“I Will Take Him At His Word”: Trump States That He Believes Kim Jong Un Had No Knowledge Of Warmbier’s Mistreatment

President Donald Trump shocked many around the world on Thursday by declaring that he believes North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un is innocent of any knowledge of the mistreatment of American Otto Warmbier that led to his death. That statement smacked of willful blindness to the guilt of a man who routinely orders the execution of officials and makes others transcribe copious notes to be sure that he continues to exercise tight control over the country. The comment rekindled memories of Trump saying that he believed Vladimir Putin on Russian meddling in the election and rejected the views of American intelligence on North Korea in favor of Putin’s assurances on that country’s missile program. It also reminded many of Trump’s continued opposition to hold the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia accountable for the murder of a Washington Post journalist in Turkey despite the contrary findings of U.S. intelligence. Update: Warmbier’s parents have issued a scathing rebuke in response to the President’s statement.

Trump said that he discussed the death of Warmbier and said Kim “felt badly about it. He felt very badly. He tells me that he didn’t know about it and I will take him at his word.”

The idea of an American president taking the word of a murderous tyrant like Kim is otherworldly. Yet, Trump did not stop there. He also cleared the top leadership of such knowledge: “I don’t think that the top leadership knew about it. I don’t believe that he (Kim) would have allowed that to happen.”

Why? Kim reportedly killed his own family members in the most savage possible ways. He has starved a nation into utter subsistence living. He has ordering kidnappings, torture and murder. Moreover, since Warmbier is believed to have been in a vegetative state for 14 months, it is preposterous to believe that Kim was unaware of his condition.

Trump’s statement follows a troubling pattern. With Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Trump has disregarded U.S. intelligence and noted simply that the “crown prince vehemently denies” his involvement.

On North Korean missile development, Trump reportedly disregarded U.S. intelligence findings and told aides “I believe Putin.”

It was a strange contrast for Trump on his return from North Korea. Despite predictions that Trump would accept any deal to maintain his claim of unprecedented success in North Korea, Trump walked away from the deal as a bad one for the United States. It added credibility to his position that was promptly shattered by the perplexing statement on Warmbier. An American student and a U.S. based journalist were killed by two different tyrants who seem to hold more credence with the president than our own intelligence officials.

209 thoughts on ““I Will Take Him At His Word”: Trump States That He Believes Kim Jong Un Had No Knowledge Of Warmbier’s Mistreatment”

  1. With all the talk that Otto Warmbier was tortured, it would seem that the overwhelming majority either did not see the news of late September 2017 or have forgotten what was reported. I suggest that the following news articles should be read.

    From NBC News https://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/otto-warmbier-had-breathing-tube-n-korea-exam-shows-n805191
    From CNN https://edition.cnn.com/2017/09/27/health/otto-warmbier-coroner-report/index.html
    Quoting from the NBC link,

    ‘ The coroner for Hamilton County, Ohio, Dr. Lakshmi Kode Sammarco, confirmed that the team looked hard for any evidence of torture, but could find nothing definitive. They even called in a forensic dentist. “There was no evidence of trauma to the teeth,” Sammarco told reporters. The report also described Warmbier as having been “well-nourished.” “We believe that for somebody who had been bedridden for more than a year, that his body was in excellent condition, that his skin was in excellent condition,” she said. “We didn’t see any evidence of healing fractures or healed fractures that would have been within that time frame,” Sammarco added. “The fact that he has anoxic encephalitis or brain damage caused by the lack of oxygen to the brain, we don’t know what the root cause of that is. There’s a couple ways you can get that, so you either have to discontinue blood flow to the brain or stop breathing … Could that have been torture at the time? We don’t know,” she added. ‘

    Quoting from the CNN link,
    ‘ It could have been any number of things that prevented sufficient oxygen from reaching the brain, (Dr. Cyril) Wecht said, including strangulation, suffocation, medication or a botched suicide attempt. ‘

