New Vent: Protesting Ahmadinejad at Columbia

posted at 12:48 am on September 25, 2007 by Bryan

Michelle and I traveled to New York on Monday to document events as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrived and spoke at Columbia University in New York on Monday. Only Columbia students were allowed to attend the speech and the Q&A that followed it, so many people who wanted to challenge Ahmadinejad were kept outside. We spoke to some of them, along with Columbia students and others who turned out to protest Columbia’s decision to give Ahmadinejad a forum on its campus. Here is the first of our video reports on the events outside the speech.

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Nuke em!!

bucko36 on September 25, 2007 at 1:03 AM

Great clip thanks for sharing, the most powerful picture I saw was the Shiri Negari from MM page. That one alone should be more then enough to the Columbia elitist pinheads.

Mojack420 on September 25, 2007 at 1:26 AM

I was surprised by Bollinger’s attack, if you can call it that, on Ahmadenijad. I had expected Bollinger to openly greet Ahmadenijad with hugs and kisses. What went right wrong with the left?

Great interviews guys. What would you say the ratio of anti-Ahmadenijad vs pro-Ahmadenijad was? From the video, it looked like mostly anti.

Kini on September 25, 2007 at 2:11 AM

Excellent reporting guys!

emmaline1138 on September 25, 2007 at 2:52 AM

Was that an Iranian at the beginning of the video?

mram on September 25, 2007 at 3:10 AM

How Mahmoud played on Broadway.

It is how all this publicity played in Tehran and the rest of the muslim world that matters to him.

MB4 on September 25, 2007 at 3:18 AM

I am impressed by the numbers that showed up against him. More people on the right side of things are getting out there.

Win Win Win on September 25, 2007 at 3:30 AM

“On location” Vents have more credibility than any MSM “report”.

Great job Hot Air!

elpresidente on September 25, 2007 at 3:59 AM

First Class report. Thanks.

Zorro on September 25, 2007 at 6:57 AM

Totally shocked by Bollenger…but I think it was backfill.

LtE126 on September 25, 2007 at 7:12 AM

Regardless of Bollinger’s motives, I think Columbia might want to consider cancelling classes on October 12.

ncc770 on September 25, 2007 at 7:35 AM

Why are these guys called leaders in the MSM?

When I envision a leader he doesn’t have his ‘followers’ in chains.

DavidM on September 25, 2007 at 8:20 AM

thank you for that report :thumbsup:

trailortrash on September 25, 2007 at 8:24 AM

How many of the people who were there were saying that Bush stinks and/or we shouldn’t be preparing for war with Iran? It appears there was just as much of that voice as there was of the stop-this-thug voice.

If so, that’s a really telling commentary on just how blinded by hate the left has become.

flutejpl on September 25, 2007 at 8:30 AM

The Rabbi made some very interesting points. The sign at the end of the report was incredibly sad. Children on Death Row in Iran – what was the youngest? I saw more than one at 14.

nailinmyeye on September 25, 2007 at 8:40 AM

So, I’m confused about this “freedom of speech” thing, among others. Does U.S. citizenship mean anything where Constitutional freedoms are concerned? I didn’t think such freedoms were available to non-citizens. Don’t you have to accept the concept of a constitutional democracy to practice the freedoms therein? I’d really love to hear folks weigh in on this…

BNCurtis on September 25, 2007 at 9:22 AM

Thanks Michelle and Bryan for letting free speech be heard.
Matt Lauer? Katie? Charles? Where is the media to report the free speech of these students and citizens? Oh….sorry I forgot you sent them to St.Cindys home for her views on this instead.

Limerick on September 25, 2007 at 10:31 AM


It’s too bad that the leadership of Columbia University hasn’t learned the lesson of the New School: America honors freedom of expression by being a refuge for the oppressed, not by giving a soapbox to the oppressors. This is not about free speech, the Iranian dictator can stand on any New York City street corner and say what he wishes, but we do not need to legitimize his hate-filled holocaust-denying diatribes by giving him a platform at a “distinguished” lecturer series at Columbia.

RushBaby on September 25, 2007 at 10:35 AM

There’s a video of the cops kicking out a Pro-American 9/11 suvivor from the WTC yesterday. Her brother was obliterated in the attack

It’s absolutely infuriating. WTF kind of country is this… how long are we going to tolerate this.

