Egyptian daily newspapers Al-Ahram and Al-Shorouk, citing a British satirical online publication as a source, inadvertently published humourous quotes attributed to former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger – in which he suggests that a world war was looming – as genuine.
Flagship state daily Al-Ahram published the story on the front page of its Saturday edition, noting the interview had been conducted by the Daily Squib, a British publication launched on April Fool's Day 2007.
The paper went on to note – erroneously as it turns out – that the interview with Kissinger had been conducted in November of last year, but had only been published on Saturday to coincide with the ongoing controversy over a US-made film that denigrates Islam and the Prophet Mohamed.
"The United States is baiting China and Russia, and the final nail in the coffin will be Iran, which is, of course, the main target of Israel," the Daily Squib – which describes itself as "a curious satirical publication and should therefore be taken fu**ing seriously" – quoted Kissinger as saying.
"We have allowed China to increase their military strength and Russia to recover from Sovietization, to give them a false sense of bravado," the Squib's Kissinger added. "This will create an all together faster demise for them."
Other popular stories on the Squib's latest edition include "Paris Hilton converts to Islam" and "David Beckham to have kidneys and liver tattooed."
Kissinger served as US secretary of state from 1973 to 1977.