Recycled Nuclear Photos

Ken AshfordForeign AffairsLeave a Comment

This might be tough to follow. But here goes . . .

Yesterday, an eagle-eyed blogger realized that CNN was using the same photo in two different stories. One story, from February 9, was about Iran‘s purported nuclear program; the other story, from February 12, was about North Korea‘s purported nuclear program. But . . . both stories carried the same satellite photo of the same nuclear plant, although one was supposedly in North Korea and the other was supposedly in Iran.

A few hours later, CNN corrected the error by changing the photo in the North Korea story (with no explanation of how it happened). No biggie.

Now, someone discovered that it has happened BEFORE.

This time, it is not on the CNN website, but on Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty website, in a story from March 2004.

Keep in mind, RFE/RL is a United States government sponsored service and website.

Once again, the story was about a North Korea nuclear program, but it had the same photo of the nuclear plant in Iran. And, to make things worse, the photo was titled Iraq.jpg.

Now, sloppy journalism is one thing. But the same mistake committed by two different news organizations 11 months apart?

Get the details here, and you too might be asking, "WTF"?