OPERATED BY CEJ

Misleading

FACT-CHECKED

by CEJ |

Image of Tom Hanks wearing a keffiyeh-like scarf is old from Jan 2018

On June 13, 2024, a picture was shared on Instagram claiming that Tom Hanks was wearing a keffiyeh symbolising support for Palestine amid the current fighting in Gaza. However, the picture is from January 2018.

Claim

Picture of Tom Hanks wearing a keffiyeh in support of Palestine

Rating Justification

The iVerify Pakistan team has reviewed this content and determined that it is misleading.

To reach this conclusion, the iVerify Pakistan team investigated the picture through a reverse image search.

Multiple posts circulated an image of actor Tom Hanks on social media platforms on June 13, claiming that it showed him wearing the keffiyeh, a Middle Eastern headdress, and implying that it was to support the Palestinian cause amid the current Israeli military campaign in Gaza. However, the picture is an old one from January 2018 when Hanks attended a movie premiere in Paris.

The current crisis in the Gaza Strip was sparked on October 7, 2023, and has since seen relentless Israeli military action that has killed over 37,000 Palestinians. Support for Palestine has grown in the West with regular mass protests and even celebrities lending their voices to calling for a ceasefire and a halt to Israeli military action.

HOW IT STARTED

On June 13, 2024, a picture was shared by on Instagram Khaled Beydoun, an author and professor and also a Palestinian supporter according to his past posts, showing Hanks wearing a keffiyeh with the caption, “Love it. Hopefully, this was more than a fashion statement.”

The post was liked by more than 28,000 users. He later took down the post.

The picture was similarly shared on social media platform X with one post by a Palestinian supporter garnering over 333,000 views.

The caption of her post said: “Tom Hanks wearing a Palestinian scarf.”

The same post was also shared by other users here and here, collecting over 30,000 views.

METHODOLOGY

A fact check was initiated to determine the veracity of the claim due to its virality and keen public interest as the issue was about the popular actor’s supposed support for Palestine.

A reverse image search conducted to trace the picture of Hanks wearing the keffiyeh-like scarf yielded a January 18, 2018, news story from British tabloid newspaper Daily Mail with the headline: “’I told the prop department I’m either buying it or stealing it’: Tom Hanks reveals what vintage item he took from the set of The Post.”

The story contained the picture of Hanks wearing the keffiyeh-like scarf while standing with actress Meryl Streep. According to the story, the picture was from a Paris premiere of their film The Post on January 13, 2018.

Pictures from the premiere were also available on Getty Images, corroborating the same as the above.

The investigation of the circulated picture showed that this was not the first time it was shared in the context of Hanks allegedly supporting Palestine. The same picture was previously shared in December 2022 as well which can be seen here and here.

FACT CHECK STATUS: MISLEADING

The claim regarding Tom Hanks wearing a keffiyeh-like scarf in support of Palestine is misleading.

While Hanks did wear an article of clothing resembling the keffiyeh, the viral picture of him is from a January 2018 film premiere in Paris and has nothing to do with the current Israel-Palestine conflict or public expressions of opposition to the conflict by celebrities.