Despite the rain, wind and cold thousands marched from Downing Street to the Israeli embassy in solidarity with Gaza – including us with a UNISON banner and rainbow flag.
We were delighted by the warm reception we got at Pride – hundreds of people took our postcards. As Israeli artists performed and tried to put over classic pinkwashing messages we waved a sea of flags. And GLF veteran and PSC stalwart Frankie Green took to the stage with a Palestine flag and a Free Palestine t-shirt.
The image on the right was posted to the Facebook page of the IDF, the Israeli army, in June 2012, to coincide with Tel Aviv Pride. People were encouraged to share the photo, which, it was claimed, illustrated how “the IDF treats all of its soldiers equally”. You would assume it shows a gay male couple, both members of the IDF. Thousands of people “liked” the picture.
But then the Times of Israel claimed that it was not what it appeared to be. The two men were not a couple, and only one was gay. And they both worked in the IDF spokesperson’s office – that is, for Israeli army PR.
For more detail, see the Guardian report. And for the truth about equality in the IDF, see a report from 2011 in the liberal Israeli paper Haaretz, headlined “Gay and lesbian IDF soldiers complain of widespread sexual harassment”.