Current Affairs | Film and TV

Some Very Unpleasant Confessions

SheikzanaIf you weren't aware of it already, homosexuality is forbidden in the Koran, so to call someone a homosexual is among the worst form of insult and degradation. For that reason, our military has found it to be a useful tool ("the interrogators told him that his mother and sisters were prostitutes, forced him to wear a bra, forced him to wear a thong on his head, told him he was homosexual and said other inmates knew it") for abusing prisoners at Guantanamo Bay and in Iraqi prisons.

Now comes word of a program running on Kurdish television that features the confessions of Sheik Zana, a terrorist whose tactics are being used to discourage terrorist recruiting. The graphic films not only include the beheading of children, but also plenty of homosexual activity, which those Iraqis interviewed ("The homosexual part - that's the worst thing.") view as worse than the beheadings.

Some argue that those in the videos were coerced into homosexual acts and confessions since it's against the Koran's teachings (like there's a ray of hope that these people wouldn't naturally be that way!). It's an enlightening look at how homosexuality is perceived in the Middle East — an abomination in any form. Quite a depressing piece.

Sordid Images on TV Repel the Kurds, but They Raise Some Skepticism, Too [ny times]

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Comments

  1. I am somewhat torn on this. One part of me thinks it is terrible to dehumanize homosexuals by giving into homophobic spiritual violence. But another part of me thinks that if this helps to curb insurgency and increased violence against Americans an Iraqis, then I can (somewhat) look past it....

    Posted by: Dr. Christopher Blackwell | Jul 20, 2005 3:57:23 PM


  2. I know that this may come as a shock but.....

    The ends do not justify the means.

    Posted by: digger | Jul 20, 2005 4:36:43 PM


  3. ".....this helps to curb insurgency". Yeah, right. So....we should show live executions on Fox (they's show it!) if it helps to curb the murder rate? It's tough to see how anyone could be "torn on this".

    Posted by: kelly | Jul 20, 2005 6:05:58 PM


  4. Ethically, there are two perspectives when examining this issue. The first, deontology. tells us that no matter the outcome, if any part of the process is unjust, then the entire proces itself is unethical. The other perspective, teleology, tells us that the ends justify the means, which is how our government in America is ruled.

    While I don't like being degraded for my sexuality, if the outcome is that people's lives are going to be saved, then I am willing to sacrifice my pride for the greater good. I have always been opposed to this entire war "effort" thwarted by a sham garbage President. But since we have already made the "mess," I am willing to do whatever to help decrease some of the bloodshed. And if that means having to endure homophobic slurs thrown at murderers and dsgusting people who mean innocent people harm, then so be it.

    Posted by: Dr. Christopher Blackwell | Jul 20, 2005 9:28:22 PM


  5. Where in the Koran worse than the Bible regarding homosexuality?

    Also... this story doesn't add up or else I am really intrigued to know more about Sheik Zana. If he really is a gay gangster terrorizing the countryside for riches (he certainly wouldn't be a religious zealot, would he?) with a gang of fellow gay thieves... I dunno, that's just so twisted... it's kinda cool. (Because it's so out of the ordinary).

    More likely I suspect that Zana used sexuality dominance as you guys do in prison. And is that really homosexuality? And is that what's been broadcast? Nope, not likely.

    This story is extra weird to me, because it seems to be lumping "terrorists" as a catch-all like we hear from our president. I am not sure this programming is going to convince anyone who believes they are doing the work of God or have an opportunity for wealth/power or living the same tribal life their families have for centuries... that man-on-man sex will happen too.

    I dunno, I am probably am completely wrong, buI don't understand how this is going to persuade anyone to believe that they will lead the life that Zana led? Who made this documentary/television program anyway? Is this being funded by our government as propaganda... because THAT would make me really angry... not the subject matter itself!

    Posted by: RedMonkey | Jul 20, 2005 10:07:40 PM


  6. Oops. I didn't mean to assume you'd spent time in prison. Along with my other typos and poor sentence structure. Yipes.

    Bumbling fingers across the keyboard.

    Posted by: RedMonkey | Jul 20, 2005 10:10:42 PM


  7. Read the Bible. There are precious few references to homosexuality -- and if you're Christian, those references are technically less relevant because they are in the Old Testament. And nowhere -- NOWHERE -- in the four Gospels is there one single reference to homosexuality. Jesus never made a single reference to it.

    But he did say a lot about the evil of hate. The evil of violence. The evil of hypocrisy. And about the supreme commandment to love each other above all other things.

    Sorry to be partisan, but compare that to Muhammed's teachings. It's not a pretty comparison.

    Posted by: Kevin | Jul 21, 2005 12:48:38 AM


  8. This IS good propaganda. However, it is unlikely to be our propaganda-machine at work. The Kurd's are more than capable of producing such without Western technical assistance. And it's almost laughable to think Iraqis, never mind birkenstock-SUV-owning American lefties, think the West would produce this. We don't need to.

    If you compare Zana's supposed tactics with Saddam's regime there's a lot of resonance, especially in the use of videod sex acts ("do what we say or we show this") or rape ("we'll rape you and/or your two boys and show neighbors the video unless you do...").

    Good propaganda merely reveals and prompts the audience to remember certain facts. Bad propaganda creates fabrications that are ultimately exposed as fraud, and remembered far longer.

    rob@egoz.org

    Posted by: rob adams | Jul 21, 2005 1:56:39 PM


  9. Have to agree with Dr. Chris on this one...

    Plus a porn situation with a beautiful middle eastern terrorist being coerced into watch gay porn and getting turned on to wanting renounce the Quran and try gay fucking is pretty hot you must admit.

    Posted by: Damon | Jul 24, 2005 11:09:44 PM


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