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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke December 13, 2019

No, Fox did not stage this photo of Trump visiting Afghanistan

On Thanksgiving Day, President Donald Trump made an unannounced visit to Bagram Air Field in Afghanistan.  

Fox News reported on the trip. But a Dec. 3 Facebook post alleges the network aired a staged photo while covering the news. 

"Fox propaganda posts a fake picture to show soldiers excited to see Trump in Afghanistan …. forgets to take out the Universal Studios sign in the background," reads the text over a photo of soldiers smiling and cheering. A yellow arrow is drawn on the image to point out a sign in the upper left corner that’s cropped. The letters "versal," "national" and "tudios" are visible." 

This post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.) 

That’s because the photo appears doctored. 

Featured Fact-check

The words on the sign look more like NBCUniversal International Studios than Universal Studios, but neither studio name appears in the original version of the photo used in the Facebook post.

AFP photographer Olivier Douliery took the photo on Nov. 28. The caption says: "U.S. Soldiers react with cheers and applause as US President Donald Trump arrives in Bagram Air Field during a surprise Thanksgiving day visit."

Fox News told that it never aired the image, but other news outlets ran it, including the Times of Israel, Axios and the Daily Mail. None of those images show the sign that appears in the Facebook post. 

We rate it Pants on Fire!


Our Sources

Facebook post, Dec. 3, 2019

Fox News, Trump says peace talks with Taliban have resumed during surprise visit to Afghanistan, Nov. 28, 2019

Universal Studios website, visited Dec. 11, 2019

Variety, NBCUniversal International Names Charlotte Bloxham head of production, Feb. 26, 2018

Getty Images, Photo of soldiers reacting as Donald Trump arrives at Bagram Air Field, Nov. 28, 2019, Photo of soldiers during Trump visit not ‘fake,’ Dec. 3, 2019

The Times of Israel, Trump makes unannounced Thanksgiving trip to Afghanistan, visits US troops, Nov. 28, 2019

Axios, Axios AM, Nov. 29, 2019

Daily Mail, Donald Trump makes unannounced Thanksgiving visit to US troops…, Nov. 28, 2019

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No, Fox did not stage this photo of Trump visiting Afghanistan

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