Brian Williams Should Not Resign His Job as NBC Narrative Reader
Feb 5, 2015
RUSH: I think NBC needs to… They’re working on their prime-time problem, and I think they need to investigate making a new sitcom based on misremembered combat experiences, people who think they were in combat circumstances but actually weren’t. It could star Hillary. Remember, she had to corkscrew in on some airplane, avoiding “snipper” fire when she went into Afghanistan. Now Brian Williams. Get John Kerry, who served in Vietnam, and we ought to have that senator from Connecticut, Dick Blumenthal, who forgot that he didn’t go to Vietnam. Remember he had said he’d served in Vietnam, but he hadn’t. He forgot that.
RUSH: Now, Brian Williams, Brian Williams of NBC News. What is it with these people? Hillary Clinton has to tell everybody that she was nearly shot down in some aircraft corkscrewing in for a landing in Bosnia. It turns out to be totally untrue. She said she had to dodge sniper fire to get in there, totally untrue. Do you tell these lies to make people think you’re brave when they know you’re not, or when you suspect they know you’re not? Do you tell these lies in order to make yourself appear more supportive of the military when people know you aren’t.
Brian Williams told an abject lie that any number of people at any point the rest of his life could expose — and he didn’t just do it once. He did it two, three times. He did it on Letterman, did it on the NBC Nightly News. You know I’ve always liked Brian Williams. And, in a personal observation, he’s one of the few in the Drive-By Media who has been fair to me. But, man, I just don’t understand. I think one thing to keep in mind here… You know, people say, “He ought to have to resign! Brian Williams ought to resign!”
No, no, no, folks. Brian Williams shouldn’t have to resign.
Brian Williams… There isn’t journalism anymore. These people are not journalists. They’re not reporters. They’re not even news readers! I have a new name for television info anchors: Narrative readers. They really are there just to read the script of the daily soap opera that is Washington. Whoever determines it, whoever writes it, they are there to advance it. Brian Williams’ job every day is to sell a narrative, to get away with whatever he can to move his and the Democrat Party’s agenda forward.
This is really not an assault or an insult to journalism, because there really isn’t too much journalism going on. But clearly there isn’t any journalism at NBC News. We know this. They doctor 911 calls in the case of George Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin, any number of examples like this. Remember, ladies and gentlemen, Dan Rather made up the story about George Bush and the National Guard. He made up all these false documents that were proven instantly by some eagle eyes at a blog to have been totally made up.
They could not be legitimate as Rather presented them. What happened? Tom Brokaw and the late Peter Jennings got together, and they arranged a brand-new award. They created an award for journalistic excellence! I don’t remember what the name of the award was, but it didn’t exist. They created it for Dan Rather, and they threw a giant award ceremony/dinner at some fashionable New York hotel grand ballroom, and they invited all the other narrative readers.
They invited all the other news people and the reporters, and Dan Rather — in the midst of all this — was given a huge award for journalistic excellence. Now, why? Because the news community knew that they were not going to be taken down by Dan Rather. They could not afford to all be taken down, and in order for them not to be taken down, they couldn’t let Rather go. So they had to circle the wagons, and they had to give him an award, not just issue public statements of support.
They had to give him an award that had to do with journalistic excellence, and this is how they circled the wagons to protect themselves and to protect the agenda, to protect the Democrat Party, to “protect the news,” as I facetiously refer to it now. And they did. Now, will that happen today? Will Scott Pelley of CBS Eyewitness News…? I don’t even know ABC. Who is the ABC nightly news anchor now? Who replaced Diane Sawyer? Does anybody know? Who is it? (interruption) I really don’t know who it is.
I honestly do not know who the anchor is at ABC. Anyway, will whoever it is get together with Scott Pelley and maybe Wolf Blitzer and arrange a celebratory dinner and honor the lifetime achievements of Brian Williams as a means here of protecting the news, of shoring up the agenda and making sure that it does plummet? (interruption) David Muir? Okay, David Muir. So David Muir and Scott Pelley decide that? Brokaw’s still around. Maybe he could be involved in this. After all, it is NBC, and he’s narrative reader emeritus at NBC.
That’s what they did for Rather.
RUSH: I am America’s Real Anchorman, folks. Me, I, am your guiding light. Your next-door neighbor. Your harmless, lovable, little fuzzball, your rock, your totally dependable and reliable Rush Limbaugh. I am America’s Real Anchorman.
