The world of news is complex – and false stories and images are often widely shared on social media. Blasting News’s editorial team spots the most popular hoaxes and misleading information every week to help you discern truth from falsehood. Here are some of the most shared false claims of this week, of which none are legit.

Please send us tips or claims to check at this email or at this X/Twitter account @BNFactCheck. Read this page to better understand our submission guidelines.

BBC and Bellingcat did not report that Ukraine sold weapons to Hamas

False claim: Social media users around the world have shared an alleged BBC News video claiming that a report by the investigative website Bellingcat revealed that the Ukrainian government had secretly sold weapons and ammunition to the Islamist group Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip and launched an unprecedented surprise attack on Israel on October 7, triggering a large-scale military retaliation, with thousands of deaths on both sides over the last days.


  • In a post on its official X account, Bellingcat shared a screenshot of the BBC News video, accompanied by the following text: “We're aware of a fake BBC video circulating on social media falsely claiming that Bellingcat has verified Ukrainian weapons sales to Hamas. We've reached no such conclusions or made any such claims. We'd like to stress that this is a fabrication and should be treated accordingly.”
  • Also in a post on X, BBC Verify reporter Shayan Sardarizadeh said that the video circulating on social media “is 100% fake.”
  • The Ukrainian government officially condemned the Hamas attack on Israel. In a post on its official Facebook page, Ukraine’s military intelligence agency accused Russia of promoting a “disinformation campaign” to accuse Ukraine of selling arms to terrorist groups.


did not approve sending $8 billion in military aid to Israel

False claim: Social media users in the United States have shared an image of an alleged White House memo, signed by President Joe Biden and dated October 7, 2023, authorizing the “drawdown of up to $8 billion in defense articles and the services of the Department of Defense” to “provide assistance to Israel.”


  • A search of the official White House website and the Federal Register finds no memo informing of the authorization to drawdown up to $8 billion in military aid to Israel.
  • The memo shared on social media, however, contains the same title and much of the same content as a memo published on July 25, 2023 authorizing $400 million in aid to Ukraine.
  • Speaking to the press, White House spokesperson Sean Savett said that the memo circulating on social media was a “fake.”

American taxpayer money did not help fund Hamas attacks

False claim: Hours after Hamas launched its surprise attack on Israel on October 7, former President Donald Trump released a statement claiming that “American taxpayer dollars helped fund these attacks, which many reports are saying came from the Biden Administration.”


  • Although Trump did not make it clear in his statement how U.S. taxpayer money would have helped fund Hamas attacks, he criticized in a Truth Social post on October 11 the decision taken by the Biden administration in August to unfreeze $6 billion of Iranian funds that were in South Korean banks, as part of an agreement in exchange for the freedom of five Americans detained in Iran.
  • After the release of the prisoners in mid-September, the Iranian money was deposited in a restricted Qatari bank account. On October 12, the Qatari government reached an agreement with the U.S. authorities to prevent Iran from having access to the money.
  • Apart from the fact that the Iranian government has not yet had access to the money, which comes from oil purchased by South Korea, the agreement also stipulates that when Iran finally has access to the fund, it can only use it to pay for humanitarian items such as medicine and food.

Alleged video of Hamas shooting down Israeli helicopter is from video game

False claim: On August 8, just one day after Hamas launched its surprise attack on Israel, social media users have shared a video allegedly showing a Hamas member using a rocket launcher to shoot down an Israeli helicopter in Gaza.


  • A reverse image search shows the same clip present in a video published in February 2023 by a YouTube account called RIMStudio.
  • The description of the video reads: “It's Just a Military Simulation. Not Real life.” The author also makes it clear in the text that the video was created “using content of Bohemia Interactive a.s.,” in reference to the developer of the war simulator video game “ARMA 3.”
  • In a post on its official blog on October 10, Bohemia Interactive reinforced that images generated with “ARMA 3” have been used to spread Fake News and provided the public with some tips on how to distinguish in-game videos from real-world footage.

Historic church in Gaza was not bombed by Israel

False claim: Social media users have shared the claim that, while heavily shelling the Gaza Strip, Israeli military forces allegedly hit and destroyed the Greek Orthodox Church of St.

Porphyrios, built by the Crusaders in the 12th century.


  • In a post on its official Facebook page on October 9, the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Porphyrios informed that the church “is untouched and operating in service of the community and our congregation.”
  • As of October 13 evening, there was no information that the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Porphyrios had suffered any damage as a result of the Israeli airstrikes in Gaza.