By: Vivek J
July 21 2023
The cover page of the Handelsblatt newspaper criticizing Zelenskyy circulating online is digitally created and not that of an actual publication.
In the recently concluded NATO summit held in July 2023 in Vilnius, Lithuania, several proposals were made to ensure a smooth and swift integration of Ukraine as a member State of NATO.
A purported image of a cover page of the German newspaper Handelsblatt has gone viral on social media platforms that features a cartoon of Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy has a headline in German, which, when translated to English, reads, “An endless story: It's time to reconsider our attitudes towards the mental abilities of the President of Ukraine.” One such social media post containing this image of the cover page said, “The German press clearly understood the actual results of the NATO summit in Vilnius.” This implies that the cover page was created by the newspaper upon the conclusion of NATO’s 2023. Archives of such posts can be seen here and here.
However, Handelsblatt never published this image.
Neither Handelsblatt's official website nor social media pages show any publications with this image. On July 13, 2023, Handelsblatt tweeted from their official account to say, “Fake front pages have been circulating more and more in various media lately. We at the Handelsblatt are also affected. So a note on our own behalf: You can always find the cover of our current issue here," followed by a link to their official archives.
The viral image is not featured in any Handelsblatt publications. The title on the top-left side of the viral cover page says, “No. 134, July 14/15/16, 2023,” but this issue actually featured a cover page with a news headline about Microsoft with a picture of its CEO, Satya Nadella.
This image was digitally created and is not a real Handelsblatt cover page, as clarified by the newspaper itself. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.