RUSH: So Brian Williams was not on the helicopter that was shot down. He was on the helicopter behind it. The thing about this is, he’s been telling this story since the invasion of Iraq. What is that? It goes back to 2003. Stop and think of this now. Everybody on the NBC News crew that was with him on the helicopter has known all this time that his version wasn’t right. All the NBC News employees and journalists traveling with him were participating in this cover-up.
These are the people that bring us the news, folks!
Well, they don’t. They bring us the narrative.
This is not a fly-by-night change that I have decided. This is something that I think is actually right on the money. They’re not news readers anymore, and they’re certainly isn’t journalism going on here. It’s not just NBC. It’s the whole Drive-By Media. They’re narrative readers. You know, in the UK they call ’em “news readers.” You know, BBC, the news anchors, they’re called presenters, and news readers. Here they call themselves journalists, and they give themselves awards for bravery and courage.
All you have to do to get one of those is have the right trench coat and be seen in Beirut some night. Just one tape of you in Beirut and you can be seen as brave in the middle of the hostilities. Peter Jennings did it all the time. They’re narrative readers. But think of all the people that knew. It was finally some military people at Stars & Stripes who blew the whistle on this. They just got sick and tired I guess of hearing him repeat the story. He was on Letterman with it.
But it was unnecessary. It didn’t matter a hill of beans to his credibility. I donÂ’t think it mattered to the NBC narrative audience, whether or not he was on board a helicopter that was shot. I mean, the thing about this is that all the while these guys are totally opposed to the war anyway. Why do they want heroism? Why do they want everybody to think of them as great heroes when everybody knows they oppose the war? Everybody knows they opposed Bush?
Everybody knows that they were in arms with the Democrat Party trying to discredit Bush’s war in Iraq, certainly elements of the Iraq war. Why in the world, during all of that, would you want to be considered to have engaged in an act of heroism while being involved, supposedly, in the invasion? It’s just like when they doctored that 911 call tape in the George Zimmerman-Trayvon Martin story, which was really outrageous what happened.
That’s not by no means a lone example, but they doctored that 911 tape to make George Zimmerman look like a walking, blatant racist — and how many people at NBC knew that had happened and stayed silent? These are the people that, quote/unquote, “bring us the news.” And the number of people that were in on this and never said anything, to me, it’s… It’s hard to comprehend certain elements of this. So let’s go to the audio sound bites. This is last Friday on the NBC Nightly Narrative with Brian Williams.
WILLIAMS: The story actually started with a terrible moment a dozen years back during the invasion of Iraq, when the helicopter we were traveling in was forced down after being hit by an RPG. Our traveling NBC News team was rescued, surrounded, and kept alive by an armored mechanized platoon from the US Army 3rd Infantry.
RUSH: And then that lie… None of that happened. That didn’t happen. He was not on the helicopter that was shot down. Last Thursday night in New York City, Madison Square Garden during a hockey game, the Rangers and the Montreal Canadiens, we have the PA announcer, the public address announcer talking about Brian Williams helicopter being hit by RPG fire, and the US Army sergeant major who protected Williams afterwards.
ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen, during the Iraq invasion, US Army command Sergeant Major Tim Terpak was responsible for the safety of Brian Williams and his NBC News team after their Chinook helicopter was hit and crippled by enemy fire.
RUSH: (silence) Man. (interruption) Yeah, “Oh, boy. Oh, boy.” So last night, on the NBC Nightly Narrative, here is a portion, Brian Williams’ apology for saying that a helicopter he was on in Iraq was forced down by RPG fire when it actually had not been.
WILLIAMS: I made a mistake in recalling the events of 12 years ago. It did not take long to hear from some brave men and women in the aircrews who were also in that desert. I want to apologize. I said I was traveling in an aircraft that was hit by RPG fire; I was, instead, in a following aircraft. We all landed after the ground fire incident and spent two harrowing nights in a sandstorm in the Iraq desert. This was a bungled attempt by me to thank one special veteran, and, by extension, our brave military men and women, veterans everywhere, those who have served while I did not. I hope they know they have my greatest respect and also know my apology.
