I'm sure you have heard by now about Dennis Rodman and several ex NBA players flew to North Korea and played basketball for the birthday of North Koreans leader Kim Jong Un. There has been a lot of outrage because North Korean has imprisoned Kenneth Bae for an undisclosed reason. This story went from a sports story to an international story even having CNN interview Dennis Rodman and it did not turn out great. (interview will be shown below)
Although the message went in the wrong direction, I believe Dennis's intentions was good we have seen sports bring countries closer together with ping pong diplomacy where the united states sent ping pong players to at that time "red" China or communist China. This also happened in baseball where the Baltimore Orioles played an exhibition game down in Cuba. So to think that basketball could help the relationship between the United States and North Korea is not a farce considering we don't have an existing relationship with North Korea.
This story was a big deal because the head of the operation is Dennis Rodman and people thought it was to promote the Rodman brand. Rodman had been in the news cycle before, he was in the news for wearing a dress, being an alcoholic, and dating Madonna. I think this is different from those situations if you had heard the interview by Charles Smith they thought they were doing the right thing until they heard the backlash by the public and they caused them to possibly regret their decision.
I think its out of bounds when the people on CNN asking Dennis if he could try to get Kenneth Bae out of imprisonment because they wouldn't ask the same questions to U.S. government officials but they choose to ask Dennis. From what we know he is only friends with Kim Jong Un, just because he is Dennis's friend doesn't mean he will do everything Dennis asks him. How about you ask Dennis to solve the famine over in North Korea while your at it I'm sure he could solve that problem.
Sports can have a major impact on countries the United States did this with ping pong over in China baseball over in Cuba so why couldn't it work in North Korea. In North Korea they love NBA basketball the NBA gave Kim Jong Un's father a basketball signed by Michael Jordan and that ball is like a treasure over in North Korea. So if basketball can even open the door a crack between the relationship between the U.S. and North Korea then that is a lot more than it was before.