There was nothing unusual about the end of a routine press “pool spray” before a private meeting between fire officials and President Joe Biden in Idaho. But conservatives have falsely claimed the video shows someone cut off Biden’s microphone, for fear he was veering off-script.
Afghanistan has implemented a COVID-19 vaccination program and, although administration of vaccines has slowed due to internal armed conflicts, the program is still underway. But some prominent conservative purveyors of misinformation in the U.S. have made false claims about vaccination efforts and the impact of the pandemic in Afghanistan.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been tracking outbreaks of acute flaccid myelitis — a serious condition mainly affecting children — since 2014. The CDC hasn’t seen a reason for concern this year, but Facebook posts have wrongly claimed that the agency has issued a “warning of polio-like outbreak” this fall. The claim seems to have originated from an outdated news article.
A spokesperson for Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has conceded that the New York Democrat falsely claimed that “all” Americans who wanted to leave Afghanistan “have come out.” Government officials say that fewer than 100 U.S. citizens, and an unknown number of U.S. legal permanent residents, who want to leave Afghanistan are still in the country.
A viral meme falsely claims that former President Donald Trump suggested that the chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan was an orchestrated distraction by Democrats. A spokesperson for Trump has denied he made that remark. A very similar statement, not attributed to the former president, previously went viral on Facebook.
An Instagram post highlighted a headline about a non-peer-reviewed study from Israel that found that unvaccinated people previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 had greater immunity against the delta variant than never-infected people fully vaccinated with Pfizer/BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine. But the social media post omitted the study’s other finding that one dose of the vaccine enhanced protection for infection survivors.
Afghan journalists report that a video of a person suspended from a helicopter shows an operation in which the person was trying to change a flag. But critics of President Joe Biden have used the footage to claim the Taliban used U.S. equipment for a “hanging.” One person who shared the claim, Sen. Ted Cruz, later deleted his tweet, saying it “may be inaccurate.”