Brian Williams Used Iraq Helicopter Lie to Deride David Petraeus

Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images/AFP
Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images/AFP

Based upon a search after seeing a Brian Williams quote via Twitter, a September 2007 Media Research item, Brian Williams Derides Petraeus as No Eisenhowerindicates NBC’s Brian Williams used a story now shown to be false as part of his coverage undermining then-U.S. General David Petraeus.

The interview was done at the National Press Club in Washington, DC and also aired “on the September 12 NBC Nightly News.”

Interviewing General David Petraeus for Wednesday’s NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams insisted he admit “al Qaeda in Iraq wasn’t around” on 9/11, demanded to know “how are we so sure all of these insurgents can be labeled al-Qaeda?” and derided Petraeus’s admission that he’s not sure if the war has made Americans safer: “I heard a commentator on television say, ‘Can you imagine Eisenhower saying the same thing?’” That unnamed commentator: Williams’s corporate colleague, Chris Matthews.

Below is a portion of the transcript from said interview.

WILLIAMS: All these insurgents, how can you be so sure in a war without uniforms or membership cards, the claim by the critics is it fuzzes it up, it makes it a convenient, unified argument.

PETRAEUS: Well, it’s not a unified force, and I have not tried to make that case. What we have had is a situation in which there are insurgents who have been loose confederation with al-Qaeda at various times.

WILLIAMS: I guess what I’m trying to understand is, at the start of the war, when I was flying in a Chinook with General Downing, that helicopter was shot at by a farmer. He wasn’t even yet known as an insurgent. We didn’t know we had insurgents yet. It was too early in the invasion. But when did that happen? And how are we so sure all of these insurgents can be labeled al-Qaeda?

PETRAEUS: Well, we do not label them all al-Qaeda, and I have tried very hard not to imply that or to state that. There clearly are Sunni Arab insurgents, again, resistance fighters, rejectionists, various labels, if you will, that are independent of al-Qaeda.


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