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Ahmadinejad Speech at Columbia:

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is a bad and dangerous man, but it seems that Columbia was quite right to have him speak there as part of its World Leaders Forum. Columbia students can benefit from hearing bad world leaders as well as good ones; I'm pretty confident that most of the students in the audience will be able to tell one from the other — and if they're not, then the event offers a great opportunity for them to do so.

If the event were some special honor for the person — as endowed lectures, "visiting public interest mentor" positions, graduation speeches, and the like often are — I would take a different view: A university should not honor the dishonorable. But my sense is that the World Leaders Forum does not carry the university's endorsement of the speaker's moral character, only of his significance on the world stage (which Ahmadinejad regrettably has plenty of).

Incidentally, the blog reports about Ahmadinejad's talk — which I read after I decided to post this — reinforce my view on the subject. It looks like Columbia President Bollinger has forcefully expressed his disagreement with Ahmadinejad, thus reminding people that the invitation didn't constitute endorsement of Ahmadinejad's beliefs.

This may be one of the I realize my friend and coblogger David Bernstein might disagree with me on this, but experienced Volokh Conspiracy readers know that such amicable inter-blogger disagreements happen on occasion.

UPDATE: Stop the ACLU faults a Columbia dean (John Coatsworth) for saying that they'd have invited Hitler, too. The dean said:

If Hitler were in the United States and he wanted a platform from which to speak he would have plenty of platforms to speak from in the United States. If he were willing to engage in a debate and a discussion, to be challenged by Columbia students and faculty, we would certainly invite him.

That seems to me to be an entirely correct attitude. Presumably the discussion here is of the pre-Dec. 1941 Hitler (I take it that he wouldn't have been in the U.S. after war between Germany and the U.S. had been declared). Americans were trying to figure out what to do about Nazi Germany. Hitler indeed would have had lots of opportunities to give propaganda speeches. But if Columbia had an opportunity to help its students see and hear Hitler in person, and hear how he dealt with probing and hostile questions -- such as the questions that Bollinger seems to have addressed to Ahmadinejad -- it seems to me that this would have been a valuable service to Columbia students, and perhaps to the American public more broadly.

taney71:
I think allowing Ahmadinejad to speak was the greatest thing any University could do to educate its students on the evils of Iran. This man is a monster and his government should collapse from within. Thug is too kind of a word to give to him.
9.24.2007 3:40pm
WHOI Jacket:
I will give credit where credit is due. I still say this was a bad idea, but it is going far better than I had anticipated.

"Iran is the friend of the Jews."
"Iranian women are the freest in the world".

Sunshine kills viruses. The question is now that we have heard, will we actually LISTEN?
9.24.2007 3:41pm
mxzptlk (mail):

Columbia students can benefit from hearing bad world leaders as well as good ones; I'm pretty confident that most of the students in the audience will be able to tell one from the other

Given what most of the students have been writing on their posters, their blogs and Spectator op-ed columns, I think you give them too much credit.
9.24.2007 3:46pm
Mac (mail):
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is a bad and dangerous man, but it seems that Columbia was quite right to have him speak there as part of its World Leaders Forum. Columbia students can benefit from hearing bad world leaders as well as good ones; I'm pretty confident that most of the students in the audience will be able to tell one from the other -- and if they're not, then the event offers a great opportunity for them to do so.


Then, why are so many students clapping his idiotic statements?
9.24.2007 3:48pm
WHOI Jacket:
I'm hoping (and crossing my fingers) for sheer politeness.
9.24.2007 3:51pm
taney71:
Not sure if everyone is watching his talk, but Ahmadinejad just said that Iran doesn't have any homosexuals anywhere in the country. That didn't go over too well as you might guess.
9.24.2007 3:51pm
Steve:
Not sure if everyone is watching his talk, but Ahmadinejad just said that Iran doesn't have any homosexuals anywhere in the country.

