costumed protesters object to a one-horse race for World Bank leadership.
Photo Credit: Photos Haraz Ghanbari -- AP (From Washington Post)
Excerpt from Wash. Post article and others here below. Blustein is continuing to amaze me. It appears he has had a (temporary, at least) change of heart and is making a point of including opposition groups' complaints in his articles now. I think this may show how staying in there for the long-haul can pay off:
Wash. Post (Paul Blustein):
Many environmental and other activist groups, unassuaged by Wolfowitz's recent pronouncements, responded to yesterday's action with fresh attacks on his record. "Now the developing world has to live with Paul Wolfowitz, a man with no relevant experience but for his oversight of the reconstruction of Iraq -- a project beset by corruption, cronyism and incompetence," said Robert Weissman, director of Essential Action, an organization critical of the bank and the International Monetary Fund. Peter Bosshard, policy director of the International Rivers Network, accused Wolfowitz of having "shown disdain for international law and human rights."
Many of these activists have been scornful of the role played by European officials, who began engaging in horse-trading for other jobs after their initial surprise over the Wolfowitz nomination wore off.
Under the informal agreement that allows the United States to pick the president of the World Bank, the Europeans get to choose the managing director of the International Monetary Fund, and an American traditionally holds the No. 2 job at the IMF. That system reflects the dominant role the rich nations have as the largest contributors and shareholders of the two institutions, but it has long drawn criticism as unfair and undemocratic.
Wolfowitz's nomination drew strong criticism from aid groups, who opposed what they called “the one-horse race.” Anti-poverty activists held a small demonstration outside the bank's Washington headquarters.
“It is disgraceful that governments have chosen to fill this important post via backdoor horse-trading, rather than through an open selection process,” said Peter Bosshard, of the California-based International Rivers Network.
NY Times (Eliz. Becker):
Critics, while acknowledging that Mr. Wolfowitz may prove to be an accomplished leader, say they worry that he will provoke renewed antagonism toward the bank just as the open hostility demonstrated in the last decade had begun to wane.
A small band of protesters gathered Thursday morning outside the World Bank's modern headquarters here, just blocks from the White House, criticizing Mr. Wolfowitz and his stance on the Iraq war. The Global Justice Ecology Project, one of the groups criticizing the appointment, said it feared that Mr. Wolfowitz would be "the link between shooting wars and economic wars."
AP (Jeannine Aversa--We've got to work on her...):
Bush's choice of Wolfowitz has especially raised the hackles of some international aid organizations and other groups. They question his development credentials and worry that he would try to use the development bank to help the United States' friends and punish its enemies. Some of those critics showed up on a gray morning to protest the choice of Wolfowitz outside the World Bank's headquarters Thursday.