President Trump shocked the world Thursday night when it was announced that he planned to sit down with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un in the coming months. The political world was so overwhelmed by the news that even the journalists at CNN were more or less optimistic. Yet over at MSNBC, host Rachel Maddow was anything but enthused by the idea as she spewed skepticism and threw shade at the commander-in-chief for accepting North Korea’s offer.
Towards the beginning of her bitter rant, Maddow seemed to question the President’s intelligence and/or knowledge of history for taking the meeting:
You might think another president in this circumstance, you can imagine a president asking himself or herself, “why has no other American president ever agreed to do this? Why has no sitting American president ever met with a leader from North Korea? Why has that never happened in all the decades North Korea existed as a nation? Should I take that to mean that this might be particularly risky or even an unwise move?”
Maddow whined about how Trump wasn’t doing what most presidents and even most people would do in approaching the situation. “I think a lot of people probably suspect tonight that those are not the kinds of questions that this president asked himself before agreeing to this meeting,” she said. “But this is the president we have and he said yes to North Korea.”
But meanwhile, this is the same MSNBC journalist that fawned over President Obama for the Iran nuclear deal. “[It’s] the major foreign policy achievement, not only of this presidency, but of this American generation,” she obnoxiously declared at the time. Maddow also gushed about how Obama had reached out to the dictatorial government of Cuba.
The MSNBC host was joined, via phone, by NBC National Security and Military reporter Courtney Kube and questioned her about what kind of problems Trump could cause and who in the “national security establishment” would stand up to him.
“It's definitely risky,” Kube said, stating the obvious. “So, one of the things this would do, if we have a picture of Kim Jong-un and President Trump standing next to one another, this actually achieves one of Kim Jong-un's long-standing and his father's goal which is to elevate North Korea.”
Maddow was clearly flummoxed by the massive shift in U.S. policy following a year of other historic and unorthodox interactions with the regime that had built up to this move. “It has been through Republican and Democratic administrations, the whole strategy not only for the United States but for the United States as leader of the free world, to the extent that we are, has been to treat North Korea as a pariah state and thereby try to change their behavior,” she huffed.
A face-to-face meeting with Kim Jong-un was a unique and groundbreaking development in the ongoing war between the two Koreas. Even Maddow’s MSNBC colleagues Chris Matthews and Joe Cirincione recognized the significance of the news. On CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper (who’s adamantly anti-Trump) was glad to see this moment come to fruition because it meant real progress in the ability to negotiate.
The relevant portions of the transcript are below, click expand to read:
MSNBC The Rachel Maddow Show March 8, 2018 9:04:14 PM Eastern [7 minutes 6 seconds]