UPDATE– Photo of two Israeli soldiers holding hands was faked

Israel/Palestine
on 117 Comments
Pinkwashing on Facebook
Pinkwashing on Facebook

Update. Earlier today we posted this photograph sent out by the Israel Defense Forces. Well it was staged and faked. From the Times of Israel:

A picture of two male Israeli soldiers holding hands, posted by Israel’s military spokesman and circulated widely on the web this week as part of gay pride month, was staged and is misleading, The Times of Israel established Tuesday.

The newly hip, multimedia-savvy IDF Spokesperson’s Office posted Monday on its Facebook page a photo of two ostensibly gay soldiers, one seeming to belong to the Givati Brigade and the other to the Artillery Corps, holding hands and walking on a city street.

In fact, the two soldiers in the photo are not a couple, only one of the two is gay, and both the soldiers serve in the IDF Spokesperson’s Office.

The picture appears to have been taken on Itamar Ben Avi street in Tel Aviv, around the corner from the Spokesperson’s Office headquarters.

This picture’s up at Facebook, where the Israeli Defense Forces write:

It’s Pride Month. Did you know that the IDF treats all of its soldiers equally? Let’s see how many shares you can get for this photo.

Headline by Kiera Feldman, who brilliantly mocks Tom Friedman, here.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

Other posts by .


Posted In:

117 Responses

  1. atime forpeace
    June 12, 2012, 9:32 am

    Officially this photo is evidence that Israel is nothing but a brand name that uses emotional appeal to enlist a minority (GLBT community) to support it in order to try to wash away, in pink in this particular case, the ugliness of it’s apartheid hatefilled government.

    Israel doesn’t discriminate against homosexuals only against palestinians and blacks.

    these are lyrics from a song called Good clean fun next year in jerusalem i found on the web.

    How angry would you have to be to face a rifle with a stone,
    With socks against authority would you be out there all alone,
    The world is such a crazy place and I’ve always found it odd,
    That if you want to hate the most you’ve got to really love your god,
    Looks like me made a big mistake back in 1948,
    Two wrongs do not make things ok,
    War in the holy land, the blood is on your hands,
    And your god cannot wash it away,
    We share the blame of every kill and for every sacrifice,
    US dollars pay the bill but they cannot pay the price,
    Here’s what’s left of Zionism, bullets fill the desert air,
    Until we make a world with no religion, peace doesn’t have a prayer.

  2. Refaat
    June 12, 2012, 9:43 am

    and then they are off to shoot some Palestinians…

    • Kathleen
      June 12, 2012, 11:10 am

      nailed it

    • Eric
      June 13, 2012, 1:13 pm

      Yes, but at least the gay guy will kill the defenceless civilians more compassionately. No wonder Palestinian society is so “homophobic”…

  3. marc b.
    June 12, 2012, 9:54 am

    this photo should be juxtaposed with the photos up at silverstein’s site from the 2011 SF gay pride float sponsored by iran180.

    At San Francisco’s 2011 Gay Pride parade, Iran180 hosted a float which featured a huge papier-mache Ahmadinejad figure with his pants down being sodomized by a presumably Israeli nuclear missile. The original caption accompanying this image was: “Ahmadinejad Getting Fucked in the Ass with a Nuclear Weapon.”

    that’s a ‘gay friendly’ image, eh.

  4. Hamishe_Sabz
    June 12, 2012, 10:31 am

    Philip, don’t be jealous…

    • OlegR
      June 12, 2012, 10:58 am

      That’s not nice Philip,
      this sort of article calls for a humorous response.

      • Philip Weiss
        June 12, 2012, 11:11 am

        provide it, funny guy

      • OlegR
        June 12, 2012, 1:11 pm

        Well this is infantry and artillery holding hands.
        I wished them to stay forever in harmony.

        Never mind, it’s not particularly funny to people who haven’t served.

      • Annie Robbins
        June 12, 2012, 1:46 pm

        i think it is very funny the idf is trying to improve it’s image by promoting pda between gay officers. how cuddly and all that. i wonder if one of those guys is in this video: link to 972mag.com

        funny ha ha. they are still soldiers serving an ugly aparthied military regime.

        i wish they were french kissing, that would make it even more funny.

      • OlegR
        June 12, 2012, 2:11 pm

        Anything for you Annie
        this is from a movie but it’s the best i can do right now.

        link to i2.listal.com

      • Woody Tanaka
        June 12, 2012, 2:22 pm

        “Well this is infantry and artillery holding hands.
        I wished them to stay forever in harmony.”

        Yuk yuk. So when you line up some Palestinian baby in your sites as an infantryman, you can call in the artillery on that spot and claim the murder wasn’t “intentional.”

      • Annie Robbins
        June 12, 2012, 2:39 pm

        let me know when the idf uses it for promotion purposes oleg. gay guys dressing up in uniform and making out is not out of the ordinary in the least.

        a military using it for promotional purposes? that would be extraordinary.

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 4:53 am

        Well the holding hand picture is used for promotional purposes
        ,and people say here it’s even a staged one so…

      • MarkF
        June 13, 2012, 7:38 am

        “Never mind, it’s not particularly funny to people who haven’t served.”

        So I guess Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz and all the neocons who advocate war using other children then their own won’t find it funny.

  5. justicewillprevail
    June 12, 2012, 10:54 am

    Let’s skip down the road, hand in hand, to beat up on some Palestinians, Somalis, Sudanese, Eritrareans, Bedouins, liberals, Scandinavians, UN people, Lebanese, Christians, Muslims, Arabs. Yes, let’s see how many ‘shares’ you can get for that action (loved that patronising attempt to get people to peddle the hasbara, lol)

    Did you know, the IDF treats every non Jew equally?

  6. seafoid
    June 12, 2012, 11:39 am

    The gun destroys the image. Maybe if you’re Jewish it looks okay but i find it nauseating. It says we are gay loving militaristic hypocrites. Gays are in but some other group obviously isn’t. I don’t get all that enemy stuff.

    link to irishtimes.com

    “Same-sex couples ..are much more sensitive to fairness and power”

    but obviously IDF gays aren’t.

    • Elliot
      June 12, 2012, 1:51 pm

      seafoid: that’s taken out of context.
      “Same-sex couples ..are much more sensitive to fairness and power”.
      The article you linked to talks about the success of relationships, not on how gays may, or may not, care about others.
      My experience is that Jewish gays are no more likely to care about Jewish abuse of Palestinians than anyone else. Certainly, it would be inaccurate to assume that gays identify with other minority groups just because gays are less privileged than straight folks.

      …just saw Kathleen’s post which makes the same point.

