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Human Rights Watch: Hundreds of Gays Executed in Iraq Since '04

A new report from Human Rights Watch demands that the Iraqi government crack down on the executions of gay men in the country, saying that hundreds have been killed since 2004:

Sadrcity "Although the scope of the problem remains unclear, hundreds of gay men may have been killed this year in predominantly Shiite Muslim areas, the report's authors said, basing their conclusion on interviews with gay Iraqi men, hospital officials and an unnamed United Nations official in Baghdad...Reports of slayings targeting gay men began circulating early this spring in Sadr City, a conservative Shiite district in eastern Baghdad. Gay men were also reportedly slain in Basra, Najaf and Diyala province, Human Rights Watch said. Gay activists said militiamen loyal to Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr had target lists containing the names of men suspected of being gay. ... Sadr City residents opposed to homosexuality said in interviews that the presence of gay men became overt after the Iraqi army was allowed to move into the district in the spring of 2008, asserting control over a vast area formerly controlled by Sadr's militia, the Mahdi Army. 'When the Iraqi army started coming here, this phenomenon started coming to our area,' said Ali Abu Kara, 23, a mechanic who identified himself as a member of the Mahdi Army. 'We felt very glad when those puppies were killed,' he added, using a pejorative term for gay men."

The "social cleansing" appears to have slowed in recent months, the group reports, because many gays have fled cities or gone underground to escape the brutality.

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Comments

  1. You finish your article with: The "social cleansing" appears to have slowed in recent months, the group reports, because many gays have fled cities or gone underground to escape the brutality.

    Let's just call it what it is - RELIGION.

    Religion is killing Gay Iraqis.

    Posted by: Andrew | Aug 17, 2009 3:01:51 PM


  2. Mmmmm....I don't know, Andrew. Other countries under different religions (albeit secular countries) would be arresting those "executioners" for murder. But I understand your thing is anti-religion, which is okay...and a whole debatable issue of its own.

    Posted by: JT | Aug 17, 2009 3:24:48 PM


  3. If it is true that this has gone on since 2004, then W and Cheney had to know about it. He could be considered an accessory in this cleansing, which is no doubt against the Geneva Convention. If that is not cause enough for a one-way ticket to The Hague, then I don't know what is. If it is good enough for Milosevic, it is good enough for Bush and Cheney. Maybe we could throw in Rumsfeld, Ashcroft, and Gonzales for shits and giggles.

    Posted by: LUMOS1313 | Aug 17, 2009 3:25:40 PM


  4. JT: Religion is the only thing that makes homosexuals WRONG. That's why we are hated. Because we are hated we will never have EQUALITY.

    To simply dismiss that as "anti-religion" misses the point. I reject the "religious lie" about homosexuals. Are you suggesting we should ignore that? We will never have equality until we extinguish what has made us wrong (the lie) or the source of that lie (religion).

    I put Equality BEFORE Religion.

    Posted by: Andrew | Aug 17, 2009 3:54:19 PM


  5. And yet Maggie Gallagher and her kind continue to say that being gay is a choice. What an appealing choice to make as a young man in Iraq...that ends in you getting executed.

    Posted by: Gregus | Aug 17, 2009 3:58:12 PM


  6. I'm not dismissing what you say, Andrew. It's just that I think there's so much more to that whole subject to debate. Don't forget how horribly the anti-religion atheist government treated us too. But on another subject : Do we have a right to tell these people in the MidEast how to behave? Sometimes I wonder. As contemptible as such murders might be to those of us in Western civilization, we must remember that "barbarity" (abuse of women; genocide; the slave trade) goes on all the time in the non-western world and maybe that's just....."their" thing. I'm not concluding here, just wondering.

    Posted by: JT | Aug 17, 2009 4:06:25 PM


  7. Sorry, up about I meant "atheist governments"

    Posted by: JT | Aug 17, 2009 4:09:42 PM


  8. Glad this is finally getting coverage in the str8 press.

    Posted by: Liberace's Love Child | Aug 17, 2009 5:07:44 PM


  9. Hitler was a Catholic and invoked "Christian" principles many times. Dogma is Dogma. It isn't about what anyone believes, that's their business. But, you cannot deny the truth that "Religion made homosexuality wrong." It still does.

    Gays and Lesbians will not have equality as long as we remain "wrong." We must reject the homosexuals "lies" of religion. Either they change or they just continue to die off.

    Posted by: Andrew | Aug 17, 2009 6:41:04 PM


  10. Yeah, Andrew, but the atheists killed us (or sent us to Siberia) for crimes against the state. (Look I have no problem with what you're saying. Just that I disagree. Or, more accurately, I only partially agree).

    Posted by: JT | Aug 17, 2009 7:40:04 PM


  11. Still insane JT? RELIGION is what has defined homosexuals for 2,000 years - not science, art or nature. If you don't get that it is because you have religion and you're choosing that over equality.

    Google the "history of religion."

    I think most atheists DON'T CARE about homosexuals. Religious people do - that's the problem. Why not confess here, on TowleRoad... are you religious? Is that the problem?