Instead of visiting liberal New York City, maybe he'd be more comfortable swapping stories with this guy.
9.24.2007 3:58pm
Lonely Capitalist (mail):
Not to give anyone ideas, but if some fanatic had killed Hitler in 1939, millions of lives would have been spared...
9.24.2007 3:58pm
liberty (mail) (www):
taney71 is it streaming live somewhere?
9.24.2007 3:58pm
taney71:
Not that I'm aware. I have a tv in my office so I am watching Fox News which is airing it.
9.24.2007 4:00pm
Le Messurier (mail):
Ahmadinejad is our blood enemy. He should be defeated or, optimally, killed. We waste time that would be better spent accomplishing one or the other by listening to him.
9.24.2007 4:00pm
WHOI Jacket:
I think it's streaming live on MSNBC. FoxNews (gasp) may have it too.

Can't tell, at work.
9.24.2007 4:02pm
rarango (mail):
Taney71: inasmuch as homosexuals face a tenuous existence in Iran, I am not surprised that homosexuals may wish to remain in the closet rather than on the gallows.
9.24.2007 4:03pm
taney71:

Taney71: inasmuch as homosexuals face a tenuous existence in Iran, I am not surprised that homosexuals may wish to remain in the closet rather than on the gallows.


I doubt that is what he meant. I believe his point was that his country doesn't have a gay issue because there are none period ... hidden or otherwise.
9.24.2007 4:06pm
Anderson (mail):
I believe his point was that his country doesn't have a gay issue because there are none period

... they've executed them all?

I'm very proud that America is the kind of country where a leading university gives its students the chance to pose questions to an Ahmadinejad. As Prof. Kerr noted in his own post on the topic, that's one of the things that distinguishes us from Iran.
9.24.2007 4:13pm
Matt P (mail):
Perhaps this is a bit over the top, but I am wondering what exactly the definition of adding and abetting the enemy is? I would be surprised if this event fit the definition, but what would be the case if we were officially at war with Iran? If I remember correctly, there were German American Bunds in America broken up before or during WWII for being agents of Nazi Propaganda and that situation would seem pretty parallel if we were at war. Wouldn't offering a forum to speak like this constitute an in-kind donation?

Matt
9.24.2007 4:14pm
r78:
I heard three separate talking heads on Fox state yesterday that it was "undeniable" that Iran was arming insurgents in Iraq and thereby killing Americans.

If so, why did the US. Govt. even allow him to step foot in this country.

It is odd, to say the least, that people think he is so awful that he should not be invited to Columbia but they seem not to have any problem with this awful person walking around in Manhattan.
9.24.2007 4:21pm
Milhouse (www):
He had to be allowed "to step foot" in this country, because he was on his way to the UN. The USA is obliged to allow anyone the UN invites to come in and out unmolested. His movements could otherwise be restricted, but there's a limit to that; I'm not sure whether the government could have prohibited him from visiting Columbia, though it could probably have done so had the invitation come from, say, Yale or Princeton.
9.24.2007 4:24pm
CrazyTrain (mail):
I would be surprised if this event fit the definition, but what would be the case if we were officially at war with Iran?

It wouldn't. If we were at war with Iran, then we would likely have cause to arrest him so your hypo is rather silly and completely off point. If Bin Ladin was to speak at Columbia, he would be arrested -- if Columbia tried to help him evade capture when he was at the university then it would likely be treason, but that situation is completely and utterly different from what is going on here. MA had a right to be in New York and as long as we play host to the UN, people like him are going to be legally allowed into this country.

Wouldn't offering a forum to speak like this constitute an in-kind donation?

Just offering a forum to speak is not treason -- we are at war with al-Qaeda. Yet when Bin Laden is given fora to speak on Fox News, CNN, etc., when he releases tapes, we do not charge those news organizations with treason (nor should we).
9.24.2007 4:27pm
Anderson (mail):
Unlike President Ahmadinejad, Prof. Bernstein doesn't take questions, so here I am re: this rationale:

That makes Ahmadinejad an enemy of the United States.

Really? I had thought the Congress had some sort of say in these things.

When the U.S. was providing weapons for Afghans to kill Soviet troops with, did that make us an enemy of the Soviet Union? In what sense of the word?

