Saturday, July 13, 2024
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HomeFact Check2020 Video Shared As Alleged Houthi Attack On US Aircraft Carrier In...

2020 Video Shared As Alleged Houthi Attack On US Aircraft Carrier In Red Sea

Authors

Vasudha noticed the growing problem of mis/disinformation online after studying New Media at ACJ in Chennai and became interested in separating facts from fiction. She is interested in learning how global issues affect individuals on a micro level. Before joining Newschecker’s English team, she was working with Latestly.

Pankaj Menon is a fact-checker based out of Delhi who enjoys ‘digital sleuthing’ and calling out misinformation. He has completed his MA in International Relations from Madras University and has worked with organisations like NDTV, Times Now and Deccan Chronicle online in the past.

Claim
Aftermath of the Houthis attack on US aircraft carrier USS Dwight Eisenhower in the Red Sea.

Fact
2020 video of a fire on USS Bonhomme Richard in San Diego

A 27-second-long video showing dense smoke rising from a colossal ship is being widely shared on social media platforms, with users claiming it to show the aftermath of an alleged Houthi attack on USS Dwight Eisenhower, a US aircraft carrier in the Red Sea. However, Newschecker found the claim to be untrue. The video in fact shows a 2020 fire aboard USS Bonhomme Richard in San Diego.

Multiple X users are sharing the footage claiming to show the Houthis’ purported attack on the US vessel, while others posted screengrabs from the clip.

Such posts can be seen here, here and here.

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The Houthis, an Iranian-backed Yemeni rebel group, said that they have launched an attack on the USS Dwight Eisenhower in the Red Sea in retaliation for the joint US and UK operation last week. However, a Business Insider report on the matter stated that a US defence official has dismissed the Houthis’ claims of attack on their vessel. 

Fact Check/Verification

On skimming through the comment sections of social media posts carrying the viral footage, we noticed a comment by a user pointing out that the video in fact shows a fire onboard the USS Bonhomme Richard in 2020 in San Diego.

Alleged Houthi Attack On US Aircraft Carrier In Red Sea
Screengrab from X

Taking a clue, we looked up keywords “USS Bonhomme Richard,” and “fire” on YouTube yielded a report by The Guardian, dated July 13, 2020. “More than 20 people suffered minor injuries on Sunday after an explosion and fire on board a ship at a naval base in San Diego, military officials said. The blaze was reported shortly before 9am on USS Bonhomme Richard, said Mike Raney, a spokesman for the navy’s Pacific fleet,” said the report.

Screengrab from YouTube video by The Guardian

After comparing the keyframes of the widely circulated footage with the The Guardian video of fire on USS Bonhomme Richard, we could conclude that they both depict the same incident.

(L-R) Screengrabs from viral video and screengrabs from video by The Guardian

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Detailing the incident, an ABC News report from July, 2020, stated, “More than 400 sailors are working to put out the massive fire that continues to rage aboard the USS Bonhomme Richard in San Diego and Navy officials are unclear how long the blaze might continue to burn.”

Screengrab from ABC News website

“There is a tremendous amount of heat underneath and that’s where it’s — it’s flashing up — also forward, closer to the bow again there’s a heat source and we’re trying to get to that as well,” Rear Adm. Philip Sobeck, the commander of Expeditionary Strike Group 3 was quoted as saying.

Multiple other outlets like DailyMail, CNN and San Diego Union Tribune also reported on the 2020 fire onboard the US Navy Ship in San Diego, carrying images and visuals similar to the viral video.

Furthermore, we also found Facebook posts from July 2020 featuring the widely circulated video to show fire onboard the USS Bonhomme Richard in San Diego.

Screengrabs from Facebook

We were not independently able to verify whether the US vessel stationed in the Red Sea was attacked or not. However, the evidence proves that this particular video is old and from San Diego.

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Conclusion

We could thus conclude that a 2020 video of a fire aboard a ship has been falsely shared to show the attack on USS Dwight Eisenhower by the Houthis.

Result: False

Sources
YouTube Video By The Guardian, Dated July 13, 2020
Report By ABC News, Dated July 14, 2020


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Authors

Vasudha noticed the growing problem of mis/disinformation online after studying New Media at ACJ in Chennai and became interested in separating facts from fiction. She is interested in learning how global issues affect individuals on a micro level. Before joining Newschecker’s English team, she was working with Latestly.

Pankaj Menon is a fact-checker based out of Delhi who enjoys ‘digital sleuthing’ and calling out misinformation. He has completed his MA in International Relations from Madras University and has worked with organisations like NDTV, Times Now and Deccan Chronicle online in the past.

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