In the past six months, the Arab press, and especially the Gulf press, published many homophobic articles, which presented homosexuality as a perversion and as a threat to society. They accused the U.S. and the West in general of pressuring the conservative Arab and Muslim societies to accept and even welcome it.  Some of the articles warned that this policy will prompt the Arabs to seek other allies instead of the U.S., hinting at Russia and China, whose stance on homosexuality is closer to that of the Arabs.’ 
It should be mentioned that the issue of homosexuality resurfaces periodically in the Arab world and sparks intense reactions in the press. The recent wave of articles is a response to several factors, including:
1. Concerns in the West regarding Qatar’s treatment of LGBT+ tourists who will visit the country for the FIFA World Cup in November, given that homosexuality is illegal in Qatar.
2. Recent incidents involving Muslim athletes who made homophobic statements or refused to take part in pro-LGBT+ campaigns, sparking criticism against them in the West. One incident involved retired Egyptian footballer Mohamed Aboutrika, who said that homosexuality is against human nature and Islam. More recently, Muslim Senegalese football player Idrissa Gana Gueye, who plays for Paris Saint-Germain, refused to wear a shirt featuring the rainbow symbol as part of a gesture by the French Football Federation marking International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia, which is observed on May 17.
3. A UN debate on increasing the organization's involvement in strengthening democracy around the world, including by demanding the abolition of laws that discriminate against citizens based on gender or sexual orientation.
4. The release of popular movies featuring gay characters, such as Marvel's
5. The monkeypox outbreak, which, according to some reports, initially spread in the gay community.
6. Pro-LGBT+ statements, including from senior officials, on the occasion of Gay Pride Month, which is marked in the U.S. in June. These included statements by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, and from U.S. embassies around the world, including in Arab countries, among them Kuwait. The latter responded by summoning U.S. Charges d'Affaires James Holtsnider to convey its protest over the tweets, the legislative body of the Arab League,
The following are translated excerpts from articles in the Gulf press that expressed opposition to homosexuality and to what they described as Western attempts to impose a pro-LGBT+ agenda on Arab countries, and called to protect Arab societies, and especially the youth, from this phenomenon.
Cartoon in Qatari daily (Al-Sharq, Qatar, May 21, 2022)
Saudi Journalist: U.S. Is Losing Its Allies Trying To Impose Liberal Values On Them
Saudi journalist Muhammad Al-Sa'ed claimed that, after the 9/11 attacks, the U.S. changed its political, military and social policy and adopted left-wing values, including pro-gay attitudes, which may cause its conservative allies to seek new allies in its stead. He wrote: "In the Tripartite Aggression against Egypt in 1956 [i.e., the Suez Crisis]… the U.S. forced the three countries, Israel, France and Britain, to withdraw from Egypt's Port Said and opposed any infringement on Egypt's sovereignty, including in the Suez Canal… In 1981, the Americans played a role in supporting the Muslims Afghans against the Soviet occupier and eventually in liberating the country… [We also remember America's] military and diplomatic efforts in Bosnia Herzegovina and its airstrikes on the Serbian army, which stopped the extermination of the Bosnian Muslims…
"[But] after [the 9/11 attacks of] 2001, the U.S. became wild, trapped in its fury and in its narrow interests. In fact, it became completely identified with a radical left-wing ideology, to the extent of justifying homosexual values and imposing them on the world. It feels the need to inculcate these values and incriminate and denounce anyone who opposes them. This dramatic change in its behavior… which used to be balanced and logical to some extent, has caused Washington to give up its allies, attack religions and values, impose its left-wing ideas [on others] and lose all restraint in its controversies with other countries… [America's] wild behavior, and its hostility towards friendly governments and conservative societies, will cause a great wave of hostility towards it, which it will not be able to withstand. One billion Muslims, for example, will refuse to transform their societies and the streets into incubators of homosexuality… and will look for other allies [instead of the U.S.], who can be trusted.
