In recent weeks, reports have surfaced that the LGBT community in Iraq is facing dire safety concerns, with many reportedly scheduled to be executed by the Iraqi government. The situation in Iraq has gotten so egregious for LGBT citizens, an underground network has started to escort gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Iraqis out of the country.
These abuses need to be investigated by the U.S. government. As Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said during her recent trip to Europe: "Human rights is and always will be one of the pillars of our foreign policy. And in particular, the persecution and discrimination against gays and lesbians is something that we take very seriously. It is terribly unfortunate that right now in unfortunately many places in the world violence against gays and lesbians, certainly discrimination and prejudice are not just occurring but condoned and protected. And we would hope that over the next few years we could have some influence in trying to change those attitudes..."
The U.S. has the power to help change these attitudes in Iraq, and we should focus on doing so before one more LGBT Iraqi is sentenced to die.