    • YoungMassJew
      June 12, 2012, 2:14 pm

      “The gun destroys the image. Maybe if you’re Jewish it looks okay but I find it nauseating. It says we are gay loving militaristic hypocrites.” Agreed.

    • Fredblogs
      June 13, 2012, 2:34 pm

      “I don’t get all that enemy stuff”. People firing missiles at you are the enemy. It’s not that hard to get.

      • sardelapasti
        June 14, 2012, 1:50 am

        “People firing missiles at you are the enemy”
        Well said. Especially if they are on other people’s land and do not have the right of resistance on their side. More especially those with illegal nuclear missiles. I’m so happy that even a robot can appreciate this and approves all Palestinian resistance against this enemy.

      • Fredblogs
        June 14, 2012, 2:55 pm

        Nothing illegal about Israel’s nuclear missiles (if any). Israel is not a signatory to the NNPT and so is free to do what it wants wrt nuclear weapons. Unlike Iran, which is a signatory to the NNPT and is violating its treaty obligations as we speak.

      • seafoid
        June 14, 2012, 4:37 pm

        FFS Fred. A hasbarawalla talking about treaty violations. Do you want a list of Israel’s?

      • lysias
        June 14, 2012, 5:13 pm

        How is Iran violating its treaty obligations? Please be specific.

        Nothing illegal about Israel’s nuclear missiles (if any).

        “If any”. LOL. Still pretending what is common knowledge is not generally known. Der Spiegel: Israel Deploys Nuclear Weapons on German-Built Submarines:

        A German shipyard has already built three submarines for Israel, and three more are planned. Now SPIEGEL has learned that Israel is arming the submarines with nuclear-tipped cruise missiles. The German government has known about Israel’s nuclear weapons program for decades, despite its official denials.

      • Fredblogs
        June 14, 2012, 5:27 pm

        Israel hasn’t broken any treaties that the other side didn’t break first.

      • lysias
        June 14, 2012, 7:35 pm

        How is Iran violating its treaty obligations? Please be specific.

      • Sumud
        June 14, 2012, 9:47 pm

        Israel hasn’t broken any treaties that the other side didn’t break first.

        Reach for the bottom eh Fredblogs.

        List of Treaties 1900-1999

        1945 – UN Charter
        1949 – Fourth Geneva Convention
        1978 – Camp David Accords
        1993 – Oslo Accords

        Israel is in violation of all of these treaties, first.

  7. Sumud
    June 12, 2012, 11:50 am

    So Israel lets straights and gays commit war crimes?

    Big whoop!

    • Kathleen
      June 12, 2012, 12:28 pm

      ““Same-sex couples ..are much more sensitive to fairness and power” I have never bought this and have never seen any real evidence to back up such a belief.

  8. radii
    June 12, 2012, 11:52 am

    israel’s pinkwashing campaign is laughable – gays see things coming from a mile away – but they are certainly not opposed to watching a trainwreck unfold and stand right there the whole time and then comment on it and then maybe loot the scraps … this pinkwashing campaign fools no one – particularly gays the world over, who are just slyly watching the debacle play out with a raised eyebrow and will smugly say “told you so” when it fails and zionism collapses ultimately

  9. ahadhaadam
    June 12, 2012, 12:03 pm

    These concerted hasbara campaigns of pinkwashing are only a sign of desperation from a state in moral bankruptcy fighting a losing battle.

    And if only there was any truth to the gay-liberal title that it is trying to appropriate for itself…. the fact is there isn’t. There are no gay marriages nor are gay marriages even being discussed in Israel – a state where a Jew cannot even marry a non-Jew.

    So what is so liberal about Israel’s gay attitude? That they don’t execute them? Well, that happens to be true in 99% of the world.

  10. Theo
    June 12, 2012, 12:21 pm

    They are sweet, holding hands!!
    I wonder if they are married!

    • OlegR
      June 12, 2012, 1:44 pm

      No gay marriage in Israel, yet.
      They can be recognized as “known in public” which gives them various benefits
      similar to those of married couples.Out of the country marriages will be recognized by the state as well.

  11. justicewillprevail
    June 12, 2012, 1:14 pm

    Oleg and Fredo must be so proud! Gay and trained to occupy and humiliate!

    • OlegR
      June 12, 2012, 1:49 pm

      What does a sexual preference have to do with your political ideas and convictions?
      Where dothat assumption that gay automatically means (left/liberal etc) comes from i often wonder.

      • Annie Robbins
        June 12, 2012, 2:11 pm

        Where dothat assumption that gay automatically means (left/liberal etc) comes from i often wonder.

        it doesn’t automatically mean anything. in this country the gop are, for the most part, politically against gay marriage as are christian conservatives. so in terms of social politics most gays are not going to align with a party that rejects the idea of their equality. but there are many fiscal conservative gays. andrew sullivan used to be right wing.

        imho, israel pinkwashes because it assumes gays and others associate gay rights with the left and therefor zionism and oppression is cool, or left or progressive or something. but gays are not stupid.

        they have been fighting for their equal rights. people who do that generally have an affinity for others equal rights also, unless they are hypocritical.

        a self identified zionist who is gay might be left on gay social issues, but they would still be a pep.

      • OlegR
        June 12, 2012, 2:21 pm

        /imho, israel pinkwashes because it assumes gays and others associate gay rights with the left and therefor zionism and oppression is cool, or left or progressive or something. but gays are not stupid./

        Annie, Israel has a relatively good record on gay rights afaik
        and yes it uses if for hasbara purposes just like anything else which makes it look better in the eyes of the world.The point is that it’s not a lie it’s something that as an Israeli i can be proud of. And i am straight for the record.

        Dan below has a good point about attributing some moral values
        to peoples identities.

      • OlegR
        June 12, 2012, 2:30 pm

        In the last Pride parade the was a chapter of Likud Gays marching.
        I think that actually serves as an indicator to how far the gay rights struggle
        went in Israel.
        The more various sexual identities become the norm in a society
        the less they will have an impact on peoples political affinities.

        When you start seeing gay Republicans run for congress or the Senate
        then you will know that the gay orientation is now perceived as normal as any other.
        In the longer run i think that would be the end of gay community as something cohesive or a political force.The only thing in common would be sexual orientation.

      • justicewillprevail
        June 12, 2012, 6:11 pm

        “And i am straight for the record.”
        Lol, why do you have to say that, if you’re so liberal?

        You can’t see the stunning hypocrisy of using gay rights as a facade to hide the hideous, intolerant human rights abuses and removal of equal rights from half the population under Israeli control. The relevant fact of the two fake gays in the photo is that they are Jewish – that grants them rights withheld from everybody else. Dressing it up as a liberal state is laughable, like the photo, and your wheedling.

