Just released documents confirm what many suspected all along. During the course of events in Ferguson the police created a no fly zone that was only meant to restrict media coverage from the air. This created a scenario where the full picture of events was difficult to gauge as on the ground cameras only reveal bits and pieces. During these sorts of uprisings news helicopter footage many times creates some of the most striking and obvious pictures as to the real situation on the ground. So, restricting it essentially stops a large portion of the population, even those already in support from grasping the overall strategic situation. From the Associated Press;
Such images would have offered an unvarnished view of one of the most serious episodes of civil violence in recent memory. The recordings also offer a rare look into government operations, especially as local public-records requests to Ferguson officials by the AP and other news organizations were denied or met with high processing fees
Along with this direct evidence, we need to step back and realize what this also means. It can be assumed with very little doubt that when photographers and other media were arrested for seemingly doing nothing that this, was also orchestrated. Of course it may never be possible to prove this directly, but it really doesn’t matter. When the worst is proven, we should assume the worst for all related questions. And, it is essential not to forget that for the past few years restricting news helicopters has been an unconfirmed but well recognized tactic during insurrection and protest. It is a national strategy, not a “hair brained local one.”
The media in Ferguson was restricted, managed and repressed in total
Why did the Ferguson police restrict the media?
Well, we know the typical safe opposition response that simply, the police do not want to be recorded violating the law and beating citizens. Sure, this may partially be true but camera phones can record police brutality quite well, many times much better than news footage. The main reason though isn’t any more complicated than the safe one. Restricting certain types of media is designed to fuel an ongoing counter-insurgency operation. It is a tactic, not used to cover up the “crimes of the police,” but a tactic used to defeat insurgency.
So why is the real answer uncomfortable? Well, it requires the believer to really, in all actuality understand that the organized justice system is working to defeat you. They want you to stop protesting and are willing to arrest and restrict the media to meet that goal. When it’s just “police brutality” it seems manageable. Even when it’s bad you can work with the cops and fix the problem. But you can’t work with the cops, this is not Mayberry 1950, this is USA 2014 where millions of people are in prison. Where cops shoot people all the damn time. I mean hell, do you really think the cops care about a news chopper catching “brutality?” They are the ones shooting people. What they care about is more citizens joining an ongoing rebellion. Let’s be clear and real about it.
Over the past few months I have talked a lot about police strategy in Ferguson and elsewhere. Many other pieces have been written about it that detail specific examples of this. Remember that, the police restricting media is just a tactic. A tactic that allows their strategic purpose of controlling information to move forth in a less turbulent fashion. And propaganda by design is meant for the masses, which will influence the situation on the ground. It’s up to us to directly counter their propaganda with our own. In order to do this we need to drop the moderate pretense of “they want to beat us,” and move directly to
they want to stop us.
From outside agitators, to pushing racial strife, to good cop/bad cop, to mass arrests, empowering moderate community leaders and as discussed, restricting specific media….they are trying their hardest.