Last week, on a panel at the Netroots Nation conference, Congressman Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) said, “North Korea is a serious thing. You have this guy [Trump] making bellicose threats against somebody else who has very little to lose over there. Kim Jong-un, the world always thought he was not a responsible leader. Well, he’s acting more responsible than this guy is.”
Soon after realizing the potential political problem he had created, Ellison retracted his comments for the TV news cameras.
What does this tell us? Ellison, who is also deputy chairman of the Democratic Party, has spoken. In a competition between President Trump and Kim Jong-un, the Supreme Leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, a U.S. congressman who is also the deputy leader of his political party finds his own president to be the more irresponsible leader.
Think about this for a moment.
Kim Jong-un is the brutal, blood-soaked dictator of a Communist nation, who keeps millions of his own people in what can accurately be referred to as concentration camps, where sometimes the inmates subsist on grass. Kim has executed more than one member of his own family, including his uncle by marriage, whom he reportedly watched be stripped naked, thrown into a cage and torn apart by 120 starving dogs. Although his nation is desperately poor, Kim has continued his father’s programs for the development of nuclear weapons and intercontinental ballistic missiles, an incredibly expensive and complicated proposition. He is also sharing the fruits of these programs with the Islamic Republic of Iran, a nation run by fanatical Shia Muslim clerics who believe that their messianic times have arrived, and that they can hasten the final messianic process by engaging in (possibly nuclear) war with their enemies, including the United States.
After a ballistic missile test in July, Kim personally taunted the U.S. by saying the “American bastards would be not very happy with this gift sent on the July 4 anniversary… but we should send them gifts once in a while to help break their boredom.” The North Korean leader, also claimed the missile looked “as handsome as a good-looking boy,” and said the country would not negotiate with the United States to give up its weapons program until the U.S. abandoned its “hostile” policy against the DPRK.
Meanwhile, in response to such threats, President Trump said he would unleash “fire and fury like the world has never seen” on North Korea, then claimed his threat may not have been tough enough, and then warned North Korea that U.S. “military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely.”
This is the relevant comparison here, which Keith Ellison believes points to Kim Jong-un being a more responsible leader than Donald Trump.
Ellison’s statement calls into question his own judgment, more than anything else.
And this is not the first time Ellison has shown questionable judgement. Ellison started off his career in public service as a member of the Nation of Islam (NOI), and as a follower of its leader Louis Farrakhan. The NOI and Farrakhan are well-known for their anti-white racism and their anti-Semitism, yet Ellison has claimed that, during about a decade during the 1990s he never realized that the NOI and Farrakhan were problematic. This is contradicted by his former associates in the NOI.
Not only was Ellison a member or an associate of the NOI and Farrakhan, but he actually served for several years as the Minnesota group’s “chief of protocol, acting as a liaison between” the local leader and “members of the community.” He was regarded as a “trusted member” of the inner circle.
At best, in Ellison’s judgment, Louis Farrakhan and his NOI were a “useful affiliation” during his Ellison’s twenties and thirties. At worst, Ellison actually believed (and possibly still believes) the bigoted opinions of the NOI. But either way, the man’s judgement is clearly tainted, and nothing he says about the current crisis involving North Korea should be taken seriously. Least of all his partisan insults towards President Donald Trump.