The destruction of Israel and the emboldening of Hamas would make life unlivable for gay Palestinians
When I first heard the phrase “Queers for Palestine”, I assumed it was a joke, a meme dreamt up by some Right-wing wag on Reddit. There is surely no way actual gay people would cheer on a state infamous for its loathing of homosexuals.
For all their zaniness, surely not even purple-haired, post-gender activists would take to the streets, Pride flag in hand, to champion a country that would jail them, if they’re lucky, and bump them off if they’re not.
But it’s not a joke. These people are real. This is where wokeness has taken us – to a situation where the young of the West are throwing their lot in with a regime that would throw them from a top-floor given half a chance.
“Queers for Palestine” has become the source of much online mirth in recent weeks, following Hamas’s October 7 pogrom. And deservedly so. People have compared it to “Chickens for KFC”. I saw one comment on Instagram noting that if these people actually went to Palestine, especially Hamas-ruled Gaza, their pronouns would be “was / were”.
I feel tempted to say “it’s funny because it’s true”, but none of this is funny. Palestine has an atrocious record on LGBT rights. In 2021, the Williams Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles carried out a survey of 175 nations and their acceptance of gay and gender-non-conforming people.
Palestine was at number 130. Behind Yemen, Saudi Arabia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The “Queers for Palestine” would literally be better off in the notoriously homophobic petro-Kingdom of Saudi Arabia than in their favourite victim nation.
Gay people face staggering levels of persecution in both Gaza and the West Bank. Jail and sometimes even death awaits those who commit the “sin” of carnal knowledge with a member of the same sex.
In 2016, Hamas executed one of their own top dogs, Mahmoud Ishtiwi, reportedly for sleeping with a man. Last year, 25-year-old Ahmad Abu Marhia, a gay man, was beheaded by thuggish homophobes in Hebron in the West Bank. Footage of this gruesome hate crime was uploaded to social media.