Rumors of Nelson Mandela’s Death

Rumors of Nelson Mandela dying from complications of a lung infection are sweeping the web. Is it true? Related topics. According to an article published Wednesday by The Guardian Express, the answer is yes. The story acknowledges conflicting reports about the respected humanitarian’s condition, but points to several key indicators causing the outlet to confidently publish the news that Mandela has indeed succumbed to complications of his illness after being taken off life support by his grieving family.

Yet, no other major media outlet is willing to follow suit. So, is this an elaborate hoax?

Such pranks are commonplace on the web, of course. It seems a week doesn’t go by when some celebrity is reported having died suddenly. And the more famous, the better.

But the sources of these false death rumors are generally of the more shady ilk on the web, and the celebrity in question is usually in the prime of their lives.

While the Guardian is no Tiffany Network, it’s not usually in the business of reporting false rumors. Especially such a world-shaking event as the death of one of the most famous men in recent history.

Among the clues they drop which lead the paper to report Mandela’s death are these “facts” dug up by investigative journalists on the Guardian staff:

“The grandson of Nelson Mandela angrily left (a) meeting over a disagreement of where the former president was to be buried. Mandela’s daughter, who was seen wearing a red blanket, and other family members were at the gravesite. It has been reported that the ‘red blanket’ is part of a tribal ceremony of the Xhosa. According to Xhosa custom the blanket is used when a family member has died.”

And this curious tidbit: “Later in the same day, gravediggers arrived at the Mandela burial site.”

These are not the kind of details usually included in a run-of-the-mill death hoax rumor, which generally tend to spin the story on a coarse, dubiously humorous angle. That doesn’t appear to be the case this time.

So, if the story turns out to be true, then the Guardian will have scored a great news scoop, far ahead of all the more conservative media giants.

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