Clarifying the ‘Broadcast Interruption’: No Threats Made Against Vučić on CBS, screenshot

Original article (in Montenegrin) was published on 27/5/2024; Author: Marko Vukajlović

Various Serbian media outlets and Facebook posts are spreading information that a threat was made against the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vučić, and other world leaders on the American television network CBS. The alleged threats were reportedly made by ‘Ukrainian propagandists.’

Portals such as, Novosti, Pink, as well as some marginal ones, have published headlines such as (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)

“YOU’RE NEXT” Threats to world leaders on CBS, including Vucic – “Enemies of Ukraine shall be punished”

Vucic and several other statesmen threatened live on CBS.

In the leads of some of the articles on Serbian news portals, it is written:

“Horrifying scenes on CBS. The broadcast was suddenly interrupted, and threats to the ‘enemies of Ukraine’, including the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vucic, appeared on the screen.”

On social media, Ukrainian propagandists share a video clip from CBS television, which was abruptly interrupted by a threatening commercial video.

Some social media users shared the news, along with statements like:

Nazis are threatening

There were also numerous inappropriate comments…

Manipulative narrative through video editing

The video from CBS begins with the host addressing a field reporter, who starts the broadcast, but then the video is abruptly cut off by some kind of montage/collage showing scenes of a Donald Trump rally, warning citizens not to attend. Subsequent clips include chaotic scenes, the Ukrainian flag, and a message promising punishment to the “enemies of Ukraine”. Screenshots of headlines reporting the death of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in a helicopter crash, the shooting of Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico, and alleged threats to Vucic are also shown, along with a message suggesting that the “enemies of Ukraine are also enemies of America.”

The CBS logo is nowhere to be seen throughout the video featuring pro-Ukrainian messages and threats.

Excerpt From a Video

For those who might doubt its authenticity at first glance, here’s evidence confirming it’s a fabricated edit.

A brief search led us to a video on the CBS New York YouTube channel, where an identical conversation between the studio host and the field reporter can be observed. The video was posted on May 22. In it, reporter or meteorologist, Toni Sadiku speaks with members of a navy band, with the following description:

Toni Sadiku speaks with members of the band as they warm up at Pier 88 ahead of the Fleet Week Parade.

The band played the American anthem as part of the start of Fleet Week, which runs from May 22 to May 28, described as:

“Fleet Week is about celebrating those who serve and recognizing the unyielding strength of our Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard…”

As seen in the original video, the reporter talks to the person interviewed about the band and then returns to the studio host, and there are no threats or clips, as reported by the portals, that interrupted them – they simply do not exist.

It’s a clear case of video manipulation.

Regarding the screenshot mentioning the arrest of a man who threatened the President of Serbia, it can be seen that this text was published on May 17 on one of the portals, with listed as the source. The day before, on May 16, D.M. from Sombor was arrested for allegedly threatening Vucic’s security.

It is also important to note that on the Internet, apart from Serbian media, it is not possible to find any reports of the alleged program interruption on the famous CBS and the threats reported by Serbian portals.

Therefore, it is evident that there was no program interruption on CBS. Who added the video with the Ukrainian flag and messages remains unclear.

Therefore, the disputed posts are rated as disinformation.

The “Disinformation” rating is given to a media report that contains a “mix“ of facts and incorrect or half-true content. In such cases, the media may not necessarily be aware of incorrect information being published alongside the true ones. Also, this grade will be given to media reports with false attributions or titles that do not reflect the text in terms of information accuracy.

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