Dennis Rodman Bows And Sings ‘Happy Birthday’ To North Korean Dictator Kim Jong-Un
Dennis Rodman has outraged plenty of Americans by saying that he “loves” his “friend for life” in North Korean dictator Kim-Jong un, but he took things to a new level today by bowing to the tyrant as he sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to him. The images of Rodman appearing to bow were taken today at Pyongyang Indoor Stadium, the site of a basketball exhibition between several former NBA stars and the top basketball players in North Korea. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the former NBA players took it easy in losing 47-39 to the North Korean team.
As Kim entered the stadium, everyone in attendance yelled for him to “live 10,000 years” and continued doing so until he silenced them. “It was, as you might imagine, a bizarre and unusual occasion that won’t easily be forgotten,” said Simon Cokerell, general manager of Koryo Tours, which organizes tours for Western visitors to North Korea.
Rodman sparked outrage for a CNN interview yesterday in which he suggested Kenneth Bae, an American man sentenced to 15 years in prison by North Korean officials, did something to deserve his sentence. Bae was charged with urging people to carry out “hostile acts” against the state, something his family vehemently denies.
“Dennis Rodman could do a lot of good by advocating for Kenneth to Kim Jong-un,” said Bae’s sister, Terri Chung, in a statement. “Instead he has decided to hurl outrageous accusations at my brother, insinuating that Kenneth has done something sinister.”
The other players in the North Korean exhibition game and NBA commissioner David Stern have tried to distance themselves from the controversy Rodman has caused. Stern said said that North Korean officials have been in preliminary talks with the NBA about future “basketball diplomacy” games, but would not send players without White House approval. “Sports diplomacy is a wonderful thing,” he said. “But they should be done in a far more dignified fashion than this particular trip is being carried out.”