In the savviest public relations move since LeBron James announced that he’d be taking his talents to South Beach, BAE Systems OASYS has besmirched Dakota Meyer, Medal of Honor recipient, after the Marine quit his gig promoting their products. Meyer resigned the job with OASYS after finding that the company pursued sales of its weapons systems to the U.S.’s nominal (at best) ally, Pakistan. When Meyer quit and tried to secure new employment, BAE, in an apparent fit of petty vindictiveness, “ridiculed his Medal of Honor, called him mentally unstable and suggested he had a drinking problem,” thereby costing him the new job. Being a Marine, – and one who saved 36 fellow lethernecks while killing eight Taliban in the bargain – Meyer’s not taking this lying down…

According to the AP via yahoo.com, Meyer’s suing his former employer.

In a defamation lawsuit filed in Texas, Meyer alleges that his former employer, BAE Systems OASYS Inc., ruined his chances at landing a new job by telling a prospective employer that he was a poor worker during a three-month stint earlier this year.

A BAE Systems manager said Meyer “was mentally unstable, that Sgt. Meyer was not performing BAE tasks assigned and that Sgt. Meyer had a problem related to drinking in a social setting,” according to the lawsuit.

Nice. Next up, BAE will be announcing that the Marines’ Toys for Tots campaign is actually a front for a kiddie porn production ring.

Meyer, like most sentient being, knows that Pakistan plays both sides of the fence with America. They ostensibly support the US fight in Afghanistan. But at the same time, they harbored Osama Bin Laden, the Taliban enjoys safe havens in the northwest part of the country and their ISI intelligence service actively supports our enemies with weapons and intelligence. All of which was too much for Meyer to stomach.

Meyer wrote that it was “disturbing” how U.S. troops were being issued outdated equipment when better, advanced thermal optic scopes were being offered to Pakistan.

“We are simply taking the best gear, the best technology on the market to date and giving to guys that are known to stab us in the back,” Meyer wrote in the email, according to the lawsuit.

Roehrkasse, the BAE spokesman, said it is the State Department and not BAE that makes the decision on which defense-related products can be exported.

“In recent years, the U.S. government has approved the export of defense-related goods from numerous defense companies to Pakistan as part of the United States’ bilateral relationship with that country,” Roehrkasse said.

It’s not our fault! The U.S. government said it was OK! Honest! Soon OASYS will testify that they were just following orders.

It’s hard to see how the PR hit BAE OASYS is sure to take over this is worth justifying the loss of a Medal of Honor wearing spokesman by telling the world he’s a drunk. Even if everything they’ve said about Meyer is true, what can possibly be gained by publicly throwing him under the armored personnel carrier?

After this debacle, BAE may want to look for a good PR firm. Preferably one with strong crisis management skills. But there’s apparently no truth to the rumor that, as their next celebrity spokesman, they’ve hired Lon Horiuchi.

 

24 Responses to BAE Systems OASYS Smears Medal of Honor Winner

  1. the BAE attack on this brave individual is an absolute disgrace. This cannot be the way that brits do business usually, they need to have someone come over the pond to slap whoever made the decision to slander this man. It sounds like BAE Systems Inc in the US needs to reassess their priorities. so they guy drinks? guess what so do i, people deal with things in their own way. it also would seem that drinking was not getting in the way of Meyer’s job, they put this out there for very transparent petty reasons.

  2. BAE like most corparations run on the profit over anything else philosophy. Integrity is a punchline to a joke not a way of life. HHHHHOOOOOOOOOORRRRRAAAAAAHHHHH! for Meyer and good luck. BAE apears to be run by the ATF, DOJ…………. and (you know who they are!)

  3. Anyone who has ever worked for a company in the Military Industry is aware of Export Control laws of the United States. This company would take precautions against releasing information to that country, let alone sell them products on this list, unless they no longer wish to EVER receive a contract delivery order or service delivery agreement again.

