Thursday, May 17, 2007

Wolfowitz, got laid but lost his job

Paul Wolfowitz, war-fighting genius and comb-licker, (I said comb... get your mind back on the page), is looking for work.
World Bank President Paul D. Wolfowitz resigned this afternoon, effective June 30, giving in to overwhelming pressure from bank staff and governments around the globe that he depart to end the ethics controversy that has consumed the institution.

Wolfowitz agreed to resign in negotiations with the bank's executive board, pre-empting a growing likelihood that he would have been formally reprimanded or fired, said bank officials who spoke on condition they not be named, citing the political sensitivity of the proceedings.

His resignation came as key members of the bank's 24-member executive board were mobilizing to push through a resolution expressing no-confidence in his leadership, a step that would have made it effectively impossible for him to continue, senior bank and Bush administration officials said.

The bank's board was moving toward that unprecedented step after a committee report that found that Wolfowitz broke ethics rules and undermined the reputation of the institution when he directed staff to award a substantial raise to his girlfriend and then covered up the details.

Wolfowitz, had to "negotiate" this departure, along the same lines the way a Cosa Nostra torpedo negotiates a late payment from a "client".

But in agreeing to leave, Wolfowitz extracted a significant measure of exoneration -- his key demand in the negotiations. Sources said the board will soon issue a statement ascribing to the bank some of the blame for the ethics controversy while acknowledging that Wolfowitz believes he acted ethically.
Extracted? No, no, no. That's extorted.

Here is the World Bank press release.

Over the last three days we have considered carefully the report of the ad hoc group, the associated documents, and the submissions and presentations of Mr. Wolfowitz. Our deliberations were greatly assisted by our discussion with Mr Wolfowitz. He assured us that he acted ethically and in good faith in what he believed were the best interests of the institution, and we accept that. We also accept that others involved acted ethically and in good faith. At the same time, it is clear from this material that a number of mistakes were made by a number of individuals in handling the matter under consideration, and that the Bank’s systems did not prove robust to the strain under which they were placed. One conclusion we draw from this is the need to review the governance framework of the World Bank Group, including the role as well as procedural and other aspects of the Ethics Committee. The Executive Directors accept Mr. Wolfowitz’s decision to resign as President of the World Bank Group, effective end of the fiscal year (June 30, 2007). The Board will start the nomination process for a new President immediately.
That was the negotiated stuff. Notice all the great ethics being tossed around. Everyone acted ethically. That's why people get fired. Too much ethics.

Wolfowitz responded to the World Bank statement by the Executive Directors. It was filled with the usual stuff from someone who is claiming they left to spend more time with the kids, although in his case, I suppose he'll be working on getting as much out of his "relationship" as possible. Unless Shaha Riza doesn't get naked for unemployed war geniuses. In any case, the stuff Wolfowitz said in his response is about as useful as his original timeline for the invasion of Iraq.

Now, Wolfowitz will become some kind of think tank pundit, or maybe even find a faculty position at some university. Stranger things have happened.

H/T liberal catnip

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