Dennis Rodman has created waves with his reported “friendship” with North Korea’s ruthless dictator Kim Jong-Un.
In an interview with CNN the controversial and flamboyant former NBA star says he is just trying to fight his addictions in rehab and figuring out how to become a better father.
Whatever his intentions, Rodman is in the middle of the ever tense relations — or lack thereof — between the US and North Korea, one of the most secretive regimes in the world.
The US does not endorse Dennis Rodman’s apparent closeness with the man who is accused by some of the worst human right violations and whom he has said is “a friend for life” and “a nice guy.”
The basketball star says he does not know enough about the accusations against Kim Jong-Un:
“I keep telling people, I’m not there to be an ambassador to try to figure out why (is Kim) doing all these things? That’s not my job,” Rodman said on Friday.
As the only American with apparent close access to the North Korea leader, Dennis Rodman is believed to have lobbying power in winning the release of imprisoned American Kenneth Bale — who has been sentenced to 15-years of hard labor — for “crimes” against the state.
However, Dennis Rodman argues that is not his job:
“I’m not an ambassador, and I tried to strive and tell people, just because I know the marshal (Kim), that doesn’t mean I know the marshal like that.”
Rodman came under fire for comments he made during an interview earlier this month, in which he suggested Bae did something to deserve his current situation, but in a rare empathetic statement said he would switch place with the captive:
“To this day I still don’t know what he did. I feel for (Bae’s family). I feel for them deeply…. I would do anything literally. This is Dennis Rodman talking. If they (North Korea) said, ‘We’ll take Dennis Rodman and we’ll let Kenenth Bae go,’ I’ll say, ‘You know what? I’ll do that…. Take me.'”
During the interview, which touched on Dennis Rodman’s current stay at the rehab facility he admitted to being an alcoholic.
“I’ve always been a party animal. I think for me, the reason I drink is because I’m bored. Am I an alcoholic? Absolutely.”
This month Dennis Rodman — who won five NBA championships with the Detroit Pistons and Chicago Bulls — organized a team of former NBA stars and traveled to North Korea for a game to celebrate Kim JOng-Un’s birthday.
North Korea has recently threatened the US and its neighbor South Korea with an “imminent nuclear war” if they don’t halt combined military exercises.
“I’m not a traitor,” Dennis Rodman said of his association with the secretive regime. “My whole goal is to make people happy.”