Thursday, December 15, 2011

Marine Medal of Honor Shrouded in Controversy

News is coming to light that the Medal of Honor awarded to Marine Dakota Meyer might not be as much of an open and shut case as was thought. As many news agencies are reporting, it seems as though the account of Meyer's actions as given by the Marine Corps are, at the very least, exaggerated. Why would this be the case?

There are two main reasons. The first reason is that Congress has tried to award more medals, and particularly higher profile medals, in the waning days of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. There have been only ten Medals of Honor awarded during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and only three of those have gone to living soldiers. The rush to award Medals of Honor was therefore present on the civilian side, and the second reason is that the rush was also on the military side. The Marine Corps also wanted to have one of their own awarded the Medal of Honor, feeling that they deserved more recognition due to their role in both Afghanistan and Iraq. Of the nine previous Medals of Honor awarded since 2001, 1 went to a Marine, 2 went to members of the Navy, and the remaining six all went to members of the Army. For a proud organization that has, in many ways, stepped outside its intention in the last decade, some more recognition would obviously be expected.

Meyer's fellow Marines that were with him during the battle for which he was later awarded the Medal of Honor say that he did indeed deserve it. While the official count given by the Marine Corps may prove to be inaccurate, the Washington Post reports that at least seven others present at the battle backed the decision to nominate Meyer for the Medal of Honor. This would seem to indicate that even if the story on the Marine Corps website is somewhat embellished, it doesn't mean that this Medal of Honor is tainted.

Another, and perhaps the most interesting aspect of this story is the timing. As I believe has been mentioned on this blog, Meyer has filed suit against BAE Systems, a contracting company and his former employer. According to Meyer, he was shown the door after protesting an arms deal BAE was in the process of making. Not only was he shown the door at BAE, but he claims he was also blacklisted from other potential employers. At the time of the suit in late November, BAE made statements suggesting that, although they would be fighting the lawsuit, they wouldn't go into personal attacks against Meyer. These two facts-the controversy over Meyer's Medal of Honor and his lawsuit against BAE Systems-raise some questions. Is this simply bad timing for Meyer, or could BAE Systems have leaked the news regarding the possible misrepresentation of Meyer's actions in an attempt to discredit him? While that could be too big of a conspiracy theory stretch, it will be interesting to see how Meyer's legal actions play out with BAE Systems.



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Anonymous said...

Have read everything. This guy may have served (and God bless those who do) but he's exaggerating in order to sell his BS. That pisses me off...AND he received a medal for it! Which pisses me off, even more.

Gordon Gandy said...

The Marines that were there support the medal for him. Were you there?
there was a investigation by officers and you question their honor too? So you just know what is true by your reading a story.
God man you should run for KING!
All heil to you !

Anonymous said...

just as many people there dispute his story as those who say it is true. Kind of like Burgduff--President tried to make him a hero after he was rescued--and others in his unit finally spoke out and told the truth. Sad that Meyer plans on running for Congress or makes big money from motivational speeches for a living--sure seems like things have gone to his head and looks like Sarah Palin is teaching him how to be a grifter or con artist, because it is easier than getting a job using your own skills.

Frogman Smith said...

His story sounded too incredible for even Hollywood. Then all the stories came out with the rush to pin a medal on. Now it all makes sense. This guy is nothing but a fraud and he will hang around the part of the pool that has his supporters in it. He knows once he ventures out of his protective enclave of fans he'll be eaten alive.