Tucker Carlson Defends Trump For Liking Kim Jong-Un: North Korea is 'Monstrous' But 'To Lead a Country' Means 'Killing People'

Fox News host Tucker Carlson defended President Donald Trump's friendly rapport with North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un — whose government has been accused of severe human rights violations — by claiming that other countries, including American allies, also "commit atrocities."

After shaking hands with Kim on Sunday, Trump stepped into North Korean territory, making history as the first U.S. president to enter the east Asian country. The seemingly spontaneous event at the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) separating the North and South came one day after Trump suggested the pair share an impromptu handshake at the border in a tweet.

"After some very important meetings, including my meeting with President Xi of China, I will be leaving Japan for South Korea (with President Moon)," Trump tweeted on Saturday. "While there, if Chairman Kim of North Korea sees this, I would meet him at the Border/DMZ just to shake his hand and say Hello(?)!"

During a segment on Fox & Friends Sunday, co-host Pete Hegseth asked Carlson, who was touring with the president, whether he believed Trump and Kim shared a "sincere" relationship.

"I think it is, I mean it's certainly sincere on Trump's part," Carlson said, via phone. "I mean, it's absolutely sincere. He's totally unembarrassed to say I kind of like Kim, you know, KJU as they call him here, I kind of like him. You know, I mean, whatever you think of that, there's never been a president that's been willing to be that blunt."

Carlson admitted that while the president may not be an "admirer" of the "atrocities" that his North Korean counterpart has committed, Trump still thinks Kim is a "competent, scrappy guy" and respects his "toughness."

Co-host Jebediah Bila then pointed out that Trump's friendly relationship with Kim ⁠— "someone who has been responsible for so many human rights abuses" ⁠— makes "some people nervous."

"Yeah I mean, there's no defending the North Korean regime, which is a monstrous regime; it's the last really Stalinist regime in the world. It's a disgusting place, obviously. So there's no defending it," Carlson admitted, before then defending the president by attempting to compare North Korea's actions to other nations.

"You got to be honest about what it means to lead a country, it means killing people," argued Carlson. "Not on the scale that the North Koreans do, but a lot of countries commit atrocities, including a number that we're closely allied with. So, I'm not a relativist or anything, but it's important to be honest about that."

"It's just kind of the nature of life, and certainly the nature of power," Carlson concluded. "And I do think that's how the president sees it. He's, you know, far less sentimental about this stuff, and maybe, I think more realistic about him."

Trump took 20 steps into North Korea, a country known for its nuclear ambitions and human rights abuses, at around 3:45 pm local time on Sunday.

As Trump and Kim shook hands, the U.S. president asked his North Korean counterpart: 'Would you like me to step across? I am okay with it."

Following his roughly one-minute foray into the hermit kingdom, Trump and Kim Jong Un stepped inside the Freedom House at the DMZ for approximately 50 minutes. Although it was unclear what exactly was discussed during that period, Trump later revealed that the pair had agreed to restart diplomatic talks that collapsed during their last summit in February.

Negotiations talks will begin in a matter of weeks, the president said.

Trump's apparent warmth toward Kim was heavily criticized on social media Sunday, where the name of Otto Warmbier became a top trending subject on Twitter. Warmbier was an American college student who was arrested in 2016 while on tour in North Korea. Kim's government ultimately released him from prison after 17 months, but he had been abused and treated so poorly that his body was in a vegetative state and he passed away shortly after being returned to the U.S.

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Fox News host Tucker Carlson defended President Donald Trump for liking North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Sunday's "Fox & Friends." Fox News/Screenshot