And did that stop us from interacting with the Soviet leadership? Would it have been wrong for a Soviet leader to come to Columbia for some q &a?
9.24.2007 4:28pm
FantasiaWHT:
r78, I'm pretty sure the majority of people who don't want him to be given an open forum don't want him in the country, period.
9.24.2007 4:28pm
ejo:
are the students of Columbia so ignorant that they need to have a live forum to recognize evil? wouldn't Hitler's actions have been enough? given that he is getting applause lines in, it seems the theory that these fine students will now get it doesn't hold any water-one might guess they would have applauded Pol Pot if he threw in some global warming clap trap.
9.24.2007 4:31pm
taney71:

I believe his point was that his country doesn't have a gay issue because there are none period

... they've executed them all?


I think there are only two ways to interpret his statement:

1) No gay people are born in Iran or the Iran society doesn't produce gay people

2) Iran killed all the gay people
9.24.2007 4:31pm
Milhouse (www):
OK, so David Duke, Fred Phelps, and Charles Manson don't happen to control any countries at the moment, so it wouldn't make sense for them to speak at a World Leaders Forum. But that seems to me to beg the question. Would Columbia create an Opinion Leaders Forum and invite these people to speak, with the same courtesies that it extended to Ahmadinijad? What is it about controlling a country that makes it better to invite Ahmadinijad than to invite those people?
9.24.2007 4:33pm
Bob from Ohio (mail):
The US Government is more to blame than Columbia.

Maybe the 1947 UN Headquarters Agreement requires us to let him speak at the UN but we have the authority to limit him otherwise. JFK to his hotel, hotel to UN, UN back to hotel, hotel to JKF. That is what should have been done.
9.24.2007 4:37pm
Anderson (mail):
wouldn't Hitler's actions have been enough?

General ignorance appears to reign on this topic. Before the Kristallnacht in Nov. 1938, Hitler was regarded with much more ambivalence in America than people like to believe today. We didn't, for instance, boycott the Berlin Olympics in 1936.

Had Hitler visited the U.S. before Nov. 1938, he would surely have been allowed to speak at any of a dozen distinguished institutions (and maybe given an honorary degree, so lucky for them they dodged *that* bullet).
9.24.2007 4:38pm
Rick Shmatz (mail):
Anderson, the right question is whether the Soviets allowed any American leader to come to their universities. That is the proper analogy if our weapons were kills its citizens. I dont know if they did or not (I doubt it), but that is the question they would answer.

I assume Bernstein did not have comments so the discussion would continue here rather than on separate posts.

When the U.S. was providing weapons for Afghans to kill Soviet troops with, did that make us an enemy of the Soviet Union? In what sense of the word?

That was called the Cold War.
9.24.2007 4:38pm
liberty (mail) (www):
yeah, what is sick is that he got applause. If he was allowed to speak, but got at best the scattered applause of the few openly pro-NAZI types, I would be proud.
9.24.2007 4:40pm
Thorley Winston (mail) (www):
Unlike President Ahmadinejad, Prof. Bernstein doesn't take questions, so here I am re: this rationale:


Check your link.
9.24.2007 4:42pm
ejo:
but he didn't, so we will never know. here, we have his reincarnation given those honors, albeit without degree, and still getting applause. my question stands-knowing what we know about Iran, are Columbia's students so ignorant that they can't recognize evil? this is not a 1934 Hitler-this is the 1942 version telling you exactly what he will do and has done. does an Ivy League education render you blind or just amoral?
9.24.2007 4:44pm
liberty (mail) (www):
MSNBC.com does have the opening speech and the Iranian's response to it, by the way.
9.24.2007 4:47pm
Edward A. Hoffman (mail):
Rick Shmatz wrote:
the right question is whether the Soviets allowed any American leader to come to their universities. That is the proper analogy if our weapons were kills its citizens. I dont know if they did or not (I doubt it), but that is the question they would answer.
I distinctly remember watching video of President Reagan addressing students at Moscow University during a state visit. This was while Gorbachev was in office; I don't know whether any of his predecessors would have allowed something similar.
9.24.2007 4:48pm
PLR:
Who is more dangerous to the average citizen of the world? George W. Bush, or Mahmoud Ahmadinejad?

