Crypto community accuses WSJ of exaggerating Hamas crypto funding by 99%

Several crypto stakeholder are calling for the media platform to retract the report.

Cover art/illustration via CryptoSlate

Crypto community members have accused The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) of publishing misleading information about Hamas crypto-related funding.

On Oct. 10, WSJ reported that Hamas had acquired approximately $90 million in cryptocurrency to finance a surprise attack against Israel. This revelation drew significant attention from prominent crypto skeptics, who swiftly used this funding to illustrate how the industry aided malicious actors.

Several U.S. lawmakers, spearheaded by Senator Elizabeth Warren, cited the WSJ report in a letter addressed to the White House and the Treasury Department. The lawmakers expressed concerns about the national security risks posed by cryptocurrencies due to their potential use in terrorist financing.

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Community says WSJ overreported terror funding by 99%

Sam Callahan, the lead market analyst at Swan Bitcoin, countered that “WSJ’s figure for crypto use in financing Hamas was off by over 99%,” citing a recent Chainalysis report.

According to Callahan, the media firm had mistakenly counted an entire exchange’s trading volume for the group’s address. He added:

“The actual funds that went to known terrorist-linked addresses was substantially less.”

Consequently, Callahan urged WSJ to retract the story because “politicians with an agenda will likely continue to use this fake news as evidence to attack an industry they have a personal vendetta against.”

Meanwhile, crypto stakeholders, including Nic Carter, also shared Callahan’s view, claiming that the journalists refused to retract their story despite contacting them via mail. He added:

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“This is a journalistic failure as egregious as the NYT’s reporting on the rocket striking a hospital in gaza. not directly responsible for loss of life, but evidencing a similarly callous disregard for the truth. Boycotting the WSJ until they retract.”

Sam Lyman, the director of public policy at Bitcoin (BTC) miner Riot Platforms, pointed out that the WSJ report failed to mention that Hamas’ crypto fundraising program was a complete disaster.

He said the fundraising had “exposed [the group] key donors to criminal prosecution and financed its two greatest enemies, the US and Israel, to the tune of millions of dollars.”

CryptoSlate reported that Coinbase had argued that blockchain technology could be used to fight terrorism funding, adding that terror funding still relies on the traditional financial system, not crypto.

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Author: Oluwapelumi Adejumo

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