    Dakota Meyer should and would have known about this, typically, since most companies have orientations about such matters. I applaud him for standing up about it, but he should have known that this was possible, and it IS the US Govt. that determines export-controlled items. He probably signed some sort of NDA or other agreement with BAE, a contract that nobody forced him to sign when taking the job initially. If he felt the way he did, he should have just resigned and left it at that! Instead, he used the opportunity to bash his former employer, doing what businesses do – sell products. (Don’t misunderstand, companies should have some moral fiber, but this was not the forum for it).

    BAE should not have done the things they did, it sounds like “small minds” are in control of that company, so I am not excusing it – but I think that just because someone who wins a MOH, served their country, served in the USMC, that they should not get a pass when they make a calculated decision to accept an offer of employment and then mock the employer after they leave.

    Plenty of blame on both sides. Now – the lawyers are involved, and should the good Marine win, potentially millions of dollars, BAE will simply pass the price on to the customer (and one way or the other it will be us), the lawyers will get a huge fee. He should have just stepped away and moved on.

    Flame away if you must, but I am not going to get indignant at this company because it feels good – you need to look deeper at the issue. Would we all love for a company to NOT sell to “suspect” country? Absolutely. But then we get mad when our 401k’s and stocks don’t go up due to lost revenue. The real blame here is our Govt. and it’s export control. They typically contract for these products and once they do, they place the EC label on them – but if they don’t use or buy it, they don’t always place controls on it.

    • Tim, Can you cite the part where Sgt Meyer publicly ridiculed or defamed BAE prior to the deformation lawsuit? From the Yahoo article it seems that his beef was internal to the company and BAE stepped out of bounds by defaming him to another prospective employer because of his beliefs. From that perspective he did “step away” without causing them harm. Doesn’t sound to me like he was using his MoH to get a pass. Sounds to me like he did the right thing and it was BAE (or it’s PR firm) that threw this issue into the mud.

      And btw, it’s not always apparent exactly WHAT an employer is up to OR exactly how business is conducted before you sign on the dotted line. Not all of us are ‘all-seeing and all-knowing’…

      • Thanks for the clarification – after further review, it looks more like an internal Marine to Marine fight – his direct supervisor (who is probably the one called for the new employment) had an ax to grind.

        Again, it is the lawyers looking for a payday by using on one side of the coin, a MOH winner, and the other side, a large defense contractor with DEEP pockets.

    • And why is this guy crying about it being offered to Pakistan and not US troops? I highly doubt that BAE won’t sell to the US military, but rather the US military doesnt want to buy thermal imagers for the troops, and the troops dont want to pay for them out of pocket. If he has this beef with the company, why did he even take the job in the first place? Its long been known our defense contractors do plenty of business with foreign nations, let alone a British defense contractor. Its not like BAE was smuggling them.

    • The issue here is the public nature of the dispute. You can certainly make the case that Meyer should have done more homework before signing on with BAE. And no one is saying BAE is doing anything illegal in selling to the Pakistanis.

      No, the problem here – from the press account – is that BAE slimed him when he left and kept him from getting a new gig. Meyer didn’t issue a press release when he left. He just quit.

      BAE evidently got a call from the prospective new employer. Instead of doing what 90+% of companies do – confirming employment dates and nothing more – they felt it necessary to say what a crappy employee he was. Bad reference. No new job.

      And that’s how it all became public. True or not, BAE didn’t have to say anything about Meyer. Instead, they thought it would be a good idea to tell the new employer what a jerk he is and that he drinks too much.

      Oops.

      • It looks from the article to be more likely his former Supervisor slimed him, but not BAE. But who has the deeper pockets in a lawsuit?

      • he should have had a friend call his past employer seeking the info prior to applying for another job. I have done this in the past. And if the employer offers anything besides the verification of employment, they better be ready to defend it with documented evidence (HR) and a third party reference or they’re in over their heads.

        Shame on BAE.

  4. The Supervisor is a Marine, the litigant a Marine. Interesting…Marines are very close, so what gives here? There are deeper issues that we are not aware of for sure. Anyone else feel that we don’t have all the facts?

  5. From Wikipedia:

    “BAE now sells more to the US Department of Defense (DOD) than the UK [Ministry of Defence].”

    Oops.

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