Columbia University will soon be hosting Iranian president Ahmadinejad for a guest forum. The leader of Iran will be in America for a supposed UN conference and has already requested, and been denied, a visit to Ground Zero in Manhatten. The thought of having a terrorist visit is just not appealing to some people, but Columbia University is not among them.
There has been plenty of outrage over this, and before I voice mine...I little reminder. Columbia was also the site of another controversial forum, this one held by the Minutemen. This is a group of volunteers who have expressed their displeasure over the government's lack of enforcement of immigration policy. As a form of protest, they watch the southern border closely, and report any suspicious activity to the authorities. Some have called them vigilantes, but if this were true then we'd have to label any neighborhood watch program the same. The Minutemen came to Columbia and were greeted with a great degree of resistance. They were shouted down by protestors, driven from the stage, and basically not allowed to speak. All of this happened without the college administration or campus security lifting a finger to protect the Minutemen. This is Columbia University, a campus dominated by radicals who obviously don't believe in free speech as a universal right for all, but only as something to be granted to those who share their beliefs. It is apparent that the students of Columbia view the Constitution as something that only applies to certain people, and if you don't share in their political viewpoints then you're not covered by that document.
Now enter Mr Ahmadinejad, who requested a visit to Ground Zero and was promptly denied, and rightfully so. I wouldn't want Mussolini or Hitler visiting Pearl Harbor, just like I don't want a known terrorist visiting Ground Zero. Yet, Columbia University decided to have him as a guest. The message they want to send? Tolerance. I'm sure the Minutemen are scratching their heads about that one.
And so Ahmadinejad will be welcomed at Columbia University. This is a man who participated in the illegal invasion at the US embassy in Tehran. This is a man who knowingly supports Al Qaeda in Iraq, and aids in the deaths of US soldiers. This is a man who supports Hezbollah and their terrorist activity with Israel. This is a man who denies women basic human rights. This is a man who openly defies the UN and pursues illegal nuclear weapons. This is a man who openly advocates for the unconditional destruction of Israel, and has threatened to carry out such destruction himself. This is a man who denies the Holocaust, calling it a hoax. This is a man who threatens to push the Middle East into a nuclear war, with millions of lives lost. He is a terrorist, a killer, a genuine lunatic. And Columbia University wants to hear what he has to say.
I predict he will be allowed to speak. I don't foresee the radicals interrupting him and shouting him down as they did the Minutemen, which brings up a question. What is he doing this for? Some would say diplomacy, but people like this aren't interested in diplomacy. Some would say he is fueling an overblown ego, explaining his audacious request to visit Ground Zero. But I disagree with this. It is my theory that this man is on a recruiting mission.
I've said before that Ahmadinejad may be crazy, but he isn't stupid. He knows who his allies are. He knows where he is most likely to find help in his cause, and as the UN and EU continue to build pressure on him, he may be getting desperate for help. So I ask...How much of a step would it be for people who deny others freedom of speech to resort to more violent measures of resistance? It is my belief that the students of Columbia are one step shy of strapping on dynamite-laden vests and taking a stroll to the closest gathering of right-wing minds. Oh, I'm sure I'll be attacked for this, but I don't think it's a stretch to assume that Ahmadinejad thinks he can mold some young radical minds for his own agenda, and it's also no stretch to assume that those minds are capable of being molded. Convincing them that America is the enemy won't exactly be a daunting task. Convincing them to resort to violent measures would only be one more step.
The students of Columbia have declared their allegiance, and it's not to the US Constitution. Ahmadinejad knows who his friends are, and he plans on addressing them soon. If I were DHS, I would be keeping a close eye on these students.