        Men in uniform have a campness regardless of their sexual orientation, with their fetishistic militarism and bonding rituals.

      • Blake
        June 12, 2012, 6:48 pm

        Human rights of the indigenous people > Gay rights of non Palestinians. Get your priorities right Oleg

      • FreddyV
        June 13, 2012, 2:42 am

        @Oleg:

        Point 1: I applaud your stance of supporting gay rights, but I want to ask, how as a Jew can you be proud of Israeli Pinkwashing? Doesn’t the book of Leviticus clearly speak against homosexuality? I just don’t know how that squares. I’m not trying to bait you on this, it’s a genuine question which I’m curious about.

        Point 2: This is soo 20 years ago by western standards. People are straight, gay or whatever. No one cares. The majority of Western nations have got past the stage of sexual and ethnic discrimination. To me, it’s a bit like when people say ‘some of my best friends are gay / black’. The statement in itself whilst trying to convey an image of tolerance, actually suggests that in the person’s mind, there is something not to like, but because the person feels it’s a credit to ones character, they outwardly project with platitudes, because they haven’t got to the stage where they just accept that people are different. Gay, straight, black, white, Jew, Christian, Muslim.

        Kind of illustrates everything that’s wrong with Israel doesn’t it? People are people. Lets all just get along.

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 5:06 am

        /Point 1: I applaud your stance of supporting gay rights, but I want to ask, how as a Jew can you be proud of Israeli Pinkwashing? Doesn’t the book of Leviticus clearly speak against homosexuality? I just don’t know how that squares. I’m not trying to bait you on this, it’s a genuine question which I’m curious about./

        I am a secular Jew, the Jewish holy scripture are important to me from the perspective of tradition and the human experience of my people as it was
        perceived by the writers of those scriptures.
        Leviticus for example clearly comes from a Priesthood source (i don’t remember the exact period) and therefore reflects the customs and rituals
        of those ancient priests nothing more.
        Some parts of those scriptures are wonderful and humane some are horrible and bigoted by our standards.They are a product of human minds therefore i treat them as such, human not divine.

        /This is soo 20 years ago by western standards. People are straight, gay or whatever. No one cares. The majority of Western nations have got past the stage of sexual and ethnic discrimination. To me, it’s a bit like when people say ‘some of my best friends are gay / black’./

        Freddy i am not sure in which country in the Western world you live in
        and i am not an expert on Gay rights in the Western world but i think you are incorrect in your assertion.

      • aiman
        June 13, 2012, 6:16 am

        Blake: “Human rights of the indigenous people > Gay rights of non Palestinians. Get your priorities right Oleg”

        Spot on. Also enforcing of capitalist individual identities in societies with more shared experiences is culturally incompetent and escalates the persecution of people who are tagged as “different”. Joseph Massad has written a great book called Desiring Arabs. The argument (wikipedia):

        Massad argues that “Western male white-dominated” gay activists, under the umbrella of what he terms the “Gay International,” have engaged in a “missionary” effort to impose the binary categories of heterosexual/homosexual into cultures where no such subjectivities exist, and that these activists in fact ultimately replicate in these cultures the very structures they challenge in their own home countries. Massad writes that “The categories gay and lesbian are not universal at all and can only be universalized by the epistemic, ethical, and political violence unleashed on the rest of the world by the very international human rights advocates whose aim is to defend the very people their intervention is creating.”

        Part of these interventions are precisely what caused problems in Zimbabwe, that was in the news some years ago.

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 7:13 am

        /heterosexual/homosexual into cultures where no such subjectivities exist, and that these activists in fact ultimately replicate in these cultures the very structures they challenge in their own home countries. /

        Are you suggesting that the West is actually to blame for the homophobia
        that exists in the Middle Eastern / Arab cultures ?

      • Elliot
        June 13, 2012, 7:30 am

        Dear Moderators – I plead you to filter out comments such as this gem. There’s only so much time in the day.

        /This is soo 20 years ago by western standards. People are straight, gay or whatever. No one cares. The majority of Western nations have got past the stage of sexual and ethnic discrimination. To me, it’s a bit like when people say ‘some of my best friends are gay / black’./

        Freddy i am not sure in which country in the Western world you live in
        and i am not an expert on Gay rights in the Western world but i think you are incorrect in your assertion.

      • Theo
        June 13, 2012, 8:35 am

        OlegR

        I never thought that I ever agree on anything you say, however I ditto the first part of your text.

        Having said that, you being a secular jew how do you justify the occupation of Palestina by jews? That occupation is based on the belief that sometime in the past God acted as a real estate agent and gave a piece of this globe to the jews, or whatever were they called that time.
        There are human beings on this Earth well over 100,000 years and you jews were not always jews, so what were you?
        At what point of your history did God get into the act?
        What part of your history is real and what part is supertition spread by those priests you denounce and what part is blatant lies, also spread by your rabbis?

      • FreddyV
        June 13, 2012, 8:36 am

        Thank you for coming back to me Oleg.

        Very interesting and enlightening. We frequently forget to apply the Bible to the time of writing and to the audience it was intended for. There’s a good saying: ‘The Bible was written for me, not to me’. I think it’s a good guide.

        You’re right, there is a good deal of great advice in the Bible, and a lot of bigotry by today’s standards.

        On point two. Yes, I would agree there is still racial and sexual intolerance in the Western world. Perhaps I used my own sphere of acquaintances as a reference and I certainly wanted to drive my point home that I think shouting ‘we love gays’ says more about the person shouting it than the statement itself.

        This may be a very rare thing on here Oleg, but I agree with you on both points.

        Thanks for replying.

        Fred.

      • FreddyV
        June 13, 2012, 8:41 am

        @Elliot:

        I don’t understand what you think was wrong with either my post or Oleg’s reply. I’m sorry if offence was caused, there was none intended.

        If you could explain what it was that’s grieved you, I’d be grateful.

        Fred.

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 8:49 am

        Theo
        the land you call Palestine is the birthplace of the Jewish people,
        it’s culture, language philosophy and yes religion which had a major part in forming our specific identity which endured and evolved through centuries
        of the Jewish existence was initially forged in this place.
        All of these give us the moral justification to return to this particular land and not to any other place in the world to build our own sovereign state.
        This is the third time that we make this endeavor.

        Regarding God and his covenant with the Jewish people as written in the scriptures.
        I am a secular Jew, i answer to no religious authority, therefore i don’t feel any obligation to explain or rationalize or defend anything that any rabbi or priest or mullah say or do in this world regarding God and his wishes or promises.

