Get PolitiFact in your inbox.
If Your Time is short
- Claims that Nancy Pelosi was caught laughing at an Armenian genocide memorial take a clip of her crying out of context.
Following recent fighting between Azerbaijan and Armenia, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi traveled to Armenia, where she visited the Tsitsernakaberd Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex.
And during that trip, according to a claim circulating on social media, she tried to fake cry but appeared to laugh instead.
"Today, Nancy Pelosi visited the Armenian Genocide Memorial," a Sept. 18 Instagram post said. "She was trying to fake cry, but almost burst into laughter."
The post includes a video clip of Pelosi in which she looks emotional with the corners of her mouth upturned. But longer clips of the speaker put this moment in context, and she isn’t laughing.
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 Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.)
RadioFreeEurope published footage of Pelosi on Sept. 17 at the hilltop monument in Yerevan, Armenia’s capital, which honors the nearly 1.5 million Armenians who died during World War I. In 2019, under then-President Donald Trump, Congress passed legislation formally designating the killings as a genocide. More than a year later, the Biden administration became the first U.S. presidential administration to also recognize the genocide.
Pelosi "wiped away tears as she laid flowers" at the memorial, RadioFreeEurope reported. In the video, she can be seen dabbing her nose and eyes, which appear wet with tears. She is not seen laughing.
In a statement Pelosi issued the day after visiting the memorial, she said that she and other members of the congressional delegation who joined her on the trip "prayed for the 1.5 million Armenian men, women and children murdered in the genocide. Congress is committed to ensuring that the truth of the genocide is never erased."
We rate claims that she was False.
Instagram post, Sept. 18, 2022
Nancy Pelosi statement, Sept. 19, 2022
Armenian News, Nancy Pelosi visits Armenian Genocide Memorial Complex, Sept. 18, 2022
The New York Times, Pelosi, in Armenia, Condemns Azerbaijan Over Clashes, Sept. 18, 2022
RadioFreeEurope, U.S. House Speaker Pelosi Honors Armenian Massacre Victims In Yerevan, Sept, 18, 2022
The New York Times, Senate Passes Resolution Recognizing Armenian Genocide, in Defiance of Trump, Dec. 12, 2019
The Washington Post, The U.S. formally recognized the Armenian genocide. Why now, a century later?, April 24, 2021
Read About Our Process
In a world of wild talk and fake news, help us stand up for the facts.