    In July 2018, GQ carried a very detailed investigative report on the entire incident involving Warmbier. gq.com/story/otto-warmbier-north-korea-american-hostage-true-story

    Quoting from the GQ link
    ‘ Within 48 hours of his return, Otto had a fever that had risen to 104 degrees. After doctors confirmed to Fred and Cindy that their son would never be cognizant again, they directed that his feeding tube be removed. They lived at his bedside until, six days after returning home, Otto died. ‘

  2. All the lame excuses for Trump’s revolting comments about Warmbier and puke worthy doubling down which included attempting to blame Obama – but not Kim – ignore the fact that Trump should have never met with Kim until a real deal was worked out by informed and experienced negotiators – he’s neither – and certainly never claimed they were “in love”. We know he’s a moral cripple, but this kind of repugnant behavior is a national embarrassment weakening our international stature. Like trashing NATO and our allies, maybe that’s his goal, much as it is his handler Putin.

  3. Two comments:

    1) It’s an open question, owning to the vast scope for inhumanity in North Korea, whether Kim Jong-Un had specific knowledge of Otto Warmbier’s presence in his country, much less the degree to which he’d been abused, until the point was raised by then-Secretary of State Tillerson in preliminary negotiations with the North Korean government.

    One can be as candid as one likes about the head of a country, until one has to discuss very contentious matters. Then a certain amount of diplomacy is necessary.

    If Donald Trump had said anything but what he had said, perhaps alluded to the unlikelihood that Kim Jong-Un was unaware of the torture and detention of an American citizen in his country for an extended period, the lip-smacking of the Western press about Trump’s boorishness prior to a delicate negotiation would be audible all over the world. So he said the diplomatic thing – and is derided and condemned anyway.

    2) relating to your comment:

    “The comment rekindled memories of Trump saying that he believed Vladimir Putin on Russian meddling in the election and rejected the views of American intelligence on North Korea in favor of Putin’s assurances on that country’s missile program….”

    Russian meddling in the US election is something that would likely have been denied by Mrs. Clinton and most of the national press had it favored her, and not Donald Trump.

    Russian meddling didn’t make a siginificant difference to the 2016 election, compared to Mrs. Clinton’s own misconduct while and as Secretary of State, allowing her family foundation to accept gratuities from foreign countries, vast irregularities in her conduct of US foreign policy and of classified infornation in a poorly-secured Email server, and afterwards, in the Democratic Party’s own manipulation of its presidential primary process favoring Mrs. Clinton. Whether Julian Assange and wikileaks had Russian help or not, no one has questioned the veracity of a single leaked DNC memo touching on these matters. No one cost Hillary Clinton that election but herself, through her considerable venality and corrupt behavior. If Putin acted at all, it was purely as the messenger of bad news about Hillary Cinton that voters in 2016 were entitled to know.

    1. Jean, Hillary won the Popular Vote by almost 3 million; well within the margins of a normal victory.

      I realize, of course, that Trumpers hate that fact. It’s still relevant, however. This common narrative that Hillary somehow ‘blew it’ just isn’t completely true. Nor is it true that Trump won a great victory.

      By any normal measure, Trump’s victory was peculiar. It had been more than a hundred years since a candidate lost the Popular Vote by that big of a margin and still got the White House. It’s just not a ‘victory’ to brag about.

      1. It’s not relevant to Hillary Clinton’s loss of the election, either. Nor has Vladimir Putin the power to force a win in the Electoral College. The votes were what they were. Mrs. Clinton’s husband was also elected President with less than a majority of the popular vote in 1996, but since we don’t hold run-off elections for the Presidency, he was duly sworn in.

        1. Jean, it’s true; Ross Perot split the vote 3 ways in both ’92 and ’96. Clinton, however, got a comfortable majority of Electoral Votes in both elections. Not that that should count, ha, ha..!!

          Russia was almost certainly behind Wikileaks via Grucifer in Romania. Wikileaks guaranteed that Hillary would get negative press throughout the campaign season.

