The first casualty of war is truth, a maxim the Palestinian Information Center is learning for itself in the hardscrabble world of social media communications.

In the wake of the Hamas-instigated “March of the Return” Gaza riots that tore across the Israeli border last week, the center was keen to publicize what it claimed was a publicity coup. In a Facebook post, it told its 500,000 followers that a French doctor had arrived in the Gaza Strip to perform her work and treat ‘wounded Palestinian protesters.’

See the evidence below:

Trouble is, the shot is of actress Katherine Heigl who played a doctor on TV in the hit show Grey’s Anatomy from 2005-2010.

The clumsy ruse did not last long and was quickly spotted on Twitter:

Good thing it’s not called the “Palestinian Fact-Checking Center”

— Ari Krauss (@AriKrauss) April 4, 2018

Very quickly the Palestinian Information Service backed away from its initial claim, and published the following grovelling apology:

There is no word yet if the doctors seen below will be in the next group of arrivals expected by the Palestinian Information Center in the troubled Gaza Strip.

American actor, director and writer Alan Alda in the driving seat of a jeep, surrounded by Loretta Swit and other cast members of the hit television show M.A.S.H, in costume as members of a US Army medical corp. (Keystone/Getty Images)

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