Brian Williams Taking Brief Hiatus From NBC Amid Iraq Reporting Scandal, Internal Investigation

Brian Williams
Brian Williams is taking a leave of absence from NBC amid his Iraq reporting scandal -- read his memo to the staff Henry S. Dziekan III/Getty Images

Brian Williams is taking a leave of absence from NBC. The Nightly News anchor will step down from his news desk as the network investigates false claims he made while covering the War in Iraq back in 2003.

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"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, 55, said in a staff memo on Saturday, Feb. 7.

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"As Managing Editor of NBC Nightly News, I have decided to take myself off of my daily broadcast for the next several days, and Lester Holt has kindly agreed to sit in for me to allow us to adequately deal with this issue," he continued in the statement. "Upon my return, I will continue my career-long effort to be worthy of the trust of those who place their trust in us."

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An insider adds to Us Weekly that "everyone decided it was for the best" for Williams to take a hiatus for the time being. "They are hoping they can see it through, but it's really spiraling."

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Williams has been the trending topic on Twitter for several days now. After admitting that he "bungled" a past Iraq story on Feb. 4, NBC News President Deborah Turness confirmed on Feb. 6 that the network had launched an internal investigation into the matter. There has also been speculation that Williams lied about experiences he had while covering Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

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