Passport

The Turkish army’s ‘show and tell’ policy

As the debate over "don’t ask, don’t tell" rages on in the United States, it seems Turkey is also facing its own domestic dilemma over military participation. While gays are barred from military service in Turkey, the armed forces allegedly are "asking for ‘photographic’ proof  that people seeking an exemption from compulsory military service on ...

ADEM ALTAN/AFP/Getty Images
ADEM ALTAN/AFP/Getty Images

As the debate over "don't ask, don't tell" rages on in the United States, it seems Turkey is also facing its own domestic dilemma over military participation.

While gays are barred from military service in Turkey, the armed forces allegedly are "asking for 'photographic' proof  that people seeking an exemption from compulsory military service on the grounds of their homosexuality are actually gay," Hurriyet reports.

The practice is not official, and the military has firmly denied the claims but there have been consistent accusations from Turks who were allegedly subject to the practice, and the 2009 European Union progress report also cited concerns over the issue.

As the debate over "don’t ask, don’t tell" rages on in the United States, it seems Turkey is also facing its own domestic dilemma over military participation.

While gays are barred from military service in Turkey, the armed forces allegedly are "asking for ‘photographic’ proof  that people seeking an exemption from compulsory military service on the grounds of their homosexuality are actually gay," Hurriyet reports.

The practice is not official, and the military has firmly denied the claims but there have been consistent accusations from Turks who were allegedly subject to the practice, and the 2009 European Union progress report also cited concerns over the issue.

Turkey’s dilemma is not so much "don’t ask, don’t tell," — it’s more over "show and tell."

Mohammad Sagha is an editoral researcher at Foreign Policy.

More from Foreign Policy

An illustration of a captain's hat with a 1980s era Pepsi logo and USSR and U.S. flag pins.

The Doomed Voyage of Pepsi’s Soviet Navy

A three-decade dream of communist markets ended in the scrapyard.

Demonstrators with CASA in Action and Service Employees International Union 32BJ march against the Trump administration’s immigration policies in Washington on May 1, 2017.

Unionization Can End America’s Supply Chain Crisis

Allowing workers to organize would protect and empower undocumented immigrants critical to the U.S. economy.

The downtown district of Wilmington, Delaware, is seen on Aug. 19, 2016.

How Delaware Became the World’s Biggest Offshore Haven

Kleptocrats, criminals, and con artists have all parked their illicit gains in the state.