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FACT CHECK: 2014 image misrepresented as current US aid to Israel


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FACT CHECK: 2014 image misrepresented as current US aid to Israel
A reverse image search reveals that the photo used in the claim was originally taken at a South Korean air base in 2014

Claim: A photo showing bombs on display is part of the third batch of US military aid for Israel. 

Rating: FALSE

Why we fact-checked this: The claim is circulating on various social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. One tweet posted on December 6 currently has 4.5 million views, 4,300 replies, 37 retweets, and 65,000 likes, as of writing. 

The facts: The image is unrelated to the ongoing conflict in the Middle East. A reverse image search revealed that the photo was taken in October 2014 and uploaded on the website of the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea. 

The caption of the original photo described “more than 80 Blu-109 and Mark-84 bombs” on display “at the Wolf Pack Munitions Storage Area, Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, following a successful emergency destruction of munitions simulation, Oct. 23, 2014.”

Reuters and Logically Facts have also fact-checked the same image.

The image surfaced as the conflict between Israel and Hamas intensified, following reports of Israel flooding Gaza tunnels and striking southern parts of Gaza

US on the Israel-Hamas war: As the international community warned of a growing humanitarian crisis, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly passed a resolution on December 12 calling for a ceasefire, with three-quarters of the 193 member states voting in favor. 

The US and Israel, which say the ceasefire benefits Hamas, voted against the measure. The US vetoed a similar call for a ceasefire in the 15-member Security Council earlier in December. 

Washington has vowed to support Israel since the conflict broke out, backing its ally with military support through pledges of aid and the sale of firearms. In recent weeks, however, US President Joe Biden criticized Israel’s “indiscriminate bombing” of Gaza, but stood firm on US support for Israel despite pressure from Democratic lawmakers. 

US aid to Palestine: The Biden administration has pledged humanitarian assistance to displaced and conflict-affected people in Gaza and the West Bank through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

USAID announced on December 5 that it will provide $21 million in humanitarian aid for the Palestinian people. This is on top of the $100 million pledged by Biden earlier in October. 

Since the war between Israel and Hamas broke out on October 7, the US has sent a humanitarian convoy on October 21 and critical food and medical supplies on November 28.

Rappler has debunked several false claims about the Israel-Hamas conflict:

– Ailla Dela Cruz/Rappler.com

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