On the 7th of October, the Palestinian militant group, Hamas launched an attack from the Gaza strip on Israel on 7 October, killing 1,400 people and taking more than 200 hostages. Heavily armed men breached the fences separating Israel and Gaza and entered southern Israel. According to Israeli officials, at least 1,400 people were killed, many of them civilians, including children.
Following this attack, Israel Officially Declared War on Hamas. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel “is at war” after Hamas launched a devastating surprise attack on the country on Saturday, 7th October.
“Citizens of Israel, we are at war. Not an operation, not a round [of fighting,] at war! This morning Hamas initiated a murderous surprise attack against the state of Israel and its citizens,” Netanyahu said in a statement.
What Is Hamas and Gaza Strip?
More than 2 million Palestinians live in the 140-square-mile enclave, making it one of earth’s most densely populated places. Hamas is currently controlling it.
Hamas, also spelled Ḥamās, the acronym for Harakat al-Muqawama al-Islamiya (Islamic Resistance Movement), is described as a militant Palestinian nationalist and Islamist movement in the West Bank and Gaza Strip that is dedicated to the establishment of an independent Islamic state in historical Palestine.
It was founded in 1987, and was labeled a foreign terrorist organization in 1997, by the United States, freezing its U.S.-based assets, barring members from entering the country, and banning the provision of “material support or resources”.
Misleading Contents Found In The Israel-Hamas War
ROUNDCHECK has noticed several misleading contents spreading across social media platforms about the Israel-Hamas war. We have carefully analysed the claims and have done due diligence to reveal the authenticity of some of the information we obtained.
A video clip claimed that Harvard University students demonstrated against Israel’s crimes against the Palestinians.
We also saw this video and same caption was shared multiple times on X
We subjected the video to INVid, a video verification tool that provided us with several keyframes.
We later conducted a Google reverse image search, which revealed the said video was a protest in downtown Dallas Texas.
A News & media website, Mega News, uploaded the video on their Instagram account on October 16th with the caption “Huge protest in downtown Dallas Texas in solidarity with Palestine and the oppressed people of Gaza!!”
We further confirmed the location of the protest through Google Maps.
However, our findings further revealed that although there was a protest by Harvard University students, it wasn’t until the 18th of October, two days after the video surfaced.
Harvard students held a protest in support of Palestine and marched from Harvard’s main campus in Cambridge to its business school in Boston.
The video was used in another event, not the Harvard University student protests.
This video clip claiming that Harvard University students demonstrated against Israel’s crimes against the Palestinians is misleading.
Somerville referenced Israel’s defense minister, Yoav Gallant visit to some of the hundreds of thousands of troops who have massed on the border with Gaza.
This post also accompanied four images depicting the level of damage the current war has had on the people of Palestine.
This post garnered 199 reactions, 265 comments, and 30 shares as at the time of this report.
We checked through the images and noticed one of them was an old picture.
ROUNDCHECK in a bid to verify the images, subjected them to several image verification tools and noticed one of the images was an old picture used in May 2021.
We, however, traced the image to a post made by Oxfam America on their website published on May 19, 2021, with the title “Nearly half a million people in Gaza out of reach of humanitarian aid”.
We went further to check and saw a news report published on 16th May 2021 of a bombardment of the home of the Hamas political chief in Gaza. The image used in the news report was a similar image.
One of the images used in the Facebook post of Somerville to depict the level of damage the current war has had on the people of Palestine is MISLEADING.
Editor’s Note: The war between Isreal-Hamas-Palestine continues but there are a range of misleading images used to depict the war and it is necessary to debunk them.