Destination: gay Beirut?

A symposium was held in Beirut earlier this month under the auspices of the Florida-based International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association – basically aimed at promoting Lebanon as a "gay" tourist destination.

Some members of Lebanon's LGBT community were uneasy about it (to say the least) and it has sparked quite a debate. I won't go into the arguments here – it would take far too long – but they do raise some important questions for LGBT activists, and particularly about distinguishing between types of activity which might be productive or counter-productive.

I have compiled some links for anyone who wants to explore this further:

Press release announcing the symposium and "familiarisation tour".

Promotional video

Report of the symposium by Raynbow Media Monitor

Statement by Helem (the Lebanese LGBTQ organisation)

Response to Helem

The consumption of gay others (discussion in Bekhsoos magazine)

Posted by Brian Whitaker, 23 October 2010.