      • MRW
        June 13, 2012, 9:04 am

        OlegR,

        Use quotes not slashes. That’s the convention in English, a language you appear to be using.

      • aiman
        June 13, 2012, 9:19 am

        /Are you suggesting that the West is actually to blame for the homophobia
        that exists in the Middle Eastern / Arab cultures ?/

        I am unaware of ancient or medieval pogroms or systematic violence/persecution in the Middle East or the greater East against homosexuals to the modern degree. This is very much a modern trend and is part of the overall instability of the socio-economic and cultural landscape. I would argue that there are more efficient ways of communicating the language of rights that have been fostered in civil society or what we call modernity in places where such identities don’t exist. First build, don’t destroy. Let people have liberal institutions in disadvantaged places and let the people prosper and learn. When they are set within the frame of civil society, they will automatically try to understand and reinterpret texts and come to terms with the language of rights as applied in that clearer frame. Violence, as perpetrated by Israel or Middle Easter authorities, can only help to drive people further away. Perhaps Maslow’s hierarchy of needs will show you how to approach people: link to gargasz.info

        It is easy for us to discuss these topics when many people don’t even have their physiological needs met. E.g. Indigenous people around the world.

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 9:53 am

        MRW
        Point taken once again.
        Though it seems to me that i am not the only one here using the slashes.

        Anything else ? (I am not being sarcastic)

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 10:02 am

        aiman

        All right, now i understand your point better.
        And actually agree with some of it.
        Building Western style liberal societies took
        centuries of complex historical processes.Trying to forcefully duplicate it in foreign cultures in a matter of years is just silly and presumptuous.
        Decades at best even today with all of the globalization.
        Again Japan is a good example but it first took the Meiji reformation to bring it from medieval culture to 19 century standards and then the Americans. Both times cost the Japanese dearly in human lives.

      • Sumud
        June 13, 2012, 10:22 am

        Oleg if you want to quote text it’s very easy to do using basic html. I really don’t think its important if you use slashes, brackets or whatever, (its comments on a blog, not a school essay), html = neatest though.

        If you look in the comment window you should see a list of html tags that you can use. Basic ones to get started are the bold, italic and blockquote commands.

        You put the appropriate tag at the beginning of the text and another at the end of the text you want to quote, bold or make italic etc.

        Let’s say you want to make some text bold. Your name for example: write it as {b}OlegR{/b} – except instead of the fancy brackets I used, substitute the angle brackets, the same sort as those used in the tag list below.

        See after your name I turned off the html tag with the /b command? Whatever tag you turn on, the turn-off command is always the forward slash symbol followed by the tag. So you turn on italics with {i} and turn it off with {/i}, and for block quotes you turn on with {blockquote} and off with {/blockquote}, and as before using the angle brackets. (If I used them in text your browser will interpret them as tags and make them invisible).

        Examples:

        OlegR

        OlegR

        OlegR

      • Woody Tanaka
        June 13, 2012, 10:29 am

        “All of these give us the moral justification to return to this particular land and not to any other place in the world to build our own sovereign state.”

        No it doesn’t. That is the evil that is at the heart of your ideology that you just don’t see. Simply because some of your ancestors lived there thousands of years ago and simply because you like some fairy tales written about that land gives you no right to that land. None. You have no more a right to it than the Nazis had a right to your homeland of Russia.

        In fact, the Nazis at least didn’t pretend that what they were doing wasn’t simply a pure exercise of power over people who they believed were inferior. It’s the same thing that you and your fellow zios are doing. At least they had the character to admit what they were doing and didn’t pretend that it was some homecoming.

      • eljay
        June 13, 2012, 10:35 am

        >> All of these give us the moral justification to return to this particular land …

        If you’re not originally from Palestine – or even, to be generous, three or four generations removed from it – you don’t have any “moral right” to “return” there.

        And even if you were originally from Palestine – or three or four generations removed from it – the only “right” to which you might be entitled is preferential immigration status.

        You sure as hell would not have any “moral right” to employ…
        – the mass migration of Jews to the region,
        – political and military pressure,
        – Jewish / Zio-supremacist terrorism, and
        – the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their homes and lands,
        …to create an oppressive, colonialist, expansionist and supremacist Jewish state.

        You’re a Zio-supremacist – it’s no wonder you can’t comprehend the concept of morality.

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 10:43 am

        10x Sumud .
        I usually don’t bother with html since it requires more typing
        and i am somewhat lazy ,and prefer to concentrate on forming a coherent sentence and argument.
        An endeavor which is not easy given my lack of practice with the English grammar and language.It’s actually quite frustrating having the idea you want to convey in mind and not being able to express it in an attractive literary form.

      • Sumud
        June 13, 2012, 10:45 am

        and to come back onto topic, your question:

        Are you suggesting that the West is actually to blame for the homophobia that exists in the Middle Eastern / Arab cultures ?

        The answer is: there is a direct connection.

        Homosexuality as conceptualised in the West only came into existence in the mid-1800s when it was classified by the medical professionals at the time as an illness. In the west being gay is part of an overall identity: this person is gay, this person is straight, this person bi etc with everyone falling somewhere on the scale between 100% straight and 100% gay.

        In the ME though, traditionally ‘gay’ is not about identity but merely what role you would play during sex. So if you are the passive partner (bottom) you are thought of as gay, but if you are the active partner (top) then you are not thought of as gay. Some western gays find this extremely frustrating because they can only understand ‘gay’ through their understanding of what that is – they may have sex or even a relationship with a man who claims to not be gay…

        I haven’t read Joseph Massad’s book amman refers to but I know about it, and have read a few others I can refer you to if you’re interested. And I’m a gay man who has lived in the ME, so this is not just theory…

        Homosexuality has a long history in the ME, and there are numerous accounts from the 1800s and before of European traveling throughout the region and being shocked at what they encountered.

        Arab/muslim culture places an extremely high value on respect for privacy and with regards to this issue, the attitude was and is “what happens behind closed doors stays behind closed doors”. Of course there is more conservatism now and attitudes vary across country and region.

        But broadly, the swing towards more conservatism on this issue in the ME is a direct reaction to imported western morals – which the west has now outgrown – and a reaction to western liberalism which superseded the previous western homophobia.

