FACT CHECK: Did Obama Bow To The Supreme Leader Of Iran?

J. J. Cahill | Contributor

An image shared on Facebook showed President Barack Obama supposedly bowing to Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

“America will not apologize or bow to anyone ever again!! TRUMP 2020,” reads the lower portion of the image.

Verdict: False

This picture is a doctored image of Obama and Khamenei.

Fact Check:

Republicans criticized Obama during his presidency for appearing to bow during introductions with multiple foreign heads of state. In this case, however, Obama not only didn’t bow to Khamenei, the meeting shown actually never took place. The image in question was photoshopped using two unrelated photographs.

The image of Obama was taken when 5-year-old Jacob Philadelphia visited the Oval Office in 2009. During an interview with TIME, Pete Souza, chief photographer for the White House, explained the picture.

“His friends had said his haircut was just like the president’s, and he wanted to see if it really was,” said Souza, speaking of the child. “He asked the president if he could touch his head and the president bent over, and he touched his head.”

The photograph of Khamenei was taken at the 2005 inaugural ceremony for former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Tehran.

TEHRAN, IRAN: Iran's new President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, right, Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei, center, outgoing President Mohammad Khatami, and former president Ali Akbar Hashami Rafsanjani attend Ahmadinejad's inaugural ceremony in Tehran 03 August 2005. Ahmadinejad appealed for an end to weapons of mass destruction in the world, a day after the West issued sharp warnings to Tehran over its threatened violation of a deal suspending its nuclear programme. AFP PHOTO/ATTA KENARE (Photo credit should read ATTA KENARE/AFP/Getty Images)

TEHRAN, IRAN: Iran’s new President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, right, Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei, center, outgoing President Mohammad Khatami, and former president Ali Akbar Hashami Rafsanjani attend Ahmadinejad’s inaugural ceremony in Tehran 03 August 2005. Ahmadinejad appealed for an end to weapons of mass destruction in the world, a day after the West issued sharp warnings to Tehran over its threatened violation of a deal suspending its nuclear programme. AFP PHOTO/ATTA KENARE (Photo credit should read ATTA KENARE/AFP/Getty Images)

The meme has been circulating since at least 2013, according to Snopes, and originally featured a watermark for the website “All the Right Snark.”

J. J. Cahill

Contributor

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