Retired Rear Admiral John Kirby, who served as the spokesman for the State Department under President Obama, insisted the administration did everything they could to bring Otto Warmbier home from North Korea.
During an interview with CNN Tuesday, Kirby pushed back against the Warmbier family’s claims that the Obama administration didn’t do enough to bring their son home.
“I understand the frustration that they feel…I can’t possibly imagine the grief they’re going through right now,” Kirby said. “What I can say is, having been at the State Department when Otto was detained…I can assure that the State Department at the very highest levels worked this very, very hard.”
Kirby then offered the family perhaps the most pathetic consolation prize–that Otto was able to come home shortly before he died.
“We failed to get them out and we all know that and we regret that. We’re glad that Otto was able to come home. Certainly we’re sad at the fate here.”