Thursday, January 29, 2009

Attack on gays in Lebanon?

I have received from Lebanon links to an article in L'Orient-Le Jour about an attack on two men who "appeared" to have been having sex. Of course, organizations of what my friend Joseph Massad calls "Gay International" would jump on the news to draw Western governments (and armies?) into a war of "liberation" or two, just as those armies--according to Feminist Majority--"liberated" the women in Afghanistan. (Is there anything that would discredit mainstream liberal feminism more than the disgraceful war-mongering position of the Feminist Majority on the eve of the invasion of Afghanistan, when it served as a propaganda arm of the Bush's White House?). But the story first appeared in L'Orient--a newspaper with zero credibility on all issues pertaining to human rights, and a platform for Lebanese racism against the Palestinian and Syrian peoples. And then the gay advocacy group in Lebanon, Helem, issues a release and it decided to absolve--for political reasons?--the Lebanese security forces from responsibility although the original L'Orient article identified them as perpetrators. Now, we learned last week that more than 8000 members of the Muslim Brothers were arrested last week in Egypt, and there was barely anything about them in the Western or Eastern press. Imagine if the 8000 were--say, gays and lesbians--can you imagine the international uproar? Don't get me wrong, I am in full support of gay and lesbian rights, but a perspective is important here. It is like I once heard the Human Rights Watch's official in charge of gay and lesbian issues tell me that Egyptian gays called his cellphone when they were being harassed by the police. I asked him: do members of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood who get arrested and tortured on weekly basis also have your cellphone number? Of course, I would report on this story if I receive credible information. L'Orient-Le Jour is hardly a credible source when it never cares about the abuse (and murder) of Syrian workers and foreign maids in the lousy homeland of Hummus. And Helem should not be in the business of covering up for Lebanese security forces which is the party most responsible for the harassment of Lebanese gays--only if they are poor of course.