who will be next World Bank President What will they do


Acceptance likely but regrettable. Voice of America carries a story reviewing the controversy caused by Wolfowitz's selection. It quotes author Sebastian Mallaby, who has come round to supporting Wolfowitz in the last couple of weeks, saying: "what you are going to see is that the cause of anti-globalization will be reunited with the cause of Iraq war protests and it will all be focused on the World Bank and Paul Wolfowitz."

The piece also cites Jeff Powell at Bretton Woods Project and Manish Bapna at Bank Information Center, among other commentators (my interview seems to have hit the cutting room floor, but I can take it).

They set out the horse-trading tactics of European governments and argue forcefully that Wolfowitz's experience does not match the job.

North-Western University academic Jeffrey Winters sums it all up when he says: "the World Bank was designed as a long-term development instrument and it has actually been abused over the years by the United States and by the European powers as an instrument of foreign policy. One can only expect that Mr. Wolfowitz is only going to deepen that role."

Meanwhile, though not carried on Voice of America, I've found two politically diverse further American voices strongly agreeing to disagree with Bush's World Bank pick.

Bruce Bartlett in Human Events On-line, 'The National Conservative Weekly':
"This is a disappointing decision for those who care about international economic development. At best, it shows a casual disregard for the Bank. At worst, it represents a politicization of the institution that could seriously hamper its work".

Bill Day, writing in the Talahassee Democrat: "He's certainly no economist. He vastly underestimated the costs of the Iraq war and vastly overestimated Iraqi oil production afterwards".

Alex Wilks ~ March 25, 2005

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