editorial by Ramona du Hoxu
NBC News anchor Brian Williams took himself off the evening newscast for several days as the network investigates his claim that he was aboard a helicopter that was downed by a rocket-propelled grenade during the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.
“In the midst of a career spent covering and consuming news, it has become painfully apparent to me that I am presently too much a part of the news, due to my actions,” Williams said in a statement posted on NBC News’ website.
Lester Holt, who typically anchors on weekends, will take over the newscast until Williams return.
Williams should never return.
There should be a national call for his resignation. This is the news not Sunday night quarterbacking. Millions of opinions across the country and world are formulated by what they hear and see on nightly news. These people deserve the TRUTH.
Walter Cronkite took pains to insure each and every story he broadcast was backed up by facts. He would not broadcast a story unless he had the evidence that the story was true. He made it a point never to editorialize in his broadcasts. So much so, when he put his point of view into a newscast because he felt it was his obligation as an eye witness to atrocities in the Viet Nam War - his point of view made National News.
Dan Rather was fired as a newscaster because he did an in-depth report on former George W. Bush's national guard service. His facts were true but the report apparently upset sponsors. And maybe that's the problem today with the nightly news. Williams is known to be "entertaining" but this is not Saturday Night Live, this is the time slot on TV where facts should be given to people. The Colbert Report had the guts to satirize nightly news but millions still believe in Williams' or Fox News broadcasts.
Now there are doubts cast on the reporting done by Williams about Hurricane Katrina.
How can the people every trust Williams ever again after making such an outlandish claim? He's done a disservice to all who served and their families as well as all news agencies who still have the integrity of reporting the truth, not as they see it - but as the facts show it to be.