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Hoax Alert

Fake News: This Is NOT Real Footage Of Missile Intercept System

  • by: Ryan Cooper
  • (Mon, 13 Jan 2020 22:14:00 Z)

Did a YouTube account post real footage of a missile intercept system used during a recent missile attack in Iraq? No, that's not true: The footage is not real, and it is actually part of a videogame that has been used to spoof other global conflicts over the years.

The story originated from a video published by What's Happening Around us on January 12, 2020, titled "US missile defense system in action during the missile attack in Iraq" (archived here). It opened:

US missile defense system in action during the missile attack in Iraq #MissileDefense #IraqMissileAttack #IranMissile

Screenshot of https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4g3z8EJVfI

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail:

US missile defense system in action during the missile attack in Iraq

US missile defense system in action during the missile attack in Iraq #MissileDefense #IraqMissileAttack #IranMissile

Eagle-eyed viewers of the video have noted that it was not taken from the recent conflict between the United States and Iran. On January 7, 2020, Iran launched missile attacks against Iraqi bases housing U.S. troops in response to the killing four days earlier of Iranian Revolutionary Guards Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani. U.S. President Donald Trump ordered the strike on Soleimani, saying Soleimani had been planning attacks on four U.S. embassies.

Instead, the video being shared online was taken from a videogame, Arma 3, a military tactical simulator game launched in 2013.

Over the years, the same clip from the game has been used to try to convince viewers it was footage of an actual rocket attack in Syria or a real Israeli anti-missile system in Gaza. In all cases, it was just a scene from a videogame.

The poster of the video updated the header to add that it was from "a simulator," but that was after other users began sharing the falsified video on Twitter:


We wrote about fake news on YouTube before. Here are our most recent articles that mention the site:

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About the author:

Ryan Cooper.jpeg

Ryan Cooper, a staff writer and fact-checker for Lead Stories, is the former Director of Programming at CNN International, where he helped shape the network's daily newscasts broadcast to more than 280 million households around the world. He was based at the network's Los Angeles Bureau. There, he managed the team responsible for a three-hour nightly program, Newsroom LA.

Formerly, he worked at the headquarters in Atlanta, and he spent four years at the London bureau. An award-winning producer, Cooper oversaw the network's Emmy Award-winning coverage of the uprising in Egypt in 2011. He also served as a supervising producer during much of the network's live reporting on the Israel-Hezbollah conflict in 2006, for which CNN received an Edward R. Murrow Award.

Read more about or contact Ryan Cooper

About Lead Stories

Lead Stories uses the Trendolizer™ engine to detect the most trending stories from known fake news, satire and prank websites and tries to debunk them as fast as possible. Read more about how we work and how we select stories to check here.

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