It’s come to light recently that NBC anchor Brian Williams has told a series of falsehoods on air. The first thing to be exposed was that his tale about being in a helicopter when it was shot down was wholly fabricated. He was caught in this particular lie when none of the soldiers he was with recalled this happening. Since then, the exposed lies have just kept coming. NBC quickly put Williams on a six month suspension, which insiders say will likely transition into a permanent firing if his replacement succeeds. The news network’s reputation has suffered due to the volume and wildness of William’s series of ‘misremembrences’.
The latest potential lie to emerge involves Osama Bin Laden. Although this story appears to have received less exposure than many of his newscasts, it is sensational. An audio clip of Williams claiming that he owns a piece of the helicopter used in the raid the killed Bin Laden recently surfaced. Needing to justify how he obtained the helicopter piece on the spot, Williams stated that it was sent to him with a ‘short, cryptic’ note attached. He did not indicate knowing who sent it or why, which is one of the reasons his story is now drawing suspicion.
One of his lies goes back thirty-six years, to 1979. Williams claimed that when Pope John Paul II visited his university, he shook hands with the Catholic leader. However, Williams did not mention this encounter with the pope until briefly before his death in 2004. It struck some people as odd that he had never before mentioned it, and that his account has varied. Ten years later, Williams claimed that he was present at Bradenburg Gate when the Berlin Wall fell. However, evidence in the form of travel records and recorded reports proved that he did not arrive until the day after.
Williams was in fact present during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, but his report of the situation was grossly embelished. While he stayed at a Ritz Carlton that others described as safe and comfortable, he claimed that the hotel was overrun by gangs and being used as a makeshift hospital. He reported that he had caught the dysentery that was widespread in New Orleans, contradicting local doctors who verified that they had not seen a single case of dysentery.
The newscasters’ tale of riding along on a Navy Seals mission early in the war can also be easily disproven. He claimed that this ride-along took place two days before the mission he discussed occured. The Navy Seals denied that that they ever would have brought a civilian along with them on such a mission. He also contradicted himself by telling NBC that he was reporting out of Kuwait on the same day, which is likely the truth.