Serious question. Don't answer it with a different question. Use whatever factual and historical resources you think are relevant.
9.24.2007 4:59pm
liberty (mail) (www):
I think the Columbia presidents opening was great.
9.24.2007 5:01pm
Lonely Capitalist (mail):
Who is more dangerous to the average citizen of the world? George W. Bush, or Mahmoud Ahmadinejad?

Bush has thousands of nuclear warheads he isn't even thinking of using. Ahmadinejad is dying to get just a few that he would immediately launch at Israel's major cities, possibly touching off the next world war. The answer is obvious.
9.24.2007 5:10pm
ChrisIowa (mail):
Until diplomatic relations are restored between the US and Iran, Ahmadinejad should be allowed to travel from the airport to the UN, and nowhere in between. As long as Iran does not recognize our diplomats' rights, we should allow only the minimum access under our agreement with the UN.
9.24.2007 5:12pm
Caliban Darklock (www):
This is about the principle of the thing.

If you want to stand for freedom of speech, you have to let people speak when you don't like what they're saying.

If we don't let Ahmadinejad speak, we simply prove the point of the Islamic fundamentalists: that we do not really stand for freedom. We would, instead, stand only for what we want when we want it. We would stand for decadence and self-importance and willful ignorance.

Don't get me wrong, I'm with Le Messurier. But we have to look beyond that, and stand for what we say we do. Otherwise, we may as well just shoot ourselves.
9.24.2007 5:13pm
Matt P (mail):
Crazy,

Of course its a silly hypothetical. I'm not trying to make a point, just asking a question about the law. I do appreciate your answer though, it is very enlightening.My question was more about what would constitute aid and comfort to the enemy, not so much about MA morally(my perspective is that if he wants to broadcast his ignorance let him, then mock and ridicule him as he rightly deserves). Sorry if the question was poised poorly.

Matt
9.24.2007 5:14pm
ejo:
let's see-MA has announced his desire to wipe a nation off the face of the earth, preferably by nuclear power. I fail to see any such desire on the part of George Bush. Throw in the fact that MA isn't going anywhere-GB is almost out of office. This question isn't quite as profound as the poster thinks it is. We weren't in a great deal of danger from Pol Pot-certainly any American president had more ability, given our nuclear arms, to cause destruction in the world. Pol Pot was mainly a danger to his own citizens. Yet, it isn't difficult to figure out who was more evil-could an Ivy Leaguer figure it out?
9.24.2007 5:14pm
Anderson (mail):
Check your link

Ah, comments weren't open originally, but the good DB has reconsidered. Glasnost!

MA has announced his desire to wipe a nation off the face of the earth, preferably by nuclear power

Come on, ejo, I *dare* you to find a link where Ahmadinijad said that he would like to wipe Israel off the map, preferably by nuclear attack. Don't keep us all waiting.
9.24.2007 5:18pm
LTEC (mail) (www):
Why exactly is a "World Leaders Forum" a good idea? If the point is that these people have power so we should learn what they're thinking, I would argue that there are much better ways to do this than inviting them to speak and then have random people asking questions. We could start with MEMRI, for example.

I think the real reason for the World Leaders Forum is to make the institution and the people attending feel important.
9.24.2007 5:28pm
ejo:
Go over to google and see how many many hits you get for MA quotes on wiping Israel off the map-I dare you. Once you have done so, please enlighten us all with your translation of what is meant. Even Hitler had enough sense not to directly state that his goal was to erase jews from the planet. I guess MA can and still find those who will stand right there with him.
9.24.2007 5:28pm
volokh groupie:
just to provide some information on the event as its happened at the campus where i spent several years drinking and studying:

1- The vast majority of the student populace echoed the 'let him speak, it'll expose the fact he's a moronic threat' attitude that I think Eugene and Orin have put forth

2- You can check bwog.net (the school's gossip rag) or columbiaspectator.com (the school newspaper) for the best coverage and updates--you'll see that the vast majority of Columbians, particularly undergraduates, hate the guy and were definitely not the guys applauding

3. The school of international and public affairs received half the seat at the events. The 3 undergraduate schools and all the other schools received the other half. I imagine the applause came from those twenty something sipa students who don't exactly harbor the most pro-america sentiments---in fact Richard Bulliet (History professor who somewhat defended ahmnadinejad in the spectator today), Lisa Anderson (SIPA dean) and the temporary assistant dean were most responsible for bringing him here--and are all associated with SIPA. There are currently still massive protests at Columbia of Ahmadinejad and what he represents. I think that outside of SIPA you would find that about less than 15-20% of all Columbians would show any type of of support whatsoever for the Iranian president.
9.24.2007 5:30pm
Richard Aubrey (mail):
Well, we knew what Ahwhosits was going to say. He didn't need to come to Columbia for people to know who he is and what he does.

