A Barrel of Monkeys
By David Peterson at Jan 28, 2006
"Hitler Lives." "Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's Unreality
Show." "Iranian Madman Walks Among Us." "[A]
grave threat to the United States and its allies in
the Middle East, Europe, and globally." "What Can
We Learn from a Monster?" "His ideology of hatred
and Iran's building of a nuclear weapon to implement that ideology are the greatest threats to civilization as we know it." "[B]razenly provocative or astonishingly uneducated." "[F]anatics and tyrants." "President of a country that is probably the greatest sponsor of state terrorism." "[V]ows regularly to destroy the country [of Israel]." "Normal craziness." "[A] petty and cruel dictator." "[L]ittle weasel." You get the picture.
How's this for evidence of the bandwagon-character of demonization campaigns within closed societies such as ours, where the nexus of tightly integrated institutions -- capital, state, media, and educative -- operate in a univocal fashion? Between the day last week when the President of Iran's request to lay a wreath at the former site of the World Trade Center was rejected (officially by the New York City Police Department, though other hands surely were involved), and today, as the inaugural plenaries of the United Nations' 62nd Session wound down, the personal smears directed singularly at the President of Iran, and the much more sweeping disinformation about Iran already placed into circulation in the States and elsewhere, must have reached an all-time high. (For Iran, at least.) It shows us how profoundly disenlightened are the people who serve these institutions, and how like-minded. Repeatedly, they displayed their ignorance, their crassness, and their vulgarity, but also their ignorance of their ignorance, their crassness, and their vulgarity. They may have told us next-to-nothing about their referent. But they betrayed everything about themselves as well as the historical regime where shit like this smells like oil of lavender at $2000 per ounce.
The low point, of course, occurred last Monday on the campus of Columbia University in New York City. There, Lee C. Bollinger, the president of the university, introduced its guest speaker with a tone usually reserved for a master addressing one of his slaves, or a prosecutor summing up his case against a defendant at trial -- one presumed to be guilty of all counts as charged. Since the university's invitation to the President of Iran to participate in its inaugural School of International and Public Affairs - World Leaders Forum for the 2007-2008 academic year was seized upon by Bollinger to direct negative disinformation about Iran to the U.S. audience, and was thus exploited toward this end, it is important to recognize how thoroughly the assertions made and questions raised by Bollinger and by SIPA Dean John H. Coatsworth carried out this task. -- Under the covers of free inquiry and challenging the views of the President of Iran, critical elements of the Washington regime's disinformation against Iran were assumed to be true, with the President of Iran expected either to confirm their truth or to confess his sins.
For the record, I'm simply going to post a lot of this material here. In case anybody's interested, we can examine it in the comments section which follows at bottom.
I. The Set-up
Excerpted from: "Statement Regarding Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's Talk at Columbia University's World Leaders Forum," News Release, School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University.
President [Lee] Bollinger emphasized that such World Leaders Forum events must allow ample time for students and faculty to pose questions that challenge the views expressed by the speakers. John H. Coatsworth, Dean of the School of International and Public Affairs, confirmed that the Iranian president had agreed to this format. Dean Coatsworth will moderate the question and answer period following Ahmadinejad's speech.President Bollinger will introduce the event by challenging President Ahmadinejad on a number of his controversial statements and his government's policies, including hisdenial of the Holocaust and his call for the destruction of the State of Israel. The US government has accused Ahmadinejad's government of supporting terrorism and developing nuclear weapons capacity. Human rights groups have charged Iran with suppressing dissent and women's rights. Columbia students and faculty will themselves have an opportunity to question Iran's leader on these and other issues.
II. The Coup de grâce
Excerpted from Columbia University President Lee C. Bollinger's introductory remarks on Monday, September 24. The printed text provides six organizational subheadings, which I am observing below. Under each of them, Bollinger directed one or more rhetorical questions at his audience. (For my source, see "President Lee C. Bollinger's Introductory Remarks at SIPA-World Leaders Forum with President of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad," Columbia News, September 24, 2007. -- Note that I am not reproducing everything that the printed text of Bollinger's remarks punctuates with a question mark.)
1. THE BRUTAL CRACKDOWN ON SCHOLARS, JOURNALISTS AND HUMAN RIGHTS ADVOCATES
Bollinger: Why have women, members of the Baha'i faith, homosexuals and so many of our academic colleagues become targets of persecution in your country?....Why in a letter last week to the Secretary General of the UN did Akbar Gangi [sic], Iran's leading political dissident, and over 300 public intellectuals, writers and Nobel Laureates express such grave concern that your inflamed dispute with the West is distracting the world's attention from the intolerable conditions your regime has created within Iran? In particular, the use of the Press Law to ban writers for criticizing the ruling system. Why are you so afraid of Iranian citizens expressing their opinions for change?
2. THE DENIAL OF THE HOLOCAUST
Bollinger: The truth is that the Holocaust is the most documented event in human history. Because of this, and for many other reasons, your absurd comments about the “debate” over the Holocaust both defy historical truth and make all of us who continue to fear humanity's capacity for evil shudder at this closure of memory, which is always virtue's first line of defense. Will you cease this outrage?
3. THE DESTRUCTION OF ISRAEL
Bollinger: Twelve days ago, you said that the state of Israel “cannot continue its life.” This echoed a number of inflammatory statements you have delivered in the last two years, including in October 2005 when you said that Israel should be “wiped off the map.” Columbia has over 800 alumni currently living in Israel. As an institution we have deep ties with our colleagues there. I personally have spoken out in the most forceful terms against proposals to boycott Israeli scholars and universities, saying that such boycotts might as well include Columbia. More than 400 college and university presidents in this country have joined in that statement. My question, then, is: Do you plan on wiping us off the map, too?
