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This Video of a Woman's Grief Over the Bombing of Her Family Is Not Staged

Wesam Abo Marq Wesam Abo Marq
23rd March 2024
This Video of a Woman's Grief Over the Bombing of Her Family Is Not Staged
This Gazan woman lost her children because of an Israeli airstrike (X)

The Claim

A video shows a Palestinian woman faking the death of her children.

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Emerging story

Amidst the ongoing Israeli war on Gaza, supporters of Israel on social media, using the systematic #Pallywood hashtag on the X platform, shared a video purporting to show a Gazan woman staging a dramatic portrayal of losing her family while on a mission to secure flour. These users levied claims against the woman, alleging she was seeking sympathy through deception.

An X user shared the video under the caption, “Breaking: Amazing coincidence as two "reporters" just happened to be in the direct path of a woman who went out for flour an hour ago & came back to her building  which had actually been bombed weeks ago.This post got 3.3k likes in less than an hour. Seriously, does anyone have a brain anymore??Why are reporters there? Where is the smoke from the explosion and implosion? Where are the emergency crews often filmed when buildings collapse in Gaza?”

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Misbar’s Analysis

Misbar investigated the viral footage and found the claim to be misleading.

Contrary to users’ claim, the woman displayed in the video is not acting.

The Video of a Gazan Mother Who Lost Her Children Is Real

Searching for the watermark inscribed in the video, Misbar's investigative team traced the origin of the video by identifying the photographer's Instagram account, belonging to a user named Moh Ahmed. 

The video was posted on March 18 with a translated caption stating, "She went to get flour for her family, but she returned and found them under the rubble of the house."

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A screenshot of the original video (Instagram)

Also, Al-Arabi news outlet uploaded the video to YouTube under the same caption.

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A screenshot of the original video (YouTube)

Staten Island Advance, a daily newspaper, published a video on March 19 showing the aftermath of Israeli strikes on Gaza City, revealing numerous individuals injured and trapped beneath the rubble. The video shows the exact incident in the circulating video, as the same woman displayed in the viral footage was seen in the video, visibly distraught as she wept amidst the debris of her demolished home in the Northern Gaza Strip.

Photographer Mohammad Hajjar captured the footage for the Associated Press (AP).

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A screenshot of a video showing the same incident (YouTube)

Moreover, the AFP released a photo of the same woman in the same location on March 18. The photo’s caption reads, “A Palestinian woman reacts as she cradles a wounded boy after Israeli bombardment in central Gaza City.”

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A photo shows the woman cradling a wounded boy after Israeli bombardment (AFP)

Famine in Northern Gaza is 'Imminent'

Pro-Israel users have additionally argued that the woman depicted in the video was not holding a bag of flour for her children, as she was purportedly shouting when her house was bombed. However, this justification is debunked by the challenging reality of obtaining flour, particularly in the Northern Gaza Strip, where access to essential supplies, such as food, is severely limited.

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A screenshot of the NPR’s article.

The latest report from the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC), the world's leading authority on hunger, warns of an imminent famine in northern Gaza, where approximately 300,000 individuals still reside. According to the report, famine conditions could manifest anytime between now and May. 

Moreover, the entire population of the Gaza Strip, exceeding 2 million people, is already grappling with elevated levels of acute food insecurity. Released on Monday, the report underscores the urgent need for intervention, highlighting that famine conditions could extend to central and southern Gaza as early as July.

Israel’s Barbaric War on Gaza Intensifies

Since October 7, Israeli occupation forces have been responsible for the deaths of over 31,923 Palestinians. 

On Thursday, the Israel occupation forces announced that their troops had arrested over 600 individuals thus far in the operation at Gaza's al-Shifa Hospital. The Israeli military killed more than 140 casualties in the operation. Initiated on Monday, the Israeli military launched the operation at al-Shifa, Gaza's largest hospital facility, where thousands sought shelter. 

Yesterday, Al Jazeera released a video obtained from an Israeli drone in Gaza, revealing the moments when four unarmed Palestinians were killed by Israeli air attacks.

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