The biggest benefit of his speaking at Columbia is to confirm the impression of Columbia students as confused airheads who think being against America makes them superior to the rest of us. We always knew it, but getting them together in one place, putting temptation to do the right thing conveniently in front of them and recording them resolutely doing the wrong thing is valuable.

I recall somebody asking--P.J.O'Rourke would have said it if he'd thought of it--who has done more damage to the US, Ivy League grads who go into academics or politics, or community college grads who end up owning a string of tire stores? Clearly the former and we see their replacements taking the vile nourishment in the PC creche.
9.24.2007 5:31pm
Anderson (mail):
ejo, where's the nuclear-weapons part?

MA explained that he thinks Israel's borders should be eliminated, i.e., that there would be no such country as Israel. Cf. his Columbia speech, where he suggests that giving Palestinians the vote in Israel would accomplish that.

--Mind you, I think it's a bad and silly idea, but it's not quite the same as nuking Israel (which would be kinda difficult to do without killing a great many Muslims, btw).

As for the curious notion that MA would have any more control over his country's prospective nuclear arsenal than you or I would, well, as you say, Google knows all.
9.24.2007 5:34pm
AntonK (mail):
While I certainly question the motives of those at Columbia University who invited him to speak... my questions center on them, not him. Why would they want him to speak? What value does his insight into world politics bring? His hatred of Jews? His hatred of freedom? His encouragement of terrorism? Does Columbia find these things valuable because they agree with them, or because they want to provide him a forum to pronounce his views and hope that students will backlash against him?" I think, though, that those are the concerns of most people on the subject, especially given the free-speech double standards we've seen at universities recently.
9.24.2007 5:34pm
DavidBernstein (mail):
Volokh Groupie, is it supposed to make us feel better that "only" 15-20% of Columbia students would express any support?
9.24.2007 5:46pm
liberty (mail) (www):

I distinctly remember watching video of President Reagan addressing students at Moscow University during a state visit. This was while Gorbachev was in office; I don't know whether any of his predecessors would have allowed something similar.


You really don't know? The Beatles were banned not only from visiting but their music itself. Nearly everything was banned-- from blue jeans to music to books to - yes - visitors. Gorbachev changed some of that under Perestroika, and yes, that was the first time that a president was allowed to speak freely. Before that, the government would allow in a few carefully selected artists and propagandists who were pro-Soviet. That's it.

You can read Reagan's speech here.
9.24.2007 5:48pm
PLR:
Lonely Capitalist at 4:10: Mind reading is a questionable basis for reaching a conclusion. From a factual standpoint, Bush has not ruled out the use of nuclear weapons. Iran has no nuclear weapons, so Ahmadinejad's wet dreams would seem to be irrelevant to the danger question. Further, if Iran did have nuclear weapons it appears that Ahmadinejad would not have access to them unless they mullahs gave up their power, voluntarily or by a military coup.

ejo at 4:14:

Bush's term expires January 19, 2009. Ahmadinejad's term expires in August 2009, and few expect him to win a second term.
9.24.2007 5:58pm
Tony Tutins (mail):
According to my grandfather, who heard him on shortwave radio in the 30's, Hitler was a powerful orator, a spellbinder. So, listeners might well have been persuaded to become Nazis. I don't think Ahmadinejad has anything like that amount of persuasive power.
9.24.2007 5:58pm
volokh groupie:
Sorry David...I'm just the messenger.

This is a campus with a significant ISO group (international socialist organization), that's hosted the restarting of the SDS (with a decent membership) and which has communist/socialist groups that espouse the views of everyone from Mao to Trotskii. Maybe 15-20% is kind of high, but at least those many support his anti american rhetoric and his views on jews/israel/palestine. Among the faculty the percentage is probably even higher.

