Civil rights activist Jesse Jackson Sr. praised Dennis Rodman for his “diplomacy efforts” in North Korea, Monday.
“Congrads (sic) @dennisrodman on your diplomacy efforts in North Korea. It might be dark but you are a light!” the founder and president of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition tweeted and later deleted.
Minutes later Jackson followed up his congratulations with a sports analogy.
“@dennisrodman ping pong diplomacy worked in China, and Basketball seems to work in North Korea. #KeepHopeAlive,” he tweeted. Jackson left this tweet up.
— Rev Jesse Jackson Sr (@RevJJackson) January 6, 2014
Monday, Rodman returned for his fourth visit to the dictatorship with a group of other former NBA basketball players for an exhibition game to take place on dictator Kim Jong Un’s birthday, according to reports.
The game comes weeks after the birthday boy executed his uncle in an effort to bring more unity to the secretive, almost-nuclear country.
While Rodman has been criticized for his engagement with the murderous leader, the former NBA star told CNN that he is not looking to change policy — specifically advocate for the release of detained American Kenneth Bae — but deal with the regime on a human level.
“I’m going to try and interact with him [Jong Un] on that point of love for sports. He loves sports. I like the guy, and he’s an awesome guy to me,” Rodman told the news outlet. “One thing is about showing people we can actually get along. Let’s get along as human beings, not politicians.”