Tucker Carlson Offers Apologies for Kim Jong Un: Leading a Country ‘Means Killing People’

Tucker Carlson Offers Apologies for Kim Jong Un: Leading a Country ‘Means Killing People’

Tucker Carlson called into Fox News on Sunday morning to offer an apologia for Donald Trump meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.

Tucker Carlson is traveling with President Trump on his Asia trip, which means he had a front-row seat as the president walked across the DMZ to meet with Kim. The hosts of Fox questioned the wisdom of Trump bromancing the North Korean leader when the American people elected him to be tough with America’s enemies and to stand up for American values. So Carlson, after first saying there is no way to defend North Korea, found a way to hedge:

“You’ve got to be honest about what it means to lead a country, it means killing people. Not on the scale the North Koreans do, but a lot of countries commit atrocities, including some that we’re closely allied with…It’s not necessarily a choice between the evil people and the great people. It’s a choice most of the time between the bad people and the worse people. That’s kind of the nature of life and the nature of power…There is a kind of Samantha Power, dorm-room ‘oh they’re so mean’ and it’s kind of silly and stupid and not helpful.”

Sure, the U.S. has allied with some countries that commit atrocities. But it has also at least tried to stand up for human rights and the values of liberal democracy. This is one of the great tensions in American life and the nation’s leaders have often struggled with it.

Carlson is basically saying, why bother? Which must be a head-spinning turn for conservative viewers, who would scream bloody murder at any Democrat who shrugged at the atrocities committed by a communist dictator.

Watch the video embedded in the tweet above.

Gary Legum

Gary Legum has written about politics and culture for Independent Journal Review, Salon, The Daily Beast, Wonkette, AlterNet and McSweeney's, among others. He currently lives in his native state of Virginia.