          Every day voters saw headlines linking ‘Hillary’ to ‘Emails’. That was a death by a thousand cuts. Even in mainstream media Hillary got mostly negative press. And that has been confirmed by a Harvard researcher.

          That was the calculation behind Wikileaks: ‘A death by a thousand cuts effect’. And it worked. No other presidential candidate in U.S. history was stalked by foreign hackers. What a handicap!

          So when people come on with this attitude that ‘Hillary was too arrogant to campaign where she should have’. It’s basically a mean-spirited, sexist view that women are never good enough. Never mind that Hillary was handicapped by Wikileaks! ‘She lost through arrogance’.

      2. Nor is it a loss worth years of non-stop whining; it’s not unprecedented to have non-majority or non-plurality winners of presidents election elections,
        And we came very close to that in 2004, when a minor shift in Ohio voting would has handed Kerry the election, despite getting a few million fewer votes.
        But the level and the extended length of the losers’ whining about the results of an election is truly unique.

      3. “I realize, of course, that Trumpers hate that fact.”

        Probably none of us even think of it since the President has been in office for 2 years and doing a great job. Your level of concern for the nation is near zero. We focus on the quality of life for all Americans and America’s security. What do you focus on? Junk, killing of babies, how to increase the drugs in our country that kill our young, the creation of ghettos, the importation of criminals and rapists, etc. Nothing you say is ever geared to reducing problems.That is your nature.

        1. What have been the Democratic Party’s rallying cries?

          Legalizing the killing of full term infants in the birth canal.
          Refusing to sign legislation that would have guaranteed medical care to babies who are born alive after a botched, late term abortion attempt. There are recorded conversations in which Planned Parenthood employees describe putting moving infants into jars of solution to kill them, or advising late-term mothers going home with chemical abortificants to flush small babies born alive down toilets or wrap them in plastic and throw them away.
          Sanctuary cities that protect illegal alien violent felons, including rapists from deportation
          Emptying prisons
          Putting the wants and needs of those who break the law over those who follow it
          Rhetoric against police
          Rising anti-semitism, including an anti-semitic kerfuffle with Linda Sarsour at the Women’s March, and the election of two blatantly open anti-semites to Congress
          Racist identity politics that evaluate individual worth based on race and gender
          Widespread assaults and harassment of people for merely wearing clothing in support of Trump. Can you imagine if most people were afraid to wear an AOC or I’m with Hillary, or feel the Bern, or Hope and Change clothing for fear of getting attacked, fired, harassed, your car keyed…
          Constant ad hominem attacks of people who disagree with them politically.
          Calling people of different political persuasions a racist no longer requires that person to actually have a negative opinion on any race. Fascist does not require that person to subscribe to Fascist ideologies.
          Hatred of the Flag

          The list just goes on and on. I used to believe that Democrats and Republicans were peas and carrots. We all wanted what was best for our country, we were patriotic, we just differed on whether the way to prosperity was through high taxes and government intervention or not. We had more in common that we had differences.

          Over the years, however, I have realized that the Democratic Party has descended into extremism and hatred. They have lost me on every major issue, starting with their assault on my access to affordable health care, which I had before the Affordable Care Act.

          They have lost me on one issue after another. They are for criminal behavior over law and order. They seem to despise business owners and the successful. They preach a victimhood mentality to people which leads to a nihilistic attitude towards life and despondent dependency upon government, an indifferent caretaker. Their latest support for infanticide has made me physically ill. They preach it’s the woman’s choice over what happens to her body when a completely separate new person is outside of her body. Perhaps, if their way becomes national law, serial killer Gosnell will be released from prison. By their reasoning, he did nothing wrong. I feel like we have traveled back in time to watch the nascent Nazi German Socialist Party’s rise, while they earnestly tell me how wonderful their policies are.

          The party seems hell bent on destroying our economy and our blessings. Perhaps when we are all starving, they will consider the debt America owes to be paid.