4. FUNDING TERRORISM
Bollinger: According to reports by the Council on Foreign Relations, it's well documented that Iran is a state sponsor of terror that funds such violent group as the Lebanese Hezbollah, which Iran helped organize in the 1980s, the Palestinian Hamas, and Palestinian Islamic Jihad. While your predecessor government was instrumental in providing the US with intelligence and base support in its 2001 campaign against the Taliban in Afghanistan, your government is now undermining American troops in Iraq by funding, arming, and providing safe transit to insurgent leaders like Muqtada al-Sadr and his forces. There are a number of reports that also link your government with Syria's efforts to destabalize [sic] the fledgling Lebanese government through violence and political assassination. My question is this: Why do you support well-documented terrorist organizations that continue to strike at peace and democracy in the Middle East, destroying lives and civil society in the region?
5. PROXY WAR AGAINST U.S. TROOPS IN IRAQ
Bollinger: In a briefing before the National Press Club earlier this month, General David Petraeus reported that arms supplies from Iran, including 240mm rockets and explosively formed projectiles, are contributing to “a sophistication of attacks that would by no means be possible without Iranian support.” A number of Columbia graduates and current students are among the brave members of our military who are serving or have served in Iraq and Afghanistan. They, like other Americans with sons, daughters, fathers, husbands and wives serving in combat, rightly see your government as the enemy. Can you tell them and us why Iran is fighting a proxy war in Iraq by arming Shi'a militia targeting and killing U.S. troops?
6. IRAN'S NUCLEAR PROGRAM AND INTERNATIONAL SANCTIONSBollinger: This week the United Nations Security Council is contemplating expanding sanctions for a third time because of your government's refusal to suspend its uranium-enrichment program. You continue to defy this world body by claiming a right to develop peaceful nuclear power, but this hardly withstands scrutiny when you continue to issue military threats to neighbors. Last week, French President Sarkozy made clear his lost patience with your stall tactics; and even Russia and China have shown concern. Why does your country continue to refuse to adhere to international standards for nuclear weapons verification in defiance of agreements that you have made with the UN nuclear agency? And why have you chosen to make the people of your country vulnerable to the effects of international economic sanctions and threaten to engulf the world with nuclear annihilation?
III. The Coup de grâce again
Excerpted from Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs Dean John H. Coatsworth, who served as the event's "Moderator." My interest here is to highlight the range of questions funneled through Coatsworth to Ahmadinejad and the greater audience beyond. (For my source, see "President Ahmadinejad Delivers Remarks at Columbia University," Congressional Quarterly Transcripts Wire, September 24, 2007 (as posted to the WashingtonPost.com).)
1. Coatsworth: The first question is: Do you or your government seek the destruction of the state of Israel as a Jewish state?
2. Coatsworth: Mr. President, I think many members of our audience would like to hear a clearer answer to that question. That is... (APPLAUSE) The question is: Do you or your government seek the destruction of the state of Israel as a Jewish state? And I think you could answer that question with a single word, either yes or no.
3. Coatsworth: (Off-mike) second question, which was posed by President Bollinger earlier and comes from a number of other students: Why is your government providing aid to terrorists? Will you stop doing so and permit international monitoring to certify that you have stopped?
4. Coatsworth: Mr. President, a further set of questions challenged your view of the Holocaust. Since the evidence that this occurred in Europe in the 1940s, as a result of the actions of the German Nazi government, since that -- those facts -- are well documented, why are you calling for additional research? There seems to be no purpose in doing so, other than to question whether the Holocaust actually occurred as a historical fact. Can you explain why you believe more research is needed into the facts of what are -- what is -- what are incontrovertible?
5. Coatsworth: Let me just -- let me pursue this a bit further. It is difficult to have a scientific discussion if there isn't at least some basis, some empirical basis, some agreement about what the facts are. So calling for research into the facts when the facts are so well established represents for many a challenging of the facts themselves and a denial that something terrible occurred in Europe in those years. (APPLAUSE) Let me move on to... Mr. President, another student asks -- Iranian women are now denied basic human rights and your government has imposed draconian punishments, including execution on Iranian citizens who are homosexuals. Why are you doing those things?
6. Coatsworth: Mr. President, the question isn't about criminal and drug smugglers. The question was about sexual preference and women.
7. Coatsworth: Mr. President, I have two questions which I'll put together. One is, what did you hope to accomplish by speaking at Columbia today? And the second is, what would you have said if you were permitted to visit the site of the September 11th tragedy?
8. Coatsworth: Mr. President, a number of questions have asked about your nuclear program. Why is your government seeking to acquire enriched uranium suitable for nuclear weapons? Will you stop doing so?
9. Coatsworth: Mr. President, a final question. I know your time is short and that you need to move on. Is Iran prepared to open broad discussions with the government of the United States? What would Iran hope to achieve in such discussions? How do you see, in the future, a resolution of the points of conflict between the government of the United States and the government of Iran?Coatsworth: I'm sorry that President Ahmadinejad's schedule makes it necessary for him to leave before he's been able to answer many of the questions that we have, or even answer some of the ones that we posed to him.
More than one translation of the President of Iran's prepared and extemporaneous remarks at Columbia University are available. So, too, are more than one videostream.
