Uhhh what is even going on here.Photo: AP
Ex-basketball star Dennis Rodman, who until this week's in-person negotiations between US President Donald Trump and North Korean strongman Kim Jong Un could accurately claim himself to be one of the few people friends with both, crashed the closed-door event today in Singapore. He did so wearing a shirt advertising a marijuana-themed cryptocurrency startup that now seems destined for either a museum or, if we're gonna guess, a jaw-dropping high bid on eBay.
Per Vox, Rodman didn't manage to score a formal invite from either world leader's government. But he showed up anyways sponsored by Canada-based PotCoin, a cryptocurrency that advertises itself as the future medium of exchange in the legal marijuana business:
Sporting a t-shirt promoting a marijuana-related cryptocurrency company, a red "Make America Great Again" hat, and a large nose ring, Rodman spoke to CNN live from Singapore. Though he wasn't actually invited to attend the summit, he flew there anyway — on a trip sponsored by PotCoin, the cryptocurrency business.
Rodman's shirt read "PotCoin.com / PEACE STARTS IN SINGAPORE."
Just arrived to Singapore for the Historical Summit! Looking forward to @POTUS having incredible success that the whole world will benefit by. Thank you @potcoin for supporting my mission! #Peace #Love #HistoricalSummit #Singapore #PresidentTrump #MarshallKimJongUn pic.twitter.com/XNDsyBjLv8
— Dennis Rodman (@dennisrodman) June 11, 2018
While doing an interview for CNN on the situation, Rodman broke out into tears while recalling alleged death threats he received after his 2013 visit to meet Kim in North Korea. Rodman said, "I believe in North Korea. And when I went home, I couldn't even go home... I had to hide out for 30 days. I couldn't even go home, but I kept my head up high, I knew things were gonna change."
"It's a great day," he added. "... I'm so happy."
Speaking with CNN’s @chriscuomo while wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat, former NBA star @dennisrodman describes his relationship with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and his hopes for the country https://t.co/oaMBT2GQ3n pic.twitter.com/YjNf7ZI9Ky
— Cuomo Prime Time (@CuomoPrimeTime) June 12, 2018
In another interview with CNN, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told host Chris Cuomo that Rodman was a national resource:
CNN's Chris Cuomo noted about Rodman on Monday night, "He is our best resource at this point right now for understanding the minds of the two men, especially Kim Jong Un."
Clapper responded: "I agree, Chris ... as weird as it is ... this whole thing is unconventional."
"I've long been an advocate of involving Dennis Rodman," Clapper noted to Cuomo. "He is a unique person since he has a relationship with both Kim Jong Un and with Donald Trump. And obviously he has a great rapport with Kim Jong Un — who is a basketball fanatic himself. So, I think there's a potential here to engage Dennis Rodman in a serious way in promoting this relationship."
While this was undoubtedly a fantastic day overall for PotCoin, which sponsored a previous trip by Rodman to North Korea in 2017 and saw its prices skyrocket as a result, the outlook for the summit itself is not so clear. Both Kim and Trump appeared amicable at the "carefully choreographed" event, according to the New York Times, though it was not clear that they would agree on the meaning of terms like "denuclearization" intended to be included in a joint statement. In the initial phases of the summit, per CNN, Kim did not answer when asked if he intended to give up North Korea's arsenal of nuclear weapons.