      • aiman
        June 13, 2012, 10:54 am

        OlegR, if you agreed with some of the points, you would know they all spring from the central thesis that lead you to Massad’s argument. That it in fact escalates persecution of “difference” in certain socio-economic settings that do not have the benefit of liberal institutions. Similarly to chastise Palestinians for homophobia without an awareness of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs will tell you that something is quite amiss. Do Palestinians even make overt statements on sexuality, even heterosexuality? Yes to persecute anyone is inexcusably unjust, but like the example of these soldiers, however made up, shows that the other side is at once parading this “compassionate virtue” and enforcing its “oppression” by subjugating a whole population and then condemning the Palestinians for lacking this “compassion”.

        The example of building civil societies (not liberal democracies) stemmed from the case of nation states. Only civil societies are good here, IMO. Nothing to do with western imposition. The phrase used was not liberal democracies, rather “liberal institutions”. In past comments I have expressed discomfort with liberal democracies and opposition to all form of intervention, including just wars, and subscribe to egalitarianism rather than liberalism as political philosophy.

      • Sumud
        June 13, 2012, 10:57 am

        An endeavor which is not easy given my lack of practice with the English grammar and language.It’s actually quite frustrating having the idea you want to convey in mind and not being able to express it in an attractive literary form.

        I understand. I know English, disgracefully bad emergency French which I can only assemble using English grammar (very embarrassing to use around native French speakers), and just a few words of Arabic. Your English seems quite good actually.

        I think it would be good if people here could remember not everyone has English as a first language. Better to argue about ideas than get hung up on grammar or formatting…

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 11:04 am

        Ok
        Sumud
        As i understand your argument ,
        the reactionary processes in the ME
        cultures are a direct result of a head on collision with Western culture and values imported into the ME via historical processes of colonization and recently globalization.And the acute homophobia we witness is just another symptom of these reactionary processes, something that was latent in the various cultures but did not surface until recently.
        A sort of don’t ask don’t tell balance that existed for centuries that was disrupted.

        This argument if i understood it correctly certainly has some merit in my eyes.
        This is the explanation of the why , it does not answer, what now?
        Progress is progress the globalization as i see it will continue and the ME will be a part of it.

      • Elliot
        June 13, 2012, 11:05 am

        Fred – no offense was intended. I included your original comment only for context. I also agree with your partial retraction. I was commenting on Oleg’s ignorance of the West.
        The Republicans have their log cabin, so the Likud has its marching gays.
        The US military is linked in people’s minds to mainstreaming gays through the don’t-ask-don’t-tell story, so Israel tries to pull off a gays-in-the-military PR stunt.

        Notice that, unlike the US, Israel hasn’t shown gay clergy, gay marriage or other public displays of acceptance for gays.
        And the authentic artillery and Givati soldiers would never agree to such a pic. That’s what made triggered my suspicion that the picture was a hoax.

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 11:20 am

        “The example of building civil societies (not liberal democracies) stemmed from the case of nation states. Only civil societies are good here, IMO.”

        Yes but civil societies or liberal institutions (lets assume that we both understand the word in the same manner) did not grow in the west out of thin air but out of the huge Western cultural tradition and it took centuries.
        The world has gotten very small now
        I don’t think the West can afford to wait a few centuries until the ME
        will go through his own “natural” processes of building liberal civil societies which in turn will create the sort of state constructs that the West is so proud off.
        Obviously the West also need to be more humble and understand that he can’t force this sort of change (not without a lot of bloodshed)
        but it has to work really slowly and carefully on the ground for decades and decades.

        Here is very old Russian sci fi book that dealt precisely with this issues.
        link to en.wikipedia.org

      • Annie Robbins
        June 13, 2012, 11:24 am

        thanks sumud, great 10:45 am comment.

      • Sumud
        June 13, 2012, 12:06 pm

        A sort of don’t ask don’t tell balance that existed for centuries that was disrupted.

        I think that’s a good way to put it.

        This is the explanation of the why , it does not answer, what now?

        I can’t really give you a sensible answer to that – it’s an issue for arabs and muslims to work out themselves, and they will, in time.

        One of the things that kept coming up in Egypt and Tunisia was young people talking about wanting to live in a democracy of their own making – relevant to and derived from their own culture, and not just import a western model. It’s early days for that yet, and the US is trying hard to destroy the arab spring, so we will see.

        To speculate, I think there will be a sort of gay liberation movement in the ME but not for some time yet. As aiman points out (to paraphrase): ‘first things first, basic issues need to be sorted out first’. Whatever happens though, it will be better if it is a solution worked out by the locals for the locals so it fits their culture(s).

      • seafoid
        June 13, 2012, 12:08 pm

        “In the ME though, traditionally ‘gay’ is not about identity but merely what role you would play during sex”

        This is very good

        link to theatlantic.com

      • Theo
        June 13, 2012, 12:09 pm

        OlegR

        you say: “Palestina is the birthplace of the jewish people”.

        Now, I am not an expert on ME history, however you base your history on the OT, therefore we just stick to it.
        When Joshua conquered Canaan, what you call Israel, there were blooming city-states with different peoples, namely Jericho, Noab and a whole slew of them, not forgetting the philisters, the original palestinians. Joshua killed all inhabitants of those cities, including women and children, so he will not have to fight them again. (This was common in those days, the sicilians still do it today).
        Do you call that the occasion when God gave that land to the jews?
        It resembles the second invasion in 1947 and the following years, when the jews again killed all inhabitants who did not flee.
        Was that the second installment of God giving that land to the jews?

        Some people say the following:
        Jews were poor and insignificant tribes, living off the land, no culture or real history and surrounded by high civilisations, like Mesopotamia, Assyrer, Egypt, Persia, etc. with a long history of culture, great architectures, etc. So your priests went to work and created for you a history all the way back to the beginning of humanity, not realizing that it went back hundreds of thousands of years. They shortened it to about 6,000 years and who could prove it otherwise?
        They stole a lot of myths from other peoples who lived around the ME centuries before, such as the tale of Abraham and Noah, that you can find, naturally with different names, in writings long before the jews ever appeared.
        They also invented Moses, his childhood in Egypt, the 40 years!! trip to the desert, splitting a sea, talking to the burning bush, (today they lock you up if you do such thing!), and the huge stone tablets with the 10 commandments, that nobody was able to pick up.

        According to ISRAELI archeologists, digging in Israel since 20-25 years, the great part of the OT, also your history, is nothing but invented stories!!
        Today we would say simple lies.

      • Sumud
        June 13, 2012, 12:22 pm

        I don’t think the West can afford to wait a few centuries until the ME will go through his own “natural” processes of building liberal civil societies which in turn will create the sort of state constructs that the West is so proud off.

        The question is – do you really think the West actually wants ME countries developing into liberal societies? I don’t see any evidence they do – in fact I see the opposite. They want stability, not an empowered population that may demand their leaders turn away from the US, for example.

