Global leaders were on edge Wednesday after a media leak revealed that Russian President Vladimir Putin sent a direct message to a user on Russian social media service VK that read, “send nukes now.”
During initial reporting, media outlets acknowledged they didn’t know who the recipient was, as the VK username was blurred out by the individual who offered the tip. However, a comprehensive analysis by U.S. military officials concluded that the recipient was a woman, and that the message was likely an autocorrect.
“Folks, this what we are speculating,” Pentagon spokesman Jason Spurman said during a press conference on Wednesday. “It’s likely that Mr. Putin frequently uses the word ‘nukes’ in his mobile communications. It’s also likely that due to Mr. Putin’s immense power, he frequently propositions women. In essence, we believe the message intended to say ‘send nudes,’ but his phone autocorrected to ‘send nukes.”
Update: ABC News has revealed the profile picture of the VK user’s account. The photo shows a bikini-wearing caucasian woman who is staring directly into the camera with a duck-lipped smile. Experts are now suggesting that the social media user was, in fact, a Russian bot.