RUSH: Okay, so this is not… (sigh) I’m not comfortable here. You know, this is why, folks, I really don’t go out of my way to meet a whole lot of people “in the news,” people in politics. You end up talk about them, and the more you know them and the closer you get to them, the harder it gets. I’ve met Brian Williams a number of times, and he’s been nothing but friendly and funny and engaging, and he’s been fair. This is just hard. But, I’m sorry, this was not a “mistake.”
There weren’t any misstatements here, and there weren’t any “mistakes,” and there was any “misremembering.” It’s not a “mistake” to think that you were in a helicopter that was shot down when you weren’t. That’s not a “mistake,” and to claim that you bungled it and made a “mistake” is bordering on telling another falsehood. What happened was that Brian, for whatever reason, told a story; it wasn’t true. He put himself on board a helicopter that he was not aboard.
And how many NBC News employees and journalists that were traveling with him and how many military people that were traveling with him participated in this cover-up? Once he made the claim, how many people knew that the claim was untrue and helped cover it up or didn’t know what to do with it? But I guess he told it one too many times, and somebody who knew it wasn’t true finally let Stars & Stripes know. They couldn’t take it anymore. I got fired…
One of the many radio jobs I got fired from, I worked with a guy that was a pathological, congenital liar, and I couldn’t put up with it. I couldn’t. And one day, I called the guy on about 10 lies that he was routinely telling. He happened to be the program director who was my boss, and I left the studio that day… I did it laughingly. I said, “Jay, I just can’t take it. This is garbage. You know, try this on somebody else, but I know you don’t even know these people you’re talking about.
“If you did, you wouldn’t be here. You’d be in New York or Los Angeles. You wouldn’t be slaving away in this suburb and radio.” Anyway, by the time I got home, 10 minutes later, the owner of the radio station called and I was fired. ‘Cause this guy had made a preemptive move. Somebody couldn’t take this any longer. (interruption) No, Mr. Snerdley, I was not shot down. I was not on any airplane shot down when I went to Afghanistan. (interruption) It does sound…
Mrs. Clinton, remember the sniper fire incident? (interruption) Lucky to get out of there alive. Ah. I don’t know. It’s just … (interruption) You can honor the military? (interruption) How do you…? Well, that’s what he claims. He was trying to honor this one military guy by claiming he was shut down and this guy saved him, and that’s what he says he was doing. Here. March 26th, 2013. This is Letterman, Late Show with David Letterman, and Letterman says, “Something happened ten years ago in Iraq, Brian. Tell people what it was. What happened?”
WILLIAMS: Two of our four helicopters were hit by ground fire, including the one I was in.
LETTERMAN: No kidding!
WILLIAMS: RPG and AK-47.
LETTERMAN: What altitude were you hit at?
WILLIAMS: We were only at a hundred feet doing a hundred forward knots because we had these massive pieces of bridge beneath us on slings.
LETTERMAN: What happens the minute everybody realizes you’ve been hit?
WILLIAMS: Uh, we figure out how to land safely, and we did.
WILLIAMS: We landed very quickly and hard, and we put down, and we were stuck. Four birds in the middle of the desert, and we were north out ahead of the other Americans.
RUSH: And the conversation on Letterman, this is again March 26th of 2013, continued.
WILLIAMS: So we got hit. We set down. Everyone was okay. Our captain took a Purple Heart injury to his ear in the cockpit, but we were alone. They started distributing weapons. We heard a noise and it was Bradley fighting vehicles and Abrams tanks coming. They happened to spot us. They surrounded us for three days and —
LETTERMAN: You were on the ground, in combat —
LETTERMAN: — for three days.
WILLIAMS: Unbeknownst to anyone back here. NBC sent my wife and children to The Breakers in Florida to keep their minds off of it and keep them occupied, because no one knew where we were. We couldn’t be in touch.
LETTERMAN: I have to treat you now, uhh, with renewed respect. That’s a tremendous story.
WILLIAMS: We got hit (chuckles), and I came away just with more respect for these men and women.
RUSH: Now, I gather all that happened except event on a chopper that was shot down. Another chopper was. His landed safely; the other chopper didn’t. But all the rest of that happened. (interruption) Well, I don’t know for sure. I don’t know for sure. Actually, no. Actually no. I don’t know if we can be sure about that. I guess we can’t be sure. I just don’t know. His wife and y kids sent to The Breakers to forget about it? Hmm.
Here’s Howard Kurtz on The Kelly File last night in the Fox News Channel. She says to him, “Hey, Howie, it turns on out that the story wasn’t true.”
