Recently, Maui suffered an unrecoverable loss from the sudden wildfire outbreak. Each day, a new discovery or rumor behind the fire is made by people on the internet.
One such story that has circulated in recent times claims the Navy SEALs swooped in to save the 1,000 missing children in the breathtaking paradise of Maui. Let’s dive in to check whether the narrative is true or not.
A Facebook video, posted on September 11th, contains a screen recording of viral TikTok aerial footage. In the video, a male narrator can be heard saying, “Over 1,000 children are missing. They have no clue where these children are.” However, the claim was debunked, and confirmed that the post contained false information. The FBI and Maui Police Department revealed that only 1 child is listed as missing.
What Is the Viral Claim about Missing Children in Maui?
Maui is still recovering from the wildfire that crashed the whole West and Siut Maui in August 2023. Maui residents are tirelessly working on building their burnt homes again in the aftermath of the disaster. A rapid dissemination of rumors regarding Navy SEALs rescuing missing children from Honolulu Harbor soon after the incident.
The narrative of the viral news was very unsettling for the viewers and listeners. These rumors originated from online speculations and allegations that the natural disaster might have been used as a cover-up. It was speculated that it was a cover-up to hide the illicit child trafficking activities in Maui.
The news provided by Real Raw News claimed that Navy officers discovered and rescued these children from the traffickers. The details were highly graphic and disturbing, stating the children are trapped in padlocked cages and are suffering from unimaginable trauma. Real Raw News was the sole platform reporting on the operation.
Soon after, a video on various social media platforms went viral talking about the missing 1000+ children in Maui. The video soon got a lot of attention from people around the world. Similar videos began circulating on various social media platforms.
Netizens started asking about the children to the officials to take action. Meanwhile, the original video was taken down from most of the media platforms.
After a few media outlets made claims of trafficking, people began speculating about the news of Navy SEALs saving the children. On X (formerly known as Twitter), another video went viral where a man was claiming that Navy SEALs came to rescue the children.
A user shared a video while captioning, “Can we talk about the 15 children rescued in Maui by Navy Seal? Where are the rest of the children?! #MauiCoverUp”. Later on, the video was either deleted due to violations or by the user, as it is no longer available.
Meanwhile, on September 9, 2023, the FBI and the Maui Police Department revealed a list containing 66 unaccounted people. It was reported that only 1 child was missing in the Maui fire. They also commented that the search operation is still in force.
Jon Heggie, the spokesperson for the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency’s Maui Joint Information Center, told ‘Lead Stories’ that the claims about the 1000 missing children are baseless and false. He further said, “We have a confirmed missing person of 66 at this time. We are not releasing which ones are children, but they are a variety of ages.”
USA Today further concluded that, as the news of 1000 missing children was false, no Navy SEALs were sent for the rescue. The news outlet also reported that both users who posted the viral video on their respective platforms are not responding to these claims. Few people started questioning the credibility of such videos.
What do you think about the credibility of this news? Share your point of view in the comment section.
Source: USA Today