"The disintegration of the Soviet Union is still vivid in our memories, and so is the fall of Nazi Germany. Washington, its people and their interests will pay a heavy price, just like previous empires that ruled and then vanished, becoming mere names in the historical [records]… Today, some people yearn for the disappearance of America. Tomorrow many will yearn for it, and the day after tomorrow everyone will oppose it. [Then America] will regret sowing the seed of destruction within itself…"
Muhammad Al-Sa'ed (Source: 'Okaz, Saudi Arabia).
In a December 19, 2021 show on Saudi Arabia’s Rotana Khalijiya TV, Saudi journalist Saleh Joraibi Al-Zahrani reacted to a UN draft resolution on gender identity and sexual orientation. Al-Zahrani said that homosexuality is a perversion, that anyone who is attracted to a person of the same sex should seek medical treatment, and that this is not a humanitarian issue. Al-Zahrani also said that the UN resolution is like a terrorist passing a UN resolution to permit explosive belts and killing civilians.
For a MEMRI TV clip of his statements, click below.
Bahrani Journalist: Defending Our Identity Is A Noble Goal; China And Russia Also Oppose Homosexuality
"We are not the only ones facing this brutal attack. China, Russia and many sectors within the Western societies themselves oppose this sexual immorality. Many countries have begun openly opposing the attempts to impose homosexuality upon them as a normal phenomenon that must be accepted...
"In sum, we must believe that confronting this [Western] war is not backwardness, as [the West] wants us to mistakenly believe. Being proud of one's principles is not regression. War in defense of one's identity is a noble cause. The Chinese are not the only ones who are proud of their values, identity and origins. We Arabs and Muslims are also proud of our identity. Teach your children to be proud of it and say no, load and clear, to the attempts to inject it [with alien notions]."
From Bahraini anti-gay campaign: “Commitment to Allah’s laws and to the Prophet’s Sunna is the shield against these perverted ideas that contravene sound human nature” (Twitter.com/alhedayasocitey, June 7, 2022)
Bahraini Journalist: This Perversion Must Not Be Legitimized
In a December 7, 2021 article in the Bahraini daily Al-Watan, journalist Faisal Al-Sheikh complained about television series and films that present same-sex relations as legitimate, and called to protect societies from this "perversion." He wrote: "The problem is not the existence of homosexuality as a phenomenon and a behavior [that characterizes] certain sectors. The problem lies in presenting this perversion as legitimate and as 'culture' or 'freedom,' and in presenting people who think it normal as 'ideologically progressive'…
"Today most of the popular foreign television series feature gays and lesbians, and there are hardly any series or films that do not feature at lease a short scene containing gays. This means that the goal is to present this abnormal human behavior as completely normal and even as natural social behavior, [and to present] anyone who is repelled by it or disapproves of it as backward, uncivilized and an opponent of freedom and human rights…
"Our duty at the moment is to protect our societies and our children from the attempts to imbue them with this idea, which encourages abnormal behavior that contravenes human nature. Do not call it a disease, a psychological state or anything else – it is perversion, nothing more. Whoever encourages it or takes it lightly does not understand how grave it is until he discovers that one of his children have fallen into its claws, God forbid. That is why there are growing calls in our societies to fight these poisonous Western ideas and to oppose all the pressures and attempts to inject them [into our societies]…
"Amid the repeated claims that we should tolerate this phenomenon during the coming World Cup, which will be held in an Arab and Muslim Gulf country, I urge not to make light of issues related to our religion, tradition and norms. If the West wishes to take part in an international activity held in an Arab country, it must respect our norms and the moral values or our faith. The Qatari hosts should reject all the pressures, rather than succumb to them…"
In another article two days later, Al-Sheikh quoted a message he had received in response to his previous article, from a reader who made suggestions for combating homosexuality: "First, the Education Ministry should ban any mention of homosexuality in schools for both boys and girls, and summon the guardian of the boy or girl if necessary. Universities, especially the private ones, should also be subjected to supervision, in order to prevent pro-gay activism… Students who engage in such activism on campus must be warned that [their studies] will be terminated and they will be expelled. Second, the Ministry of Commerce and Tourism must prevent performances by singers, artists and all celebrities who are openly gay or who promote homosexuality. Third, the Foreign Ministry must ban the entry of any organization known to promote homosexuality, even if it operated under the aegis of the UN. Fourth, the Interior Ministry must act to prevent gay gatherings and ceremonies, especially in clubs frequented by expats."
