RUSH: This is Fred in Jacksonville, Florida. Hey, Fred, great to have you on the program.
CALLER: Dittos Rush, I’m Commander Fred West out of Jacksonville, Florida. I was a pilot of the C-130 that flew Brian Williams and his crew from Bahrain to a forward operating base southeast of Baghdad where he boarded from the helicopter that he talked so much about.
RUSH: You piloted the plane?
CALLER: C-130, yes, sir, flew him from Bahrain to a forward operating base in the desert southeast of Baghdad where he was gonna pick up his helicopter.
RUSH: You flew Brian Williams?
CALLER: Yes, sir. We were coming in —
RUSH: So your plane, your plane came under fire, your plane was hit?
CALLER: No, it wasn’t hit.
RUSH: Just like Brian Williams said, your plane was hit, you went down, somebody got hit, got a Purple Heart injury right to the ear, right?
CALLER: Well, we were flying downwind on runway 31 and we got to the downwind end and got to about 400 knots and had to do a half Cuban 8 —
RUSH: Runway 31? There wasn’t any runway 31. This happened in Iraq he said, runway 31 where?
CALLER: In a forward operating base just southeast of Baghdad. Then we got to the upwind end and they changed the runway, so we did a split S and made a hard landing right on the numbers. Struts went right through the wheel wells and all four propellers were ground to a halt on the runway, and then —
RUSH: The next thing you’re gonna tell me is Brian Williams suffered a catastrophic injury that he hadn’t told anybody about yet because he doesn’t want to make himself out too big a hero.
CALLER: Well, what he did, you know, protocol for airplanes is the plane commander is the last on and the first off. Well, as soon as we landed, Brian Williams jumped out of the airplane and ran across the apron and he was dodging left and right as if he was dodging sniper fire.
RUSH: But there wasn’t any fire, he just made it look like that?
CALLER: He just made it look like that. You should have seen him. He was like a track man. He was going left and right and jumping up and down and it was just an amazing thing.
RUSH: What did everybody think? Because the other plane that he claimed he was on had landed an hour earlier and had taken all the fire —
CALLER: Oh, no, no, no. Helicopters —
RUSH: — so by the time you guys land, there is no fire, yet he’s dodging fire that isn’t happening.
CALLER: Yeah, well, see, he was on the helicopter in that infamous thing. We were the C-130 that flew him into Iraq from Bahrain, so this was a whole different incident than the helicopter incident.
RUSH: Wait a minute. I thought Brian Williams said the plane he was in — it was a helicopter he was in that got hit?
CALLER: Yes. Yes.
RUSH: So this is an entirely different Brian Williams, and you were the pilot.
CALLER: Yes. I flew he and his crew into the desert south of Baghdad.
RUSH: Did you find him to be a courageous guy? Was he sitting in the number two seat with you?
CALLER: He wasn’t so courageous when he jumped off the airplane and ran to the apron to try to find those helicopters. You should have seen him dodging imaginary sniper fire.
RUSH: (laughing) Was his crew following? Did anybody get —
CALLER: Oh, yeah, he had about three or four people, cameraman, a sound guy, probably a script guy, I couldn’t tell, but they sort of followed —
RUSH: Wait a second now, a script — (laughing) — script guy? How can you know there was a script guy?
CALLER: Well, he had a clipboard and a grease pencil, so I imagine he was writing the words for Brian to read.
RUSH: All right. Fred, I’m gonna have to — I know what Fred’s doing. Fred is accepting an offer made weeks ago on this program. One Open Line Friday I offered anybody the opportunity to call here and lie and make it up. See if they could sell it just as easily and as well as Brian Williams sold all his lies, and that’s what Fred’s doing here. I knew this was a lie to begin with but when he told me the script guy with the clipboard, Brian Williams dodging nonexisting sniper fire, way to go, Fred, I applaud you.
RUSH: This is great. I have e-mails pouring in trying to help me understand what Fred was saying in the previous call. “No, Rush, Fred flew the plane. It was Brian Williams on the helicopter that flew –” folks, the guy was lying. He didn’t fly Brian Williams anywhere. He was taking advantage of my offer, and he admitted this to Snerdley. Snerdley knew this. I didn’t.
Snerdley knew it when he put the call up and it was an attempt to see just how far he could to get me to believe this. And I don’t know what it was, something triggered this might be made up from a weeks-old invitation to callers to call here and lie in honor of Brian Williams. Make it up and see how easily you can sell it.