"President Ahmadinejad Delivers Remarks at Columbia University," Congressional Quarterly Transcripts Wire, September 24, 2007 (as posted to the WashingtonPost.com)
World Leaders Forum (Videostream), School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University, September 24, 2007
Ahmadinejad at Columbia University -- Q&A Part 1
Ahmadinejad at Columbia University -- Q&A Part 2
Ahmadinejad at Columbia University -- Q&A Part 3
Ahmadinejad at Columbia University -- Q&A Part 4
Unfortunately, I don't speak Farsi, so I can't tell you which translation is the best one.
Equally laughable were three different actions by the two houses of the U.S. Congress: Two in the House of Representatives; one in the Senate. Since all three of them were in honor of the Iranian President's visit to the States, we may as well hyperlink them here.
Bill: "To enhance United States diplomatic efforts with respect to Iran by imposing additional economic sanctions against Iran, and for other purposes" ( HR 1400 ), U.S. House of Representatives
- U.S. House Vote: 397 - 16 (19 not voting), September 25, 2007. -- The 16 voting against it were: Neil Abercrombie (D - HI), Tammy Baldwin (D - WI), Roscoe Bartlett (R - MD), Earl Blumenauer (D - OR), John Conyers (D - MI), Keith Ellison (D - MN), Jeff Flake (R - AZ), Wayne Gilchrest (R - MD), Maurice Hinchey (R - NY), Barbara Lee (D - CA), Jim McDermott (D - WA), George Miller (D - CA), Gwen Moore (D - WI), John Olver (D - MA), Ron Paul (R - TX), Pete Stark (D - CA). (Note that Dennis Kucinich (D - OH) did not vote on this bill.)
Bill: "Strongly condemning the United Nations Human Rights Council for ignoring severe human rights abuses in various countries, while choosing to unfairly target Israel by including it as the only country permanently placed on the Council's agenda" ( HR 557 ), U.S. House of Representatives
- U.S. House Vote: 416 - 2 (14 not voting), September 25, 2007. -- Only Dennis Kucinich (D - OH) and Ron Paul (R. - TX) voted against it.
Amendment: "To express the sense of the Senate regarding Iran" ( S 3071 ), Senator Jon Kyl (R. - AZ)
- U.S. Senate Vote: 76 - 22, September 26, 2007. -- The 22 voting against it: Joe Biden (D - DE), Jeff Bingaman (D - NM), Barbara Boxer (D - CA), Sherrod Brown (D - OH), Robert Byrd (D - WV), Maria Cantwell (D - WA), Chris Dodd (D - CT), Russ Feingold (D - WI), Chuck Hagel (R - NE), Tom Harkin (D - IA), Daniel Inouye (D - HI), Edward Kennedy (D - MA), John Kerry (D - MA), Amy Klobuchar (D - MN), Patrick Leahy (D - VT), Blanche Lincoln (D - AR), Richard Lugar (R - IN), Claire McCaskill (D - MO), Bernard Sanders (I - VT), Jon Tester (D - MT), James Webb (D - VA), Ron Wyden (D - OR). (Note that neither John McCain (R - AZ) nor Barack Obama (D - IL) voted on this amendment. It is way past time for Obama to stand up and either vote with or against these lunatic actions in the Senate.)
September 24, 2007
SHOW: GLENN BECK 7:00 PM EST
President Ahmadinejad Visits U.S.
BYLINE: Glenn Beck, Allan Chernoff
GUESTS: Jim Gilchrist, David Weprin, Peter King, Ray Tranchant
GLENN BECK, HOST (voice-over): Tonight: New York pulls out the welcome mat for President Ahmadinejad. We`ll have the latest, including his speech at Columbia and his press conference. It doesn`t get crazier than this.Plus, an illegal alien kills a teenage girl. This guy was drunk driving, had multiple prior arrests. Why is he still here? We`ll talk with the girl`s father, who now has a plan to get tough with illegals.And presidential hopefuls and, yours truly, believe it or not, address the NRA over the weekend and took calls from our wives.
RUDY GIULIANI (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Hello, dear. I`m talking to the members of the NRA right now. Would you like to say hello?
