Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. posted at Twitter on Friday some advice for President Joe Biden: Don’t refer to the leader of China’s government with the insulting descriptor of “dictator.” And the advice went further, indicating Biden should avoid using similar language to describe leaders of other nations as well.
In the first of a series of Friday tweets, Kennedy commented, “It’s Diplomacy 101 that a President doesn’t send his senior diplomat to speak to a foreign leader, then insult that leader the next day.” In this tweet Kennedy linked an article regarding Biden having in a recent speech called China leader Xi Jinping a “dictator.”
In the second of his series of tweets, Kennedy further stated:
Maybe Biden is trying to appear ‘tough on China.’ But absurd, unhinged, and personally insulting remarks don’t make you tough. There is a level of unavoidable tension between great powers like China and the U.S. that doesn’t need to be artificially aggravated by antagonistic rhetoric.
Kennedy, however, does not appear to have followed this advice in his own presidential campaign.
In his campaign that began on April 19, Kennedy has volunteered his assessment that Russia President Vladimir Putin is a “gangster” and a “thug” at least two times. You can hear Kennedy make such comments six minutes and 19 seconds into a report on Kennedy’s interview with Noel Phillips and 41 minutes and 8 seconds into Kennedy’s interview with Freddie Sayers at UnHerd.
If Biden calling Xi a dictator is unacceptable under Kennedy’s take, why would Kennedy’s use of these other descriptors for the leader of Russia’s government — another great power — be acceptable?