Though the Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan’s reasonable objections to the situationist comedy of Sacha Baron Cohen have been noted in this space previously (October 27, 2006, October 10, 2006, November 15, 2005), the New York Post’s Marianne Garvey reports on an unusual attempt to clear the air with American intellectuals. Or failing that, students at St. Francis.

Yesterday, students at St. Francis College in Brooklyn Heights sat through a guest lecture on the nation by Barlybai Sadykov, deputy permanent representative of Kazakhstan to the United Nations – and found it anything but entertaining.

Half the class dozed off, some played games on their laptops, and many sent text messages during the hour-long lecture by Sadykov, in which he disputed Borat’s tall tales about the country.

“Kazakhstan is becoming increasing important in the world,” Sadykov told the class. “Its economy is flourishing, and we have a large abundance of natural resources – in fact, we make 1.5 million barrels of oil a day.”

“We have very good relations with other countries, especially Israel,” Sadykov said.”Kazakhstan is not only a developing country, we are well equipped technologically and are an advanced society. Our people are highly educated. We have modern cities that are economic centers. We have very modern buildings.”