Social media users are sharing a fabricated story about a CNN journalist allegedly killed in Ukraine amid Russia’s recent invasion. The posts are claiming CNN shared a tweet about the man’s death amidst the ongoing crisis in Ukraine after sharing the same story during the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan in August 2021. But no such stories were posted by the news outlet and the screenshotted tweets come from unverified Twitter accounts posing as CNN pages.
Examples can be seen (here) and (here).
The text in one post reads: “Wow!! The same person that was “executed” by the Taliban in Afghanistan- Is also the FiRST American casualty in the “Ukraine Crisis.” See how that works? CNN is the enemy of the people. Why lie? Go ahead and look at ALL the fact check sites saying these tweets never came from CNN, I found the original tweets FROM CNN and captured them* the pictured man is apparently a YouTuber named Jordie Jordan… Wake up time! #FCNN #WeAreTheNews.”
Reuters previously debunked posts that showed the same man and story (here ), but with the claim that he was a CNN journalist killed in Kabul, Afghanistan.
Fact checkers Snopes and PolitiFact debunked the identical Afghanistan claim at the time as well (here), (here), pointing out that same man’s photograph had also circulated after the August 2020 explosion in Beirut.
The Twitter accounts shown in the screenshots are not verified CNN accounts. Neither has the blue check mark that real CNN accounts hold (twitter.com/CNNUKR) (twitter.com/CNNAfghan).
The @CNNUKR account was active at the time of writing this article, but had less than 130 followers and the account was created in February 2022 (here). The account @CNNAfghan has since been suspended (twitter.com/CNNAfghan).
A CNN verified account dedicated to Ukraine does not appear listed on Twitter (here).
A search on the CNN website reveals no results for “Bernie Gores” (here), the name of the alleged journalist mentioned in the social media posts. A reverse Google Images search of the man in the photographs shows a YouTuber called Jordie Jordan (here).
Matt Dornic, head of strategic communications at CNN, told Reuters via email that the posts are “absolute fiction”.
“The social handles and stories are bogus,” Dornic said. “CNN never reported either of these accounts.”
False. The screenshots show fabricated tweets impersonating CNN claiming that an American journalist was killed in Ukraine.
This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here .
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.