In terms of his wholistic philosophy which probably includes women as second class citizens and murdering homosexuals, I doubt even 1% support that.
9.24.2007 5:59pm
Anderson (mail):
I note that Nixon visited Russia in 1972, including multiple opportunities to hobnob with the working masses and a televised address to the nation (censored?).

I don't doubt that the Russians were too scared to ask Nixon anything meaningful, but then, that's another instance of our society's superiority to theirs.
9.24.2007 6:02pm
volokh groupie:
apparently Ahmadinejad had a significant entourage with him too--that was the source for a good amount of applause
9.24.2007 6:27pm
liberty (mail) (www):

In terms of his wholistic philosophy which probably includes women as second class citizens and murdering homosexuals, I doubt even 1% support that.

-volokh groupie

And what about all that religious stuff in his speech? It all kind of goes in one ear and out the other for me (I wasn't raised religiously)? Hard to imagine all these lefties eating that up.

Anderson,
True. I do think that the whole visit was tightly controlled. The speech was prepared ahead of time and presumably was viewed by authorities before he was given permission to read it. Was it censored? Well, it may have been accepted without changes, but he was not free to say whatever he wanted. And, I am sure that would not have been able to take questions either-- although, as you point out, the censorship of the Soviet citizens is the real censorship-- they would not have been able to ask him the questions without fear of exile to the gulag.
9.24.2007 6:28pm
Roger Zimmerman (mail):
People that ask the "Who's more dangerous: Bush or MA?", miss the point.

Bush is the executive of a functioning constitutional republic. Even if he had the most evil motives imaginable, his ability to exercise them are, in fact, constrained by numerous institutional checks, including (but not limited to): a free press, an independent judiciary, congressional war-declaration powers, congressional power of the purse, and, ultimately, the most independent-minded (and volunteer) military in the world, which I am very confident would put a damper on any president's truly catacalysmic decisions.

Amadinejad, by contrast, has quasi-dictatorial powers in a barely functioning state. His fundamentalist fantasies are therefore much more likely to be enacted. While I agree that his appearance at Columbia will help sane Americans "spot the idiot", this ignores the impact it will have on the home front, after the government censors have cleaned up the copy: his stature will be (slightly) enhanced, and this will be to all of our detriment.
9.24.2007 6:32pm
Anderson (mail):
Amadinejad, by contrast, has quasi-dictatorial powers in a barely functioning state.

Mr. Zimmerman, what are you talking about? MA is not even close to running the show in Iran. You really think the mullahs are letting him call their shots?
9.24.2007 6:41pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
When the U.S. was providing weapons for Afghans to kill Soviet troops with, did that make us an enemy of the Soviet Union? In what sense of the word?
In the sense of the word in which we were siding with a country at war with them and supplying the armed forces that were killing Soviet soldiers?

If you don't think that's an enemy, how do you treat your friends exactly?
9.24.2007 6:57pm
ejo:
okay, then it is his masters, the mullahs, who have the quasi dictatorial powers and are actively seeking nuclear weapons-does that make it an improvement? by the way, when MA talks about wiping a nation off the map, why should a benign interpretation on his rhetoric be accepted?
9.24.2007 6:58pm
r78:

The USA is obliged to allow anyone the UN invites to come in and out unmolested.

So you are saying that the United States is obligated to allow any foreign enemy to enter the US provided s/he is invited by the UN?

I don't think so.
9.24.2007 7:01pm
Anderson (mail):
Mr. Nieporent, the point is that we were not an "enemy" of the USSR in any sense that would, say, hinder reciprocal visits between Reagan and Gorbachev.
9.24.2007 7:08pm
SG:
But we were in an enemy in the sense that we organized a boycott of their Olympic games in '80, and the Soviets in turn organized a boycott of our Olympic games in '84. The normal diplomatic relations between nations was definitely altered.

