The world of news is complex – and false stories and images are often widely shared on social media. Blasting News’s editorial team spots the most popular hoaxes and misleading information every week to help you discern truth from falsehood. Here are some of the most shared false claims of this week, of which none are legit.


Elon Musk shared conspiracy theory about Paul Pelosi attack

False claim: Days after completing the purchase of Twitter, billionaire Elon Musk shared an article on his social media account claiming that the recent attack on Paul Pelosi, husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, was actually a drunk dispute with a male sex worker. The article shared by Musk – who later deleted the tweet –, published the day after the attack by the Santa Monica Observer – a website known to share Fake News –, is titled: “The Awful Truth: Paul Pelosi Was Drunk Again, And In a Dispute With a Male Prostitute Early Friday Morning.” The text claims, without presenting any evidence, that Paul Pelosi had met his attacker at a gay bar and brought him to his house.


  • First, according to NewsGuard, a tech firm that monitors misinformation and rates the reliability of media outlets, the Santa Monica Observer is notorious for publishing false information on topics like politics and COVID-19.
  • During the 2016 presidential election, the website claimed that Hillary Clinton died and was replaced by a body double during a debate.
  • One day after Musk shared the article, the Santa Monica Observer added an update to the beginning of the article with the following message: “Update 10/30: In response to this story, San Francisco Police said today that victim Pelosi and suspect DePape, did not know each other prior to the attack. SFPD reaffirmed that the assault followed a break-in.”
  • The Department of Justice released the criminal complaint and affidavit in which the suspect, a 42-year-old man named David DePape, details the attack on Paul Pelosi. He states in the document that he “broke into [Pelosi's] house through a glass door” using a hammer, and that the victim “was in bed and appeared surprised.”
  • DePape also stated that his intention was to “hold Nancy hostage” and that he wanted to “tie Paul up” to wait for Nancy, who was not in the house.

Latin America

Clarín newspaper did not tweet that Jair Bolsonaro claimed to have evidence of “scandalous fraud” in the second round of Brazil's presidential election

False claim: Social media users in Latin America have shared a screenshot of an alleged tweet from Argentine newspaper Clarín with the following message: “[Breaking News] Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro claims to have evidence of a 'scandalous fraud' and has ordered the mobilisation of the Armed Forces in the country.”


  • First, Clarín's verified Twitter account is @clarincom, while the account that made the viral post is @clarinlacom.
  • The fake account, which uses the same profile picture as the verified account of the Argentine newspaper, describes itself as follows in its bio: “obviously it is a parody account”.
  • On Tuesday afternoon, more than 40 hours after the official announcement of the results of the second round of Brazil's presidential election, which confirmed the victory of the left-wing candidate Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Jair Bolsonaro made his first public statement since losing the election, stating that he will “comply” with the constitution. There was no mention in his brief speech of the alleged evidence of “scandalous fraud”.
  • Speaking after Bolsonaro's brief public address, his chief of staff, Ciro Nogueira, said that he was “authorized” by the president to begin the process of a transition to Lula's government.


CNN did not report Trump died

False claim: Social media users in the United States have shared a screenshot of an alleged report attributed to CNN stating that former President Donald Trump reportedly died on November 1, 2022 at the age of 76.


  • In a statement to Reuters, Emily Kuhn, a spokesperson for CNN, reported that the image was fabricated and that the broadcaster did not publish the content shared on social media.
  • The screenshot appears to have been doctored from an original analysis published on November 1 by CNN editor-at-large Chris Cillizza, with the headline “Donald Trump joins the Paul Pelosi conspiracy caucus” and the same cover photo of Trump.


Video does not show a U.S.

B-2 stealth bomber landing in Poland

False claim: Social media users in Europe have shared a video of a U.S. Air Force B-2 stealth bomber landing on a runway, accompanied by the following description: “U.S. B-2 bomber lands in Poland for the first time ever.”


  • A reverse image search shows that the same video was posted on YouTube in April 2020, accompanied by a description stating that the aircraft landed at RAF Fairford airbase in Gloucestershire, England, in March 2020.
  • Articles published in the British press at the time show that the U.S. Air Force B-2 stealth bomber landed in England after flying in from the American base in Lajes Field, Portugal, where it had carried out training.


Video of South Korean students celebrating unrelated to deadly Halloween crowd crush

False claim: Social media users in Southeast Asia have shared a video of a group of students celebrating, alongside the claim that the clip was allegedly shot moments before

a deadly crowd crush that killed at least 150 people during a Halloween party in Seoul, South Korea.


  • A reverse image search shows that videos of the same scene, shot from slightly different angles, were posted on YouTube on October 29.
  • According to the descriptions of the videos, the scenes show students from Korea University during a celebration on October 29, following the conclusion of a series of annual sports games with rival Yonsei University.
  • In a statement to AFP, a representative from Korea University's Student Union confirmed that the video shows its students celebrating on a street in the Seongbuk-gu district, some five miles away from where the deadly Halloween crowd crush occurred.


Picture of a man with a rifle does not show Tunisia’s Club Africain CEO

False claim: Social media users in Africa have shared a picture of a man at a desk with an automatic rifle, alongside the claim that the image shows the CEO of Tunisia's soccer team Club Africain talking to a journalist.


  • A search on Club Africain's official website shows that the soccer team does not have a CEO, but a president, Youssef El Elmi, who bears no resemblance to the man who appears with the rifle in the image shared on social media.
  • A reverse image search shows that the picture of the man with the rifle has been circulating on the web since at least 2021 in content linked to Afghanistan.
  • The flag that appears in the background of the image matches that of the Afghanistan Revenue Department, which indicates that the image was indeed taken in Afghanistan.