First, Columbia University moved the speech venue from the grand Low Library to a campus auditorium. Then the university president avoided being seen with Ethiopian despot Meles Zenawi, and sent his deputy. Just to make sure there is no World Leaders Forum association with Meles, they put him on a stage with a blank dark background. Every leader who has appeared on the WLF has had the script of the forum in the background behind the podium except for Meles. See for yourself below and judge.
Meles Zenawi and other leaders at World Leaders Forum