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Photo in viral video shows SoKor, not PH rocket

A TikTok video compiling the late president Ferdinand Marcos Sr.’s supposed accomplishments has misappropriated a 10-year-old photo of South Korea’s rocket launcher to claim that the rockets being fired from it were the first-ever manufactured in the Philippines. 

At the 4:56 mark of the video posted on Nov. 25, TikTok user @gabriel.c.08ormoc showed an image of a missile being fired with the label:

Unang rocket na gawa sa Pilipinas (First rocket made in the Philippines)

However, a reverse image search shows that the photo was taken on Dec. 15, 2014 during a firing practice of the Kooryoung 130mm, a multiple rocket launcher, by the South Korean Army at Songjiho Beach in Gangwon province and uploaded to the Republic of Korea Armed Forces’ Flickr account a day later. 

According to the post, the photo was taken by reporter Jo Yong-hak, a former staff photographer for Reuters and Yonhap News, as seen in his Facebook and X (formerly, Twitter) accounts.

The caption translated in English reads:

2014.12.15, 8th Army Corps 130, Multiple Launch Rocket Republic of Korea Army
A 130mm multiple rocket launcher participating in the joint maritime long-range shooting exercise held at Songjiho Beach on the 15th is firing at a maritime target. This training, hosted by the 8th Army Corps, was conducted with a focus on cultivating joint firepower operation capabilities in which the joint forces of the Army, Navy, and Air Force focus firepower on the same target, assuming a situation where the enemy has infiltrated the NLL.

The TikTok video, titled “5 BAGAY NA HINDI MO ALAM KAY FERDINAND MARCOS SR (5 things you didn’t know about Ferdinand Marcos Sr.),” mislabeled the South Korean rocket while referring to Project Santa Barbara, Marcos’ missile project during 1972.

An archived document by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) shows a record of “Bongbong II” being launched in March that year. Page 96 of the document reads: 

March 12: The Philippines successfully launched Bong Bong II, its first liquid-propellant   rocket. A rocket was successfully retrieved from South China Sea. (SBD, 3/22/72, 121) 

The TikTok video mentioned at the 5:25 mark the launching of Bongbong II rocket named after Marcos’ son and now president Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. 

@gabriel.c.08ormoc’s misleading video has garnered 7,982 reactions, 163 comments, 798 bookmarks and 441 shares on TikTok as of writing. The account, which is a mix of political content and esports, has 1,340 followers and 12,700 likes. (FB)


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