Photo showing Israeli flag alongside swastika at protest has been edited

30 April 2024
What was claimed

A photo shows an Israeli flag being flown at a rally alongside several US Confederate flags and the Nazi party’s flag bearing a swastika.

Our verdict

The photo has been altered. There is no Israeli flag in the original photo, which was taken at a ‘Unite the Right’ march in Charlottesville, US, in 2017.

A photo circulating online appears to show an Israeli flag being carried at a rally alongside the Nazi party flag which features a swastika. 

But the photo has been edited—the Israeli flag does not appear in the original photo.

The edited image has been shared on both X (formerly Twitter) and Facebook with captions including: “Interesting combination of flags?” and “Can someone explain?” 

Both the US Confederate flag and the Gadsden flag are also visible in the photo.

However, there is no Israeli flag in the original photo, which shows scenes from a ‘Unite the Right’ rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August 2017. Full Fact could find no reporting indicating an Israeli flag was flown at the march.  

The rally was organised in protest against plans to remove a statue of the Confederate general Robert E Lee (which has since been taken down and melted). 

A counter-protester named Heather Heyer was killed and a further 19 people were injured by a man who drove a car into a crowd during the rally. The man, James Alex Fields Jr, was subsequently sentenced to life in prison. Two police officers also died when their police helicopter crashed while patrolling the protests.

We’ve previously fact checked many examples of altered photos that have been shared widely online, particularly those that relate to the ongoing conflict in the Middle East. These include a photo edited to show IDF soldiers holding an ISIS flag, rather than a flag for their specific brigade, and another some were claiming showed the singer Adele holding a Palestinian flag, that was actually a Mexican flag. 

This type of misinformation can be very convincing and cause people to form opinions based on false information. It’s always worth considering whether posts online show what they claim to—our guides on identifying misleading images and videos should help you do this.

Image courtesy of Zachi Evenor

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