North Korea Caught Doctoring Military Exercise Photo of Hovercraft


In a recent Photoshop blunder, North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) was caught distributing the above doctored photo of a marine military exercise involving hovercraft. The photo, which was originally distributed to several news outlets, claimed to show the prowess of North Korea’s marine force.

It didn’t take long, however, for several news agencies to start pointing out some anomalies that all indicated the photo had been doctored.

According to The Atlantic, two of the hovercraft seem to have been duplicated and had their twins digitally placed in other areas of the photograph. Additionally, the hovercraft circled in yellow below shows several signs of having been placed there (e.g. no visible wake, soft edges, and a color “oddities”).


Even though the fake has since been pulled from distribution, Agence France-Presse — who initially distributed the image along with Getty Images and KNS — says North Korea’s fakery is getting better:

Usually a very simple examination with our software dismisses KCNA pictures, but they tend to be better with Photoshop recently.

The photo adds to a string of threats and displays meant to illustrate the country’s military power and readiness to put it to use. But as was the case with the ‘shopped photo of the “state-of-the-art” Iranian fighter jet, these illustrations tend to have the exact opposite effect.

(via The Atlantic)

  • Tommy Sar

    Ministry of Truth indeed.

  • A_Lwin

    Does anyone actually take these countries seriously?

  • kel

    Media Jounalist quoting other media journalist…..thats like dumb quoting the dumber. Why are the water splash look different? Sometimes Truths are hard to swallow, but blame that on the photoshop…..just like the photo shot of noKorea during the night….no lights, photoshop.

  • Nathan Blaney

    This is North Korea we’re talking about – I’d be shocked if they DIDN’T do this!

  • Kevin Fulton

    Absolutely they do, which is why the photos get analyzed so quickly and shown to be faked so publicly. They’re trying to create positions of strength and support through fear. If you show them to be fake, said country/leader will lose that strength almost immediately and it damages their position amongst their own people. I guess you might call it “social warfare”?

  • gabe sturdevant


  • A_Lwin

    I mean the press agencies that publishes these photos before they realize they’re shopped.

  • You’re an


  • Alan Dove

    Every news story about the latest round of Pyongyang’s posturing really should begin with the statement “It’s famine season in North Korea.” Kim Jong Un desperately needs to distract his people right now, and a runup to war, even if absurd, is the best way to do that.

  • Interesting

    If they go on improving their skills, we can see in a near future an interesting place to outsource the retouching :D

  • lidocaineus

    I’m guessing this is some North Korean government sponsored propagandist right here…

  • Gregor_Albrecht

    nice profile picture! and yes, i mean it.

  • Samuel

    They weren’t put out by a press agency, not a lot of press agencies in N.Korea. They were released by state news. As far as i can tell these weren’t released in any story except “North Korea photoshops stuff”

  • canon fanboy

    If there is a war between North Korea and US, North Korea will lose, but US will go bankrupt. ($16 trillion debt and climbing) That’s the goal of North Korea.

    Keep laughing at NK

  • Roger Thornhill

    Yea, I think even saying that they have a goal is giving them too much credit.

  • The all mighty one

    I’m suprised they even have a copy of photoshop

  • Greg McKay

    Version 2 running on a Pentium III machine.

  • Duke Shin

    I was never really worried about them anyway.

  • cas_e

    “The photo adds to a string of threats and displays meant to illustrate the country’s military power and readiness to put it to use. But as was the case with the ‘shopped photo of the “state-of-the-art” Iranian fighter jet, these illustrations tend to have the exact opposite effect.”

    Actually I think it is more for the “benefit” of their own people, to make North Koreans think they are stronger than they are. And they will be none the wiser.

  • Aaro Keipi

    So the goal of North Korea is to lose a war with the U.S. and in the process likely be completely destroyed, all in order to inflict economic harm on the U.S.? Yeah, that makes sense.

  • Aaro Keipi

    The water splash are look different because the photoshop are get better!
    Yes yes, someday they’ll photoshop their way to world domination.

  • Neoracer Xox

    Thats gonna happen REGARDLESS….

  • Home run

    With this track record, why do news agencies distribute this stuff? If you can’t trust their photos, you can’t trust their words. Our news media is revealing that they are nothing more than a pro-bono PR firm for N. Korea.

  • Singe

    Oh man, DPRK, why must you sink to Iran’s depths of bad photoshoppery? Your attempts at technological advancement are cute, but generally reasonably honest. Iran just shops everything obviously. C’mon, you’re better than this.

  • SleeperSmith

    There’s sad, pathetic, then there’s North Korea.

  • YitzhakFinnegan

    Their hovercrafts are full of eels!

  • DoctorFeelgoodMD

    Tubby lives in a fantasy world always wanting to be the big cheese