Hinter „Amina“ steckt ein Amerikaner namens Tom MacMaster, der hat diesen Fake über fünf Jahre (!) lang betrieben. MacMaster hat grade folgendes auf seinem Blog „A Gay Girl in Damaskus“ gepostet:
Apology to readers
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.
July 12, 2011
[update] Washington Post: ‘A Gay Girl in Damascus’ comes clean, NPR: 'Gay Girl In Damascus' Apologizes, Admits She Is An American Man (via Boing Boing)
MacMaster, a Middle East peace activist who is now working on his master’s degree at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, wrote that he fictionalized the account of a gay woman in Syria to illuminate the situation for a Western audience. Amina’s story may have remained believable, but he wrote of her arrest, his fans — in a desire to help the woman they had grown to care about — found a trail of evidence that led back to MacMaster.