Chabad Synagogue Tunnel Conspiracy Theories Debunked; Capitol Attack Inside Job Video Misinterpreted; No Suspect in Texas Hotel Explosion

Unfounded claims and conspiracy theories have been circulating on social media this week, spreading misinformation and causing confusion. The Associated Press has fact-checked some of the most popular but completely untrue stories and visuals that have been widely shared. Here are the facts:

1. Discovery of a tunnel at a Chabad synagogue:
– CLAIM: A secret underground tunnel found at the Chabad Lubavitch World Headquarters in Brooklyn was used for child sex trafficking or other illicit activities.
– THE FACTS: These claims are unfounded and hint at antisemitic tropes and baseless conspiracy theories. There is no credible evidence to support these allegations. The tunnel was built by young men in the Chabad community and its purpose and provenance are still under debate.

2. Video of comedy TikTokers on Jan. 6:
– CLAIM: A video clip shows liberals disguised as supporters of former President Donald Trump participating in the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, proving it was an inside job.
– THE FACTS: The clip in question was filmed by comedians Walter Masterson and Peter Scattini, who posed as Trump-friendly reporters on Jan. 6 to make comedic content. They were not involved in the attack and their videos clearly explain their intentions.

3. Blast at historic Texas hotel:
– CLAIM: A 44-year-old migrant named Sahil Omar was identified as the suspect of an explosion at a hotel in Fort Worth, Texas.
– THE FACTS: No suspect is being sought in relation to the explosion. Authorities believe it was a natural gas explosion and are still investigating the cause. Similar false claims were made about a shooting at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, last month.

It is important to fact-check information before sharing it on social media to prevent the spread of misinformation. These false claims can cause harm and perpetuate baseless conspiracy theories. The Associated Press urges the public to rely on credible sources and be cautious of sensationalism and errors in the media.

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