From her third-floor balcony, Muir then watched the soldiers fire off flares and smoke bombs before searching floor by floor through the darkened hotel, their paths marked by flashlights and the pop-pop-pop of gunshots. “The show of force was so overwhelming,” she said.

The maneuvers were part of a “realistic urban training” exercise for about 100 military personnel, and organized by the U.S. Special Operations Command, said Maj. Michael Burns, a U.S. Army spokesman. The exercise also included three military helicopters, and the use of simulated explosions and gunfire to mimic real-life military scenarios.

Miami police assisted in overseeing the exercises — but they were instructed to keep quiet about the exercises until late Monday, for security reasons.


Dear Military: Stay the fuck out of my city. You have got to be kidding me: dropping from helicopters in the middle of the night while playing gun and bomb sounds without even the courtesy of notifying the residents of what you’re doing (For “security reasons?” Whose security?). This is the same style of assholery that we are seeing from all aspects of the government right now, and while I try to keep this blog non-partisan (as TSA abuse is not an issue that divides us), the blame for this goes straight up to the White House. This behavior is disrespectful to the American people, and we deserve an apology.