Justin Hinkle(l), Elon Musk in front of baby crib(r)

Featureflash Photo Agency/Shutterstock EyePress News/Shutterstock (CC-BY)

‘They put UNFIRED BULLETS in a baby crib’: Far-right influencer ridiculed for claiming spent shell casings were staged for Musk’s visit to Israel

'As much as I support Palestine, disinformation will not help.'

 

Mikael Thalen

Tech

Posted on Nov 28, 2023

A popular pro-Russia commentator is being ridiculed online after claiming that an image of spent shell casings in a baby’s crib in Israel actually showed “UNFIRED BULLETS.”

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Jackson Hinkle, who boasts more than 2.2 million followers on X, uploaded a still image from a video shared by the Israeli government on Monday during billionaire Elon Musk’s visit to the country.

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The video showcased the aftermath of the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas on Kibbutz Kfar Gaza, an Israeli community that borders Gaza. Focusing in on the crib, Hinkle accused Israel of planting bullets in order influence Musk.

“They put UNFIRED BULLETS in a baby crib when Elon Musk visited,” Hinkle proclaimed.

https://twitter.com/jacksonhinklle/status/1729173002733097430?s=20
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But there’s just one problem: The image does not show unfired bullets and instead the casings from what is likely rifle rounds.

The faux pas was quickly met with widespread ridicule. Users began uploading pictures of rifle rounds to highlight Hinkle’s blunder.

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Even fellow supporters of Palestine also argued that Hinkle had made an embarrassing mistake.

“These are fired cases dude… as much as i support Palestine, disinformation will not help,” one user wrote in response.

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But Hinkle wasn’t the only one to run with the claim. Another user with nearly 115,000 followers on X similarly described the casings as live rounds.

“LOLLL Netanyahu and his PR goons actually got an empty baby crib and sprinkled unfired bullets on it to flabbergast Elon Musk,” X user Hadi Nasrallah wrote. “Was the baby sleeping in there without a mattress? And if there was a mattress how did unfired Khamas bullets go under it?

https://twitter.com/HadiNasrallah/status/1729098911627809019?s=20
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Responses to Nasrallah, however, were largely supportive of the false description. A handful of users did push back though.

“Those aren’t ‘unfired bullets.’ What you’re looking at are the belt links and the casings of 5.56 or 7.62 rounds,” X user Tal Hagin said. “If they were unfired, you’d also see the bullet, which you don’t.”

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In response to the pushback, Nasrallah later admitted that “some” bullets appeared to have been fired but argued nonetheless that the display had been fabricated by Israel.

While deceptive propaganda has been present throughout the conflict, there is no evidence to indicate that the casings were placed in the crib prior to Musk’s visit.

The conflict has produced an avalanche of misinformation across the board, with X being the primary dumping ground for such false claims.

Musk’s visit to Israel comes shortly after he was criticized for promoting antisemitic views on his platform. Since Oct. 7, which saw 1,400 people in Israel killed, the Gaza Health Ministry estimates that more than 13,000 people have died in Palestine.

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*First Published: Nov 28, 2023, 10:08 am CST
 

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