        Western countries seem to have lost the ability, if they ever had it, of long range strategic planning. It’s always the short to medium term goal of increasing power and then dealing with an endless stream of unintended consequences.

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 12:40 pm

        Theo you are mixing too much in this paragraph.
        I don’t really have the time right now to go into everything you said in detail.
        Just a suggestion.
        Don’t treat the scriptures as an accurate and detailed history of the Jewish people.It’s not.

        /Some people say the following …/

        Are you by any chance referring to Apion ?
        because if you do then i would refer you this article
        link to en.wikipedia.org

        That would illustrate that Jews already engaged in this sort of arguments
        2000 years ago :)

      • Annie Robbins
        June 13, 2012, 1:09 pm

        Are you by any chance referring to Apion ?

        oleg, which specific part of theo’s the text are you referencing which reminds you of Apion. you don’t have the time right now to go into everything theo said in detail but you have the time to link to a source deemed anti semitic.

        Don’t treat the scriptures as an accurate and detailed history of the Jewish people.It’s not.

        isn’t it rather common for people to pick and choose what part of the scriptures suits their own perceptions. after all, don’t you do it?

        Palestina is the birthplace of the jewish people

        not all the jewish people obviously.

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 3:57 pm

        Annie the invention of history part reminded me of some of Apions claims
        linking to it took me about 10 seconds.

        /sn’t it rather common for people to pick and choose what part of the scriptures suits their own perceptions. after all, don’t you do it?/
        People can take whatever they want from the scriptures that still does not make them an accurate history book, so what is your point exactly?

      • OlegR
        June 13, 2012, 4:07 pm

        /The question is – do you really think the West actually wants ME countries developing into liberal societies?/
        I don’t know, usually i would say that they want their interests in the ME
        to be kept in order and damn everything else.
        But it is possible that the West maybe already begun realizing that the emancipation of the ME is the only way to guarantee those interests.
        Just like it’s beginning to realize that making a mess in Africa and then throwing away the keys and leaving maybe looked like a good idea at the time but it didn’t work too well and now Africa is banging on European
        door step.

      • American
        June 13, 2012, 4:55 pm

        That’s good Theo…and accurate I think.

      • Mooser
        June 13, 2012, 5:42 pm

        “And i am straight for the record.”

        Sure you are, OlegR. Real straight. Straight as a freakin pin, baby. Yes sir, boychik, they just don’t come any straighter than you.

      • Fredblogs
        June 13, 2012, 6:41 pm

        @Theo
        I don’t know about Oleg, but I don’t justify it by means of God or the Bible. I do point out when someone says the Arabs have an ancient claim that the claim of the Jews is older still, but that is a matter of history, not religion.

        I justify the occupation of the West Bank by the Palestinians ongoing refusal to make peace. I justify the blockade of Gaza by the Gazan’s ongoing firing of weapons into Israel. I justify the initial existence (which is not an occupation) of Israel by right of the Jews to self determination, the current area of Israel is justified by right of conquest, same as every other country, and the existence as a Jewish state is justified by the existence of all those Christian countries and Muslim countries. I’d be happy to answer any more non-personal questions you have.

      • Cliff
        June 13, 2012, 10:42 pm

        The scriptures and the Bible are the main sources for which ancient history books explain Jewish history.

        So sorry, OlegR – looks like your origin story is nothing but an ancient comic book.

      • aiman
        June 14, 2012, 2:03 am

        OlegR, thanks for the link.

        On the other hand, as Sumud said, there has been a shift toward conservatism. To say that it would take centuries to change that is wrong. Iran under Mossadegh was very different from that under the Shah and whatever bad came after. Iraq is another example. All human beings want freedom and happiness. They don’t hate you for it. Once the political apparatus is changed by the people and for the people, things will become better. It’s not going to be a soap opera, as witnessed in the Arab Spring when equally bad tribal, religious forces are vying for control.

        The only way the “West” (and this really refers to those few countries around the Atlantic) and Israel can exercise humility is to keep the hell out and not put out a cold war showdown they are currently doing. While extremist-minded Muslims have always existed, do heed Asma Barlas’s point (Barlas is a female religious scholar campaigns for human rights by the way):

        However, what I find more disturbing is the ease with which liberal and secular states that are based in tolerance, human rights, democracy and liberty—states like the U.S., for instance—are able to engage in
        repressive, antidemocratic, and authoritarian practices abroad without too much opposition from their citizens. This is partly because we almost never talk about the violence done in the name of secular values because of our tendency to associate violence only with religion, and, post 9/11 almost exclusively with Islam.

        In other words, it is not only the Arabs and Muslims who need to change for the better. In fact two of the most damning Muslim thinkers who have had a very bad impact on Muslim thought and ethics, in opposition to the wisdom of great Muslim polymaths and sages like Muhammad Abduh, came to power in the second half of the twentieth century. These people, like the founders of Zionism, used historical tragedies and colonialism to introduce very damaging forms of thoughts and practices, knee-jerk paranoia, sexism and racism. The influence of one of these thinkers can be traced to attacks on women and minorities and even in the infusion of “revolution” and “religion” together that shook Iran. For a moral believer to read their Qur’anic translation is like listening to the devil’s song. They banned translations of the Qur’an that were not true to their ideology. For example, compare Abduh’s learned translation to theirs and their smearing of him as an infidel. They themselves became oppressors and ordinary people, especially women and the vulnerable, have suffered for the worse. Imperialism and conservatism feed off each other.

      • Theo
        June 14, 2012, 8:46 am

        Fredblogs

        You base your rights to Palestina on the right of the stronger. To attach an occupied land and to populate it with your own people are against countless international agreements and laws, so your state is a lawless and illegal state.

        In the ME there were peoples 10-15,000 years ago, so the jews are just another johnny-late-comers with big sticks.
        The palestinians are not arabs, but greek-phoenician origin, they just became “arabs” under the centuries old occupation of arab caliphats. Their forfathers are the biblical philisters, who, according to some studies, came from Greece, and they have a much, much longer claim to that land.

        Every people in this world has the rights to DEFEND themselves and the palestinians do just that!!
        If you jews stayed in Europe and all other places, where you were safe after 1945, nobody would shoot rockets at you and you could eat your borsch in peace. Or if you came to become a citizen of Palestina, I am positive that you would have been welcome. However, you came as conquerors and colonists, killing and driving out the population that lived there for thousands of years, so now you get what you deserve.
        In addition, if you want to establish a jewish state, you must find a piece of land that is free of any population.
        May I suggest the Moon or the Mars! With billions of US dollars a year and the ingenuity of the jewish people you can make it into the new Garden of Eden in a few years. There you can make the laws and nobody shoots at you!

