News and Commentary

‘A True Dummy’: Trump Blasts MSNBC’s ‘Lyin’ Brian Williams’ For His Stolen Valor
NBC NEWS -- Pictured: (c) Anchor and Managing Editor, Brian Williams of "NBC Nightly News" with American military reports from Camp Liberty in Baghdad, Iraq on March 8, 2007 (Photo by
Jeff Riggins/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

President Trump on Thursday blasted MSNBC host Brian Williams over his past apology for stolen valor, when the former NBC Nightly News host made a slew of exaggerated claims about his stint covering the Iraq War.

Williams, Trump wrote on Twitter, “wouldn’t know the truth if it was nailed to his wooden forehead.”

“Remember when he lied about his bravery in a helicopter? Totally made up story. He’s a true dummy who was thrown off Network News like a dog. Stay tuned!” Trump tweeted.

The president also posted a video containing news coverage of Williams’s suspension from NBC in February 2015.

In another post, Trump compared Williams to CNN’s Don Lemon, who often draws the president’s ire.

“I must admit that Lyin’ Brian Williams is, while dumber than hell, quite a bit smarter than Fake News @CNN ‘anchorman’ Don Lemon, the ‘dumbest man on television’. Then you have Psycho Joe ‘What Ever Happened To Your Girlfriend?’ Scarborough, another of the low I.Q. individuals!” he tweeted.

Williams’ reputation has been under repair for years, and the New York Post reported in February that Williams could possibly replace Chris Matthews, who resigned after facing charges of sexual harassment. Matthews announced his resignation from MSNBC last month after being accused of “inappropriate behavior” by GQ columnist Laura Bassett.

Williams was fired after it was learned that he lied about an incident in Iraq, when he said a helicopter he was in was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG).

The NBC anchor, reportedly making $10 million a year, at first tried to claim he had “conflated” two incidents. “I was instead in a following aircraft,” Williams said on NBC in February 2015. “This was a bungled attempt by me to thank one special veteran, and by extension, our brave military men and women.”

“I would not have chosen to make this mistake,” Williams said on the air. “I don’t know what screwed up in my mind that caused me to conflate one aircraft with another.”

But crew members on the helicopter that was hit exposed Williams’ lie, which the news anchor told repeatedly in public. Crew members told Stars and Stripes that Williams was actually about an hour behind the three-helicopter formation that came under fire. “It was something personal for us that was kind of life-changing for me. I know how lucky I was to survive it,” said Lance Reynolds. “It felt like a personal experience that someone else wanted to participate in and didn’t deserve to participate in.”

By June 2015, the story fell apart.

“I said things that weren’t true,” Williams said in an interview with then morning-news anchor Matt Lauer (who was also fired by the network amid sexual misconduct allegations).

“It had to have been ego that made me think I had to be sharper, funnier, quicker than anybody else,” Williams said. He said he was always careful with his words when he was anchoring the news, but “after work, when I got out of that building, when I got out of that realm, I used a double standard. Something changed. I was sloppy. I said things that weren’t true.”

Williams was caught lying about several other things, like claiming he saw a dead body float by in the French Quarter after Hurricane Katrina — except that the French Quarter never flooded.

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