President Donald Trump on Monday evening hammered ABC News for airing a video that purportedly showed a recent Turkish military operation against Kurdish civilians in northern Syria, which actually appears to have been filmed at a Kentucky gun range in 2017.
“A big scandal at @ABC News. They got caught using really gruesome FAKE footage of the Turks bombing in Syria. A real disgrace,” the president wrote on Twitter. Tomorrow they will ask softball questions to Sleepy Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, like why did Ukraine & China pay you millions when you knew nothing? Payoff?”
A big scandal at @ABC News. They got caught using really gruesome FAKE footage of the Turks bombing in Syria. A real disgrace. Tomorrow they will ask softball questions to Sleepy Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, like why did Ukraine & China pay you millions when you knew nothing? Payoff?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 15, 2019
The video, which ABC News reported was of an attack on the border town of Tal Abyad, was broadcasted Sunday on World News Tonight and on Monday’s edition of Good Morning America. Yet, a comparative analysis by a technology news site found the footage was filmed at Knob Creek Gun Range in West Point, Kentucky. “[I]t’s clear that the videos are the same,” Gizmodo concluded.
ABC News anchor Tom Llamas aired the footage on Sunday, claiming that it showed “the situation rapidly spiraling out of control in northern Syria.”
“One week since President Trump ordered U.S. forces out of that region, effectively abandoning America’s allies in the fight against [ISIS],” the anchor framed the purported video.
“This video right here appearing to show Turkey’s military bombing Kurd civilians in a Syrian border town,” he added. “The Kurds, who fought alongside the U.S. against ISIS. Now, horrific reports of atrocities committed by Turkish-backed fighters on those very allies.”
After several social media users raised concerns about the video, ABC News released a statement with a correction and apology for the embarrassing mistake.
“[W]e’ve taken down video that aired on World News Tonight Sunday and Good Morning America this morning that appeared to be from the Syrian border immediately after questions were raised about its accuracy. ABC News regrets the error,” said the news network.