Mr. Wolfowitz’s singular focus on corruption at the World Bank left him extremely vulnerable to charges of hypocrisy. This episode is emblematic of his faulty leadership at the World Bank, having alienated the staff and member states and pursued regressive policies on family planning, climate change, and even Iraq.
The real victims today are the world’s poor—the 3 billion people in developing countries who struggle to get by on less than two dollars a day. With the World Bank’s credibility at risk, it is all the more urgent for the United States to show genuine global leadership to build a better Bank that addresses the biggest challenges of the 21st century global economy: reducing poverty, promoting decent work, and spurring sustainable development.
To bolster the Bank’s legitimacy in these uncertain times, the administration should begin by spearheading a leadership selection process that is more democratic and transparent than the hand-shake deal that put Wolfowitz at the helm in the first place.
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