BECK: All this and more tonight.(END VIDEOTAPE)
BECK: Hello, America.It serves as just another wake-up call. Right now, Satan is among us, or the next closest thing. Right at this very moment, Iran`s President Ahmadinejad is here in New York, just a couple of miles away from where I sit on American soil.He spoke at Columbia University this afternoon, and tomorrow he`s going to address the General Assembly of the United Nations.If you don`t think this guy is evil, I want you to look at this clip from today`s speech at Columbia, where he talks about homosexuality in Iran.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD, PRESIDENT OF IRAN (through translator): In Iran, we don`t have homosexuals like in your country. We don`t have that in our country. In Iran, we do not have this phenomenon.(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: Yes. He was tying this into the death penalty and drug dealers, by the way.I realize that foreign leaders, even scary ones, visit the United States all the time. But the impact of this visit by Iran`s Ahmadinejad is different. That`s why I`m devoting almost my entire show to it tonight. And if you agree that Iran is our enemy, then stick with us, because there`s some stuff you have to see.If you`re unsure if they`re an enemy or not, do not miss a second of tonight`s program. It`s just that important.Now, Mahmoud in Manhattan. Ahmadinejad, invited guest of Columbia University today and because of that, here`s "The Point" tonight.I believe Columbia University should lose every penny of public funding they get. I`m sick and tired of these universities and me paying for it and you, too. And here`s how I got there.I believe in academic freedom, but we have to draw the line somewhere. Ahmadinejad is a Holocaust denier, an Islamic extremist, a madman hell-bent on getting a nuclear weapon and a terrorist. And that`s just not my opinion. That`s the State Department`s opinion.This is a guy who is trying to bring back the messiah through bloodshed and chaos. You don`t believe me? Fine. Believe him. In 30 minutes, I`ll give you the "Real Story".Ahmadinejad has no business spreading his message of hate to American college students just so a media and cash whore, like Columbia University, can elevate their own status. It is exactly the propaganda that the Iranian president is looking for.Here`s how Columbia president Lee Bollinger justified his decision on "Good Morning America" today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEE BOLLINGER, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT: The reasons for doing this go to freedom of speech and academic freedom. They`re fundamental.And what`s at stake here is really the opportunity to be able to learn about the world and to know about people, even dictators, even people who are highly repressive and highly dangerous as Dr. Ahmadinejad.(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: I`ve got to tell you, I don`t need to have ebola to understand it`s evil.Here`s where it gets crazier. Here`s where Columbia dean John Coatsworth says that he would have had Hitler speak on campus.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN COATSWORTH, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY DEAN: If Hitler had come to the university -- Columbia University in 1939, I would have been outside with the peaceful protesters, or if I had been dean, I would have been inside presenting him to our students to be challenged.(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: You just heard in their own words why Columbia`s leadership is thoughtless, irresponsible and quite possibly complicit in helping Ahmadinejad spread his evil propaganda. Doesn`t matter what happens here. It`s what happens over there.And here`s what you need to know tonight, America. Yes, Columbia is a private university, and they can do whatever they want. But they still receive a ton of public funding. Last year, Albany gave them over $22 million of taxpayer money and saved them countless more in low interest loans.Once you start legitimizing terrorists and showing a complete lack of respect, common sense and moral responsibility, Columbia, I say we cut you off. You want to bring the devil to town and have him speak to your students, that`s fine. But don`t expect me to pay the Bill.CNN`s Allan Chernoff was at Columbia today.Allan, I didn`t see the protesters. Who were these people protesting out front?
ALLAN CHERNOFF, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, we had hundreds of protesters out here. And I should say, there were actually three main protests. One over here along Broadway, one inside of campus, in front of the library, and then there was a third protest, actually, in midtown right across from the United Nations. And you can be sure that there will be plenty of people out there on Tuesday, as well. But there were -- a broad range of protesters.
BECK: So who -- who were there? Was there a large contingent of Muslims that were saying, "Don`t -- not in my name you don`t get away with this"? Was there a large contingent of anyone from GLAAD or anyone from the National Organization of Women who were saying you shouldn`t stone homosexuals or women?
CHERNOFF: I`d say the majority of the protesters appeared to be Jewish folks responding to the Iranian president`s denial of the Holocaust and to his call for the destruction of Israel. That was really the predominant group.
BECK: OK. Allan, thank you.Now whether you agree or disagree with Columbia`s decision to have Ahmadinejad speak on campus, it is shamefully hypocritical. They have denied ROTC access to their campus. They have disinvinted the anti-illegal immigration group the Minutemen.It seems to me if you just don`t agree with Columbia`s liberal agenda then you just don`t get access to their precious academic freedom.Joining me now is Jim Gilchrist. He`s the founder of the Minuteman Project. And New York City Councilman David Weprin.Let me start with you, Jim. It`s my understanding that Columbia University decided to invoke -- to invite you back this year after the debacle last year. But then they had an emergency meeting with the students and revoked that invitation. Is that correct?
JIM GILCHRIST, FOUNDER, THE MINUTEMAN PROJECT: That`s my understanding speaking with Dr. David Isenbach (ph), who was trying to orchestrate my appearance there this year.That`s what happened. There was some emergency meeting when word got out on campus that the Minutemen are coming. They had to revoke my invitation, which two months ago they had approved. The same Columbia Political Union. It`s called CPU.
BECK: It`s my understanding that you support Mahmoud Ahmadinejad coming to Columbia.
GILCHRIST: Glenn, I support the First Amendment. And we`re talking here, in this particular case, Glenn, a very razor-thin, narrow threshold that we`re walking upon with bringing this man here.This Ahmadinejad apparently has been accused of being an outright terrorist. He`s been responsible for the deaths of many members of American armed forces and innocent people in the Mideast. If that is true, I would have to say he should not be here, but I cannot -- I am not God, and I can`t take someone`s freedom of speech away.BECK: OK. I`ve got to tell you, Jim, those things are true. It is confirmed now that Iran is supplying people with the arms to kill our soldiers. He is directly responsible for it. He is directly responsible for the stoning of women and homosexuals in Iran, and I find it amazing that Columbia University won`t have you speak, who, by the way, I applaud you in your efforts. Won`t have you speak, but they`ll have out and out evil speak to their students.David, what part of -- what part of evil does Columbia not understand?
DAVID WEPRIN, NEW YORK CITY COUNCILMAN: I don`t understand. I think they made a grave mistake by giving a forum to a -- not a world leader but really a world terrorist, a world gangster. Someone that has been linked to terrorism, to killing of American lives, has denied the Holocaust, has called for the destruction of the United States and Israel.This is not the person that a major institution, probably the -- the major institution in the city of New York, of higher learning, one of the most prestigious institutions. To give this terrorist this type of forum is not free speech.
BECK: You know, in the same speech that he said that Israel doesn`t have a right to exist and he`d run the Jews into the sea, he also said, imagine a world without America. This is not a -- you know, this isn`t a guy that has an awful lot of subtlety to him.Jim, back to you. Did you see the speech at all? Were you at all...
