Bankers Gone Bad
One of the more interesting things about politics is the way that ideas that seem unconnected all of a sudden crash into each other to reveal the hidden structures of power in the world.
Consider: Paul Wolfowitz. Bank of America. Augusto Pinochet.
It was announced today that Paul Wolfowitz, the man who predicted that Iraq would be financially able to pay for its own reconstruction, has been proposed by the Bush Administration as the best candidate to become the next President of the World Bank. You can’t hear my whistle of astonishment over the Internet, but trust me, I do find it astonishing that Bush and company would so brazenly support Wolfowitz to run the World Bank when Wolfowitz has so plainly proven that he is incapable of understanding the economic realities of developing nations, and nations recovering from war.
Paul Wolfowitz has also proven to be a pretty unethical character in his role advising the Defense Department, especially when it comes to his connection to the Bush Administration policy of torturing prisoners in American prisons around the world. This is where Augusto Pinochet comes in…
General Augusto Pinochet was the dictator of Chile back in the 1980s, after the Republican Party here in the USA supported his violent coup d’etat against the democratically-elected Chilean government. While in power, Pinochet became infamous for killing and torturing thousands upon thousands of Chilean dissidents. Wolfowitz loves torture, Pinochet loves torture. But do they have anything else in common? Why yes!
…and so we come back to banks. We also learn today that Bank of America, Citigroup, Riggs bank, Espirito Santo Bank, Royal Bank of Scotland, Ocean Bank, and Pine Bank helped Augusto Pinochet and his family hide a fortune of 13 million dollars they stole from the Chilean people. These banks have been reported to the United States Senate as purposefully helping the Pinochet family use false names and offshore accounts to evade detection by investigators.
Paul Wolfowitz, Augusto Pinochet, and big banks, all working together like members of some elite club to move money around across international borders and sponsor torture. It makes one think of the Nazis, doesn’t it? Well, read Truman’s article from this morning for that issue. So many connections!