      • Fredblogs
        June 14, 2012, 2:58 pm

        Sorry, but I do not believe that rules against taking territory by force should apply exclusively to the Jews. Any such rules applied to the Jews and not to everyone else are invalid. When Turkey gives back Cyprus, China gives back Tibet, and the countries that took German territory after WWII give those territories back, then you get some credibility to “rules” against taking territory by force. Until then it is just a hypocritical way to screw Jews out of their hard fought victory in a war that would have meant their extermination in the Middle East had they lost.

        As for your “Jew get off the planet” idea. No thanks.

        Also, the Palestinians very much are Arabs. They are the one making up a phony history about having been there longer than they have been. Most of their ancestors invaded after the Muslim religion was started.

      • Klaus Bloemker
        June 14, 2012, 7:39 pm

        - “the land you [Theo] call Palestine is the birthplace of the Jewish people,” –

        Oleg – why didn’t the Jews just stay in Palestine? Some did, but why did the others leave? If they hadn’t left, there would be no need of ‘return’. Who is to blame that they left? – The Palestinian Arabs?

      • eljay
        June 15, 2012, 10:08 am

        >> Sorry, but I do not believe that rules against taking territory by force should apply exclusively to the Jews.

        You’re absolutely right, they shouldn’t. But I like how you recognize that such rules exist, but then use the injustice and immorality committed by others to justify your own. Very Zio-supremacist of you – always reaching for the bottom of the barrel.

        >> Until then it is just a hypocritical way to screw Jews out of their hard fought victory …

        Ah, yes, the rapist fought hard to kidnap his victim, to bring her back to his lair, to tie her up, to beat her and to rape her. He shouldn’t be denied the fruits of his “victory”! The rules against kidnapping, confinement, assault and rape should not apply only to this rapist! And, so, he goes about his business, convinced of the “morality” and “righteousness” of his actions.

        What a hateful and immoral piece of work he is, this Fraudblogs.

        >> … in a war that would have meant their extermination in the Middle East had they lost.

        And a drama queen, too!

      • Theo
        June 15, 2012, 11:31 am

        Freddy

        Just because others rob banks, it doesn´t mean it is OK to do it!
        You are right, others should also pull out lands that belongs to others, however don´t forget, “you are the only democracy in the ME” and you should act accordingly!
        Do you really believe you have a future in Palestina?

      • Theo
        June 15, 2012, 11:39 am

        Do you know what would happen on this globe if all nations want to go back where they lived 2,000 years ago?
        Take a look at the map of Europe and ME 2,000 years ago, then continue every century. You can Google this map. Nations wandered, the gotes went all the way to present Spain, the arabs to Spain and Portugal, the slavs, the hungarians coming from Asia.

        Besides, 80-90% of those jewish “returnees” are not even semitic, but converted people whose forfathers never lived in Israel.

      • Philip Weiss
        June 15, 2012, 12:14 pm

        my people came from africa a long long time ago. do i get to claim kenya?

      • Klaus Bloemker
        June 15, 2012, 1:01 pm

        No, it’s not Kenya. We all got a ‘right of return’ to Tansania.

      • Sumud
        June 15, 2012, 1:40 pm

        do i get to claim kenya?

        No! My people also came from Africa and I’ve already claim Kenya for myself. Yesterday.

      • Sumud
        June 15, 2012, 1:44 pm

        Until then it is just a hypocritical way to screw Jews out of their hard fought victory in a war that would have meant their extermination in the Middle East had they lost.

        Rubbish, you don’t even know the history of your own country – and let me tell you Fredblogs, YOU HAVE BEEN LIED TO by your government and most of your peers.

        You think we’re the enemy, but we’re not the ones lying to you.

        Ready to open your eyes yet?

        The Birth of Israel: Myths and Realities

      • Fredblogs
        June 15, 2012, 2:56 pm

        It’s not that others do it. It’s that others do it an no one does anything about it or even significantly criticizes it. Where is the BDS campaign to get Turkey out of Cyprus?

        I believe that the Jews have a future in Israel. I think that the Palestinians will be kept down by the Israelis until they acknowledge that.

      • Fredblogs
        June 15, 2012, 3:02 pm

        @Theo
        The DNA says different. Your claims about converts might have worked 40 years ago, but not now that DNA tests prove that the European Jews are Middle Eastern in origin. Note, that’s both Y chromosome DNA for the male line and mitochondrial DNA for the female line.

      • eljay
        June 15, 2012, 6:23 pm

        >> It’s not that others do it. It’s that others do it an no one does anything about it or even significantly criticizes it.

        Bullshit. There’s plenty of significant criticism of China vs. Tibet. There’s plenty of criticism of the sh*t that America pulls in the Middle East. There’s plenty of criticism of the sh*t that Russia pulls within its sphere of influence.

        There’s plenty of criticism of all sorts of illegal and immoral activity that goes on in this world. But you’re a hateful and immoral Zio-supremacist, so as long as there’s an absolute bottom in terms of justice and morality, you’re prepared to reach for it. You must be proud, Fraudblogs.

      • Sumud
        June 16, 2012, 12:19 am

        I believe that the Jews have a future in Israel. I think that the Palestinians will be kept down by the Israelis until they acknowledge that.

        More rubbish.

        Palestinians have been onboard with the two state solution (i.e. jews having a future in Israel) for decades.

        The problem is that Israel refuses to accept that Palestinians have a future in Palestine. This is so self-evident I won’t waste another second on it…

      • RoHa
        June 16, 2012, 1:16 am

        “I believe that the Jews have a future in Israel.”

        “The” Jews? All of them, or just the Israeli Jews? If all, how do they have a future in a foreign land?

        “I think that the Palestinians will be kept down by the Israelis until they acknowledge that.”

        The Palestinians acknowledged long ago that the Jews who are resident in the area have a future there. It is the Israelis who refuse to acknowledge ant future for the Palestinians.

  12. Dan Crowther
    June 12, 2012, 1:31 pm

    Well, take a good look, identity politickers – this is the true expression of it all. The message is clear – the Israeli army, because it allows gay soldiers to serve openly, is a moral agent, after all, gay men would never act brutally or illegally right? As long as we afford certain identities a moral value, those identities will always be used to beat people over the head.

    • aiman
      June 13, 2012, 3:51 am

      Well said. And in general sexuality is a neutral concept. Homosexuality is not an exception. Homosexuality itself can have more than one meaning, particularly in war and in prison.

