FACT CHECK: Did The U.S. Bomb A Civilian Oil Ship In Syria?

Elias Atienza | Fact Check Reporter

A video shared on Facebook allegedly shows U.S. forces bombarded a civilian oil ship in Syria.

Verdict: Misleading

The video shows a fuel convoy, not a civilian oil ship. The U.S. has denied any involvement in that attack.

Fact Check:

The armed conflict in Syria has been ongoing for 11 years, according to USNI News. As of 2022, approximately 900 U.S. troops still serve in the country as part of the U.S. military’s Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR), the outlet reported.

Social media users have been sharing a video of what appears to be a structure burning. The video caption reads, “The US just bombed a civilian oil ship carrying life saving fuel to war ravaged Syria on the eve of winter, killing 30 innocent men.”

There is no evidence a civilian oil ship was attacked. If a civilian oil tanker had been hit by an airstrike, media outlets would have covered it, yet none have. The U.S. Embassy in Syria website does not feature any releases or announcements of airstrikes in the country.

The video appears to show a fuel convoy being attacked on land, not at the sea. A convoy of fuel tankers was attacked by airstrikes, according to The Associated Press. Syrian opposition groups claimed that the men killed in the strike were Iranian militiamen, while Iranian state media stated that the convoy was carrying fuel from Iran to Lebanon, the outlet reported.

Images of the strike were shared on Twitter by Joe Truzman, a research analyst at the Foundation for Defending Democracy. (RELATED: Video Claims Ukraine ‘Disabled’ Two More Russian Gunboats)

“Reports of an airstrike at al-Qaim located on the Syria-Iraq border,” Truzman tweeted.

The U.S. denied involvement in the strike, according to Reuters.  The Wall Street Journal citing anonymous sources, reported that Israel conducted the airstrikes. The Israeli military declined to comment on the strike, the outlet reported.

This is not the first time misinformation surrounding current world events has circulated on social media. Check your Fact recently debunked a claim suggesting Israel had provided cruise missiles to Ukraine during their conflict with Russia.

Elias Atienza

Fact Check Reporter
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