www.wolfowitzresign.com May 21, 2007

"Mission (Actually) Accomplished!" We are retiring. Good luck with the search for a successor.

Monday, April 23, 2007

News Round Up April 25: "biggest crisis in Bank history'', more on Daboub, family planning, and climate change

New York Times
Frustrations With Wolfowitz Boil Over at Meeting


At a meeting between Paul D. Wolfowitz and his top managers at the World Bank last week, Mr. Wolfowitz made an unusual confession. ''I understand that I've lost a lot of trust, and I want to build that trust back up,'' he said, according to people present.

But the beleaguered bank president was immediately confronted by one of his top deputies, who asserted that Mr. Wolfowitz was wrong to think that the furor over his leadership sprang only from his handling of the pay and promotion for his companion or from unease over his support of the Iraq war while at the Pentagon.

Graeme Wheeler, the bank's managing director, said at the meeting that the fight over whether Mr. Wolfowitz should stay on at the bank amounted to the ''the biggest crisis in its history.''

Financial Times
Deputy's woes stir World Bank turmoil


One of Paul Wolfowitz's two handpicked deputies, Juan José Daboub, tried to water down references to climate change in one of the World Bank's main environmental strategy papers, the bank's chief scientist has told the Financial Times.

Mr Daboub, a conservative former finance minister from El Salvador, was brought into the bank by Mr Wolfo-witz. He is already under fire for allegedly trying to take out references to family planning in the bank's Madagascar country assistance strategy and reduce its prominence in its new health sector strategy.

Wall Street Journal
Wolfowitz Tensions Affect World Bank Operations - Europeans Fight U.S.-Backed Move On Family Planning


Several European members of the World Bank revolted against a U.S.-backed proposal on the bank's family-planning policy, in a meeting yesterday that illuminated how tensions over embattled President Paul Wolfowitz and his appointees are spilling into the institution's functioning.

The family-planning issue has become a lightning rod amid increasing criticism inside and outside the bank over Mr. Wolfowitz's tenure.

The Washington Post
Wolfowitz's Well-Traveled Travails


It seems Wolfowitz's priority is to put the brakes on the uproar -- something known at the bank as "The Current Situation," or TCS for short. In a bank-wide e-mail yesterday, Wolfowitz urged everyone to avoid a rush to judgment in "the current situation" and asked "for your continued patience . . . while we wait for the Board's decision."

"Yesterday," he wrote, "I briefly met with VPs and Actings to update them on the current situation and how to move forward. . . . The Vice Presidents have been very candid with their feedback to me on the challenges facing the Bank and I appreciate this." You betcha.

3 comments:

wolfowitzmustresign said...

Wall Street Journal

Politics & Economics: Wolfowitz Tensions Affect World Bank Operations --- Europeans Fight U.S.-Backed Move On Family Planning

Greg Hitt
25 April 2007

WASHINGTON -- Several European members of the World Bank revolted against a U.S.-backed proposal on the bank's family-planning policy, in a meeting yesterday that illuminated how tensions over embattled President Paul Wolfowitz and his appointees are spilling into the institution's functioning.

At a closed meeting of the bank's board yesterday, representatives from Germany, France and Italy, among others, objected to a Washington-backed proposal that would require that family-planning assistance, including abortions, be provided only to individuals of legal age, bank officials said. Critics say the proposal could limit aid for younger women.

Mr. Wolfowitz has been fighting for his job amid allegations that he had showed favoritism in securing a compensation package for his girlfriend, also a bank staffer. Rank-and-file employees are sporting blue "good-governance" ribbons at work to signal their lack of confidence in Mr. Wolfowitz. A high-profile group of former bank executives have called upon him to resign, and the board has started a review of his conduct.

The family-planning issue has become a lightning rod amid increasing criticism inside and outside the bank over Mr. Wolfowitz's tenure. At yesterday's meeting, several board members questioned whether Juan Jose Daboub, appointed by Mr. Wolfowitz as one of two managing directors at the bank, ranking him just behind the president, had attempted to water down bank policy on sexual- and reproductive-health programs, bank officials said. Mr. Daboub has denied doing so.

The divisions forced the board to postpone a decision on updating the bank's health strategy. A senior Bush administration official stressed the discussions on the bank's health policy statement "have not finished," and that give and take is to be expected within the bank. But the episode underscored how the crisis over Mr. Wolfowitz's leadership at the bank is coloring its core mission of fighting global poverty.

In a memo circulated to staffers yesterday, Mr. Wolfowitz said he is working with top bank managers on a plan to overhaul his closest circle of advisers. Critics contend that Mr. Wolfowitz has been too insulated by his front-office staff, after giving some aides, including former Bush White House official Robin Cleveland, wide latitude to intervene in bank operations.

"I will be finding ways to consult with [the bank's vice presidents] as a collective sounding board for finalizing major changes," he said in the memo.

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