News Release

World Bank After Wolfowitz


Currently in South Africa, Brutus is professor emeritus at the Unversity of Pittsburgh. He said today: “Wolfowitz’s arrogance, his insistence that any problems were the result of his colleagues’ actions, never his own, were a perfect match for the World Bank, which has always refused to take responsibility for its own disastrous policies and projects, laying blame instead with the borrowing country, even though the common denominator in so many botched projects, violations of human rights, and failed policy packages has been the presence of the World Bank. The combination of war and economic crimes for which he was responsible made Wolfowitz an appropriate symbol for the institution.” Brutus is a renowned poet and was an anti-apartheid activist who for a time was jailed on Robben Island with Nelson Mandela.

Director of 50 Years Is Enough: U.S. Network for Global Economic Justice, Dossani said today: “The end of this ordeal offers some startling insights into how Wolfowitz ran the Bank in the first place. Instead of even attempting to address the millions in poverty the Bank is supposed to be helping, it has been about saving face for Wolfowitz and his supporters.”
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Co-director of Foreign Policy In Focus at the Institute for Policy Studies, Woods said today: “Wolfowitz’s removal creates an opportunity to examine the fatal flaws in the policies, practices, and governance of the international financial institutions. The global community must seize this moment to create new, more accountable mechanisms for development finance that give greater voice, power, and resources to the poor.”
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Executive director of the New Rules for Global Finance Coalition, Griesgraber said today: “The Wolfowitz scandal is but a natural consequence of the ‘old boys club’ way in which the World Bank and IMF have been governed. It provides an opportunity to end the anti-democratic behavior of the world’s great democracies, whereby the U.S. President names the World Bank President and a small coterie of European Finance Ministers names the IMF Managing Director. After 63 years it is time to have open, merit-based selection of these leaders.”
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A recent report from the New Rules for Global Finance Coalition on global finance reform is available [PDF].

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020