          Which brings me to another core belief of theirs with which I disagree. Democrats believe the the US is evil, that all whites bear a terrible burden of guilt for slavery. Talk of reparations keeps going around, although I doubt no matter what they make everyone pay will ever be enough. Let’s review, for a moment, the facts of slavery.

          Slavery was a universal, loathsome institution since before recorded time. It sprang from the rule of the club and persisted for thousands of years. People were born and raised in a world where slavery had always existed. It exhibited convergent societal evolution. Native Americans, whom had migrated to the New World thousands of years before European settlers reconnected with their long lost cousins, also engaged in slavery, especially sexual slavery.

          It was Great Britain and the United States who were at the forefront of abolishing slavery. We were the earliest pioneers in fighting to squelch that great evil. In fact, slavery still exists in the African continent. 4% of every man, woman, and child in Mauritania are enslaved…literally. The US does not bear the guilt for the global industry of slavery. We helped eradicate it. The vast majority of whites in America were not slave owners. And yet, ever able bodied man in the North fought with their own countrymen in the South over whether states had the right to continue enslaving human beings. So many died. Not only that, their surviving widows and children suffered, and sometimes starved to death. The South was destroyed, and many Southerners suffered starvation.

          Now I wonder, if you could go back in time to the scared young corporal about to charge onto the field with fixed bayonet, and told him that a hundred years later, Democrats were going to perpetuate a hatred of white people over slavery. They were going to demand Reparations. His sacrifice was going to be for nothing, in Democrats eyes. His death and the deprivation of his wife and children, who were not slave owners, was not going to be enough. Nothing was enough. Would he or anyone else still fight?

          This obsession over slavery has got to stop. White non slave owners fought and died to free black slaves. There is no greater show of love and sacrifice. The debt has been paid. We have current laws against discrimination. We have spent trillions of dollars on programs designed to help black families. Move forward. Since slavery ended over a hundred thirty years ago, whites have immigrated to this country whose ancestry had nothing to do with American slavery. Blacks have immigrated to this country whose ancestors never experienced American slavery. In fact, they come from a region in which slavery is still practiced, so some of those black immigrants might have been, or descended from slave owners. Their ancestors might have belonged to the tribes who sold their enemies to Portuguese slavers.

          No one is ever going to untangle the thread of whom ever was involved in slavery since antiquity. No one will ever right the wrongs against every man, woman, and child of all races throughout history. Our laws evolved to become more just. That is the balm for eons of evil deeds. Jurisprudence and individual freedom.

          1. Karen, everything you say above is true especially your remarks on slavery.

            Were the points you made in rapid sucession after the first sentence taken from a draft of the next Democratic piece of legislation to go before Congress?😇

      4. Peter:

        Hillary Clinton won highly populated urban areas. The rest of the country was a swath of red.

        The reason why we have the Electoral College is to prevent a couple of highly populated states from becoming king makers, relegating the Other 48 to Flyover Nuclear Waste Dumps.

        It should come as no surprise that she won the popular vote. The two most populated states, CA and NY, are a Democrat voting bloc, especially since the Democrats began to favor illegal immigration. Democrats promise unlimited free stuff. The African American community has been voting for the very policies that have held them impoverished. Latinos vote for them because they support and enable illegal immigration, sanctuary cities, drivers licenses for illegals… In fact, I have personally knowledge of illegal aliens who voted in the last election. The system is set up in a way that encourages them to register to vote. Many did not even know they were not supposed to vote. There is a legitimate concern that the reason why Republicans have become irrelevant in CA, is because of voter fraud from illegal aliens, as well as other means. Los Angeles and San Francisco are Democrat meccas, while the rest of the state is Republican.

        I do not know why Democrats have such a very difficult time understanding this, but all 48 states get to have a say in who becomes our President. Otherwise, candidates would only campaign in, and cater to, basically 2 states out of the Union, and the rest would become some Hunger Games dystopia. There would be nothing they could do about it, because abolishing the Electoral College would disenfranchise them.

