Thursday, December 14, 2006

Wolfowitz Causing Big Stink at World Bank

On June 1, 2005, the Prez appointed Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz to replace James D. Wolfensohn as head of the World Bank. Wolfensohn was appointed by President Clinton and had served two five-year terms, From 1989 to 1993, Wolfowitz was Under Secretary of Defense for Policy in the first Bush administration. He served for three years as U.S. ambassador to Indonesia in the Reagan administration. When he resigned from the Pentagon in 1980, Wolfowitz served as dean of the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies of The Johns Hopkins University in Washington. If that sounds familiar, Wolfowitz’s buddy on William Kristol’s Project for the New American Century and co-neocon, Eliot Cohen, was also a professor at the Paul H. NItze School. Technically, the World Bank is part of the United Nations. It’s a tradition for the president of the World Bank to be a United States citizen, while the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund is always a European. The World Bank primarily makes loans to developing countries. At the time of the Wolfowitz appointment employees at the World Bank feared Wolfowitz would take advantage of his position and advance U.S. policies in Iraq. Wolfowitz seemed to be acting in good faith during his first months at the World Bank. He promised to focus on poverty reduction in Africa, But now, those early fears have been borne out. According to an article by Christopher Swann on, “World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz faces mounting criticism from directors of the international lending organization who say he relies on a coterie of political advisers with little expertise in development while driving away seasoned managers.” In other words, Wolfowitz has hired a bunch of Republican fascists from the Bush administration to staff the World Bank. The Wolfowitz hires include his counselor Robin Cleveland. She was associate director of the White House Office of Management and Budget. She helped secure congressional funding for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. An observer of the changes at the World Bank commented to a reporter from the Financial Times that Ms Cleveland was a “wild-eyed conservative whose expertise lay in national security, not development.” Wolfowitz hired Suzanne Folsom to be the bank’s “chief corruption fighter”. She is married to George Folsom who was principal deputy director of the Iraq Reconstruction Management Office. George Folsom served as president of the International Republican Institute. Wolfowitz picked Kevin Kellems, a former spokesman for Vice President Dick Cheney, to be his director of external strategy. Half of the World Bank’s highest-level executives have left since Wolfowitz arrived, Vice president for the Middle East and a 30-year World Bank veteran Christian Poortman bugged out in September. He tried to resist pressure from Wolfowitz to funnel money into Iraq and beef up the World Bank staff in Iraq. To no avail, as it turned out. Poortman resigned rather than accept a post in Kazakhstan. Once a sleazoid scumbag neocon fascist, always a sleazoid scumbag neocon fascist. It was only a matter of time until the real Paul Wolfowitz emerged at the World Bank.

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