GILCHRIST: Yes, I...
BECK: Were you at all intrigued that they came over, tipped the podium over on you, chased you out, and yet they treated him with dignity to the point to where they were applauding him?
GILCHRIST: Glenn, when you have student body comprised of Paleolithic mentalities -- that means caveman mentalities for those students at Columbia who don`t know the difference. When you have that mentality, that anarchist mentality, you`re certainly seeking to promote something evil. You want to give notoriety and promenade the macabre parts of our society, rather than some good parts.And they did get exactly what they wanted. Unfortunately, they`ve set a precedence, where now other universities will probably try to outdo them and bring someone even worse in.
BECK: Yes. David, I know you say that you don`t think that state or local funding should be cut off for Columbia University. I have to tell you, if the KKK were running a school, even if they built hospitals and -- and had day care centers, I`d still say cut the funding off for them.These guys are pumping in really bad stuff into our -- into the heads of our next generation, and I don`t want to pay for it.
WEPRIN: Well, I hear what you have to say. The problem with cutting off funding is the funding benefits a lot of citizens in the city.
BECK: Again, if the KKK were funding hospitals, would you say that same argument?
WEPRIN: Well, I`d look closely at their projects, but at the same time, each project has to really be considered on a case-by-case basis. But I think there should be some repercussions to the administration at Columbia for allowing this terrorist to speak and give him this kind of forum...
BECK: I got to tell you.
WEPRIN: ... which really was not a forum of free speech.
WEPRIN: He actually had revisionist testimony. All of a sudden, he came up with answers that did not match any other answers he`s done before.
BECK: I have to tell you, gentlemen, I think America is sick of this. We live in a capitalist society. These -- the funding to these universities should stop. I`m tired of paying for the hate and the anti- American rhetoric.Now, time to find out where I`m wrong. I think Columbia University should lose all of its public funding for letting President Ahmadinejad speak on their campus. Agree or disagree? Go to CNN.com/Glenn and cast your vote right now.Coming up, after being denied a visit to Ground Zero, apparently President Tom isn`t giving up. Iran`s state-run news agency is reporting that he plans to visit with the families of 9/11 victims. That could be just nothing more than shocking propaganda. We`ll delve into it next. Plus, a closer look at what Ahmadinejad told "60 Minutes". He can`t lie. Well, there seems to be a little-known loophole, and I`ll explain in tonight`s "Real Story".And just a reminder: tonight`s show is brought to you by the Sleep Number Bed by Select Comfort. I want you to watch this next commercial, then find a Sleep Number Bed near you at a Select Comfort store.
BECK: Coming up, that little Rudy phone call stunt at the National Rifle Association over the weekend. Did you see it? I had front row seats for that, and some of the other headlining presidential candidates did, as well. How did they all measure up with the NRA? My scorecard in just a bit.But first, it`s bad enough that Iran`s President Ahmadinejad is in New York City today. But he actually had the audacity to request an official visit to Ground Zero prior to his arrival. Fortunately, that official request was denied, even though he has said he`s going anyway.Now the Farz news agency. This is an arm of the Iranian government is reporting that he`s planning to meet with families of the 9/11 victims.It`s important to note that Farz, and their report, it has not yet been officially confirmed by anything not directly connected to evil. So it could be nothing more than propaganda.But, if it`s true, if Ahmadinejad does meet with 9/11 families, it would be exactly the same as Adolf Hitler meeting with the families of Holocaust survivors. Ironically, Ahmadinejad does not believe the Holocaust ever happened.Representative Peter King is a Republican congressman from New York.Congressman, good to see you. I have to ask you, to just touch on the quote that you had last week that somebody said that you had said that there are just too many mosques in America. Can you explain that, sir?
REP. PETER KING (R), NEW YORK: Sure. What I said, and actually said repeatedly for the last four or five years, is there are too many mosques in America who do not cooperate with the law enforcement, who have allowed radical elements to take over their leadership.And it`s really unfortunate that, in this case, "The Politico" newspaper in Washington chose to take a remark totally out of context, out of the context of a one-hour interview three weeks after I gave the interview and try to say that I was saying there were too many mosques. I`ve never even hinted at that.It`s clear what I meant, and the reporter who did the interview, by the way, never asked me about it during the interview. This was something afterwards they were trying to publicize.But I do think it is important for us to say there are too many mosques in America who are beholden to radical interests and they -- there are number that are under surveillance, and that should be on the record. And we shouldn`t run away from that issue.
BECK: Congressman, I`ve got to tell you, I couldn`t agree with you more. There are -- I have yet to see a report, and there will be on this program. I have yet to see a report on what those mosques are, who -- who are the radical clerics that are turning our own citizens into radicalized Islamists, and it will be on our program. So keep fighting the good fight on that.
KING: Thank you Glenn.
BECK: There are unconfirmed reports that Ahmadinejad is going to meet with 9/11 victim families. Also that he`s meeting with Muslim leaders here in the United States.If that`s true, is there anything to -- to questioning of any of these people, questioning to, if he is meeting with Muslim leaders here in America...
BECK: ... what the conversation was?
