In his words: Brian Williams’ interview with Stars and Stripes

Stars and Stripes reporter Travis J. Tritten: Speaking to these guys today they all told me they don’t understand how you could make a mistake like this. It is the opening of the war, the first week of the invasion. These are memories that are seared into people’s minds. There’s all this buildup to the war. And all of them told me they couldn’t understand how you could misremember what aircraft you were on or whether your aircraft was hit, so I’m just wondering how that could happen?

Brian Williams: Same reasoning in reverse. It was my first engagement of the war and remember I was — we were all I think scared, I have yet to meet the veteran who doesn’t admit to cinching up a little bit when it starts, and it all became a fog of getting down on the ground, what do we do now, taking our direction from the air crews — I’m traveling with a retired four-star general — and then the arrival of the armored ‘mech’ platoon. So, a professional will look at this differently. They do into a kind of hyper-drive. I did what a civilian, an untrained civilian, would do in that instance and it was being scared. I think anyone in my shoes would admit that. It could not have been a more foreign environment. All we knew is we had been fired upon. All we knew was we had set down and then with the arrival of the sandstorm, how do we defend our little desert bivouac area.

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