PHOENIX — Former U.S. Secretary of State Madeline Albright said former National Basketball Association player Dennis Rodman needs to shut up when it comes to diplomacy.
Albright said Rodman’s attempts at North Korean Diplomacy are a “side show” at a press conference in Phoenix on Thursday. She even offered to make a deal with Rodman.
“I promise not to play basketball if he stops trying to do diplomacy,” she said.
Albright recently visited the demilitarized zone that seperates North and South Korea, and said it was like stepping back in time.
“It’s so Cold War that it’s like out of a different era,” she said.
Rodman recently told a news conference that he told North Korean leader Kim Jong Un that “Your grandfather and your father did some bad things, but you are trying to change.”
Albright said Rodman doesn’t know what he’s talking about.
“It is a cruel regime,” she said. “Kim Jong Um, the new young leader, lives a very nice life, while, in fact, the majority of the people in North Korea are starving and can’t do anything. Either Dennis Rodman needs to find out what he’s talking about, or stop talking.”
Albright is glad that Rodman has apologized for his recent outburst during a CNN interview about several former NBA players accompanying him to North Korea.
Albright also said that she’s disappointed with former U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates.
In his new book, Gates criticized President Obama for what he calls “losing faith in his own strategy” when it came to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Albright said that Gates was part of Obama’s inner circle and the president trusted that he could openly express his concerns to him. She said it was wrong for Gates to write the book while Obama is still in office.
As for Obama himself, Albright said that “it is clear that President Obama is bound and determined to defend U.S. national interests. He has the utmost respect for the military. But he is not somebody that wants to keep fighting endlessly. He is trying to figure out how to bring troops home.”
Albright made the comments while in Phoenix to promote her new book.