January 29, 2010

Afghanis: Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Deny, Deny, Deny

Uh...this is news?

As if U.S. troops and diplomats didn't have enough to worry about in trying to understand Afghan culture, a new report suggests an entire region in the country is coping with a sexual identity crisis.

An unclassified study from a military research unit in southern Afghanistan details how homosexual behavior is unusually common among men in the large ethnic group known as Pashtuns -- though they seem to be in complete denial about it.

The study, obtained by Fox News, found that Pashtun men commonly have sex with other men, admire other men physically, have sexual relationships with boys and shun women both socially and sexually -- yet they completely reject the label of "homosexual." The research was conducted as part of a longstanding effort to better understand Afghan culture and improve Western interaction with the local people.

The research unit, which was attached to a Marine battalion in southern Afghanistan, acknowledged that the behavior of some Afghan men has left Western forces "frequently confused."

The Pushtuns seem convinced that as long as they don't love the men and boys they're having sex with, then they aren't gay. Anecdotes I've read over the years suggest that this is very common in both Sunni and Shia Muslim cultures, with the men in those cultures in equally deep denial about their homosexuality and pedophilia.

These same cultures routine murder gays or have them executed after sham trials... I'm not sure how they reconcile that, and it seems denial is their only mechanism for coping. Kinda makes you wonder the gender of the 72 virgins they dream about, doesn't it?

Posted by Confederate Yankee at January 29, 2010 10:04 AM

This is pretty much the norm in ALL regressive muslim-based societies. It is brought about by those societies' sequestering of their women after they reach puberty{until they are sold-off(married)}. The take away is that as long as one of the males is older/ wiser/richer/etc than the other, there is no stigma attached to this behavior. It's a lot more complicated then this but that's the simple version.

Posted by: emdfl at January 29, 2010 11:01 AM

It wasn't just restricted to Muslim/Arab societies. Google the Sacred Band of Thebes some time.

Posted by: Stoutcat at January 29, 2010 11:43 AM

I work in Security Force Assistance and I train Afghan infantry companies every day. I work very closely with them and I get to know the people I mentor quite well.

I am here to tell you that the homosexuality is very common and widespread. I cannot tell you how many times my mentors have been propositioned for sex. Or the intances where Afghan company commanders make jokes about buggering their "Chai Boys."

It makes for an interesting work environment... that is for sure.


Posted by: Zombiekiller6 at January 30, 2010 12:34 AM

The War Nerd wrote all you'd want to know about the Pushtun here.

Posted by: Old Rebel at January 30, 2010 11:14 AM

Reminds me of a joke I heard in Afghaniston:
Q: Why did the Pushtun general tell his army to cross the river?
A: To get to the boys on the other side.

Also had a buddy who was advising in Iraq. Not long after he joined the unit, he went outside one night to adjust his NVGs. Holy $#*&! He clawed them off in horror at the frenzied activities taking place in the dark.

Posted by: Mike S at January 30, 2010 11:34 AM

Kinda makes you wonder the gender of the 72 virgins they dream about, doesn't it?

I said the same thing to a friend of mine who was raised muslim, and he confirmed my thoughts, he spent a fair bit of time in deeply muslim nations and he said basicaly that sex with men or animals is treated as walking. Something someone must do on the path towards marriage and procreation.

Posted by: Douglas at January 30, 2010 12:22 PM

You would think they should dress better though.

Posted by: Douglas at January 30, 2010 12:24 PM

3 Words: "Man-Love Thurdays"

ANYONE who's been in the AOR knows about it... A very twisted scene here. "Duu-decki" (sp?) is the Iraqi term for a 'silky-boy' so to speak... I routinely interact with LNs (male) who look they bought their clothes from the womans department in Nieman Marcus... Yet another aspect of WHY these guys are so angry/repressed...

Posted by: Big Country at January 30, 2010 05:26 PM

They do get "pearly boys" in the hereafter as well as the virgin girls. (Link might be a little NSFW.)

Posted by: Zimriel at January 30, 2010 06:05 PM

The catchers are gay, but not the pitchers. And youthful catchers can grow out of it. I echo CY's amazement that anyone treats this as a new development. Hussein.... I mean Saddam, almost certainly had some coerced sex in his, um, background along with his dog torturing and cousin killing. Plenty of folks examining the desperate sexual frustration hidden in the repressive Islamic culture; the madrassas, the man-boy relationships, the sequestration of women and eunachism... have made these observations. I think this was well addressed by Hirsi Ali. But better late than never I guess. Seems like even those who are indifferent are getting TMI about our dusty enemies.

Posted by: megapotamus at January 30, 2010 06:38 PM

"The Pushtuns seem convinced that as long as they don't love the men and boys they're having sex with, then they aren't gay."

What's love got to do with it?

Posted by: Thorien at January 30, 2010 10:59 PM

It is somewhat ironical that Afganistan is perceived to have a very masculine behaviour due to its culturally strict culture but behind that perception lies the feminine, weak and homosexual orietation. It might not be plausible at first but it is likely happening. I think this is due to the fact that boys have limited contact with girls and those natural feelings towards the opposite sex are diverted into feelings towards the same sex which leads to a homosexual orientation.

Posted by: Mark @ Israel at January 30, 2010 11:51 PM

Contrast these Afghan warlord hypocrites with the All American straight and narrow: ArmorGroup corporation's patriotic "operations" in Kabul.

Ahem, "deny, deny, deny." Cough.

Abu Ghraib already repealed DADT.

Posted by: JW Pepper at January 31, 2010 12:19 AM

as long as they don't love the men and boys they're having sex with, then they aren't gay

Isn't that what Westerners would call "empty sex" ?

Sure sounds like they more in common with Western civilization than more Westerners believed.

Posted by: Neo at January 31, 2010 03:25 PM

But I am sure that Afghanistan fully deserves the 500 billion 20 grand that we have spent on each and every Afghan, including all of the gay Afghanis. LET"S SEND THEM MORE MONEY RIGHT NOW !!! And of course Spartans weren't gay or samurai and no one is down low in the NFL that is just manly comraderie and team spirit and love ..... of sport

Posted by: John Ryan at February 1, 2010 04:17 PM

You've got to wonder about "Little Barry's" childhood in Indonesia.

Posted by: Razorgirl at February 1, 2010 05:12 PM