Iran's President Visits Columbia University
Iran's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was invited to speak and participate in a question and answer session with students at Columbia University in New York on September 24. Ahmadinejad accepted the invitation and was introduced by Columbia's president, Lee Bollinger. According to The New York Times, Columbia's campus and Bollinger have been criticized by the public for hosting an event featuring the controversial, Ahmadinejad. In the introduction Bollinger was quoted as saying, "Mr. President, you exhibit all the signs of a petty and cruel dictator. You are either brazenly provocative or astonishingly uneducated." (The New York Times)
According to CNN Ahmadinejad began his speech by criticizing Bollinger's remarks calling them "discourteous, intellectually dishonest and inaccurate."
Ahmadinejad then continued to make such statements, according to The New York Times, as, there are no homosexuals in Iran, and that the Holocaust could not be treated as fact but instead theory. These were just a few of the fictionalized facts he said in his speech.
According to the Tehran Times Iran's Expediency Council Chairman, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani said, in regards to Bollinger's speech, "Those who insult Iranians would certainly suffer its repercussions."