KING: Muslim leaders should not be meeting Ahmadinejad. They should be focused on getting the Muslim community mobilized in the war against terrorism. Meeting with Ahmadinejad would send the worst possible message of all.As far as the 9/11 families, I had probably close to 150 victims in my district who were killed, murdered on September 11. Many police officers, firefighters, people at Cantor Fitzgerald and the brokerage houses downtown. And it was absolutely horrible to go through that.And I can`t understand why any family would allow themselves to be used this way. Again, we don`t know if they are going to do it or not. If they do, they would be making a terrible mistake.And again, I -- my heart goes out to those families. If they do meet, they`re probably going through some sort of anguish. But the signal that would send, to have a known terrorist, a war criminal as far as I`m concerned, Ahmadinejad, to be giving him any type of credibility at all or to allow the sacredness of 9/11 to reflect on...
BECK: Well, but listen -- but hang on just a second. Columbia University, I mean, Trotsky talked about useful idiots. Columbia is both useful and a group of idiots for letting him on campus to speak.Does Columbia get any federal dollars, and is there any reason or any way to cut some of this funding off?
KING: Well, the reason I think federal funding should be cut from Columbia University is because they don`t allow ROTC on their campus, which is absolutely disgraceful, especially in time of war.But it was also totally wrong for them to invite Ahmadinejad, and it showed the real intellectual pretense and arrogance of people in the universities. They really thought that, by them asking quote, unquote, "tough questions" that that was going to put Ahmadinejad in its place.
KING: As if Columbia University was going to unravel the evil of Ahmadinejad.
KING: The fact is, he got tremendous publicity. He got the respectability of appearing at a major American university. And that`s going to be telecast all over the world, especially in the Arab world.And Glenn, here`s what I`m concerned about. A great, great majority of Iranians support us and are opposed to Ahmadinejad. When they see this, it sends them the totally wrong signal.
BECK: Congressman, thank you very much. I appreciate it.I found it also interesting that they spray-painted over the Columbia University logo on the podium. I`ve never seen anybody do that before.Now another installment of what we call "Missed by the Media". This is a feature where we expose the messages of hate broadcast in other parts of the world, which has rarely seen the light of day here in America.Today, Columbia University`s guest of honor, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, speaking to a hometown crowd. Take a listen, and you tell me whether you want this guy speaking to our kids in our universities.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD, PRESIDENT OF IRAN: (SPEAKING FOREIGN LANGUAGE)GRAPHIC: (The Americans) should leave our region. All the countries in the region should be vigilant and should know that, with the help of God, America`s strength is fading. America`s straw-like strength and satanic rule over the world is about to be annihilated.(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: More on the face of evil here with Ahmadinejad in just a second…
BECK: Well, welcome to the "Real Story." This is the part of the show where we usually expose how the media isn`t telling you the truth, but tonight I`m going to shift gears and expose someone else who is lying to you. Last night, Iranian President Ahmadinejad -- we like to call him President Tom on this program -- went on "60 Minutes" to kick off his U.S. media propaganda tour, and here are a few of his greatest lies.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD, PRESIDENT OF IRAN (THROUGH TRANSLATOR): ...obviously are very much against any terrorist action and any killing.
SCOTT PELLEY, REPORTER, "60 MINUTES": Mr. President, can you tell me that you are not sending weapons to Iraq? Very simple, very directly.
AHMADINEJAD: We don`t need to do that.
PELLEY: For the sake of clarity, because there is so much concern in the world about this next question, please give me the most direct answer you can: Is it your goal to build a nuclear bomb?
AHMADINEJAD: You have to appreciate we don`t need a nuclear bomb. We don`t need that.(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: I have to tell you, I looked into his eyes last night, and all I saw was evil. This guy oozes evil. Anyway, to sum up the whole interview, Iran doesn`t need to send bombs into Iraq. They don`t need a nuclear weapon. They hate war. They love peace and teddy bears. Just in case you think that`s maybe what he really thinks, he`s being less than honest with you. President Tom made sure to slip in this little bit of reassurance.(END VIDEO CLIP)
AHMADINEJAD: What I am saying, I am being very sincere here. I`m a Muslim. I cannot tell a lie.(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: Oh, well, apparently now he`s the George Washington of all of Iran. Unfortunately for us, the "Real Story" is that, in some warped views of Islam, lying is not only permissible, but it is encouraged, so long as that lie will further the cause. The cause? I`ll tell you exactly what that cause is here in just a bit.But the point is, we must stop pretending that this man`s threats are empty. When I was about 30 years old and I`m trying to figure out life, I picked up and bought a copy of "Mein Kampf" for the first time. I didn`t read it for Hitler`s propaganda. I knew who that guy was. I read it to answer one question that had been bothering me since I was a kid: Did the Germans know what Hitler was planning on doing? The answer, unfortunately, was yes.And while I know it`s hard to admit, some day the world may very well look back at us with the same question I had when I read "Mein Kampf." Did they know? Then they`ll watch Ahmadinejad`s interviews, they`ll read his speeches, they`ll listen to his threats, and they will wonder why, in the famous words of Edmund Burke, why did good men do nothing?Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, he is the founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy. Zuhdi, Muslims in America, non-Muslims in America, everybody is turning a blind eye to this guy and not taking him at his word. Big mistake? Huge mistake?
DR. M. ZUHDI JASSER, AMERICAN ISLAMIC FORUM FOR DEMOCRACY: Very, very big mistake, Glenn. I can`t emphasize that more in that, you know, he disgraces Muslims. And by saying that, because he`s a Muslim he can`t lie, this man hasn`t said a truth in his entire life. He is a born liar and uses the religion for his own power trip. And as the senator said today, he`s a megalomaniac.And for us to give him a podium and to allow him to spread his vile -- you know, I got a press release today from CAIR saying this was time for dialogue with the Iranian president. Give me a break. This guy has suffocated dissidents. He`s suffocated journalists and students. And to come to a university and teach them about democracy and free speech is the summit of hypocrisy.
