Cutting aid to Africa won’t help gay rights

First published in the Boston Globe on Saturday, 11 February, 2012

David Bahati reintroduced anti-gay legislation in the Uganda parliament, to a standing ovation. Photo image: Ronald Kabuubi/Associated Press

WHEN Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spoke in Geneva at the International Human Rights Day last year, she sent a strong warning to countries passing anti-homosexuality bills that US foreign aid would be tied to tolerance of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community. The message was received with both anger and jubilation.

For the LGBT community, it was an outcome of months of lobbying. Within African countries that abhor the idea of gay rights, it was viewed as another imposition of the United States’ continued policing of sovereign countries. Homosexuality is banned in 37 African countries.

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Ugandans wonder: Is US after Kony, or oil?

First published in the Boston Globe, Saturday 19, November 2011

 Ugandan rebel leader Joseph Kony is the head of a group considered responsible for many atrocities.FILE 2006/ASSOCIATED PRESS: Ugandan rebel leader Joseph Kony is the head of a group considered responsible for many atrocities.

 

UGANDANS  GREETED President Obama’s decision last month to deploy 100 US military advisers to central Africa to assist in the manhunt for rebel leader  Joseph Kony with mixed feelings. Immediately, social media outlets were abuzz with the fear that the United States was only interested in Uganda’s nascent oil sector.  Continue reading