KURTZ: It’s completely untrue and it is very difficult for me to fathom, why Brian Williams — the anchor of the top-rated network newscast, the face of NBC News — would tell the story on the air at this ceremony about being shot down back in 2003 in a helicopter over Iraq. It is very difficult for me to understand it. And he has now apologized and he has blamed the fog of memory, but, come on! If your helicopter was shut down, that’s a life-changing event.
KURTZ: It either happened or it didn’t happen and it’s very hard for me to understand how he could make that mistake, and I have to be candid and say: It’s a major blow to his credibility and that of his network.
RUSH: Now, that’s what I’m not sure of anymore. I don’t know. How much does a network that employs Al Sharpton and Ronan Farrow care about its credibility? Number one. Number two, now, the Twitter gang (which is a lot of Millennials) have been having fun and making fun of Brian Williams. But at the end of the day is this really gonna harm his credibility? He’s a good liberal. He cares about liberal.
He has compassion. He’s a big supporter of Obama, gets the daily narrative, right? Okay, it was a mistake, probably PTSD. “He was scared, Mr. Limbaugh! Any one of us could have thought our helicopter was shot down if one right by us was,” and so forth. I can — sadly in our culture today — see how it’s not gonna have any lasting credibility problems. But, here, imagine if this was, say, Chet Huntley and David Brinkley. Imagine if this was John Chancellor. Imagine if it was Lawrence Spivak, who used to host Meet the Press.
Any of those people would have already resigned — and if not that, they would have been fired. It’s a different day now. It’s a changing world. It’s a new era. It’s a different world. So I don’t know that… I just don’t know. I just can’t understand it. I don’t know how. You must tell the story, what…? You know, when you’re a kid, when you’re five years old, if say you’re watching Bonanza, you pretend you’re Little Joe — or in my case, I’d pretend that I was Big Hoss. But, regardless, when you’re 50 years old, you don’t pretend you got shot down in a helicopter in Iraq, when you didn’t!
Here’s Hillary Clinton, just to close the loop and make sure everybody remembers. March 17th, 2008, George Washington University.
HILLARY: I remember landing under sniper fire. There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport, but instead we just ran with our heads down (chuckling) to get into the vehicles to get to our base. It was a moment of great pride for me! There was a saying around the White House that if place was too small, too poor, or too dangerous, the president couldn’t go, so send the first lady.
RUSH: Man! That’s even worse, that she’s the only brave one that had the guts to go to these places. She lies about having to avoid sniper fire and corkscrew in, and that didn’t happen either. Here’s the next bite, March 26th, 2008, in which Mrs. Clinton tells us why she made that up.
HILLARY: I totally misspoke. You know, I’ve talked about this endlessly, I wrote about it, and I don’t know what I was thinking. Because, yeah, we were told that we had to land under, y’know some threats, and the military did a great job. I was the first first lady taken to a war zone since Eleanor Roosevelt. But, uh, that was just sleep deprivation or something.
RUSH: “What difference does it make now anyway?” Just like Benghazi. “What difference does it make?” Meanwhile, the real threat to America is posed by Republicans in the War on Women and vaccination, and don’t you forget it.
RUSH: Round Hill, Virginia. This is Maggie. Maggie, thank you for waiting. I appreciate your patience. You’re next on the EIB Network.
CALLER: How are you?
RUSH: Hi, Maggie. Welcome to the program.
CALLER: Thank you. I’ve got to get rid of my dog. I originally called because I wanted to let you know that the Crusades, which you talked about earlier, were originally instituted because they were fighting back 450 years of Islamic terrorism that was sweeping across Europe, which some of your previous callers had already mentioned. So it’s kind of a moot point. (giggles) As far as Brian Williams is concerned, I think now he is trying to run for the presidency.
RUSH: You mean it’s a resume enhancement if you’re on the Democrat ticket?
CALLER: Exactly! (giggles) So that was the first thought that came into my head.
RUSH: Now, the way the left… If they wanted to mobilize and try to explain this away, and the way they would do it that has worked in the past, “Hey, okay, look he was there, right? It happened. He wasn’t on the bird that got shot down, but he got shot down. His chopper had to land too and they were in dire straits he probably got confused after all this time. When you’re on a mission and one of the choppers gets shot down and you all have to land because of it, it’s no different than your own getting shot down.