BECK: I mean, why is it that people don`t take him at his word when he says, "I`ll run Jews into the sea"? "Soon, the West will burn with the fire of the Islamic fury"? What? What does it take?
JASSER: You know, it`s interesting. My family a few generations ago escaped the oppression of the Baathists in Syria. And we are taught in my family to remember that, because we can`t forget. I think Americans and many in the West seem to have forgot what dictators and thuggery and thugs can do.And we can`t allow ourselves to be lulled into complacency by living in the freedom and liberty of America and not looking these people in the face and looking at their societies, where they stone women, where they deny gays full rights, and it`s just -- it`s pathetic for us not to know this and talk about it.
BECK: Zuhdi, in that note from CAIR, did they say that they were protesting at all his -- anything that he said?
JASSER: Absolutely not. And just as the Khatami visit a year ago, they said that it`s a time for dialogue. No criticism about human rights. No criticism about free speech in Iran. No encouragement of dissidents to change that government from a theocracy to a liberal, freedom-loving democracy, not just for democrats and democracies to control the minority, but to give free rights for the minority.
BECK: Well, I have to tell you, Zuhdi, thank you very much for everything that you do. I have to tell you, America, I`m going to write the National Organization of Women, GLAAD, CAIR. I would really like to hear where they were, why are they not protesting someone that says homosexuals should be killed, and women should be stoned to death, and who are so grossly misusing their religion. That will be on tomorrow`s program. Hopefully, we`ll have an update.Now, when President Tom speaks in front of the U.N. General Assembly tomorrow, you`ll likely hear all the typical rhetoric about how peaceful they are and blah, blah, blah. But if his previous addresses are any indication, the media will probably ignore what is perhaps the most important part of his speech. Here he is at the U.N. in 2005.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AHMADINEJAD (through translator): Almighty lord, I pray to you to hasten the emergence of your last repository, the promised one, that perfect and pure human being, the one that will fill this world with justice and peace.(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: OK. This is what he said at the end of his speech last year as well at the U.N. After calling for the return of the promised one, Ahmadinejad left the stage in 2005 and said to a cleric, and I quote, "I felt that all of a sudden the atmosphere changed and, for 27 to 28 minutes, the leaders did not blink," end quote. President Ahmadinejad has been quietly talking about his belief -- and this is important that you understand this -- that we are in the end days. The real story is, he`s not burying this lead anymore. Listen to his opening remarks this afternoon at Columbia.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AHMADINEJAD (through translator): Oh god, hasten the arrival of Imam Al-Mahdi and grant him good health and victory, and make us his followers and those who attest to his rightfulness.(END VIDEO CLIP)
BECK: I hope you`re starting to hear a pattern here. This guy is openly praying for the return of the Mahdi in almost every speech, and now he`s starting his speeches with that, yet no one in the media is even bothering to do their homework on what that really means. Basically, think of the Mahdi as the Shiite Muslim version of the second coming of Jesus Christ, but unlike Christians, the twelvers -- as they`re called, President Tom is a twelver -- believe that they can hasten the Mahdi`s return by creating the right conditions for it. Unfortunately for us, those conditions are pretty simple: chaos, war, bloodshed, because only then can the Mahdi return with peace and justice.Thing about that. Ahmadinejad must usher in chaos and war before he can fulfill his destiny. That is why he wants a nuclear program; that is why he threatens Israel and the West; and that is why he`s killing our soldiers in Iraq. To him, the United States is the only thing stopping the war and chaos that he needs. And believe it or not, that makes us the Great Satan, otherwise known in the West, to you and me, as the literal anti-Christ. When your politics are your religion, it is impossible to understand one without first understanding the other.Joel Rosenberg is the author of "Epicenter: How the Current Rumblings in the Middle East Will Change the World." Joel, this guy -- nobody gets this. Everybody says you`re nuts and you shouldn`t take him at his word. He is telling us what he is going to do.
JOEL ROSENBERG, AUTHOR, "EPICENTER": He certainly is, Glenn. And I think you`ve picked up on a really important point, that in his previous trips to the United States in 2005 and 2006, he ended his speeches at the United Nations by praying for the Islamic messiah, known as the Mahdi, this just and promised one, to arrive. But now you`re absolutely right, he is leading with that.And this is interesting because of the timing. When Ahmadinejad was elected in June of 2005, he began telling people that the end of the world was just two or three years away and that the way to hasten the coming of the Mahdi, the Islamic messiah, was to annihilate Israel, the Little Satan, in his view, and the United States, the Great Satan.And now we are two years into that, right? We`re now in the fall of 2007, two years later. We don`t know exactly his timetable, but we know what he`s been doing over the last two years: building military alliances with Russia, China and North Korea, three nuclear powers; building 3,000, that we know of, centrifuges to enrich uranium; and building alliances with Syria and Hezbollah in southern Lebanon to prepare for this annihilation.
BECK: I`ve only got a minute. We have so much to cover. Would you come on the radio show with me tomorrow and cover this in detail?
BECK: Real quick, this guy is so dangerous, and these twelvers are so dangerous, that the Ayatollah Khomeini back in 1979 banned them, tried to kill them all, because they are just so volatile. But the 12th imam does not come back to Iran. This is critical that you understand this, because both Osama bin Laden say this is important, and President Tom says this is important. Where does the 12th imam return?