        Yes, we know that the two highest populated states voted en bloc for Hillary. That is not a revelation.

        Should the electoral college be abolished, the only way the Other 48 would be self-determinative would be if they moved en masse to the 2 Kingmaker states, thus disenfranchising the Democrats who abolished the representative nature of our government. And there would not be a thing they could do about it, having dissolved representation of the Other 48. It would be CA on a larger scale – most of the mileage of the state is Republican, but they do not have the votes to be self determinative, as the urban areas overwhelm them. This is also how urban areas mismanage rural areas. They vote policies on areas they do not understand. This is also how nuclear waste dumps end up near reservations, and rural communities become dumping grounds for pedophiles. Urban areas have the votes to enact Not In My Backyard.

        The takeaway from Hillary’s win of the popular vote and complete and total loss in the electoral college, is that she only caters to the urban areas, and has absolutely no idea what the entire, rest of the country wants.

        1. Karen, could you please send me the Cliff Notes version of your comments? I’m a little pressed for time.

          1. Peter, now we have it. All your life you have used Cliff Notes, headlines, summaries and the like so you don’t know much of anything.

            1. Alan, your Turley block symbol looks different today. Have you any explanation for that?

        2. Karen, forgetting about the illegal votes had the popular vote been the objective I think Trump would have skipped some of the less populous areas and went to the concentrated Democratic areas. There I think he would have picked up a lot of votes from those deciding not to vote where the vote was already decided and perhaps a good number of Clinton voters. He probably would have then won the popular vote.

  4. The two leaders were working on negotiations regarding denuclearization. You’re not going to call your negotiating opponent a spoiled, psychotic stuffed full of sweets and carbs while his country starves, and then throw poop on his shoes, either while your are trying to denuclearize the nation, or hope to keep negotiating in the future.

    No, I don’t believe that Kim Yong Un is unaware of general torture going on under his regime, although he probably doesn’t micro manage each and every savage abuse, personally. Who would have the time, with all those souls in gulags?

    You expect some ego stroking, conciliatory comments, and compliments with abusive dictators, like Kim and Putin, whom you are trying to curb. The other alternative is war or military action.

    There seems to be a yo yo going on. People were afraid Trump would start a nuclear war with North Korea, then they were afraid he was too nice, and why isnt’ he just bombing North Korea?

    My father was a negotiator with foreign governments as well as private corporations.

    1. Thanks, Karen S, for the voice of reason. Let the POTUS do his damn job without all the Monday-morning quarterbacking by those who objectively know little of what went on yet harbor no doubts. And yes the critics want it both ways. On a side note, your father sounds like a fascinating man.

    2. Karen……….your father sounds like an interesting man. Do you mind if I ask which years he was with the Bureau?

      1. He was in the military until the 80s and then was in a related private industry.

        He specialized in the Middle East and USSR. At one time, he was lead negotiator on some very interesting subjects, although there was often not much he could tell us. He said when he traveled to Saudi Arabia, the officers were fainting in 120 degree heat while the Arabs wore the flowing thobes they all wished they could wear. When he went to Russia they had to sweep the room for bugs, all while carrying on inane conversations. He will still to this day refuse to tell me anything that was classified at the time until or unless I can provide proof that it’s been declassified. I’m thinking I want to get on that. Based on what he was able to tell us, I think he should write a book. I remember there was this one story of them coming across a man standing beside his car next to a cornfield, tearing his hair out because he just saw an alien spaceship. It was a test flight of an experimental aircraft.

        I don’t want to include any information or events that could identify him. People are political savages, and I don’t want my family to suffer because I share my personal opinions on the internet.

        1. Karen ….I certainly understand about his privacy.. I thought your father had been in the FBI. My brother was an agent during the 60’s.
          Yes, your father should write a book. It would be a great read, I’m sure.

        2. Karen S:

          I second Cindy’s motion on the book. What a great time to be alive and in service to the country in the hottest of hotspots. Put me on the pre-publication buy list.

