North Korean media in a commentary on Tuesday slammed former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, condemning the prominent Democratic politician for recent comments in which he criticized DPRK leader Kim Jong Un as a “dictator.”
In an article released by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), DPRK state-run media accused Biden — widely seen as a frontrunner for the Democratic nomination for next year’s Presidential election — of “sophism.”
“Former U.S. Vice-President Biden has gone reckless and senseless, seized by ambition for power,” the commentary said.
“The presidential candidate from the Democratic Party during his recent election campaigning reeled off rhetoric slandering the supreme leadership of the DPRK,” it continued. “What he uttered is just sophism of an imbecile bereft of elementary quality as a human being, let alone a politician.”
In a statement echoing comments made by U.S. President Donald Trump, who has long feuded with the former Vice President and Senator from Delaware, the KCNA article derided Biden for past gaffes and allegations of sexual harassment.
“It is by no means accidental that there is nonstop comment over his bid for candidacy that he is not worth pinning hope on, backed by the jeer that he is a fool of low IQ,” it said.
“He has been accused even within the Democratic Party, to say nothing of the American society, for his vulgar acts and words about women and his thoughtless remarks.”
The commentary appears to be a response to comments made by Biden on the campaign trail earlier in the month, in which he condemned President Trump for his alleged closeness with autocratic leaders like Russian President Vladimir Putin and the DPRK leader.
“Are we a nation that embraces dictators and tyrants like Putin and Kim Jong Un?” the former Vice President asked supporters.
The KCNA on Tuesday hit back, deriding his current bid for the U.S. Presidency as “enough to make a cat laugh.”
“It is easy to conjecture the politics to be pursued by such a thoughtless guy,” it continued. “Such a guy had the temerity to insult the supreme leadership of the DPRK, an intolerable and serious politically-motivated provocation against the DPRK.”
Biden last month formally declared his candidacy for the Democratic nomination following months of speculation, with opinion polls now placing him firmly in the lead among 25 other candidates.
Tuesday’s commentary sees DPRK media, at least for the moment, suggest that diplomacy between the two countries would likely stall should Biden succeed Trump as U.S. President.
“Explicitly speaking, we will never pardon anyone who dare provoke the supreme leadership of the DPRK but will certainly make them pay for it,” it said.
One expert, while describing the commentary as “bizarre,” said there was a precedent for the move.
“North Korea has not been shy in the past about seeming to publicly favor one side or another in U.S. and Korean elections,” Mintaro Oba, a former East Asia desk officer for the U.S. State Department, told NK News.
“They’re probably calculating there’s more to gain from creating a perception they favor President Trump than any cost from criticizing a potential future president so early in the race.”
Edited by Colin Zwirko
Featured image: Flikr user Marc Nozell