ROSENBERG: He goes to Iraq, to Karbala. He first comes to Mecca, then Medina, but he then goes to Iraq. And in the conditions of chaos and carnage, that`s where he emerges to take over the world and create an Islamic caliphate where, as one of his key advisers, the Ayatollah Khamenei said -- and I quote him in "Epicenter" -- the Mahdi will offer the religion of Islam to the Jews and Christians. If they accept, they`ll be spared. Otherwise, they will be killed.
BECK: You don`t have to believe that we`re in the tribulation. We don`t have to believe that the United States is the literal anti-Christ, but he does, and that`s important. We`ll see you tomorrow on the radio program.
BECK: That`s the "Real Story" tonight.…
BECK: Thank you, sir.Coming up next, we`ll go live -- kind of -- to Columbia University for an update on those anti-Ahmadinejad protests. There is one group that was not protesting President Ahmadinejad today. When we come back, I`ll give you the shocking details.
BECK: Well, New York has never been more pleasant than it is this week. Roads are cut off. We`ve got Coast Guard ships in the river. And Ahmadinejad is speaking at Columbia University.Joining me now on the scene is my radio producer, Stu, Stu Burguire.Hello, Stu.
STU BURGUIERE, "GLENN BECK" CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Glenn. How are you?
BECK: Oh, I know you`ve had a good day being at Columbia University.
BURGUIERE: Yes, Glenn, Ahmadinejad-mania is underway right now. I mean, it`s just been fantastic out here. The cleanup is going on. To give you just a little perspective, bigger than Woodstock `94, not as big as the original.BECK: Really?
BURGUIERE: It just -- yes, it was a little disappointing overall in ticket sales. There were the typical -- the groupies were out, the Ahmadinejad groupies. You expect that. Although we do know now 100 percent of them straight. No gay, 0 percent.
BECK: Was that incredible to hear that?
BURGUIERE: Not a one.
BECK: I just could not believe it. Did you -- I asked you this on the radio program earlier today. Did you see anybody from GLAAD? Did you see anybody from the National Organization of Women? Who was protesting?
BURGUIERE: Mainly, what I saw, there was, of course, one group that was protesting George Bush in a just completely unrelated thing. There was another group that was former Iranian nationals that were living here now and wanting their country back, essentially. And then there was, you know...
BECK: Why? I learned from Ahmadinejad they`re all free. It`s a free nation.
BURGUIERE: Yeah, you know what? I don`t know. Listening to him, it sounded like a commercial. It was like a Jamaica tourism ad.
BECK: I was thinking I would go.
BURGUIERE: And there was a large kind of contingency of pro-Israeli protesters, as well. And then students, who were generally, surprisingly enough, not split. It was very anti-Ahmadinejad, which was, even in New York, impressive.
BECK: Good, all right. "Even in New York." All right, tomorrow, you`re at the U.N. for the radio show and for TV. And then Wednesday, I`m sending you for Frostees. I`m just saying.
BURGUIERE: Oh, I love that, because the dictator tour isn`t working out.
BECK: Yes. Don`t forget, if you want to know what`s on tomorrow`s program, you like a little more in-depth commentary on the news of the day, please sign up for my free daily newsletter at glennbeck.com.Tomorrow on the radio program, some stuff that you just cannot miss. You will understand the face of evil tomorrow. All right, from New York, good night, America. And you, too, Ahmadinejad, you little weasel. [#####]
Update (September 29): In the light of the lavish lunacies with which the President of Iran's four-and-a-half day visit to the United States was greeted over the course of this past week, I couldn't resist checking both the microfilm as well as the electronic database maintained by the New York Times for this gem that "SK" called to our attention earlier today: "Shah Praises U.S. for Peace Policy; Iran's Ruler Calls on West to Bolster Independent Nations -- Gets Degree at Columbia," No Author Listed, New York Times, February 5, 1955 (Sect. 1, p. 2).
What a beauty it is.
Note, though, that roughly two-thirds of the text of the original article is missing from the copy found here. (In case it's important to anybody, you can purchase a copy via the New York Times's electronic archives by clicking-on the hyperlink provided above.)
"Only nations who are steadfast and resolved in their beliefs for freedom and democracy, and only nations who are prepared to make sacrifices will be able to make the grade," he said.
Calling upon the Western powers to help remove the sources of weakness and confusion among peace and freedom loving nations, the Shah said:
"We must be strong enough spiritually, socially, economically and militarily to dispense with apathy, parochialism and economic and political instability.
"We must be strong enough internally and externally so that the temptation of subversion from within, supported from without, can be obliterated.
"I am convinced that the economic help given by the Western world to peace-loving nations will be dedicated to the defense of world peace. No better investment could be made."
Discusses Problems of Iran
Turning to his own country's problems, the Shah observed that Iran's economic and political stability would fashion her internal development and that "the volume of assistance given to her by the Western powers will determine the tempo and pace of this economic development."
He noted that the plan to distribute land from royal estates in Iran to needy farmers and peasants already had resulted in the distribution of 175,00 acres to 7,000 farmers.
He added that "in a matter of years, when this scheme has reached its climax , 4,000,000 acres of cultivated land will have been distributed to 250,000 farmers."
The Shah said the dominant theme of Iran's policy was "the wholehearted belief of our people in the purpose and principles of the United Nations and our unwavering resolve for the safeguard of our independence and sovereignty."
The Shah was accompanied by his wife, Queen Soraya, during the degree-awarding ceremony in the rotunda of Columbia's Low memorial Library. His address constituted the university's 1955 Gabriel Silver Lecture Dedicated to International Peace. [#####]