You really don't think we were an enemy of the Soviets during Afghanistan? How about Vietnam and Korea? Being an enemny doesn't mean you can't have some degree of diplomatic contact, but the Soviets would have been well within standard diplomatic norms to have rejected reciprocal visits. The fact thatr they didn't doesn't prove that we weren't enemies, only that they felt allowing those visits was in their best interests.
9.24.2007 7:27pm
Mac (mail):
Ahwhosit (my vote for best quote on this post to Richard Aubrey for Ahwhosit). Much easier to spell.

Anderson,

He has not only said he will wipe Israel off the face of the Earth, he has said that if a few million Palestinians die in a nuclear attack, no big deal as there are a billion Muslems in the world so he can spare a few milion. These quotes should be very easy to find.

Applause ocurred most when he criticized the US in Iraq, now and in the past during Iran's war with Iraq. No one asked him why he wasn't grateful to us now for righting that wrong (in his mind) and getting rid of Saddam.

And, to all of you who support the freedom of speach thing, answer why ROTC can't be on campus? Do they even allow the US Military to show their face there?

Why did the Prez (of Columbia) do nothing to the students who forced the Minutemen off the stage.? I believe they came back a second time and could not speak, either, but I might be wrong about that. However, Columbia is doing nothing to ensure that Conservatives can speak there safely and in an atmophere that would allow them to be heard.

Their Prez is a hypocrit in my humble opinion.
9.24.2007 8:39pm
glangston (mail):
Anderson
Come on, ejo, I *dare* you to find a link where Ahmadinijad said that he would like to wipe Israel off the map, preferably by nuclear attack. Don't keep us all waiting.



While there are some who claim the Iranian statements do not call for the destruction of Israel, the practical result of listening to their advice is reminiscent of Gandhi's advice to the Jews.

Louis Fisher, Gandhi's biographer asked him: "You mean that the Jews should have committed collective suicide?"
Gandhi responded, "Yes, that would have been heroic.

Iran wants Israel to remove itself to Europe or have a mutual referendum with all the Palestinians on combined rule. Given the history of the Jews, no matter how convincing you find that argument you can safely say they will do neither.
9.24.2007 8:46pm
Tony Tutins (mail):
So you are saying that the United States is obligated to allow any foreign enemy to enter the US provided s/he is invited by the UN?

Why, yes, yes the U.S. obligated itself to do so. See Article IV, Sections 11 and 12 of the 1947 U.N. Headquarters Agreement:

Establishment of Permanent Headquarters in New York; Agreement Between United Nations and United States


Joint Res. Aug. 4, 1947, ch. 482, 61 Stat. 756, provided that:
"Whereas the Charter of the United Nations was signed on behalf of the United States on June 26, 1945, and was ratified on August 8, 1945, by the President of the United States, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, and the instrument of ratification of the said Charter was deposited on August 8, 1945;
...
The agreement follows:
"AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE UNITED NATIONS AND THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA REGARDING THE HEADQUARTERS OF THE UNITED NATIONS
...

"Article IV—Communications and Transit



section 11


The federal, state or local authorities of the United States shall not impose any impediments to transit to or from the headquarters district of (1) representatives of Members or officials of the United Nations, or of specialized agencies as defined in Article 57, paragraph 2, of the Charter, or the families of such representatives or officials, (2) experts performing missions for the United Nations or for such specialized agencies, (3) representatives of the press, or of radio, film or other information agencies, who have been accredited by the United Nations (or by such a specialized agency) in its discretion after consultation with the United States, (4) representatives of nongovernmental organizations recognized by the United Nations for the purpose of consultation under Article 71 of the Charter, or (5) other persons invited to the headquarters district by the United Nations or by such specialized agency on official business. The appropriate American authorities shall afford any necessary protection to such persons while in transit to or from the headquarters district. This section does not apply to general interruptions of transportation which are to be dealt with as provided in Section 17, and does not impair the effectiveness of generally applicable laws and regulations as to the operation of means of transportation.

section 12


The provisions of Section 11 shall be applicable irrespective of the relations existing between the Governments of the persons referred to in that section and the Government of the United States.
9.24.2007 8:48pm
Ron Hardin (mail) (www):
A university should not honor the dishonorable.

