Wolfowitz Wins Over the Europeans
From the Defense Dept. to the World Bank...
Well, I didn't expect it would wind up causing any tensions, but I didn't expect it to go so smoothly either.
When Bush nominated Deputy Defense Sec. Paul Wolfowitz to head the World Bank, right on top of naming John Bolton as the US ambassador to the UN (and he's not exactly a big fan of the UN, so I'm certain he'll love his new job...) a lot of people saw it as Bush being really unilateral and basically saying "screw you, we'll do things our own way, thanks" to Europe.
It really kind of is the message we're sending. But whatever. The United States, under tradition, always nominates the head of the World Bank. In turn, the Europeans nominate the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). So each holds sway over a different entity. But this was looked at as the US trying to bend the Europeans to doing things our way. If that's the case, they bent a little by offering formal backing today. But then, it's really not worth it and it wasn't expected for them to offer an argument to his nomination. Many people within the World Bank themselves aren't too happy, however.
But we'll see how it turns out. Paul Wolfowitz, if he does his job right, should on many occasions wind up doing things that are not always to his former boss's (that would be President Bush) liking. It's entirely possible that he can do it, and the Europeans seem willing to give him a chance. The World Bank is especially important because of the clout it holds in the international community; it's the entity that grants loans to developing nations, help end world poverty, etc.
The Europeans happen to be as a whole the largest contributors to the Bank and they plan to make their influence felt more in the future. Likely so this can't happen again.
I'm particularly interested because I am considering going for a job in the World Bank in the future, at a time when Wolfowitz will still likely be head of the Bank. So this could be my future big-time boss I'm talking about here. Pretty much it all depends on what area in international affairs I intend to go into. Still making my mind up on that ftront...