The New York Times did not publish a front page story about Bajwa immigrating to the US after retiring

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Claim: A viral video claims The New York Times published a story with the headline,  ‘Due to security concerns in Pakistan, Pakistan’s former Army Chief General Bajwa moved to America with his family.’ 

Fact: The headline is doctored and the claim is false. The New York Times did not publish such a headline or story about Pakistan’s former army chief.

On 1 December 2022, Twitter user p4pakipower posted a video that claims a report about General Bajwa and his family moving to the US after his retirement, was published on the front page of the New York Times. It seems, the video was first published by digital news organisation, Top Breaking News, which could not be located through a Google search or on Twitter, Facebook or Youtube due to its generic name. The post was captioned, “As expected, General Bajwa and his family returned to their country, America!” on Twitter, where it was retweeted more than 1300 times.

The narrator of the video states in Urdu, [Salutations] friends, welcome to Top Breaking News. The biggest story yet: General [Qamar Javed] Bajwa, having been at the helm for 8 years, after retirement, could not stay in Pakistan for a single day. Regarding this, the American newspaper New York Times published a recent image of General Bajwa on the front page with an incredibly shameful headline. The New York Times has written ‘due to security concerns in Pakistan, Pakistan’s former Army Chief General Bajwa moved to America with his family’ in their story.”, highlighting an image in the video of General Bajwa in America as proof of the claim.

Fact or Fiction?

The claim is false. The headline is doctored, and the image used in the video is taken out of context. Soch Fact Check surveyed The New York Timesarchives and conducted a number of Google searches to conclude  that the American newspaper never published such a story about Pakistan’s former army chief.

The image accompanying the headline shown in the video and described in the narration as “a recent image of General Bajwa” is actually from December 2021, and was published by the army itself. The image actually shows US senators visiting Pakistan and meeting Bajwa in Rawalpindi. 

Virality

Soch Fact Check conducted a CrowdTangle analysis for the 3-day period from 30 November 2022 to 2 December 2022 using the following search terms:

  • “Bajwa” “moved” “America”

We found 5 posts on Facebook with 5000 views and 800 interactions. Two of these posts can be found here and here.

Conclusion: The New York Times did not publish an article claiming Bajwa has moved to America with his family. The headline shown in a viral video is doctored.

 

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