the Harlem Globetrotters may have been an unconventional alternative to diplomacy, but Rodman returned with some apparent insight into the psyche of current North Korea dictator Kim Jong-Un, son of the recently late Kim Jong-il, as well as a newly solidified opinion that Kim was "awesome," "humble," and "so honest."
Rodman addressed his comments on ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos. "I hate the fact that he is doing that," Rodman explained when Stephanopoulos asked him if he knew about Kim's threats toward the United States and his record of human rights violations. "But the fact is, you know what, as a human being, though, he let his guard down. He did it one day to me. I didn't talk about that. I understand that."
Stephanopoulos asked Rodman if he really thought that Kim Jong-Un was a "great leader," as he had previously stated. "What I saw in that country," Rodman explained, "I saw that people respect him and his family," he said.
"Aren't they forced to?" said Stephanopoulos.
"Well, I say no, because I think he's going to change something because his is a different view. I sat with him for two days, and the one thing he asked me to do was give Obama something to say and do and think. He wants Obama to do one thing: call him."
"He wants a call from President Obama?" Stephanopoulos asked.
"That's right. He told me that. He said, 'If you can, Dennis, I don't want to do war. I don't want to do war. He said that to me …. He loves basketball. And I said the same thing, I said, 'Obama loves basketball!' I mean, let's start there. Let's start there."
Basketball is a popular North Korean sport, and the exhibition game on which both Americans and North Koreans composed each team ended in a 110-110 tie and a huge celebration afterward.
Watch the interview from Stephanopoulos's show here: