IN SHORT: In a video captioned “fear Israel”, a flying object is seen rising out of water as people scream in the background. However, the same video was online at least a week before Israel declared war on Hamas in early October 2023 and is unrelated to the conflict.
The video can also be found on TikTok here, with over 260,000 likes and more than 6,000 comments.
Israel is a small country in the Middle East. Decades-long conflict saw new fighting when Palestinian armed group Hamas launched an attack on Israel on 7 October 2023. Israel subsequently declared war on Hamas, who control the Gaza Strip.
The Gaza Strip is a narrow territory that lies mainly within Israel but borders Egypt to the southwest. The strip is densely populated and has high levels of poverty. The people who live there are mainly Palestinians.
But did Israel unleash a new form of military attack against Hamas, as the video of the strange aircraft rising from the water suggests?
Video found on TikTok days before the war
We found the same video clip posted on TikTok on 29 September, without the text “fear Israel”, about a week before Hamas attacked Israel. The post did not make it clear where and when the video was taken.
It was captioned in Spanish with a mix of emojis, reading something like “UFO … recorded on earth”, and also added a number of hashtags such as #ufo #ufosightings and #videoufo. UFO stands for unidentified flying object.
While it’s unclear what this video actually shows, there is no evidence it is in any way connected to Israel or its army.
Fact-checking organisation Factly also found that the video was being falsely linked to the conflict.
We couldn’t find any link between the two video clips besides the background noise. However, the same audio track being used as in a debunked video clip is another sign that this video is being used to share disinformation.
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