For some countries (and there are many) that have welcomed LGBT soldiers for some time now, the entire debate over DADT has reinforced a negative view of the United States. Here's a comment from a Canadian blog that is fairly typical of what I've been reading:
The comments made by the general reflect, I am afraid, the generally homophobic attitudes of Americans in general. It's sickening that a country that has had slavery and racism in its history is still racist, and nowadays adds homophobia to its toxic brew of conservative politics and intolerance. We have our problems in Canada with homophobia and racism, yes, but it's nothing of the magnitude one sees from Americans.
Whether or not you agree with the statement isn't the point. The point is that in many eyes we are not the "home of the free." We are not that "sweet land of liberty" conservatives would want others to believe. How can we claim to be the leader of the free world when many of our citizens would find greater freedom in other countries? We are, in fact, woefully behind many countries when it comes to basic equality of our citizens. And that, I think, is very sad.