The former Minnesota senator and comedy writer shared his fondest memory of the late secretary of state on X (formerly Twitter) on Wednesday night, following news of the diplomat’s death at 100 years old.
“Kissinger called SNL once late on a Friday night looking for tix for his son,” Franken wrote. “The [Rolling] Stones were playing that week. I told him that if it hadn’t been for the Xmas bombing, he’d have the tickets.”
The comic was snubbing Kissinger over the December 1972 bombings of North Vietnam, which are said to have killed around 1,600 Vietnamese.
Known as Operation Linebacker II, the military campaign inundated the region with 20,000 tons of explosives over the course of 11 days.
At the time, the controversial statesman was U.S. national security adviser under President Richard Nixon.
Franken’s minor moment of vengeance wouldn’t happen until years later, when the Rolling Stones made their first and only appearance on “SNL” in October 1978.
Kissinger had been out of the State Department for around two years at that point, following President Gerald Ford’s Oval Office ouster.
News of Kissinger’s death reverberated across the world with a mix of reverence and repulsion Wednesday.
While he was publicly mourned by both former President George W. Bush and Russian President Vladimir Putin, others denounced Kissinger as a war criminal.
Kissinger ― whose taste for conflict touched Vietnam, Cambodia, East Timor, Bangladesh, Latin America and southern Africa ― is believed to be responsible for the deaths of at least 3 million people, according to historian Greg Grandin.