Faisal Al-Sheikh (Source: Al-Watan, Bahrain)
Kuwaiti Journalists: The West Demands That We Accept Gays, While It Itself Harms Other Sectors
On the occasion of Gay Pride Month, marked in the U.S. in June, American embassies around the world, including the embassy in Kuwait, posted pro-LGBT+ tweets. In response, Kuwait summoned U.S. Charges d'Affaires James Holtsnider to convey its protest over these tweets,
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"The U.S. is afflicted with the worst kind of racism and hatred for blacks, Muslims and ethnic minorities, which was fanned by its most racist president ever, Donald Trump, who came into office in 2016. Now they want to infect us, the Arabs and Muslims, with homosexual culture by means of laws and contaminated commercials that enter our homes, markets and social media, so that [this culture] becomes accepted. Thankfully, the Kuwaiti policy was to [refuse to] keep silent over the violation of the laws of our state and of the Muslim religion, which forbids this sexual perversion, whose effects are now evident in Europe: the spread of cancer, AIDS, syphilis, birth defects, stomach plagues, and drugs…"
Another article in Al-Rai, by journalist Walid Al-Jassem, said: "Marketing the LGBT+ [agenda] is not limited to the Americans. Europe does it too. The civilized world seems to have forgotten all the problems of humanity except for the feelings of the LGBT+ community, which wants to brag about shameful acts… The Western eagerness to market this behavior still puzzles us… When it comes to the LGBT+ community, they have 'principles' that keep them from embarrassing it, such as 'don't ask don't tell'… But [the West] violates these same principles when it drills [its agenda] into our heads every day, marketing [homosexuality] and beautifying this behavior, demanding that we accept it and glorify it…"
Gay Pride Month tweet by the U.S. embassy in Kuwait quotes statements by U.S. President Joe Biden (Twitter.com/USEmbassyQ8, June 2, 2022)
Qatari Journalist: Monkeypox Should Be Called Homopox
Responding to the affair of Muslim footballer Idrissa Gueye, who refused to wear the shirt featuring the rainbow symbol, and the outbreak of the monkeypox virus, which has been linked to the LGBT+ community, pro-LGBT+ attitudes. She wrote: The day we threw away the masks and started breathing freely… the demon of a new plague, called monkeypox, appeared … European experts noted that the cases observed were of homosexuals, [people] who violate human nature and the values of the three monotheistic faiths, which regard sexual perversion of all types as a crime… I am puzzled by the widespread discourse about so-called 'homosexuality'… especially after the incident of the Paris Saint-Germain's Muslim player, Idrissa Gana Gueye, who refused to wear a shirt expressing support for gay rights. This caused the French Football Federation's Ethics Committee – and don't ask me why it's called by this inappropriate name – to summon the player and ask him why he did not join his teammates in this act of supporting gay rights in France and beyond. Subsequently the world launched an unprecedented campaign of solidarity with this player, who chose to follow the directives of his religion, in which he believes, or his convictions as a decent man…
"There seems to be an aggressive [campaign] to market this sector and its right to equality and a natural life – even though its behavior is neither normal nor natural and it is the main cause for [the spread of] monkeypox, which should perhaps be called homopox, if the reports coming from the countries where it originated are accurate…"
Moroccan Media Figure: Absolute Freedom Means Absolute Chaos
In an article on the online daily Raialyoum,.com, Moroccan media figure and academic Dr. Tareq Lisawi praised Muslim footballer Idrissa Gueye, who plays for Paris San-Germain, for refusing to wear a shirt featuring the rainbow symbol. He warned that supporting the LGBT+ community contravenes the directives of Allah, and that the personal freedom of some individuals must not come at the expense of others'. He wrote: "Balance and standards have been upset to such an extent that human nature has become a crime. We saw the attack on the Muslim Senegalese athlete [Idrissa Gueye] who cleaved to his human nature even before he cleaved to his faith. He refused to support homosexuals by wearing a shirt featuring the rainbow flag, thus [echoing] the statement of Lot, who said to his people: 'Do you commit immorality knowingly? Do you indeed approach men with desire instead of women? Rather, you are a people behaving ignorantly' [Quran 27:54-55]. [Idrissa Gueye] was summoned [for questioning] by his team [sic], [which behaved like the people of Lot, who said], 'Expel the family of Lot from your city. Indeed, they are people who keep themselves pure' [Quran 27:56].
