Israel has established strict measures in response to armed attacks on its schoolchildren. But social media posts falsely claim there have been “no school shootings in Israel” and use a photo to misleadingly suggest students carry weapons to class. Only guards and other specific personnel — not students — can carry arms in Israeli schools.
A mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas on May 24 was the deadliest at a U.S. school in a decade, and has once again sparked debate about gun laws and how to protect children in the classroom.
Comparisons also are being made to gun laws or regulatory measures taken in other countries, such as Israel, a nation that has a low number of school shootings as compared to the U.S. But as we’ve written before, some social media posts have spread misinformation about school security measures and gun control laws in Israel.
On May 29, the Independent Firearm Owners Association — which describes itself as “a gun rights, pro-privacy, pro-freedom organization” — shared a photo on Facebook showing young women walking with military-style guns. The caption reads, “No school shootings in Israel. Must be great gun control? What, they carry guns to class – oh no, not that!” The post received over 13,000 likes and 8,000 shares.
But the Facebook post and the tweets misrepresent the individuals in the photo. And it is not true that there have been no school shootings in Israel.
We don’t know when the photo was taken. But through a reverse image search, we found the photo had been posted in 2011 on Defence.pk — a self-described “one stop resource for Pakistan defence, strategic affairs, security issues, world defence and military affairs” — with the heading, “Pictures of Women in the Armed Forces.”