The Museum of Hoaxes
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The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Hate Crimes/Terror
The Dark Side of April Fool’s Day — For some, April Fool's Day means innocent fun. For others it appears to be an invitation to explore the dark corners of their twisted psyches. That's the only reason I can think of to explain why every April 1st stories like this one, featuring a woman who "pranked" her brother-in-law by calling him and telling him that her 1-year-old child wasn't breathing, appear in the news.
Posted: Wed Apr 08, 2009.   Comments (2)

Over-Reacting —A slight over-reaction, perhaps. Two guys at a science park pranked a colleague on April 1st by moving his car. When the guy couldn't find his car, the science-park security force naturally thought it must be a terrorist threat and evacuated the entire building. [Chester Evening Leader]. Update: Here's a link that should work. Plus, this article (unlike the first one I linked to) makes clear that what actually happened is that the guys moved the car into a restricted parking lot,…
Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2009.   Comments (3)

Helix High Hoax — Yesterday (Tuesday) there was a helicopter buzzing around in the sky outside my window for about half an hour. I was speculating what it might be: bank robbery, accident, men in black? No, turns out it was just a local, neighborhood hoax. (I live about 2 blocks from Helix High School in La Mesa, a San Diego suburb): A report of an armed man at Helix High School that prompted a lockdown on the campus Tuesday was a student hoax, police said. An investigation by school staff and the La…
Posted: Thu Dec 18, 2008.   Comments (5)

Phony 9/11 Photos — Recently the Delray Beach Public Library arranged an exhibition of photographs taken by 71-year-old Milt Goldstein. The pictures were taken immediately following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and showed rescue workers searching for victims. Goldstein told anyone willing to listen how he had gained access to ground zero by buying an NYPD hat and jacket from a vendor on Canal Street. Goldstein was offering to sell individual pictures for prices ranging from $200 to $350. But it turned…
Posted: Wed Sep 24, 2008.   Comments (5)


Waterboard Thrill Ride — Visitors to New York's Coney Island amusement park now have the opportunity to try the "Waterboard Thrill Ride." As the sign outside proclaims, "It don't Gitmo better!" According to Reuters: A man with a black hood pours water on the face of a prisoner in an orange jumpsuit strapped to a table... The scene using robotic dolls is an installation built by artist Steve Powers to criticize waterboarding, a simulated drowning technique the United States has admitted using on terrorism…
Posted: Fri Aug 08, 2008.   Comments (4)

Arboleda’s Assassination Exhibit — Last week 28-year-old artist Yazmany Arboleda rented an empty storefront across the street from the New York Times building near Times Square to house his art exhibit. He then posted the title of the exhibit in the window: "The Assassination of Hillary Clinton / The Assassination of Barack Obama." It didn't take long for the secret service to show up and haul him in for questioning. Arboleda pleaded innocence, insisting he was referring to character assassination (by the media), not…
Posted: Mon Jun 09, 2008.   Comments (1)

Terrifying Vision of a Devastated America — Eric writes: "Alex, please look into this one" -- Al-Qaeda's terrifying vision of a devastated America in the wake of a nuclear attack. According to the Daily Mail article, a computer-generated image of what Washington DC would look like after a nuclear attack was recently posted on an Islamic extremist website. Simultaneously, there have been rumors circulating suggesting that "the FBI was warning that an Al Qaeda video was about to be released urging militants to use weapons of mass…
Posted: Mon Jun 02, 2008.   Comments (12)

Quick Links: Dec. 19, 2007 — Survivor Tale of Woe A contestant on the TV show Survivor:China may have lied about losing her job as a janitor at an Elementary School. If I still watched Survivor I might care more about this, but I haven't seen it in years. Princeton Hoax Exposed A student at Princeton who was a member of an anti-sex club claimed he was beaten up by horny liberals who were enraged by his "brave stand against promiscuity." Turns out he beat himself up. Figures. Gold Pills Offered for sale at the New…
Posted: Wed Dec 19, 2007.   Comments (16)

Loch Ness Terror Plot? — This is weird: An east London electrician accused of having terror ties claimed he was not attending training camps but hunting for the Loch Ness Monster during a trip to Scotland with other terror suspects, the Scottish Daily Record reported Saturday. Kader Ahmed, 20, was up in the Loch Ness area with a group organized by preacher Mohammed Hamid. I wonder if they went on the Nessie Hunter cruise with that boat captain who sounded like Sean Connery?
Posted: Tue Dec 18, 2007.   Comments (1)

American troops eat babies? — Among the many difficulties American troops are encountering in Iraq (I won't get all political here by listing them), one is a little bit more bizarre than others. It seems that some Iraqis believe that American soldiers carry poison-tipped bullets and eat babies. Kinda tough to win hearts and minds when you're dealing with people who think you dine on infants, I would imagine. I wondered if this story itself was a hoax until I followed the link I found and saw that it lead to Stars…
Posted: Tue Jul 10, 2007.   Comments (17)