"The paradoxical fact is that [another] Muslim football player, popular in Morocco [apparently a reference to Achraf Hakimi], did wear the 'impure shirt,' thus implicitly agreeing to be on the side that angers Allah, while his teammate Idrissa Gueye refused to be part of this, even implicitly. Even if [the Moroccan player] opposes this crime [of homosexuality], wearing the shirt that encourages the spreading of this perverted culture is worse than anything [he] could have said…
"Freedom in general is a relative concept. There is no absolute freedom except in personal matters, and even this [kind of freedom] is limited by the directives of Allah… Absolute freedom means absolute chaos. Freedom must have limits that cannot be crossed. It must stop where someone else's freedom begins… If we are talking of freedom, why is it denied to someone who does not wish to wear the 'impure shirt'? The [Paris Saint-Germain football] club should have respected [Idrissa Gueye's] freedom and allowed him to play regardless of [his stance on] homosexuals."
Cartoon shows footballer Idrissa Gana Gueye kicking the rainbow flag into a garbage bin (twitter.com/A_RahmanBoland, May 19, 2022)
Saudi Journalist: Social Media Should Be Used To Defend Our Children From Homosexuality
Bandar Al-Shihri, a columnist for the Saudi daily Al-Watan, complained about the West's promotion of LGBT+ rights through laws and through campaigns like the ones recently conducted by various football clubs. He called mobilize all social sectors, including celebrities on social media who are popular with young people, to keep this attitude from spreading in Arab society. He wrote: "What do we do if we suddenly discover that someone is exhorting [us] to anchor the rights [of homosexuals] in law in our Arab and Muslim countries? Some may dismiss this [concern] as exaggerated, but experience teaches us that many scenarios that we once dismissed [as unlikely] have become a reality, and that nothing is impossible in this age of globalization and of the satellite [channel] revolution. Hence, we must begin to fight back, and not wait for disaster to strike before acting, because action is naturally more effective than reaction. It is paramount to increase our action on this front, on several levels, and not suffice with legislation that penalizes the offenders.
"We must increase measures to protect the youth and children from the danger of this unnatural behavior. This must be done in an appealing manner that will capture the interest of the target audience, while avoiding direct preaching and traditional methods that are not suitable for young people. All sectors of society must be involved in this task, from families and schools to the religious, cultural and media institutions."
Saudi Journalist: The Forces Of Evil Disseminate Homosexuality Using Goebbels-Like Methods
In an article in the Saudi daily 'Okaz, responding to LGBT+ inclusion in the Western media and elsewhere, journalist Yousuf bin Turad Al-Sa’doun wrote that "the forces of evil" are trying to spread homosexuality in Arab countries using the methods of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels, who said that if a lie is repeated enough times it becomes the truth. Al-Sa’doun therefore called to formulate a national strategy to counteract these efforts. He wrote: "One of the propaganda methods invented by Joseph Goebbels, Hitler's Nazi propaganda [minister], was based on the claim that ‘a lie must be repeated again and again until it becomes true…' The forces of evil have exploited this human weakness to spread the moral degeneration of atheism, homosexuality, and drug use. They based their strategy this idea of ‘the big lie.’ Their strategy includes propaganda in favor of homosexuality formulated by two Americans, Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen.
