In a previous generation there were foreign correspondents who stayed in one place long enough to acquire some idea of what was going on there.
The contemporary journalist is voyeur to a “crisis.” He has been flown in, with a crew. He does not arrive knowing the way from the airport. He is taken for a fool by every interested party he encounters, and manipulated accordingly. He is like a rich hunter on safari who must employ beaters to drive a few game animals into his way. He has limited time, before his audience has lost interest in the latest crisis, and he is himself air-freighted to the next one. The result is reportage not quite so good as no information at all.
I suppose our familiarity with (but not actually knowledge of) a reporter whom we've seen before at other locations is supposed to be a proxy for the reporter's knowledge of the situation.
The essay ends with a novel suggestion for dealing with the army of would-be immigrants (aka refugees) in Europe.