Now that Tony Hayward has gotten his life back, BP is turning to a yank—Bob Dudley—to salvage its Gulf debacle, and the managing director may actually have had tougher jobs than this one. Dudley made a name for himself by steering BP's Russian consortium through a bizarre political adventure that saw one employee charged with espionage, Russian intelligence raiding the company's offices, tax and labor investigations, and an investor boycott. At one point Dudley had to run the company from abroad because he barred from Russia.
Dudley almost beat out Hayward for the CEO job three years ago, according to the AP, and so far he's avoided his boss's penchant for gaffes. When deployed to the Sunday shows to explain the failure of the top kill, he made no excuses. "We failed to wrestle this beast to the ground," he said matter-of-factly. A week later he toured Louisiana with Bobby Jindal, seeming appropriately conciliatory. "We understand the importance of this," he said. "We are deeply sorry."