FACT CHECK: Is This A Real Video Of The Suspected Chinese Spy Balloon?
A video shared on Twitter purports to show the suspected Chinese spy balloon that hovered over the U.S. from late January to early February.
— marigu (@marigu7850) February 17, 2023
The claim is false. The creator of the video admitted it was made using computer-generated imagery (CGI).
The U.S. Navy ended its recovery mission regarding the suspected Chinese spy balloon that was shot down off the coast of South Carolina earlier this month, ABC News reported. The debris the Navy located from the downed object will be transferred to the FBI laboratory in Virginia, according to CNN.
“200x zoom on the balloon!” the Instagram post, liked over 600,000 times, purports. The video shows what appears to be a satellite and a moving camera attached to a white balloon.
Other iterations of the video circulated on Twitter. (RELATED: Does This Video Show The Downed Chinese Spy Balloon?)
WTH! Are you kidding me?? pic.twitter.com/dhBOBD8l0C
— The Figen (@TheFigen_) February 18, 2023
The claim is false. The video has not been included in any credible news reports about the suspected Chinese spy balloon that hovered over the U.S. from late January to early February. Likewise, the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) has neither referenced the purported video via its website nor its verified social media accounts.
Hamid Ebrahimnia, the video’s creator, admitted he made it using CGI via his Instagram account. In a highlight saved to his profile, titled “Balloon,” Ebrahimnia said he used real news footage of the balloon to create his own CGI rendering, which he then used in the Instagram video.
Ebrahiminia also admitted the video was CGI in the comments section of the post after one social media user asked if the video was real.
“No, it is CG, check my latest highlight to see the breakdown,” he wrote.
Misleading images and videos of the suspected Chinese spy balloon have circulated on social media since it was first detected in January 2023. Check Your Fact recently debunked a video allegedly showing the debris from the balloon.