«Miami police also invited reporters to "embed" with them in armoured vehicles and helicopters. As in Iraq, most reporters embraced their role as pseudo soldiers with zeal, suiting up in combat helmets and flak jackets.
The resulting media coverage was the familiar wartime combination of dramatic images and non-information. We know, thanks to an "embed" from the Miami Herald, that Timoney was working so hard hunting down troublemakers that by 3:30pm on Thursday "he had eaten only a banana and a cookie since 6am".
Local TV stations didn't cover the protests so much as hover over them. Their helicopters showed images of confrontations, but instead of hearing the voices on the streets - voices pleading with police to stop shooting and clearly following orders to disperse - we heard only from police officials and perky news anchors commiserating with the boys on the front line.
Meanwhile, independent journalists who dared to do their jobs and film the police violence up close were actively targeted. "She's not with us," one officer told another as they grabbed Ana Nogueira, a correspondent with Pacifica Radio's Democracy Now! who was covering a peaceful protest outside the Miami-Dade county jail. When the police established that Nogueira was "not with us" (ie neither an embedded reporter nor undercover cop) she was hauled away and charged.
[...] Already, Jim Wilkinson, director of strategic communications at US Central Command in Doha, Qatar (the operation that gave the world the Jessica Lynch rescue), has moved to New York to head up media operations for the Republican National Convention. "We're looking at embedding reporters," he told the New York Observer of his plans to use some of the Iraq tricks during the convention. "We're looking at new and interesting camera angles."»