The United States’ Lockheed Martin: Rights violations at home and abroad: Page 2 of 2
have discriminated against its female workers. A lawsuit alleged that the company denied female employees the opportunity to “advance their careers to upper management level positions outside of the human resources, communications, and ethics department.” It stated that the company violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, and was eventually settled in 2008 pursuant, again, to undisclosed terms. [viii] Ironically, the current chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Lockheed Martin, Marillyn Hewson, is a woman. [ix]
In addition to this, the US EEOC announced in 2008 that a race discrimination and retaliation lawsuit against Lockheed Martin fined the company over US$ 2.5 million after an African American electrician was subjected to a racially hostile work environment, which included threats of lynching and the use of racially derogatory language.
Resistance from the international community
At the local level, groups and organizations have mobilized against Lockheed Martin and its war profiteering schemes. Anti-war protesters mobilized in Salina, New York on 31 August 2018 in front of the Lockheed Martin facility in the suburban area against the bombing of the school bus in Yemen. They accused the company of “having blood on its hands,” and called for an end to US arms sales in Saudi Arabia. [x] Local members of Women Against War also gathered on 30 November 2018 outside New York’s Capitol building to protest the Saudi-led airstrikes. [xi]
The residents in Soseong-ri, South Korea have protested the installation of the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), a Lockheed Martin anti-missile system to defend them from North Korea, in their village. They argue that the presence of the THAAD in their community would make them a potential target should hostilities between the two nations resume. Around 200 villagers were reported to have taken shifts around the clock to block US vehicles from travelling to the battery site. The elderly farmers also conducted rallies outside the US army base twice weekly. [xii]
Student activists from the University of Adelaide have also protested against the partnership between the university and Lockheed Martin for the proposed Australian Institute for Machine Learning. They called for university autonomy from undue influence of defense, weapons manufacturing, and military sources of funding. [xiii]
These movements are only a few out of many: resistance from the grassroots persists to oppose the war-profiteering schemes by transnational corporations led by Lockheed Martin and the permanent war of aggression driven by US hegemony. This resistance from the international community—which sees the participation of various actors ranging from nations to civil society organizations to local communities—reflects the people’s assertion of their collective sovereignty and rights. #