Video doesn't show Palestinians learning to fake injuries amid Israel-Hamas war

By: Annet Preethi Furtado
October 17 2023

Share Article: facebook logo twitter logo linkedin logo
Video doesn't show Palestinians learning to fake injuries amid Israel-Hamas war

Screenshots of posts claiming that Palestinians are faking injuries amid the Israel-Hamas war. (Source: X/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)


The Verdict False

Segments of footage from a 2017 workshop have been used to claim Palestinians are being taught how to fake injuries amid the Israel-Hamas war.

Claim ID af548fcf

What's the claim?

Amid the ongoing Hamas-Israel war, a viral 26-second video alleges Palestinians are fabricating injuries to falsely implicate Israel and cast themselves as victims. This narrative insinuates that Palestinians are being guided to apply makeup to fake injuries and "cry using chemicals" to accuse Israel unjustly.

In the video, a woman in a hijab is seen applying a red substance to people's faces and clothing to make them look as though they've sustained injuries and are bleeding. After the application of the substance, one woman can be seen smiling and gazing into the camera. A man can also be observed providing aid to individuals with several nearby ambulances. 

An X user who shared the video wrote, "Welcome to Islamic University of Victim Card. Here you can learn how to do full makeup and cry using chemical and then blame #ISRAEL. This University has special discount for women and small children. #IsraelFightsBack #Gaza #IsraelPalestineConflict #IsraelPalestineWar". "Real truth of Palestine," reads a banner atop the videos. The archived version of the posts can be seen here, and here.

Screenshot of viral posts (Source: X/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)

Another similar video was shared with the caption, "Let's not get carried away by fake victims." The video featured a Hindi text overlay, "गाजा पट्टी में बच्चों का विशेष मेक-अप ताकि इज़राइल को बदनाम किया जा सके," which translates to "Special makeup for children in Gaza so that Israel can be defamed" in English. Text in English inside the video claims that it shows people making “fake blood” and painting fake wounds to “make the world feel sorry for them, to make Israel look bad.” An archived post can be found here

Screenshot of viral posts (Source: X/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)

However, these videos were captured during a 2017 workshop in Palestine where makeup artists and actors were taking part in a project by the Doctors of the World. The project focused on utilizing special effects makeup to replicate injuries to acquaint medical professionals with these scenarios.

What we found

Upon conducting a reverse image search on keyframes of the viral video, we found that the same visuals had been published by the Turkish news outlet TRT World on YouTube in March 2017. TRT World had shared an extended version of the clip as a part of their "Showcase" program, dedicated to exploring arts and culture. The video is titled "Palestinian film industry | Cinema | Showcase" and its description reads: "There are not many film productions in the Gaza Strip. But that didn't stop makeup artist Mariam Salah from following her dream." The visuals in the viral video match the 22-second to 50-second segment of the original YouTube video. The video also features Abdel Basset al Loulou, another makeup artist. 

Footage from "Showcase," on TRT World. (Source: YouTube)  

In the original footage, the host explains that the footage shows Salah, a makeup artist, skillfully creating gruesome injuries on a film set on actors taking part in a project organized by the French charity Doctors of the World. TRT World's video narration explained that Doctors of the World aimed to raise awareness about the dangers experienced by Gaza residents. 

Moreover, precisely from the 0:16 to 0:20 time mark, a banner featuring the word "simulation" is visible in the video, while a representative can be observed wearing a Médecins du Monde (Doctors of The World) logo on the back of their T-shirt.

Screenshot of TRT World's video featuring a representative wearing a Médecins du Monde (Doctors of The World) logo on the back of their T-shirt, with a 'simulation' banner in the background. (Source: YouTube/Screenshot/Modified by Logically Facts)

Logically Facts has contacted Doctors of The World for a comment, and this fact check will be updated if and when we receive a response.

We found a video of scenes from this set shared on news outlet Gaza Post’s YouTube channel on February 25, 2017, titled “Cinematic tricks: an art that makes the world look differently at Gaza”, focussing on makeup artists and their work in the Palestinian film industry. 

In this YouTube video, at the 0:05 timestamp, two men are visible: one wearing a grey outfit with visible injury marks and the other wearing a cap, a white top, and black pants with an orange stripe on the left side. Both individuals are seated next to a van and are the same two featured in one of the viral videos. Furthermore, at the 1:32 timestamp, Salah is also seen speaking, wearing the same outfit as she does in the viral videos.

Comparison between the viral clip and the Gaza Post YouTube video. (Source:X/YouTube/Screenshot)

Multiple segments of the Gaza Post YouTube video, such as those from 0:11 to 0:13, 0:21 to 0:23, 0:50 to 0:53, and other timestamps, have been edited and misused to promote unfounded allegations on social media suggesting Palestine is staging victims with faked injuries.

Comparison between the viral clip and the Gaza Post YouTube video. (Source:X/YouTube/Screenshot)

What have the makeup artists said?

A report by news outlet Al Arabiya published in February 2018 stated that the video showed an art workshop that holds this exercise annually in Gaza. The report further quoted al-Loulou, the workshop's owner, as saying that the primary purpose of the workshop was to replicate injuries commonly seen in children from conflict zones. This was done to acquaint medical professionals with these scenarios and train them to provide appropriate care for injured children. 

Further, in May 2021, Salah told AFP that the shoot featured in The Gaza Post report was for the Doctors of the World and dated back to 2017. “The content of the video was creating almost real injuries for a group of doctors from the French Doctors of the World to train on, and it is a manoeuver coordinated by them,” she told AFP.

The verdict
Segments from a 2017 video showing makeup artists creating injury effects for a project have been circulated amid the Israel-Hamas war to falsely claim that it shows Palestinians learning to fake injuries and falsely accuse Israel. Therefore, we have marked the claim false.

Would you like to submit a claim to fact-check or contact our editorial team?

Global Fact-Checks Completed

We rely on information to make meaningful decisions that affect our lives, but the nature of the internet means that misinformation reaches more people faster than ever before