“They all had to put down,” and that’s the way they would justify it. “Hey, he was there! Hey, he cares. Hey, come on. He didn’t make up the whole thing.” There’s any number of ways that these “mistakes,” quote/unquote, are rationalized by defenders on the left. Remember, now, the only reason that we know this — the only reason we know anything about this at all — is because some in the military have blown the whistle on this. They, I guess, just couldn’t abide hearing it any longer.
Some people are now gonna wonder, “Well, what else do we hear on NBC that isn’t true?” And that’s a valid question. I mean, it really is a valid question. I wish everybody had that attitude about all these networks. “Is this maybe not true? Are they maybe making some of this up?” or, “Is this not really news? Is it really just part of the Democrat agenda, or is it some sort of narrative? Are they trying to advance some belief? Are they trying to propagandize me?”
I wish we had as healthy skepticism as that.
RUSH: This is Bob in Spokane. It’s great to have you, sir. Welcome to the EIB Network.
CALLER: Well, thank you, Rush. Hi. 48th Assault Helicopter Company, Blue Star dittos to you.
RUSH: Thank you, sir.
CALLER: Thank you. Back in my younger days when I was immortal, I flew helicopters in Vietnam, and I was shot down. It will be 44 years this March, and you do not forget that. You don’t “misremember.” It’s like it happened yesterday.
RUSH: I would think so.
CALLER: Yeah. This is not something that you think happened. This is something you know happened.
RUSH: By the same token, Bob, can you imagine…? In the fog of war, can you imagine being in a convoy of, say, choppers, one of them gets shut down — you’re in a different chopper not shot down, you eventually land within half hour/an hour of the chopper that was shut down? Can you imagine yourself, after a period of time, thinking you were on the chopper that was shot down?
CALLER: Well, I can tell you that I had two helicopters in front of me shot down and one behind me that went down in flames, and never once did I think I was on any of those helicopters.
RUSH: Yeah, it sounds reasonable. “I saw a couple helicopters shot down. I never once thought I was on ’em.” It sounds reasonable. I have to admit.
CALLER: One other thing that bothers me on this is that the veterans kind of got their hair rubbed and a pat on the bottom and he said, “Well, I did this to honor you guys.”
CALLER: Well, what he did is an insult to every aircrew who ever flew in combat, and you don’t insult somebody that you honor.
RUSH: No, no, no, no. Wait a minute. How did he insult ’em?
CALLER: By claiming to be on that helicopter that went down.
RUSH: So he trivialized it?
CALLER: Exactly. Stolen valor. You don’t do that. That’s an insult to anybody who’s ever actually done it.
RUSH: Yeah, but he says that he did this because there was a particular serviceman he wanted to honor.
CALLER: Well, that’s what I’m saying. He’s trying to get out of this by talking about, well, he did this to honor us. He insulted us.
CALLER: And you don’t insult somebody that you’re trying to honor.
RUSH: By the way, I should point out NBC News reported at the time that he was shot down. This is not something that Brian Williams concocted after a period of time, after the incident happened. NBC reported it the moment they learned of it that Williams was shot down. So it was not a distant memory. It was something that happened from the very beginning, this story.
CALLER: Correct. And, you know, 12 years? It’s about 44 for me, and I remember it like yesterday.
RUSH: Well, I, of course, have never been shot down, obviously. But I would think I would never forget it. That would be a unique experience. I would think I would remember every last detail about that. I have to grant you that.
RUSH: So I’m watching CNN, and they’re talking about the Brian Williams thing, and the infobabe is asking one of her guests, “Why didn’t the military speak up sooner? Why didn’t the military expose it? The military knew that this story wasn’t true! Why did they wait so long?” The guest said… I don’t know what he said. He said something stupid like, “They may not have really known. They may not have been listening.” That’s not the question. The military didn’t want to blow the whistle.
It just got to be insufferable.
They kept hearing the story over and over.
The question is, “Why didn’t anybody at NBC come forward and divulge what happened?” You’re gonna start trying to assign blame to the people that didn’t blow the whistle? Good grief! How many people at NBC have known this story was not true from the get-go? Why didn’t any of them speak up? Winston Churchill said, “Nothing in life is so exhilarating as to be shot at without result.” Nothing in life is so exhilarating as to almost lose your life but not. Brian Williams: Nothing in life is so exhilarating as to not be shot at but to say you were. (sigh)