Fact Check: Video Does NOT Show Harrison Ford Expressing Support For Palestine -- His Topic Was The Amazon Rainforest

Fact Check

  • by: Uliana Malashenko
Fact Check: Video Does NOT Show Harrison Ford Expressing Support For Palestine -- His Topic Was The Amazon Rainforest Climate Talks

Does a viral video show actor Harrison Ford advocating for Palestine? No, that's not true: A fragment of his speech was taken out of context. Ford was discussing the Amazon rainforest at a 2019 United Nations climate event, over four years before the Hamas-Israel war that began on October 7, 2023.

The claim appeared in a post (archived here) on TikTok on April 20, 2024. A video of a man in a suit was shared under the title:

They are

Pushing through

TikTok ban today

Free Palestine

Protect free speech

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of the writing of this fact check:

Screen Shot 2024-05-10 at 9.54.33 AM.png

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Fri May 10 13:54:33 2024 UTC)

The man in the video is Hollywood actor Harrison Ford, and the post implied that he was expressing support for Palestine.

In the clip, Ford said the following:

The people on the frontlines, the people on the ground, the people with their feet in the mud ... Our efforts will have an effect. We will make great progress, and we are not alone. There's a new force of nature at hand, stirring all over the world. They are the young people whom, frankly, we have failed, who are angry, who are organized, who are capable of making a difference. They are a moral army. And the most important thing that we can do for them is to get the hell out of their way.

However, his speech had nothing to do with Palestine or the Hamas-Israel war.

A reverse image search shows that the post on TikTok reused an older video of Ford. It took his words out of context.

The footage in question captured Ford's address (archived here) at the 2019 United Nations Climate Action Summit (archived here), which took place in mid-September of that year in New York City.

The excerpt from the speech that was posted on TikTok begins at the 05:06 mark.

Ford had been talking for four minutes before that section began. He spoke about the Amazon rainforest, not about Israel, Hamas or Palestine. He said:

We've been talking about saving the Amazon for 30 years. Almost 30 years ago, Sting held a concert to save the Amazon right here, in New York. And we're still talking about it. The world's largest rainforest, the Amazon, is crucial to any climate change solution for its capacity to sequester carbon, for its biodiversity, for its freshwater, for the air we breathe, for our morality -- and it is on fire. When a room in your house is on fire, you don't say, 'There's a fire in a room in my house'. You say, 'My house is on fire.' And we only have one house.

In mentioning "the people with their feet in the mud," Ford had been referring to the Amazon's indigenous people and civil-society groups that help them. Right before the excerpt shown on TikTok, he said:

On behalf of Conservation International (a Virginia-based environmental nonprofit - LS), I'm honored to announce that we're committing an additional $20 million in funding. But we can't do it alone. We need all the help that we can get. This money must go directly to indigenous people and civil society, the people on the frontlines, the people on the ground, the people with their feet in the mud...

Other Lead Stories fact checks of claims related to the Hamas-Israel war can be found here.

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  Uliana Malashenko

Uliana Malashenko is a New York-based freelance writer and fact checker.

Read more about or contact Uliana Malashenko

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