      This is the nascent stage of homosexuality as a movement, it will I think develop complexity later, including critiques of notions of power and abuse that we have in heterosexuality. Treating it like an exceptional virtue rather than just sexuality is partly what gives ammunition to this PR and pinkwashing in the first place.

      • MRW
        June 13, 2012, 9:05 am

        “Treating it like an exceptional virtue rather than just sexuality is partly what gives ammunition to this PR and pinkwashing in the first place.”

        Exactly. It’s just a different hole and magic wand.

  13. bangpound
    June 12, 2012, 1:51 pm

    It’s a hoax. link to timesofisrael.com

    • Dan Crowther
      June 12, 2012, 2:10 pm

      Nice catch!

    • Elliot
      June 12, 2012, 2:30 pm

      Thanks bangpound. I posted my challenges to the pic (below) before your comment was visible.
      Israsel doesn’t seem to get that you’re gonna be found out.

      • seafoid
        June 12, 2012, 3:19 pm

        I wonder what Andrew Sullivan thinks of it

      • ToivoS
        June 13, 2012, 12:13 am

        “I wonder what Andrew Sullivan thinks of it”

        The same question I had. I first saw this image at his site. I am still curious.

      • Theo
        June 13, 2012, 8:39 am

        … there gonna be found out.

        They never heard the proverb: “It is easier to catch a liar than a lame dog!!”

      • MRW
        June 13, 2012, 9:06 am

        “Israsel doesn’t seem to get that you’re gonna be found out.”

        Israel thinks its disdain is impenetrable.

  14. Elliot
    June 12, 2012, 1:55 pm

    Did the IDF provide any identifying info about this “couple”? How do we know that these are not two actors, volunteering to promote pinkwashing?
    If Israel is the haven it says it is for gays, why are two gay soldiers photographed from behind as if they need to conceal their identity?

  15. Woody Tanaka
    June 12, 2012, 2:28 pm

    The response I would suggest is to post a picture of Ernst Röhm and say, “…and the Nazis had their gays, too.”

  16. piotr
    June 12, 2012, 4:19 pm

    I have two favorite pink military videos.

    One is the fragment of military parade on 60 anniversary of PRC. Battalion in miniskirts, pink uniforms and white accessories including high boots.

    More flamboyant is a pink battalion of Iranian Army on a similar parade, they have some kind of pink frocks and enormous headdresses that look like white wigs, and while the Chinese girls used a version of goose step (no much stomping, given their weight), Iranians kind of dance and chant. And they also have a beach bums battalion, all in dark glasses, Cheewacka battalion etc.

  17. Peter in SF
    June 12, 2012, 4:29 pm

    The usual pinkwasher’s line is “You wouldn’t see this in any other country in the Middle East.” But this photo is of two men walking down the street holding hands. That is actually a common sight in the non-Jewish-state Middle East! It is telling that the people who are spreading this photo seem unaware of that.

  18. Elliot
    June 12, 2012, 5:52 pm

    Two gay world leaders from more innocent times:
    link to lfph.org

  19. lyn117
    June 12, 2012, 6:35 pm

    Darn, just I was beginning to think zionists were capable of telling the truth

  20. optimax
    June 12, 2012, 6:46 pm

    Can Israel keep John Hagee from seeing this picture? Losing his support could be devastating to the Zionist-Christian alliance.

  21. libra
    June 12, 2012, 10:03 pm

    What a surprising turn of events. A photo released by the IDF was staged!

    How could we have been so easily duped? After all, were we meant to believe two soldiers, one armed, could walk arm in arm down the middle of a street full of cars oblivious to a photographer only a few yards behind them. And it’s not as if it would be the first photo staged by the military. The flag raising at Iwo Jima comes to mind.

    Sorry Phil, the breathless update to the headline misses the point. The photo was not faked. Unless you mean the fact that only one of them is now claimed to be gay is what makes it faked. But given that this is staged propaganda what difference does it make if they are both gay, both straight, or as we are now meant to believe one is gay and one is straight?

    Indeed, doesn’t this last claim that make the photo genuine in sense. For when it comes to Israeli hasbara what could possibly be more authentic than trying to have it both ways?

  22. Elliot
    June 13, 2012, 6:40 am

    the IDF Spokesperson’s Office did not deny the photo was staged, offering the following statement: “The photo reflects the IDF’s open minded attitude towards soldiers of all sexual orientations. The IDF respects the privacy of the soldiers featured in the photograph, and will not comment on their identities.”
    So, we’ve gone from Israel, the only gay haven in the Middle East, to Israel, where the identity of a gay soldier and his straight buddy must be kept secret.
    Boy, did this one backfire!

    Back in late 80s, during the 1st intifada, the IDF Spokesman’s Unit (as it was then known) routinely accused foreign journalists of staging images that showed the IDF in a bad light. One example, I remember, was of a young boy protesting and shouting at IDF troops. In one instance, a photojournalist was accused of staging this scene (that had actually happened but he had missed it).

  23. Kathleen
    June 13, 2012, 9:04 am

    Gay or not gay…this statement still applies
    “Refaat says:
    June 12, 2012 at 9:43 am

    and then they are off to shoot some Palestinians…”

  24. American
    June 13, 2012, 5:01 pm

    So now Israel has stooped to faking up gays to prove how nice they are?
    The christian rightist whackos will love this…..the Israelis are ‘defiling’ the Holy Land!

    • seafoid
      June 14, 2012, 2:55 pm

      link to haaretz.com

      And then, if that wasn’t bad enough, in steps one of our most embarrassing legislators, Yisraeli Beitenu MK Anastasia Michaeli, to make matters worse. In a discussion at a Knesset panel on the status of women, Michaeli decided to attack homosexuals in the context of criticizing a television program, saying:

      “I think that most gays are men that suffered very difficult experiences of sexual harassment at a very young age and it just gets worse….Where does Channel 10 get the right to broadcast programs like this? This is content that my kids watch,,,, They are miserable, those homosexuals. In the end they commit suicide when they reach the age of 40 and it’s those same guys that want to be women.”

      You cannae polish a turd

  25. lysias
    June 14, 2012, 7:37 pm

    Israeli Deputy Ambassador/Culture Officer in Dublin advocates intimidation and smearing [Israeli] human rights activists; suggests humiliating them by associating them with Mossad and ‘sexual identity problems’:

    Ms Tinari-Modai also goes on to make the bizarre claim that “the activity of those [Israeli] activists against the state is, in my evaluation, not necessarily ideological, but grounded in psychological reasons (generally of disappointment with the parents, [or] sexual identity problems).”

    I.e., they’re doing this because they’re maladjusted queers.

    So speaks the wife of the Israeli ambassador to Ireland.

Leave a Reply