dennis rodman & kim jong un (cartoon)

Dennis Rodman & Kim Jong Un (illustration courtesy of Cagle Post)

*Dennis Rodman’s trip to North Korea was one of those magical, couldn’t-make-it-up moments that started off as comical, went all the way around into absurdity and then dove straight into The Onion territory.

The most closed-off, paranoid, neurotic and dangerous country in the world, full of a starving population and tinker-toy nuclear weapons, one that is still technically at war with its closest neighbor, finally accepts someone from the West inside its borders – and it’s Dennis Rodman.

Frankly, we should all be breathing a sigh of relief that the balloon didn’t go up and the mushroom clouds didn’t start appearing during Rodman’s visit. He was one hell of a basketball player, but on a trip to North Korea, we wouldn’t bet against him triggering World War III before he had breakfast. Jeez, even one look at the cover of his autobiography would be enough to start an invasion (look, if you dare)

So, next time this bizarre little country attempts some basketball diplomacy, might we suggest the U.S. sending over these figures instead?

CHARLES BARKLEY –This is the good cop option, because everyone loves Charles, right? We could totally see him and Kim Jong Un going out for a very awesome night on the town that ends up on TMZ.

CHARLES OAKLEY – The bad cop option. He might have retired nine years ago, but we’re still terrified of him. Oakley might come home with all the nuclear plans in his suitcase.

LEBRON JAMES – Kim Jong Un’s dad, Kim Jong Il, was renowned for his ludicrous athletic boasts, like his eleven holes-in-one during a round. LeBron might be able to do something that even Kim Jong Il couldn’t do. That’s the way to impress his son.

BILL RUSSELL – One of the smartest, most thoughtful men to ever play the game. If he can’t talk some sense into the North Koreans, we should all just start investing in bomb shelters right now.