Jun 132011

Like many, I’ve been following the blog of “A Gay Girl in Damascus”. (No, I’m not linking to it – for obvious reasons.)

Like many, I’m SICKENED to discover that this is a scam, a lie, a hoax.

I’d started following the blog about a month or so ago. I have sat and wept at some of the things that have been described in it, feeling impotently empathetic. A horrible feeling.

I’ve experienced optimism and pessimism in near equal measure, often within the same post.

So, what’s the problem? If the emotional response is genuine, and the circumstances being “described” are essentially accurate, why the outrage?

Simple; the lies which make up THIS blog breed doubt in any others of similar nature. The next time we read an apparently earnest, heartfelt cry for help from an LGBTQ person in such a regime, we will hesitate and wonder. And apathy will be more likely.

Apathy, the enemy of any advances in these states.

And that is why, along with P Z Myers, I say “Screw You, Tom McMaster”.


Read the coward’s excuse below:

I never expected this level of attention. While the narrative voıce may have been fictional, the facts on thıs blog are true and not mısleading as to the situation on the ground. I do not believe that I have harmed anyone — I feel that I have created an important voice for issues that I feel strongly about. 

I only hope that people pay as much attention to the people of the Middle East and their struggles in thıs year of revolutions. The events there are beıng shaped by the people living them on a daily basis. I have only tried to illuminate them for a western audience.

This experience has sadly only confirmed my feelings regarding the often superficial coverage of the Middle East and the pervasiveness of new forms of liberal Orientalism.

However, I have been deeply touched by the reactions of readers.

Tom MacMaster,
Istanbul, Turkey
July 12, 2011

The sole author of all posts on this blog