Reuters Doctoring Photos from Beirut?

• Views: 92,821

OK, now things are getting weird.

This Reuters photograph shows blatant evidence of manipulation. Notice the repeating patterns in the smoke; this is almost certainly caused by using the Photoshop “clone” tool to add more smoke to the image. (Hat tip: Mike.)

It’s so incredibly obvious, it reminds me of the faked CBS memos. Smoke simply does not contain repeating symmetrical patterns like this, and you can see the repetition in both plumes of smoke. There’s really no question about it.

But it’s not only the plumes of smoke that were “enhanced.” There are also cloned buildings. (See below.)

Smoke billows from burning buildings destroyed during an overnight Israeli air raid on Beirut’s suburbs August 5, 2006. Many buildings were flattened during the attack. REUTERS/Adnan Hajj

UPDATE at 8/5/06 5:15:55 pm:

Rob at Left & Right has isolated some repeating elements. Check out his animated GIF showing one section that is very obviously cloned.

Ace has been saying for a week that mainstream media is headed for a major meltdown, by outsourcing so much of their reporting to low-paid foreign stringers with highly questionable loyalties and ethics.

This looks like that meltdown.

UPDATE at 8/5/06 5:32:28 pm:

Here’s another animated GIF I just put together, showing another section that is very obviously duplicated:

And here’s a zoomed-in version of the above cloning example (step back from the monitor for the best view of the effect):

UPDATE at 8/5/06 6:01:37 pm:

Here is a slightly larger (but slightly lower quality) version of the photograph: Reuters Photo.

UPDATE at 8/5/06 6:52:08 pm:

Professional sports photographers are discussing the image here: - Odd photo from Lebanon…

Verdict: obvious fraud.

UPDATE at 8/5/06 7:04:54 pm:

The photographer who took this picture (probably also the person who doctored it), Adnan Hajj, is rather well-known to LGF readers. In fact, rather well-known to the entire world.

He also took this infamous photograph from Qana of the guy in the green helmet, parading a dead body around for pictures, featured on the front pages of newspapers worldwide: Yahoo! News Photo.

A rescuer carries the body of a toddler victim of an Israeli air raid on Qana that killed more than 60 people, the majority of them women and children, in south Lebanon, July 30, 2006. REUTERS/Adnan Hajj (LEBANON)

UPDATE at 8/5/06 8:11:06 pm:


The possible original for this faked photo has been discovered. And it was taken on July 26, 2006, credited to the Associated Press, by Ben Curtis: Yahoo! News Photo. (Hat tip: LGF readers.)

Notice the lower right area of this photo, and compare to lower left of the doctored photo. Notice how all the buildings line up perfectly, including the oddly shaped building on the horizon. I’m putting together another overlay to make it painfully obvious.

UPDATE at 8/5/06 8:33:02 pm:

Here’s the overlay showing the common area of these two photos, clearly cropped from a larger panorama shot.

UPDATE at 8/5/06 9:17:20 pm:

A point to note: regardless of whether you agree that the July 26 photo is cropped from the same panorama shot as today’s (I still think it is), it is still damning evidence — because the one from today shows buildings that don’t exist in the earlier photo, even though they are clearly from the same angle.

UPDATE at 8/5/06 10:19:23 pm:

Allahpundit calls it “The worst photoshop I’ve ever seen,” and corrects Reuters’ lousy Photoshop work.

UPDATE at 8/5/06 10:23:49 pm:

Michelle Malkin reminds us of Reuters’ news-gathering policy, from the Reuters website:

“Our policy is to send news to our customers only after scrutiny by a group of production editors who ensure quality standards are maintained across all our news services. When we get something wrong, our policy is to be honest about errors and to correct them promptly and clearly.”

UPDATE at 8/5/06 10:27:13 pm:

If you’d like to ask Reuters “what the hell?” here is their contact page: Contact Us |

UPDATE at 8/5/06 10:48:59 pm:

Publius Pundit has another photo from the series. (Heh™.)

UPDATE at 8/6/06 6:43:48 pm:

Reuters now says this is the original photo:

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