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The U.S. provides Israel with $3.8 billion each year in military funding under an already established agreement. But social media posts are sharing a doctored “memorandum” that falsely purports to show an additional $8 billion was approved for Israel by President Joe Biden on Oct. 7, the day war began between Hamas and Israel.
A doctored document falsely claiming that the U.S. is providing $8 billion in aid to Israel has been circulating on social media since war broke out between Israel and Hamas on Oct. 7.
Images shared on Instagram, X and other social media platforms of the fabricated “memorandum” dated Oct. 7, 2023, says President Joe Biden authorized “up to $8 billion in defense articles and services of the Department of Defense and military education and training, to provide assistance to Israel.”
There is no such memorandum referring to $8 billion for Israel listed among the presidential actions for Oct. 7, and the language in the posts matches exactly — except for the amount and the designated country — what was written for at least two documents Biden signed earlier this year authorizing aid to Ukraine.
A spokesperson for the Biden administration also told the Associated Press that the memo shared on social media is fake.
That said, the U.S. has a long-standing relationship with Israel and has provided more than $158 billion in aid since the country’s founding in 1948, according to the Congressional Research Service.
The most recent agreement, signed in 2016, requires the U.S. to send $38 billion to Israel between 2019 and 2028. That amounts to $3.8 billion per year.
Since the recent violence broke out, the U.S. has also provided additional military supplies to Israel — including components for the country’s missile defense system known as the “Iron Dome” — and has increased its military presence in the region.
At least 25 U.S. citizens have been killed in the fighting, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in remarks on Oct. 12.
Editor’s note: FactCheck.org is one of several organizations working with Facebook to debunk misinformation shared on social media. Our previous stories can be found here. Facebook has no control over our editorial content.
Reuters Fact Check. “Fact Check: U.S. document approving $8bn military aid to Israel is fake.” Reuters. 9 Oct 2023.
Hudnall, Hannah. “No $8 billion aid package for Israel. False claim spreads from fabricated memo.” USA Today. 10 Oct 2023.
Marcelo, Philip. “Biden hasn’t signed a recent order sending $8B in aid to Israel. A ‘memo’ circulating online was altered.” Associated Press. 9 Oct 2023.
Presidential Actions. Whitehouse.gov. Archived 11 Oct 2023.
Biden, Joe. “Memorandum on Delegation of Authority Under Section 506(a)(1) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961.” Whitehouse.gov. 3 Mar 2023.
Biden, Joe. “Memorandum on Delegation of Authority Under Section 506(a)(1) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961.” Whitehouse.gov. 4 Apr 2023.
Sharp, Jeremy. “U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel.” Congressional Research Service. 1 Mar 2023.
Press release. “FACT SHEET: Memorandum of Understanding Reached with Israel.” Whitehouse.gov. 14 Sep 2016.