The Washington Post’s Erik Wemple sees the Brian Williams scandal as a bigger than just one person — a serious problem for NBC News in general. While it is obvious the network never vetted or noticed the evolution of their Nightly News anchor’s 12 year lie about being shot down in a Chinook helicopter over Iraq in 2003, Wemple wonders why the NBC crewmembers assigned to Williams at the time never spoke up:
Where were Williams’s crew members, who surely knew that Williams had either “conflated” his Chinook with another Chinook — his explanation — or was using the passage of time to embellish his own exploits — another explanation. And what of other NBC News employees who worked on the story? Why did they remain silent on these matters? Are they still with NBC News?
We put these questions to NBC News and haven’t heard back.
It’s hard to imagine NBC News being all that worried about its credibility. As National Review’s Jim Gergahty pointed out this morning:
Here’s the thing: NBC News employed Chelsea Clinton under that ridiculous contract, and MSNBC keeps Al Sharpton around (allegedly to keep him happy with corporate parent ComCast), has a correspondent that accused “American Sniper” Chris Kyle of going on “killing sprees,” has guest commentator claim Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal is “trying to wash that brown off his skin,” has a host wearing tampon earrings, and gave a weekend show to Hillary Clinton’s former deputy press secretary.
How much more credibility is there to lose?
Add to that what I wrote last night
Just a few months ago, NBC News Chief Medical Correspondent Nancy Snyderman was caught violating her Ebola quarantine. During the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman uproar NBC News was caught editing a 9-1-1 call to make Zimmerman look racist. During the 2012 presidential election Andrea Mitchell was caught fabricating a Mitt Romney gaffe.
NBC News could actually boost its credibility by firing Williams. But I don’t think the left-wing network wants to send the message that lying on the air over 12 years is wrong.
Over 12 years, Williams repeated this lie at least 7 times.
John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC