At least 80 current and former Australian Defence Force personnel signed up to a Facebook page created to out and denigrate gay colleagues.
The Star Observer was made aware of the page by an anonymous tipster who created a YouTube video featuring screenshots from the Facebook page, including the names of 50 of the page’s friends. The video was still online when SSO went to press.
Created in early 2010 under the name Steve Austin, the page’s bio read: “This page has been created to inform current and past serving members of the ADF who is biting the pillow.
“Below in the quotations is a list of names of current serving members of the ADF who are homosexual. I feel I have to make you aware of their lifestyle decision.
“It is your right to know who is biting the pillow. If you know any more bum bandits getting around in the ADF, shoot me an email.”
The page goes on to describe homosexuality as a “filthy lifestyle decision”.
Another screenshot shows the page with 80 friends and contains posts naming an individual as “a number one offender” and another with a video post in which accompanying text names an ADF member as a “poo pirate”.
SSO understands that six gay ADF personnel were named and denigrated through the page, which our source claimed included “videos and comments contain[ing] extreme racist, anti-gay, anti-Semitic, anti-democracy, and pro-terrorism content”.
“Some members of this group wore uniform and carried weapons in the photos associated with the site,” our source said.
The Facebook page was taken down in August last year, but later replaced with another called ‘Gay in the ADF’ which was also taken down.
The source says a larger group of ADF personnel had been invited to ‘friend’ the page but declined without alerting their superiors.
The ADF did not respond to a list of questions from SSO before press time, despite initially agreeing to comment.
A friend of one of those outed by the Facebook page said his friend received a death threat in his work email, as well as a threatening note delivered to his house, after he was outed.
The revelations follow allegations this week that an 18-year-old male cadet was anally raped with a broomstick after he came to the aid of a female colleague in 1989, but this had not stopped the alleged offenders from rising to senior roles in the ADF.