        3. Karen, I wonder why he can’t get permission to write a book even if it never gets published. Then have it looked over and then remove whatever remains classified. I think these personal recollections of well placed individuals need to be preserved. I am trying to get someone in my own family to do that who has an incredible history with a good deal of intrigue.

  5. The comments on this thread are a wonderful example of why I am increasingly reluctant to express my opinion on any post containing the words “Donald Trump.” Regardless of the subject matter of the post, the discussion quickly devolves into an exercise in whataboutism, stark animosity and insults on the level of “Your mother wears Army boots.” This sad state is amplified by anonymity, which permits a person to express whatever vitriol comes to mind in the moment in the secure knowledge that he or she will never have to assume public responsibility for the opinion, the blog version of toilet papering someone’s house or throwing raw eggs at their windows, and operating at the same level of maturity. The typical result is that one can’t see the forest for the trolls.

    Yet here I am, like some sort of bargain basement Sisyphus, thinking I may be able to push the logic rock back up the hill. We’ll see.

    The subject matter of Prof. Turley’s post was the President’s public exoneration of Kim Jong-un and his government from any responsibility in the death of Otto Warmbier. The post did not suggest that Mr. Trump should have ended the summit with a denunciation of the North Korea leader for the death or pillory North Korea’s human rights record or formally demand the immediate release of all political prisoners. But diplomatic niceties do not demand the acceptance or endorsement of explanations which defy history and common sense. The President could easily have deflected the questions with general language that the Warmbier matter remains a topic of discussion between the two countries; instead, Mr. Trump adopted the foreign relations version of the Full Monty.

    It is also true, of course, that we do not know the efficient cause of Mr. Warmbier’s tragic death. However, although I do not expect to be nominated for the Mr. Perspicacity Award for 2019, I am fairly confident that his condition was not a product of eating bad rice. Fortunately, Mr. Warmbier was not a close relative of the North Korean leader, which could have meant death by anti-aircraft gun or through the treachery of comely women with lies in their hearts and poison on their finger tips.

    Perhaps the President should have thanked Kim Jong-un for the generous sentence of only 15 years of hard labor. After all, Mr. Warmbier admittedly converted to his own possession and use a propaganda poster, a blatantly indecent insult to his hosts. We can all be grateful that he did not receive the death penalty for his ungracious actions-oh, wait; he did.

    As the day is certain to become night, most of you will undoubtedly continue to defend the President’s statement as a model of brilliant leadership. Have at it.

    1. “But diplomatic niceties do not demand the acceptance or endorsement of explanations which defy history and common sense.”

      Mike I respectfully differ with you. Trump didn’t accept the death. Instead he chose to believe that what Kim said was true even though he might think Kim is lying. I might choose to believe something you say is true even though I think you are lying. That is part of getting past something that acts as a wall between two negotiators. Insincere or timid language doesn’t work but sets the ground for insincere discussion.

      I accept your ultimate personal opinion but I base what I believe on experience and what a few experts in the field that heavily criticized Trump are now saying. You are entitled to your opinion though at the end it would have been better said without the tinge of sarcasm.

      I wish you wouldn’t hesitate in posting. I like listening to your alternate views as they assist us in getting to the truth.

      1. Mike A. and Allan,
        I agree with the view that publically “exonerating” Kim to the degree that Trump did was a mistake.
        Under those circumstances ( media questioning), any president would be unlikely to openly condemn Kim when there is the hope of productive negotiations.
        But ideally, Trump could gave mumbled some non-commital lines as suggested in Mike’s post.
        The mention of the “love” between them that Trump previously mentioned seemed extreme and bizarre, but maybe Trump was trying to appeal to Log Cabin Republicans.
        On the Warmbier issue, I viewed it more as a kidnapping by North Korea, rather than any real evidence that they had an actual criminal justice system independent of Kim’s domination.
        If a kidnapped victim is found moribund, there’d normally be an effort to determine a cause of death in our criminal justice system.
        For that reason, I don’t think the significance of prohibiting an autopsy is overstated.
        IMO it’s important to know if it was neglect, injury intentionally inflicted, or something else that caused his death.
        An autopsy was probably the best last chance to get at those answers.

