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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke March 11, 2022

Footage of Marines training in Arizona mischaracterized as showing Russians in Ukraine

If Your Time is short

  • Footage of Marines training at a simulated village in Arizona is being mislabeled as showing Russians invading Ukraine. 

There are a few easy clues that a video posted on Facebook on March 7 doesn’t actually show the "Russian war in Ukraine," as the description claims. 

"RussianFrogfoot Eats Anti-Air Missile," the post says. "Keeps Flying."

But while much of the footage coming out of Ukraine shows a cold, wintry landscape, this video was clearly filmed in the desert, and Americans can be heard talking in the background as helicopters circle what looks like a village that’s under attack. 

This post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.)

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In reality, the video is an ocean and many countries away from Ukraine. It’s of a Marine Corps Air Station in Yuma, Arizona. The village is a fake one made out of shipping containers that the Marines call "Yodaville." It’s a training range where Marines can practice air support exercises. 


Capt. Ryan Bruce with the Marine Corps confirmed that the footage in the Facebook post shows Yodaville, but he said he didn’t know when it is from. We found what appears to be some of the video in this 2015 post on The description says it shows gunships firing rockets and machine guns "on the simulated village of Yodaville during a helicopter close air support (CAS) training exercise near Yuma."

We rate claims that this shows the current conflict in Ukraine False.

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Footage of Marines training in Arizona mischaracterized as showing Russians in Ukraine

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