FACT CHECK: Does This Image Show A Replica Statue Of Liberty In Syria Made From The Rubble Of The Artist’s Home?
An image shared on Facebook allegedly shows a replica of the Statue of Liberty built by a Syrian artist with the “remains of his home.”
The image shows a digital photomontage created by an artist. It is not a real statue.
The image shows what appears to be a replica of the Statue of Liberty made from the rubble of a destroyed building. The caption of the Facebook post reads, “A Syrian artist in Aleppo built this replica of the Statue of Liberty with the remains of his home, adding the slogan ‘This is the freedom that they (the US) brought us.’”
Syria has been engaged in a bloody civil war since 2011. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported over 387,000 people in Syria have been killed as a result of the conflict, according to BBC News. The U.S. has been involved in the conflict over the years, including sending troops to Syria to support anti-Syrian government rebels and to fight the Islamic State, according to the Associated Press.
While the image is the work of a Syrian artist, it is not a real statue built from the rubble of a destroyed home. There is likewise no indication such a slogan was originally attached to the piece. (RELATED: Does This Video Show A Syrian Woman Asking Donald Trump To Stop Joe Biden From Bombing Syria?)
A reverse image search revealed the artwork comes Syrian artist Tammam Azzam, who posted it on Facebook in 2012. In the caption, he described the piece as a “photomontage,” the combining of multiple images to create a single image. The U.S. is not mentioned in his 2012 caption.
“It’s done by a photomontage on the computer and not a real statue,” said Azzam in an email to Check Your Fact. “It was part of my photomontage series I did in Dubai in 2012, and it’s clearly photographed.”
The piece was the subject of a 2016 Alarabiya News article in which Azzam said Syrian regime supporters had misleadingly asserted his creation was meant as a message to the U.S. He told the outlet that he used the Statue of Liberty “only as a symbol of freedom” and that the digital photomontage was “carrying a message of optimism despite all of the destruction in Syria.”