        1. “An autopsy was probably the best last chance to get at those answers.”


          It is always a difficult decision for a family member to order an autopsy because it entails doing more injury to the body. Yet, the only way to confirm the nature of the death of a person, particularly in mysterious ones as in this case, is via autopsy.
          We were not part of the investigation, we were not present when the poor young man was kidnapped and tortured, nor have we any knowledge of the pain experienced by the family. It is all off the richter scale and too much to comprehend.

          The internet was supposed to bring us together but clearly that didnt work. The MSM, the internet in general, forums like these and others, the comments therein by David Brock paid trolls purposely seeking to agitate and divide/conquer, all are symptoms of pathology in our nation. We are a sick country

          I have been tempted many times to throw my iPhone into the river but my wife, though understanding, will not follow suit. We have lost respect for each other, for human life, for God.

          I fear less Russians, Koreans, Foreigners and immigrants. I fear more our Federal Govt and especially gluttonous, slothful angry Americans who should have left this world years ago due to chronic medical conditions through their own choices. Let evolution do its thing: survival of the fittest. We have to stop keeping people alive who should have died long ago because they are not fit

          I am a health care professional…..and I am not alone in my medical opinion.


          (Be a Man) for those dumb chimps who cant recognize Latin

        2. “ appeal to Log Cabin Republicans”, how is that splinter problem Gnash? Sphinctering you worked it out.

        3. Tom, I agree on the critical importance and lost opportunity of an autopsy. It’s difficult for the family, because of the damage to the body. An open casket might not be possible. Plus, it is an important decision to be made during intense emotional turmoil. Perhaps the family felt there was a surfeit of proof of abuse without it.

          Whenever foul play is suspected, perform an autopsy.

    2. “But diplomatic niceties do not demand the acceptance or endorsement of explanations which defy history and common sense.”
      An American student gets mistreated in a Korean prison and the country’s leader is ipso facto aware of the circumstances and nature and extent of his injuries? Who is defying common sense now?

      I had a client beaten in a Virginia county jail. I didn’t think to sue Bill Clinton who was President at the time or even George Allen (pre-macacaw) who was the Virginia governor. I placed blame on the guard and sheriff. Silly me. But then again I couldn’t reflexively go after anybody I didn’t like. I had to deal with the evidence thingy.

    3. Mike A, I can see why you would feel that way.

      Idealogues make debate difficult. They either can never admit when their person does wrong, or cannot admit when their opponent does right.

    1. “Mr Kurtz says: March 1, 2019 at 1:17 PM
      Memory of my sad whores? sounds interesting, check it out, thanks!“

      that was meant to be a reply to MK but oh well.
      Its not like this is an academic crowd citing scholarly references using APA format

      putas tristes indeed

  6. It’s sad about Otto, and the DPRK is responsible not only for the death of many foreigners but countless of its own citizens. But our national interests in stability in the region vis a vis the nuclear issue come first. Sorry, I don’t see how or why human rights issues, however genuine, should always be expected to come forth at the same time as strategic ones. What did Kissinger say one time about that?



    Warmbier’s father stated that his son, en route to Hong Kong to complete a study abroad program, was traveling in China at the end of 2015 when he saw a company offering trips to North Korea. He decided to go because he was adventurous, according to his father. The senior Warmbier said that the China-based tour operator, Young Pioneer Tours, appealed to young Westerners with slogans such as “This is the trip your parents don’t want you to take!” and advertised the trip as safe for U.S. citizens.

    Edited from WIKIPEDIA profile of Otto Warmbier

    It’s darkly comical the tour was advertised as a trip parents would object to. Though one has to ask why the Warmbier’s funded such a trip for their son.

