There is nothing like the idea of pushing forward a military project to a general or the government, which will be advantageous in the field of battle. However, sometimes, these projects turn out to be so ridiculous it is not even funny. One of the most absurd project I came across recently is “The Gay Bomb.”
The Gay Bomb is exactly what it sounds like. As recently as 1994, the Wright Laboratory, part of the U.S. Air Force, produced a three page proposal for this weapon. Apparently, they suggested a chemical aphrodisiac that would be spread through an explosive that would cause ‘homosexual behaviour’ in enemy soldiers. It seems like the saying “make love not war” doesn’t work very well with the U.S military.
This amalgamation of power and widespread homophobia was a failure from a scientific point of view. This is mainly because there is no known chemical that causes heterosexual people to suddenly change their sexual orientation. Moreover, even if we forget the homosexual part of this bomb, science has not been able to develop or find an aphrodisiac that works successfully on one human, let alone an entire army.
Wright Lab requested a 6 year, $7.5 million grant to create a variety of non-lethal weapons. The Gay Bomb being one of them was something “that contained a chemical that would cause enemy soldiers to become gay, and to have their units break down because all their soldiers became irresistibly attractive to one another”.
This bizarre idea probably came to the mind of scientists at Wright Lab considering the political environment at that time. President Bill Clinton had attempted to lift the ban on homosexuals in the military and had received a lot of backlash. Apparently homosexuality was incompatible with military service according to many leaders of the Department of Defense.
Thankfully, this project never received funding and didn’t go beyond the concept stage. However, it garnered a lot of attention from the media and even a musical called “Gay Bomb – The Musical” was made.