Brian Williams sits for first interview since suspension from NBC News

This is an awkward interview. I think the bottom line is this. Williams says that he embellished stories to enhance his role in certain events he was involved in (kind of like a fisherman would exaggerate his exploits). This started not as a part of his news reports but in interviews and conversations outside of his reporting. In his own mind over the years, his exaggerations took on a life of their own–so much so that he was no longer distinguishing fact from fiction in his own thinking. He apparently began to believe his own fictions and repeated them years after the fact, not recalling (perhaps not choosing to recall?) that they were not true.

Like I said, this conversation is awkward. But there is something deeply revealing about human nature in all of this. Even our memories are morally implicated by sin. People tend to remember themselves as the hero of our their own stories. They recall (and sometimes invent!) what buttresses their self-image and suppress what does not. These fictional accounts of ourselves tend to emerge rather spontaneously from our nature as sinners (Rom. 1:18). People can be easily, happily, and even obliviously self-deluded.

You can watch the interview above for yourself and judge for yourself whether I have the correct read on this. Or you can read the report here. You can read Albert Mohler’s comments from last February here.


  • Sam Dillon

    I remember seeing an interview with Brokaw either shortly after he stepped down or shortly before. From what I remember he and a few other anchors like Rather, Jennings, and maybe even Donaldson were sitting around and telling war stories of various rather dangerous situations they had been in during their time as correspondents and the like. From the moment the story hit with Williams I wondered if perhaps he put himself in the middle of those stories as a way to measure up to some of the guys, and women I suppose, who had came before him even though, clearly, he was not able to match their exploits. Assuming of course Mr. Williams would have watched the same interview I remember. In a sense, if my speculation is true, I feel kinda bad for him. That kind of envy is enough to eat people alive.

  • Don Johnson

    I have read that it is possible to implant false memories just by asking questions; in other words, where there have been no direct assertions about what actually happened in the past, just questions about what might have happened..

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