    Did the Warmbier’s simply provide Otto with a credit card that could cover any whimsical adventure? If so, that may have been an issue here. Perhaps Otto had ‘too much’ freedom. If indeed this was the case, he might have gotten killed one way or another.

  8. Obviously, the thing to do when you’re negotiating with someone is to call the other guy a liar in front of the international press. Yeah, that’ll help.

    1. RSA,…
      There are probably some in the media who would like to see that happen.
      But Trump still went too far in letting the NK regime off the hook for Warmbier’s incarceration and death.
      And as I mentioned elsewhere, not permitting an autopsy deprived both the U.S. and the family of an opportunity to learn more about what actually happened to Warmbier when he was in NK custody.

  9. That statement smacked of willful blindness …


    Infanticide – woman’s right; Gender dysphoria – completely normal; Southern border – secure; Illegal aliens – legal, receiving taxpayer benefits, harbored by cities and states, holding public office, voting, – $93 trillion Green New Deal – Necessary; 70% tax rate – necessary; $8 billion border wall – unnecessary; Presumption of innocence – depends on your political party; 1st amendment – only if the majority approve; 2nd amendment – give us your guns and we’ll negotiate; IRS – don’t be a conservative 501c3; Voter ID – Racist; Vote harvesting – depends, did we win?; And on, and on.

    Yeah, no. Willful blindness? More like calculated. What really has the Left incensed is President Trump has nicer things to say about foreign totalitarians than he does about our domestic ones.

    1. Excellent comment Olly. It shows the blindness of the left and the dangers this nation faces from the leftist fascists.

  10. I’m getting the same feeling. But if JT keeps going, he’s got a job at FOX.

  11. People may be shocked but when one is negotiating with another where they both have interests in the deal they don’t destroy the deal with bad things that aren’t part of the deal. In fact it is best if the two parties get along even if they hate each other. They aren’t getting married. They are just looking for a deal.

    1. So, you’re saying that if one has a deal about nuclear bombs, they should not muddy it with other issues like support of terrorism or missiles.

      Interesting. And that deal was actually completed and the parties abiding by it according to the IAEA, the US Military and Intelligence Services, and Israeli intelligence.

      1. “So, you’re saying that if one has a deal about nuclear bombs, they should not muddy it with other issues like support of terrorism or missiles.”

        Anon, your mind wanders a bit too much. Otto Wambier was already dead and nothing could be done about it. Trump did bring him home along with the bodies of our soldiers that died decades ago. You were, however, happy about the Iran deal despite hostages, their continued support of state sponsored terrorism happening on a daily basis, and their death threats not only to Israel but to the US. We could liken that to a split personality on your behalf or schizophrenic behavior but I am a nice guy so I give you the benefit of the doubt that you are confused.

        1. Allen posted above:

          “People may be shocked but when one is negotiating with another where they both have interests in the deal they don’t destroy the deal with bad things that aren’t part of the deal. In fact it is best if the two parties get along even if they hate each other. They aren’t getting married. They are just looking for a deal.”

          I’m not seeing an explanation of how that fits with his criticism and rejection of the Iranian nuclear deal, but then I don’t speak Trumpish.

          Maybe he should focus on the discussion at hand instead of announcing his mental superiority – if it was obvious, he wouldn’t have to – and hiding behind insults.

      2. “So, you’re saying that if one has a deal about nuclear bombs, they should not muddy it with other issues like support of terrorism or missiles.”

        They certainly should and Trump did that with N. Korea something Obama didn’t do with Iran. Iran is moving forward with its nuclear aims and missle systems. At the same time Iran is building missiles that Hezbollah and Hamas can launch into Israel. Along with that Iran is now trying to place missiles against Israel in Syria. Only the very stupid don’t know these things so I assume you already know them and are just spouting nonesense.


  12. The Warmbier family’s refusal to allow an autopsy complicated any effort to get a definative cause of injury/illness/ death.
    I don’t think there was a conclusive determination that the brain damage was caused from trauma, but I’d have to review the articles and try to find the death certificate, if it’s viewable online.

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