Russian propagandists enjoy distributing fake covers: fake covers contain “free” credibility for a trusting reader, and are often humorous and easy to make. This time, a fake cover for a Spanish satirical magazine, El Jueves, appeared and spread from within their channels. 

On the cover, leaders of NATO countries and Volodymyr Zelenskyy are ridiculed, standing in confusion in front of a screen. Vladimir Putin’s address is being transmitted on the screen. We’ve seen this one already, though. Let’s debunk it and determine why this fake cover is given a second life. 

What happened? 

On December 10, the Russian Telegram channel, Takticheskyi halstuk (archive), shared an ostensibly new cover for the Spanish satirical magazine El Jueves. It depicted caricatures of the Russian President Vladimir Putin on the screen, giving, apparently, a speech so scary that NATO leaders and the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who stood in front of the screen, “have pissed themselves.” 

Macho no para — “Macho doesn’t stop” — says the title, apparently alluding to Putin. 

“[…] you’re admiring their newest cover right now. The editorial team wasn’t shy in showing the current mood of international politics while ‘beefy’ agencies are still trying to find the right path through the thick forests of post-truth culture,” post the authors under the “cover”. 

This cover was also shared by other pro-Russian telegram channels back in September 2022. (Channels such as Oplot (archive), Denatsyfikatsia UA (archive), VOBLYA, and so on)

The cover also appeared in @bocharik’s profile on X (archive) and on the Dzen website.  


First, we checked all social media (Facebook, Instagram, and X) and the official website of El Jueves and found no magazine issues with such a cover. 

We’ve figured out that the cover propagandists spread has the number 2,366. 

But El Jueves 2,366 issue looks completely different. It was released in October 2022

Additionally, the credits on the fake cover say, “ELJUEVES + Igor.”

So, Russian propaganda used a fake cover to give Russian or pro-Russian readers an impression of them choosing the ‘right candidate’ in Vladimir Putin before the election in Russia. But fakemakers didn’t even update the number of the cover to make it appear recent. 

Conclusion: Fake 

We urge you to keep vigilant when interacting and spreading the information you see. When in doubt, send the news for fact-checking to Gwara Media via our Perevirka bot. 

Author: Viktoria Horak

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