Team Fortress 2 is not part of the US military-industrial complex (or is it??), but that didn’t stop a Russian documentary from using a piece of fan art as an example of war propaganda.
The TF2 fan art above was created by TankTaur for a competition tasking artists with creating a piece in the style of historical propaganda flyers.
You’d better go give TankTaur some love on DeviantArt for their success in painting a convincing example, because the image was picked up by Russia’s Channel One, and featured in a documentary about US efforts during WWII to convince its citizens that the German enemy deserved a good spanking.
Propaganda is a tricky issue morally, and has certainly been abused by a number of regimes, but I’m pretty sure the US has never suggested that its foes actually eat babies. Then again, as an English speaker if I had to collect a series of Russian documents I’d probably make a few errors, too.
You can watch the documentary below and see the image in situ for yourself. The error has been reported by the International Business Times, and Google Translate of this TJournal post seems to agree with the report.
This is far from the first time a piece of media related to video games has been used in error by mainstream press. It’s especially common on TV. Last year, an Assassin’s Creed screenshot was mistaken for a real photo, and the year before that a Halo logo was used in place of the UN’s. 2012 was a bad year for it, actually; ITV posted a slab of ArmA 2 gameplay claiming it was real footage of a British helicopter being shot down.