Fake Attack at Elementary School — Sixty-nine elementary students from Scales Elementary School got quite a scare during a recent field trip to Fall Creek Falls. Their teachers told them that a gunman was on the loose in the area: The students were told to lie on the floor or crawl underneath tables and keep quiet. The lights went out, and about 20 kids started to cry, 11-year-old Shay Naylor said. Some held hands and shook. “I was like, ‘Oh my God,’ ” Shay said Saturday afternoon as she recounted the incident. “At…
Posted: Tue May 15, 2007.   Comments (16)

Quick Links: Peace Bomb and Fake Snakes — Peace Bomb Colin Barnett thought a good way to promote his art might be to place one of his vases outside the National Gallery of Victoria with the phrase "Peace Bomb" written on it. The police disagreed, and now Barnett is spending three months behind bars. I guess his publicity stunt backfired. Fake Snakes "Austrian officials fed up with motorists stopping to urinate by the roadside have put up fake snake warnings to scare them into using toilets... Of course there are no snakes but…
Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2007.   Comments (2)

American Airlines 9/11-Themed Ad — Here we go again. Yet another ad circulating around that features a plane flying towards two tower-like structures. Wilson Bryan Key would probably claim that it's done deliberately as a form of subliminal seduction, like the skulls hidden inside ice cubes in alcohol ads. I, on the other hand, am willing to give the advertisers the benefit of the doubt. Although I'm not sure exactly what those tower-like structures are. Stereo speakers, I'm guessing. (Submitted anonymously) Update:
Posted: Mon Sep 25, 2006.   Comments (25)

1979 Pakistan Airlines WTC Ad — Alex from Colombia sent me this picture. He writes: This is supposed to be a PAKISTAN AIRLINES ad, posted on the newspaper LE POINT on March 19, 1979. It announced nonstop voyages from Pakistan to New York. I saw it on this page. Interesting coincidence. This image has been circulating widely around the internet during the past week. For instance, it appeared on Digg four days ago. The question is, is the image really an ad from 1979? Following the link chain back, you soon arrive at
Posted: Mon Sep 18, 2006.   Comments (14)

Is the “End of Serenity” Photo Fake? — I think what follows is an example of the truism that "we are most gullible when we are most skeptical." When United Airlines Flight 93 crashed in Somerset County, Pennsylvania on Sept. 11, 2001, a woman named Val McClatchey, who lived nearby the crash, managed to get a picture of the cloud of smoke from the crash rising above the trees. Her photo, which she subsequently titled 'The End of Serenity,' became quite famous, but now conspiracy theorists are suggesting that it's a fake:
Posted: Mon Aug 07, 2006.   Comments (23)

Attack of the Mario Power-Up Cubes — Status: Misinterpreted April Fool's Day Prank This story offers a sad commentary on the state of affairs in America. Five teenage girls living in Ravenna, Ohio got into the spirit of April 1st by decorating a few public places in their town with brightly colored boxes designed to look like the power-up cubes in the Super Mario Bros. game (the ones you jump up to hit and get extra energy). They got the idea from qwantz.com. Local residents who didn't recognize what the boxes were…
Posted: Wed Apr 05, 2006.   Comments (15)

YCT Immigrant Hunt — An email is going around that describes an 'Illegal Immigrant Hunt' to be held at the University of North Texas by a group called the Young Conservatives of Texas: "Well, the YCT (Young Conservatives of Texas) are at it again. This time they've organized a so-called "Immigrant Hunt" for this Wednesday, March 2nd on the West Mall on campus-- they have reserved the space from 11:00am-1:00pm. They recently organized a similar event at the University of North Texas and appear to be…
Posted: Wed Mar 02, 2005.   Comments (43)

Osama Bin Laden As A Teenager — Apparently this picture (click to enlarge) has been circulating around for quite a while (over three years), but I've just seen it. It shows a happy group portrait of twenty-two brothers and sisters posing for the camera while on a family holiday, but the grinning kid whose face is circled is none other than Osama bin Laden. This picture appeared in the Sun with the caption: the 14-year-old is Osama bin Laden - and within a few years the grinning schoolboy was on his way to becoming…
Posted: Tue Feb 22, 2005.   Comments (47)

Islamic Hostage Barbie Hoax, Part Two — As a follow-up to the Islamic Hostage Barbie Hoax, an anonymous poster to a Jihadist message board (he calls himself 'al-Iraqi4') has come forward to claim responsibility for the hoax. He says that: In the name of God, the Most Merciful and Most Compassionate, Soldier John Adam is [only] a toy. I am a 20-year old Iraqi young man. I am unarmed, independent and do not belong to any party or group. I apologize to all the parties and everyone, for I meant nothing by that [no harm].
Posted: Wed Feb 09, 2005.   Comments (4)

Islamic Hostage Barbie Hoax — The Islamic Hostage Barbie Hoax as Instapundit has dubbed it (i.e. that hoax photo of a captured U.S. soldier) is now all over the blogosphere. It seems quite clear that it was an action figure in the photo, not an American soldier. But it's not clear to me where this photo originally came from. Where is this mysterious Islamic website that the picture was posted on? If we knew that it would be a lot easier to tell if it was meant as a joke, or as a serious (though absurd) threat.
Posted: Wed Feb 02, 2005.   Comments (14)

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