"According to [Kirk and Madsen], a decent society can be changed and led to accept moral degeneracy and homosexuality as a [legitimate] part of it by means of propaganda campaigns comprising [several] steps:
Defusing the sensitivity and revulsion toward homosexuality so that the moral degenerates [will be accepted as] normal and as equal to decent people, by means of intensive discourse about the moral degeneracy [of homosexuality] and visibility of homosexuals in the public sphere, and in the arenas of arts, culture and sports…
Brainwashing people by presenting moral degenerates like homosexuals as victims…
Amending the laws and regulations with language that promotes moral degeneracy by revoking the penalties for moral degeneracy and homosexuality. The next move is to abolish the laws that prohibit this degeneration and pass laws that permit… same-sex marriage and provide [gays] with legal protection from being bullied and harmed by others… This is followed by changing the curricula to include tolerance [towards gays] and personal freedom of choice, and finally, imposing laws regarding the family that forbid parents to interfere in their sons' and daughters' personal choices.
"These corrupt people succeeded in fully realizing every stage of their strategy in America and the European Union… Our Arab world is not safe from this deluge. Some have [already] drowned in it, while others still manage to keep their heads above water… Therefore, it is crucial that we trust ourselves, ignore the barking of people with agendas and take serious action to protect the citizens of our countries from the problems of moral inferiority. This may be accomplished by:
Formulating a comprehensive national strategy for confronting the forces of moral degeneracy and taking a firm stance against their destructive actions, while strengthening the educational role and the central pillars of the family.
Consolidating faith and commitment to religion and to [our] national and cultural values. [Raising] awareness of the dangers of this moral degeneracy through targeted programs in mosques, in the education [system] and in the media, and examining and reevaluating everything circulated in the media.
Recruiting experts with a sense of patriotism and strategic thinking, particularly in the spheres of education, media, tourism, sports, youth, culture and society.
Keeping from fully trusting… the programs of foreign consultancy agencies. The national security apparatuses must investigate them to ensure that they do not contain overt or covert aspects of moral degeneracy…"
In response to U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s tweet on the occasion of Gay Pride Month, another Saudi writer, ‘Abd Al-Wahhab Al-Fayez, listed steps that can be taken as part of a comprehensive strategy for keeping “homosexual culture” from penetrating Arab societies. He wrote on June 8, 2022: “We must confront this West, which eagerly promotes gay rights and is in the throes of a great revolution of principles. This matter must not be taken lightly. Three decades ago, homosexuality was considered a crime and a mental illness. It is unfortunate for mankind that one of the arenas that have been penetrated by organizations that support and embrace the gay community is the UN… These intensive efforts by individuals and governments in the West compel the Arab League and the local organizations [in the Arab world] to unite the efforts of the governments and societies, and to mobilize civil society in the Arab countries, in order to counteract these [Western] efforts. The following steps can be taken:
“First, an [Arab] League committee must be established to combat homosexuality and pool the efforts of the Arab civil and governmental [sectors].
“Second, universities and research institutes in the Arab world must conduct studies on the impact of the liberal movements, which have gotten out of control, on various sectors of the Arab societies, and especially on the family, for the disintegration of society begins with the disintegration of the family…
“Third, restrictions must be imposed and terms must be set for international companies that operate in the Arab countries, to prevent interference [in the affairs of the host countries, manifested in] calls to change the labor and commerce laws, as demanded by LGBT+ supporters…
“Fourth, Arab governments must be pressured to establish civil and scientific associations in all the Arab countries specializing in perpetuating the values, morals and customs that flow from the uniqueness of Arab societies and their stable foundations.
“Fifth, [we should] pool the efforts and plans of the civil and public institutions and organizations with those of equivalent institutions across the Muslim world, in America and Europe, in the Russian bloc and in east Asia, where the local governments and societies take a firm stance against the radical Western liberal currents.
“Sixth, reports must be circulated in the media about the efforts of media outlets and international news agencies that defend LGBT+ rights, so as to inform the Arab societies of their hidden roles… Large goals require a clear strategy and strong alliances. That is the art of politics.”
