who will be next World Bank President What will they do


Blair Knew of Plan to Nominate Wolfowitz. The Financial Times reports that UK Prime Minister Tony Blair was informed in February that President Bush wanted to nominate Paul Wolfowitz for the World Bank presidency. "The Poodle" earned his nickname again by agreeing to go along with the idea, and by keeping it a secret from other European officials, including his own finance minister (Chancellor of the Exchequer) Gordon Brown.

"Mr Blair's discreet support gave President George W. Bush the confidence to know that Mr Wolfowitz, the deputy defence secretary and an advocate of the war in Iraq, would not face united opposition from the World Bank's European shareholders," reports the FT.

It goes on: "The UK Treasury, the British foreign office and officials in other European capitals remained in the dark, according to UK officials. Following a report in the Financial Times on March 1 that Mr Wolfowitz was a leading candidate for the US nomination, a senior UK Treasury official telephoned his US counterpart. The US Treasury dismissed the story, according to British officials. A British diplomat, who contacted the administration, was told Mr Wolfowitz was not in the running."

While the article does not claim that no other Europeans were told in advance, it does note that Schroeder (Germany) and Chirac (France) first heard about the nomination when Bush announced it.

Soren Ambrose ~ March 26, 2005

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