Basketball bad boy and former SoCal party man Dennis Rodman was expected to arrive in North Korea today.

That according to Associated Press, which reports exclusively that Rodman is headed to the most politically isolated nation on the planet with a crew from Vice Media. He's being billed as “an unlikely ambassador for sports diplomacy at a time of heightened tensions between the U.S. and North Korea,” according to AP:

North Korea has been up to its old, provocative ways, including a December rocket launch and a Feb. 12 underground nuclear test, both against the wishes of the international community.

This as some of its population starves. If we're on the brink of World War III with anyone, it's North Korea.

The question is, do we really want Rodman representing us? Are we being punk'd by the famously snarky Vice? Should we all build bomb shelters? Are folks in L.A., the Korean American capital of America, down with this?

Vice claims it's all about serious but playful “basketball diplomacy.”

The outlet is also — ahem — promoting the April 5 launch of an HBO series called “Vice Guide to North Korea,” based, apparently, on the publication's previous two visits to the country.

(Glad the politics of global thermonuclear war could assist with the outlet's marketing needs).

VICE founder Shane Smith told AP this:

Is sending the Harlem Globetrotters and Dennis Rodman to the DPRK strange? In a word, yes. But finding common ground on the basketball court is a beautiful thing. These channels of cultural communication might appear untraditional, and perhaps they are, but we think it's important just to keep the lines open.

Spoken like a future Nobel Peace Prize winner. (Crosses fingers).

[@dennisjromero / / @LAWeeklyNews]

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