FACT CHECK: Does This Video Show An Iraqi Soldier Saying Goodbye To His Family Before Dying?

Elias Atienza | Senior Reporter

A video shared on Instagram purportedly shows an Iraqi soldier saying goodbye to his family before dying.

Verdict: False

The video comes from a short film and does not depict the goodbye of an actual Iraqi soldier.

Fact Check:

ISIS, an Islamic terrorist group, took over about a third of Iraq, including cities such as Fallujah and Mosul, by mid-2014, according to the U.S. Institute for Peace. Iraqi and Iraqi Kurdish forces, backed by a U.S.-led coalition, eventually retook lost territory, and the Iraqi government declared victory over ISIS in 2017, Reuters reported.

Text inside a viral Instagram video inaccurately claims the footage shows an Iraqi soldier bidding his family goodbye before dying during an unspecified battle. In the video clip, gunfire can be heard in the background. (RELATED: Do Saudi Arabia And Its Allies Spend 8 Times More Than Iran Militarily?)

A reverse image search of key frames revealed the footage actually originates from the short film “Dialing,” which can be found on YouTube. The short film, directed by Bahaa Al Kadimy, was screened at the 2015 Dubai International Film Festival and “follows an Iraqi woman who refuses to accept her son’s death,” Gulf News reported.

Menhel Abbas, the actor portraying the soldier, shared the entire short film on his Instagram account in 2019. He had previously posted scenes from the film, including part of the one where his character says goodbye to his family, writing in the caption, “I live, and this video is a scene of representation, not real. This is a movie for the martyrs of Iraq,” according to Google Translate.

Elias Atienza

Senior Reporter
Follow Elias on Twitter Have a fact check suggestion? Send ideas to [email protected].