Videomanipulation, as if Only Buildings Were Burned Using a Direct Energy Weapon in Hawaii

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On August 18, 2023, footage of a fire on the Hawaiian island of Maui was disseminated on Facebook. According to the post, only houses, buildings, and cars were burned on the island, but the trees survived, which means that a Direct Energy Weapon was used to cause the fire. The post alleges that this was a premeditated attack against the people of Hawaii, the purpose of which was to convince people of “global warming” and impose tyrannical restrictions in the name of “climate.”

videomanipulatsia thithqos havaize energetikuli iaraghis gamoqhenebith mkholod shenobebi daitsva Videomanipulation, as if Only Buildings Were Burned Using a Direct Energy Weapon in Hawaii

The claims voiced in the post are false and aim to amplify a conspiracy theory. Fires of this type are not unusual in Hawaii, as wildfires often throw sparks that hit larger targets than trees, such as houses and cars. The trees themselves are somewhat protected from burning by their bark and water content.

In addition, the claim that the fire was intentionally caused by laser beams or other weapons is baseless, and there is no evidence to prove that the fire was caused artificially.

After August 8, a number of claims were spread on social media, according to which the fire was intentionally caused by laser beams or other weapons. However, such claims are unfounded, and there is no evidence to prove that the fire was artificially started.

According to experts, such fires are not unusual on the island of Hawaii. Wildfires often send flying sparks, which then travel to larger targets such as houses and cars. And trees that catch fire usually don’t burn completely because of their water content and the presence of bark.

Michael Gollner, an associate professor of mechanical engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, who leads the Fire Research Lab, told the AP that fires like this on Hawaii Island are not unusual.

Michael Gollner: “It’s actually very common that wildfires will burn out structures and vehicles but leave surrounding trees, utility poles, and other vegetation unscathed.” Wildfires are often spread to homes and other structures via embers — small, burning particles that break from vegetation or structures.”

He also recalled a fire in California in 2008, during which residential buildings were burned, while vegetation survived relatively unscathed. Photos circulated at the time show burnt houses standing among the trees that survived the fire.

videomanipulatsia thithqos havaize energetikuli iaraghis gamoqhenebith mkholod shenobebi daitsva1 Videomanipulation, as if Only Buildings Were Burned Using a Direct Energy Weapon in Hawaii
Source: fs.usda.gov

Christopher Dunn, an Oregon State University assistant professor of wildfire risk science, also said the Maui images were not unusual, recalling the 2020 wildfires in southern Oregon that destroyed homes and spared nearby trees. Although small pieces of wood burn easily, large trees are somewhat protected from fire by their own bark and the water in the trees.

videomanipulatsia thithqos havaize energetikuli iaraghis gamoqhenebith mkholod shenobebi daitsva2 Videomanipulation, as if Only Buildings Were Burned Using a Direct Energy Weapon in Hawaii
Photo: John Locher

A fire safety professor at the University of Maryland noted that fires can spread from contact with flames, radiation or flying sparks. And structures, decks, and fences are particularly vulnerable to flying sparks blown by the wind from trees and power poles.

As for the video shared with the attached post, it does not depict the 2023 Maui fire, and an identical video was shared on Twitter in 2020.

videomanipulatsia thithqos havaize energetikuli iaraghis gamoqhenebith mkholod shenobebi daitsva3 Videomanipulation, as if Only Buildings Were Burned Using a Direct Energy Weapon in Hawaii

A number of conspiracy theories have been spread about the causes of the forest fires that started on the Hawaiian island of Maui on August 8. One of them is related to “directed energy weapons”. According to the official version, the fires in Hawaii were caused by extremely high temperatures, dry, hot, and windy weather. However, according to the Washington Post, the first fire in the area could have been caused by a downed power line. According to John Bravender, a meteorologist with the Hawaii National Weather Service, the wildfire started during a period of very high winds and low relative humidity. Because of the increasing drought, along with dry vegetation, all the other conditions were in place for extreme fires to occur.

According to the US Government Accountability Office, Directed energy weapons (DEW) use concentrated electromagnetic energy to combat enemy forces and assets. These weapons include high-energy lasers and other high-power electromagnetics—such as millimeter wave and high-power microwave weapons.

Iain Boyd, director of the Center for National Security Initiatives at the University of Colorado, stated that the power of modern lasers is high enough to start any kind of fire, although infrared radiation cannot be seen with the naked eye. Therefore, other than the fake photos, there is no evidence that the Maui fire was caused by a weapon. Also, state and federal officials told USA Today that claims that a targeted energy weapon caused the fire are untrue.

Notably, another conspiracy about the Maui fires, claiming that The Simpsons predicted the fire caused by the Directed Energy Beam, was disseminated as well. The claim has been debunked by “Myth Detector.” For more details, see: 

Video manipulation, as if the Simpsons Predicted the Artificial Causing of the Fire in Hawaii

About the Sources:

Facebook account “ბოლო ჟამის ქრისტიანები” [Christians of the Last Advent] has been amplifying disinformation and conspiracies since the emergence of the Coronavirus pandemic. Myth Detector has debunked a number of false claims voiced by the user.


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Country: USA
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