Video of helicopter flying over Kabul edited to include Afghan national pride song
Following the Taliban's takeover of Afghanistan, a video has circulated on Facebook and Twitter purporting to show a helicopter flying over the nation's capital, Kabul, while playing a song that celebrates Afghan national pride. The posts circulated online two days before Afghanistan's Independence Day. The claim in the posts is false: other versions of the video have circulated online since at least June 2021 without the song.
The video was posted here on Facebook on August 17, 2021.
It has been viewed more than 2,000 times.
The video purports to show a helicopter flying over Afghanistan's capital Kabul while the song, "Watan Eshq Tu Eftekharam" -- a song celebrating Afghan national pride -- plays in the background.
Another version of the song can be found here, posted by Afghan media outlet Tolo News.
The post's Pashto-language caption translates to English as: "Mandagar's song 'Watan Eshq To Iftakharam' is sung on the sky above Kabul. This song is composed by Ustad Abdul Wahab Madadi with his own voice and this poem is from the anthems of Dr. Mohammad Nasir Tahouri".
The post circulated online two days before Afghanistan celebrated its independence from British rule on August 19.
This year's celebrations saw demonstrators defiantly wave the Afghan flag following the Taliban's seizure of power in August, AFP reported here.
The claim, however, is false.
A reverse image search of the video's keyframes found earlier versions of the footage posted online, including here on YouTube on June 15, 2021.
The earlier clips do not contain the song played in the misleading posts.
Below is a screenshot comparing several keyframes from the misleading posts (L) and the video posted on June 15, 2021 (R).
Using satellite imagery of Kabul, AFP was able to determine the video does indeed show an aerial view of the city.
Below is a screenshot comparing a scene from the video posted in June (L) and a satellite view of the same area (R) with similar features highlighted by AFP.
The coordinates of the satellite image can be accessed here.