Associated Press Confirms Flooding and Floating Bodies Near Brian Williams’ Hotel During Katrina

The Ginger Avenger’s big scoop blows up
Media • Views: 41,501

Following up on our previous post about the now almost certainly false claim launched by wingnut stalker Chuck C. Johnson that NBC anchor Brian Williams was “lying” about seeing a dead body floating in a flooded street from his hotel room in New Orleans, the Associated Press has now confirmed that:

  1. Brian Williams was staying at the Ritz Carlton Hotel.
  2. The Ritz Carlton did experience severe flooding.
  3. There were definitely dead bodies floating in the streets in this area.

Here’s the AP report: NBC Launches Internal Probe on Brian Williams’ Iraq Claims. (h/t: @ProgressGA.)

Questions also were raised about statements Williams made on coverage of Hurricane Katrina, which was one of his proudest moments at NBC. In a 2006 interview with former Disney CEO Michael Eisner, Williams twice referenced seeing a body float down a street in New Orleans.

“When you look out of your hotel room window in the French Quarter and watch a man float by face down, when you see bodies that you last saw in Banda Aceh, Indonesia, and swore to yourself that you would never see in your country,” Williams said.

[…]

The remarks drew suspicion because during Katrina there was relatively little flooding in New Orleans’ French Quarter.

Williams was staying at the Ritz-Carlton hotel in New Orleans, according to an NBC source who was not authorized to speak on personnel matters and requested anonymity.

Police Capt. James Scott, who was a commander in the downtown area, said he saw a body floating along the edge of the French Quarter on a street about four blocks from the Ritz-Carlton, which was surrounded by up to 3 feet of water.

Alex Brandon, a Washington-based photographer for The Associated Press, said there was enough water to launch a flat-bottomed boat from in front of the Ritz. He said he photographed a dead body floating on another street a few blocks from the Ritz.

If Brian Williams lied about his helicopter being shot down in Iraq, that’s still a serious problem for him. But the news outlets that fell for Chuck C. Johnson’s bogus story claiming he was also lying about seeing a floating body from his hotel room were clearly taken in by a right wing con man.

We can only hope that more of the media have learned their lesson now about treating this guy as a credible source.

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