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Wednesday, September 26

Columbia University spits on memory of US war dead in Iraq

Columbia's board, faculty, and students are aware that the US has evidence on Iran's involvement in the death of US soldiers in Iraq. That knowledge should have been the only factor in deciding whether to invite Iran's President Ahmadinejad to speak at Columbia. Indeed, there should have been no need for a decision process.

The simple fact that Iran is engaged in proxy war with the United States in Iraq, and that the war has killed US troops, should have made a decision unnecessary.

Defenders of Columbia's decision focus on the issue of free speech. This ignores the enormous amount of blood Americans have shed to gain and defend our freedoms. To consider free speech outside the larger context is to cram the history of the United States into a courtroom.

So why bother to parse Columbia President Bollinger's remarks to Maddy? That Bollinger wrongly portrayed Maddy as a dictator can be read as embarrassingly misinformed, a sop to those protesting the Iranian's visit to Columbia, or a cheap trick to give Maddy an advantage.

No matter how you interpret Bollinger's rant, the fact that his university greatly disrespected America's armed forces towers over any comment he made to Ahmadinejad.
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