Dennis Rodman “friend for life” with North Korea leader Kim Jong Un
I wondered what those enduring Kim Jong Un’s reign would think to see a pampered former basketball star from the free and rich United States, chatting it up with their leader and offering his stamp of approval for Kim Jong’s leadership.
Rodman and Kim sat side by side at an exhibition game in Pyongyang on Thursday, chatting as they watched players from North Korea and the U.S. play in mixed teams, Alex Detrick, a spokesman for the New York-based VICE media company, told The Associated Press.
Rodman later addressed Kim before a crowd of thousands, telling him, “You have a friend for life,” Detrick said.
The encounter makes Rodman the most high-profile American to meet with the young North Korean leader, said to be a diehard basketball fan, and comes at a time of heightened tensions between Washington and Pyongyang.
But then I realized . . .
Rodman is demonstrating to the world the glories of reconciliation and the importance of doing mission and ministry together. Deep in Rodman’s soul it’s all about peacemaking and the relationship and unity.
Of course, I’m sure there are some who would reject Rodman and Kim Jong being “friends for life”—after all, those people “have been wounded and betrayed” and understandably have hurt feelings and therefore have a problem with Rodman’s being friends for life with Kim Jong. That’s why they might react with such outrage and indignation and revulsion.
I’m sure that Rodman and Kim Jong hold the same tension about agreeing and disagreeing. And certainly Kim Jong must be concerned about the way his position in North Korea has been characterised.
Agreement is overrated. What Rodman and Kim John are trying to do is stay in there and reclaim the best charism of their respective US traditions of freedom and North Korean traditions of repression, torture, and fascist control – a ‘both-and’ quality.
The other issues are not defining realities.
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