By: Sam Doak
October 11 2023
This video was filmed in Ukraine, months prior to the current wave of violence in Israel and Gaza.
On October 7, 2023, militants affiliated with Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad launched an assault on Israeli-held territory. As of October 11, government sources claimed that over 1,200 Israelis have been killed by Palestinian militants since the outbreak of violence on Saturday. The Gaza Health Ministry has stated that more than 950 people have been killed in the Gaza Strip by Israeli forces during the same timeframe by Israeli forces, which have been targetting the densely populated area with retaliatory strikes.
As violence has unfolded in Israel and Gaza, many misattributed videos have circulated widely online. One such clip, filmed at night in an urban area, shows brightly burning incendiary material falling from the sky. Numerous users have posted this footage on X in recent days, claiming it shows the use of chemical weapons by Israeli forces in Gaza.
While this footage has been widely shared by users claiming it originates in Gaza, Logically Facts has determined that it was recorded in Ukraine.
A reverse image search reveals that this footage was included in coverage published by The Mirror on March 12, 2023. According to the newspaper, it shows the use of thermite in the Ukrainian town of Vuhledar by Russian forces. A YouTube video published by the Telegraph provides the same context alongside this footage.
Neither The Telegraph nor The Mirror provided details in their coverage that demonstrate conclusively that this video was recorded in Vuhledar. However, a search for discussions of this event on social media reveals X user @auditor_ya, a volunteer with the project Geoconfirmed, geolocated the footage to Desantnykiv Street in the north of the town.
This video does not show the use of chemical weapons in Gaza. It was filmed in Vuhledar, Ukraine, following an attack by Russian forces. According to news reports, the substance shown is thermite. This claim has, therefore, been marked as false.