*B. Chernitsky is a research fellow at MEMRI.
 Islamic institutions such as Al-Azhar and the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) have recently issued many fatwas (religious rulings) calling homosexuality an abomination and urging the West not to impose it on the Muslims. See MEMRI Inquiry & Analysis Series No. 1621 - Religious Authorities Across The Muslim World: Homosexuality Is A Dangerous Abomination That The West Is Trying To Impose On Us – February 2, 2022.
 This issue was also discussed in the Egyptian press. See e.g., an article by Nageh Ibrahim titled "Is Homosexuality Part of Human Rights?", published December 12, 2021 in the daily Al-Shurouq; an article by Hussein Morsi titled "Disney and Homosexuality," published June 9, 2022 in Al-Gumhouriyya, and al article by Gamil 'Afifi titled "The Danger Threatening Our Children," published in Al-Ahram on June 14, 2022.
 See e.g., MEMRI reports:
Special Dispatch No. 8350 - Article On Muslim Brotherhood Website: Election Of A Gay U.S. President Will Lead To Pressure On Arab Countries To Permit Homosexuality; The Prophet Muhammad Ordered The Killing Of Homosexuals - 11/05/19;
Special Dispatch No. 8248 - Saudi Columnists: Homosexuality, Which Is Condoned In The West, Is Repulsive And Contravenes Islam; We Must Defend Our Societies Against It And Impose The Death Penalty On Those Who Engage In It - 08/28/19;
It should be noted that articles opposing homophobia are rare. See Special Dispatch No. 9253 - Gay Egyptian Man Describes Plight Of Egyptian LGBT Community Through His Own Personal Story - 03/25/21;
 See Article 296 of Qatar's Penal Code, almeezan.qa. See also MEMRI Inquiry & Analysis Series No. 1613 - Despite Qatar's Promise To Respect Gay Community In World Cup, Incitement Against It In Qatari Media Continues – December 15, 2021. In a recent press conference with the German Chancellor, the Qatari Emir said that his country will welcome all fans, but expects visitors to respect its culture (Insideworldfootball.com, May 23, 2022).
 Al-ain.com, December 1, 2021. Aboutrika said this on November 27, 2021 on the Qatari beIN SPORTS channel, where he is a commentator. He was responding to the English Premier League's "Rainbow Laces" initiative championing LGBT+ inclusion, as part of which rainbow-themed branding, armbands, laces and badges were displayed at matches.
 According to the UN website, the draft resolution was approved without a vote. See un.org, December 16, 2021.
 Twitter.com/SecBlinken, June 1, 2022.
 Raialyoum.com, June 3, 2022. The Kuwaiti penal code includes a ban on "sexually immoral behavior," which can be applied to homosexuality (undp-acaic.org). It should be noted, however, that in February 2022 Kuwait's constitutional court cancelled a law forbidding "imitation of the opposite sex." Amnesty.org, February 16, 2022.
 Raialyoum.com, June 4, 2022.
 'Okaz, December 22, 2021.
 Al-Watan (Bahrain), April 26, 2022.
 Al-Watan (Bahrain), December 7, 2021.
 Al-Watan (Bahrain), December 9, 2021.
 Raialyoum.com, June 3, 2022.
 Al-Rai (Kuwait), June 5, 2022.
 Al-Rai (Kuwait), June 4, 2022.
 Al-Sharq (Qatar), May 22, 2022.
 Raialyoum.com, May 20, 2022.
 This cartoon, by Kuwaiti artist 'Abd Al-Rahman Boland, was retweeted many times as part of the social media campaign in support of Gueye.
 Al-Watan (Saudi Arabia), December 6, 2021.
 Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen are the authors of the 1989 book After the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the '90s, which outlined a strategy for combating homophobia.
 'Okaz (Saudi Arabia), December 19, 2021.
 The reference is apparently to passing laws against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
 Al-Jazirah (Saudi Arabia), June 8, 2022.