VinceP1974 on September 25, 2007 at 10:39 AM

As everyone predicted, Ahmadinejad made mincemeat out of Bollinger and Coatsworth. He treated them like doddering old fools and they both played role of egghead professors dressed in tweed. Bollinger thought he was clever to call Ahmadinejad “brazenly provactive” as though this would really, really upset Ahmadinejad. Ahmadinejad just laughed through the whole presentation by Coatsworth and Bollinger, seeing them the way Hitler perceived Neville Chamberlain. Ahmadinejad took the measure of these two men, knew that he could anything he wanted at them and they would never ask him to leave the stage. Ahmadinejad perceived weakness in these two men and he did so correctly. Ahmadinejad also perceived correctly that many in the audience detested Bush and America more than they mildly disliked Iran’s policy so he played that angle as well. The only time Ahmadinejad slipped was when he made negative comments about homsexuals. That DID upset the audience. You can criticize America and Israel all you want at Columbia but don’t ever criticize a PC subject.

Larraby on September 25, 2007 at 10:54 AM

YAY Vent!

Well done on all counts. Thanks for doing this.

ThackerAgency on September 25, 2007 at 10:54 AM

Great job Michelle and Bryan ! Hardly any coverage of this by the Media, even Fox News missed it and this was a big protest. The only story I see on Fox was written by the Associated Press, and of course it gave praise to Ahmadinejad for responding calmly to the students. No firsthand account of the protest against Ahmadinejad was made, instead the Associated Press quoted the Islamic Republic News Agency, thus the favorable review. As usual the Associated Press turned a blind eye toward that which did not fit it’s agenda.

Fox News had a good news website before they contracted with the Associated Press and put their junk-news on the site. Now the Fox News site is just another outlet for the usual liberal claptrap.

Maxx on September 25, 2007 at 11:22 AM

You got that right Larraby.

I thought Bollinger was about to go all the way and wag his umbrella at Ahmadinejad in a disapproving manner. That would have wiped the smirk off his face! /sarc

Well anyway, the rabbi in the clip was very good. he should have been at the podium.

forest on September 25, 2007 at 12:20 PM

“On location” Vents have more credibility than any MSM “report”.

Great job Hot Air!

elpresidente on September 25, 2007 at 3:59 AM

Amen! Thanks guys.

infidel4life on September 25, 2007 at 12:47 PM

Great coverage all around; I didn’t see anything even close to this on the news.
I am not all that impressed with Bollinger since I think his statements would have been totally different had there been no outcry over Ahmadinejad’s visit.
I too thought the rabbi was very good and thought he should have had a chance to air his views at the podium.

dbdiva on September 25, 2007 at 1:14 PM

I was very pleased to see this. Thanks for taking the time to put this report together. The man who spoke at the end was excellent.

JannyMae on September 25, 2007 at 1:21 PM

I’d be ashamed if Ahmadinejad or some other evil-embracing hate-monger came to MY neighborhood and started reciting MY usual mantra… I wonder if any Democrats are ashamed that he was reciting THEIR talking points and offering exactly the same criticism of the GOOD guys… And just to be clear, for those who read nuance into my words, I DID just call the Democrats the BAD guys…

Rugged Individual on September 25, 2007 at 2:54 PM

The [Iranians] President’s chief strategist, Hassan Abbassi, has come up with a war plan based on the premise that “Britain is the mother of all evils.” We have a strategy drawn up for the destruction of Anglo-Saxon civilization,” says Mr Abbassi. “There are 29 sensitive sites in the U.S. and in the West. We have already spied on these sites and we know how we are going to attack them… Once we have defeated the Anglo-Saxons the rest will run for cover.”

VinceP1974 on September 25, 2007 at 5:23 PM

Rugged Individual,

Al Qaeda and their ilk have been quoting the Left’s talking points for years. The Left has never given it one millisecond’s thought.
If anyone doubts that the Left is anti-American, then ask yourself why every foreign leader, dictator, thug, and terrorist whose motto is “Death to America” urges “Vote Democrat” at the same time. Castro, Chavez, bin Laden….
And it is not a recent phenomenon. Remember the accounts of Ted Kennedy discussing with the Soviets trying to get Reagan defeated in the 1984 election campaign? Do you really think it never occured to His Liberalness that he was consorting with, and furthering the political goals of, a regime that still had thousands of nukes pointed at us and that still, at that time, wanted to follow K’s promise to “bury” us?

Lancer on September 27, 2007 at 6:34 PM

Not the tailors, too, your excellency? Surely you could have spared at least one good tailor.

atbay on September 28, 2007 at 3:06 AM