No, I didn't think too much of it either.
As Khaled Diab writes on the Guardian's Comment is Free website:
"No matter what Bollinger's personal feelings are on Ahmadinejad's ridiculous, insulting and ambiguous stance on the Holocaust and the Iranian regime's human rights record, he broke both the basic rules of decorum and free debate in a disgraceful fashion. A moderator introducing a debate should, as his function suggests, project a semblance of impartiality and give the speakers a chance to express their views, leaving the audience to decide for themselves."
It is to Ahmadinejad's credit that he didn't just walk off after such a disgraceful intro: even the Jerusalem Post, hardly a pro-Ahmadinejad organ, said that Bollinger's introduction set the scene not for a debate, but for a trial.
There may be those of you out there who think the Columbia President is a brave man of principle, who introduced Ahmadinejad in the way he did out of personal conviction. But as the Guardian commenter 'neo conned' points out, Bollinger is man
who can be rather selective in his outrage.
This is how Bollinger introduced the military dictator of Pakistan, who harbours and finances the Taliban and signs peace deals with al-Qai'da:
"President Musharraf is a leader of global importance and his contribution to Pakistan's economic turnaround and the international fight against terror remain remarkable - it is rare that we have a leader of his stature at campus."
Unlike Ahmadinejad, Musharraf really is a dictator. And unlike Ahmadinejad he's been financing and harbouring the Taliban and also doing deals with al-Qai-da. But this evidently doesn't seem to bother our oh-so-principled Columbia President too much.