This article makes that case.
One of the dumbest and most disingenuous arguments made by gay conservatives, they who laughably worship Dick Cheney as the “most-pro-gay vice-president” in American history, is that neoconservative foreign policy is pro-gay. They say this because many Islamic countries are indeed dangerous places for gay people, and their argument (if you can call it that) is that if we bomb more of those places, then we can save the gays!
As is usually true with conservative talking points, it’s utter crap. Conservatives who supported the illegal Iraq war often said insane things like: “Now the girls can go to school!”; or “Now the women don’t have to wear burkhas!”
People with knowledge about that part of the world would roll our eyes and respond, “No, you’re thinking of Afghanistan.” The wingnuts would then respond, “Iraq was like that too!” To which we would reply, “Actually, no.” Hussein was a secular dictator, and he didn’t put up with that theocratical crap. He may have been evil, but on the issues you’re talking about, he was actually far better than Saudi Arabia (our bestest friends), Iran, Afghanistan, etc. The religious tensions which have created Iraq as it is now simply weren’t allowed to flourish under Hussein. Our misguided adventure over there may indeed have made a couple of things better, but for gays?
LONDON — It often shocks people to hear this but talk to Iraqi gays who’ve made it out and they’ll tell you — Life was better under Saddam.
Baghdad played the role that Beirut does now as a sanctuary for Middle Eastern gay life with clubs which men from the Gulf and Saudi Arabia flocked to.
In sharp contrast, for the past six years Iraq has been the worst place in the entire world to be gay. Far, far worse than Uganda or even Iran. Hundreds of gays, lesbians and transgender people have been hunted down and killed in the most vile ways imaginable — and imagination is the right word. Doctors have confirmed reports of men have had their anuses glued shut by militia forces and others have accused the government of being involved.
No one has been prosecuted and the Iraqi government has failed to do anything to stop it. So Iraqi gays have helped themselves. They have created safe houses, although many have been discovered and become a new killing field.
It shocks people because the average American wingnut can’t even pick out Iraq on a map, first of all. And the Iraqi government does nothing about it because the government there is far more Iranian-style now. Thanks, America!
It may come as a shock to conservatives, for whom anything less than an all out invasion of a Muslim country is an affront to their already tenuous grasp on their own masculinity, but starting wars in the name of “liberating” people doesn’t really work. Suddenly foisting democracy on people who have been living under a dictatorship for decades isn’t really useful. (For a great example, you only have to look to the elections the Bush administration forced on Palestine. When the Palestinians elected Hamas, the idiots surrounding Bush were gobsmacked. Meanwhile, even liberals who are only halfway politically aware collectively said, “What exactly did you expect, you nimrods?”)
And now we have a situation where those who cheerled us into an unprovoked war with Iraq are complicit in making the entire Middle East a little bit more dangerous for LGBT people, and deadly for the gay citizens of the nation we were supposedly “liberating.”
Most wingnuts don’t care about the fate of gay people in other parts of the world, much less our own, but it’s particularly disgusting that gay conservatives continue to ignorantly and speciously justify their support for imperialist neo-conservative foreign policy in the name of making life better for LGBT people abroad.
A commenter at AMERICAblogGay put it this way:
Gay Republicans, including Andrew Sullivan, have argued time and time again that it was necessary to ‘liberate’ Iraq so that gay Iraqis could taste America’s beautiful gift of freedom. These same people have been screaming for an attack on Iran to ‘gift’ them the same liberation for gay citizens. The Iraqi citizens thank GOProud, Log Cabin, and Andrew Sullivan for their roles as courageous keyboard warriors.
Or they would thank them, if they weren’t, you know, dead or at risk of being killed by having their anuses glued shut.
(h/t Timothy Beauchamp)