Surely the wrong word. He's more of a psychopath. But a sincere one. Would that he had such loyalty to some virtue.
9.24.2007 11:11pm
neurodoc:
The Washington Post's Anne Applebaum is remarkably intelligent and usually gets thinks right. She did in her column on the op-ed page of today's paper. I highly commend it. (Sorry can do a link right now, but shouldn't be hard to find. She thought it a bad idea in prospect, and now a bad one in retrospect, an opinion in which I concur.)
9.25.2007 8:12pm
Cal Gunzalez (mail):
i like what Ahmadunejad said we re very bia we only know our self, and our leaders are not telling us the true about the whole thing. he is indeed a very good man
9.25.2007 11:47pm
Bush (mail):
AS LONG AS JEW WILL NOT LIKE ANY MUSLIM WE WILL NOT LIKE THEM, EVEN IF THEY PRETEND THEY LIKE US WE KNOW IS A LIE,
9.25.2007 11:58pm
Mac (mail):
Why, yes, yes the U.S. obligated itself to do so. See Article IV, Sections 11 and 12 of the 1947 U.N. Headquarters Agreement:

Tony,

Among many, many others, you have just provided another good reason to get the UN the hell out of this country.
9.26.2007 12:47am
Disgust:
Ive never encountered a forum page with so many ludicrous comments about one simple issue:

1)

Ahmedinejad has never attacked a single country since in power
GW Bush has openly attacked 2 and was involved in others

2)

Ahmedinejad reiterated the words of Khomeini from '79 where he said the regime of jerusalem will vanish from the pages of time. He could never have said Israel as the government is still not recognised.
Israel has openly warned Iran that it WILL use tactical nuclear weapons in a pre-emptive strike against which, surprise surprise, they have or will buy from the US. Who is more beligerent?

3)

Iranian interference in Iraq? How about American inerference in Iraq. WTF ARE YOU DOING THERE IN THE FIRST PLACE? It is identical to Iran being in Mexico, and being shocked that the US is worried about it. You guys get your heads straightened out.

4)

Iran will attack Israel and the US. Heard this one before, but I think it was Iraq the last time I read that statement. Dont be as ignorant as Columbia's president and repeat to everyone who wants to listen what General Petraeus said, what the council on foreign relations reports, what Fox news spins, and CNN shows IF you consider yourselves to be educated people. I suggest you take a deep look at the real hard facts and see that all of it is coming from the same sources that have lied to you before, and killed over 3000 of your soldiers...How on earth can you believe that they are now telling you the truth?

5)

''Not to give anyone ideas, but if some fanatic had killed Hitler in 1939, millions of lives would have been spared...'' a post by Lonely Capitalist a bit higher up.

You are entertaining the idea that MA is the most dangerous man on the planet and he wants to kill everybody? I thought that was Bin Laden? Or was it Sadam? YOU ARE A F'KING IDIOT regardless of freedom of speech rules to respect. I believe solemnly that anybody as stupid as you should be sent to die alongside all the other idiots that think the war on terror is for real. Why dont you take up arms and join the army, you warmongering hater? You like seeing people die, then continue spreading the crap that you do, and you might see even more american coffins coming back from your fronts.

Dont call on war when you have no idea what it entails. The people who will make the final decision wont even ask your opinion. They'll only ask you to pay for it, and to sacrifice your security. The fight is not for you. If you still bellieve it is, god bless you for your ignorance, but F*CK YOU for spreading lies about other peoples.
9.26.2007 1:35pm
Disgust:
Edit:

2)

Ahmedinejad reiterated the words of Khomeini from '79 where he said the regime of jerusalem will vanish from the pages of time. He could never have said Israel as the government is still not recognised.
Israel has openly warned Iran that it WILL use tactical nuclear weapons in a pre-emptive strike against the which, surprise surprise, they have bought or will buy from the Unted States. Who is more beligerent?
9.26.2007 1:39pm
Never show weakness:
First of all I can't believe the president of Columbia was fired for speaking out against this tyrant. He's trying to push us as far as he can to test our weakness maybe next we'll let him take a piss on the twin towers memorial. I know that most people who are for him and who oppose what i'm saying are most likely wearing a shitty diaper on their head so please quit trying to confuse us.
9.27.2007 6:15am