The Pentagon's PR Guru

Stephen J. Hedges profiles the Rendon Group, the PR firm now working for the Pentagon in the "war on terrorism." Company owner John Rendon, who calls himself "an information warrior and a perception manager," has gotten rich working in places like Panama, the Balkans, Haiti, Iraq and Afghanistan. However, the secrecy surrounding his work makes it difficult to assess what, if anything, Rendon is actually accomplishing. "They're very closemouthed about what they do," says Kevin McCauley, an editor at O'Dwyer's PR Daily. "They do media monitoring, getting an image of how the U.S. is perceived in the Muslim world. And they're big into video news releases. It's all cloak-and-dagger stuff."