    Nobody can say with any certainty whatsoever that they have the "truth" with their particular religion - they are all stories. Ancient superstitious stories.

    Welcome to 2009 - religion is fading away (Thank God) and we are now required to actually "think." So, JT - think about this:

    Each years thousands of young gay teens commit suicide because they believe they are WRONG. They got that belief from Religion - nowhere else.

    We MUST end the idea that homosexuals are "wrong," an idea started and promoted by religion. We must stand up and tell the world we are Not Wrong. To Hell with religion if it can't change or grow. We're over it.

    Posted by: Andrew | Aug 17, 2009 10:06:23 PM


  12. If you want to practically help send some $$$ the way of 'Iraqi LGBT' http://iraqilgbtuk.blogspot.com

    They run safe houses inside Iraq as well as supporting refugees in the rest of the middle east.

    Whilst the HRW report is good news for raising the profile of the pogrom, only Iraqi LGBT is actually supporting people (saving them from murder) inside the country. But funds are scarce and they consequently have to turn people away.

    To find out more, read their annual report which is published on their website.

    Posted by: paul canning | Aug 17, 2009 11:04:36 PM


  13. Paul Canning: Is Iraqi LGBT doing anything to end the Muslim belief that homosexuality is wrong? That's the solution.

    Posted by: Andrew | Aug 17, 2009 11:14:11 PM


  14. I'm not religious at all. (I'm probably a Deist, like the Founding Fathers of America were, basically). But I've also studied enough history to see how dangerous atheist governments have been as far as mass murder (and as far as homophobia) to conclude that a religious country with a secular government works best.

    Posted by: JT | Aug 17, 2009 11:48:22 PM


  15. We are talking about the religious belief that homosexuals are wrong - Baptist or Muslim, it's the same thing.

    I'm not an atheist, but I respect their choice to use "reason" and to choose not believe unproven fairy tales.

    Gay men are being killed in Iraq because of RELIGION.

    Posted by: Andrew | Aug 18, 2009 9:36:35 AM


  16. Andrew is wrong. His focus is too narrow and parochical.

    Religion is only part of the problem. As in the 'religious' was in occupied northern Ireland it's a tool to divert people from the the real issue and inflame haterds.

    This reign of terror is solely the result of the invasion and occupation by the US. "Shock and awe" on a massive, sustained scale over the last 14 years led to the deaths of over a million Iraqis. It began with the murder of the innocents – Clinton’s embargo of food, medical and sanitary supplies: according to the UN and relief agencies it killed 567,000, most of them children.

    As the UN and relief agencies warned that Clinton’s policies were creating a humanitarian nightmare Clintons Secretary of State went on a campaign to defend these murders; CBSs Lesley Stahl on the 60 minutes program on April 12th, 1996 questioned Secretary of State Madeleine Albright about the embargo. “We have heard that a half million children have died. I mean, that's more children than died in Hiroshima. And, you know, is the price worth it?”

    Albright’s chilling replied: “I think this is a very hard choice, but the price--we think the price is worth it.”

    Actually it’s too neutral to call them deaths. Those 1,000,000 or so Iraqi’s and growing numbers of Afghani civilians were murdered for their oil and gas. Such slaughter induced by colonialist invaders like the US and its puppet states degraded Iraqi society and continues to propel it deeper and deeper into violence and mayhem.
    Everyone should contribute to the safe houses campaign at Iraqi LGBT UK. Their work is valuable and funds are urgently needed but they can only save a few.

    The solution lies in building an anti-war movement that, working with the Iraqi Federation of Oil Unions, the Electricity Association and the General Federation of Workers Councils and with dissident GI's can compel US withdrawal of from the region. We need to fight here in US for the total and immediate withdrawal of all US forces from South Asia and for cutting the US purse strings that bankroll zionist policies of ethnic cleansing and apartheid.
    For GLBT folks the solution lies in demanding that the US antiwar movement take up this question. They have huge recourses and we need their help. Start with US Labor Against the War. Other important antiwar groups to get in touch with are Iraq Veterans Against the War and the National Assembly to End the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars and Occupations. Pass on the facts and ask them to take a stand.

    Bring the troops home. Bring the naval and air fleets’ home. Bring the Blackwater mercenaries home in chains. If they or any military officers are accused of war crimes prosecute them before the World Court. Withdraw the CIA and stop the Clinton Bush Obama policy of kidnapping, torturing and murdering political and military opponents.

    Posted by: Bill Perdue | Aug 18, 2009 10:13:03 AM


  17. @JT

    I'm really curious as to what 'atheist governments' you are referring to that treated homosexuals so horribly. I'd like to know what your definition of 'atheist government' is, and which ones you are referring to. I hope you aren't referring to Nazi Germany, since that was hardly an atheist government and as was already stated, Hitler often invoked Catholicism as the reason for why atrocities should be committed. China is often seen as more 'atheist' nowdays, but has had a long history of non-persecution of gays (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexuality_in_China). So what exactly ARE you referring to? Russia, with a government during the communist years mainly made up of members of the Eastern Orthodox Church? Please, help me out here.

    Posted by: Zodiakos | Aug 24, 2009 12:27:17 AM


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