South Korea Caught Off Guard By Trump's Praise For Kim Jong Un

FILE - In this Saturday, Oct. 10, 2015 file photo, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un waves at a parade in Pyongyang, North Korea. North Korea is preparing to hold a once-in-a-generation congress of its ruling party that is intended to rally the nation behind leader Kim Jong Un and could provide an important glimpse into Kim’s plans for the country’s economy and military. The congress is set to begin May 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E, File)

He really does seem to be unusually preoccupied with dictators and despotic regimes.

On Monday, President Trump said he would be open to having direct talks with North Korea’s raging little tyrant, Kim Jong Un.

Over the weekend, he even referred to Jong Un as a “smart cookie.”

“A lot of people, I’m sure, tried to take that power away, whether it was his uncle or anybody else,” Trump said. “And he was able to do it. So obviously, he’s a pretty smart cookie.”

Ok. Wow.

Understandably, our allies in the region, and those who stand the most to lose, due to their close proximity to the unstable madman (Jong Un), South Korea, were a bit unnerved by Trump’s comments.

The South Korean newspaper Segye Times referred to Trump as a “rugby ball” — a metaphor for someone who takes unpredictable bounces — in a headline about the remarks, The Associated Press reported.

South Korea’s Yonhap news agency attempted to explain in an article what “smart cookie” meant and wrote that the comments could be an effort to justify potential future actions by the U.S. to increase pressure against the North.

Could be, but that’s a really odd way of going about it.

North Korea hasn’t responded, and likely won’t, considering some of the tough talk that has come out of the administration towards Jong Un and his repeated attempts to develop nuclear and ballistic missiles, even in defiance of international arms agreements.

Either way, somebody needs to school Trump on NOT saying things that make our allies nervous.