Independent Media Centre Ireland

IMF chief Strauss-Kahn caught in "Honey Trap"

category international | anti-capitalism | other press author Wednesday May 18, 2011 21:59author by T

Strauss-Kahn simply had to be eliminated.

Two recent articles make the strong case that IMF chief Strauss-Kahn has been caught up in a palace coup as it were from the extremist side of the IMF.

While it is easy to hate the IMF and row in with the corporate media and pronounce him guilty we have got to remember to step back from this story and examine the context. What is also interesting is the way that this is the same media that so eagerly brought us the Afghan War, Iraq war, bailout of the rich and austerity and impoverishment for the rest of us, here they are now attacking one of the key figures in this global institute. It is all rather strange

So it is best to put some context around who is Strauss-Kahn and what is the signficance of his arrest.

Strauss-Kahn is a member of the Socialist Party in France. He was their front running candidate for the presidency of France and he was well ahead of Sarkozy in the polls and could very easily have been the next president of France.

So what is an apparent socialist doing in a right wing organisation that is a key part of the spearhead of worldwide financial imperialism? Well many ostensibly Left wing parties have sold out to the right (think Labour party in UK and Ireland) and Strauss-Kahn had a successful career in Left politics and wound up in this job and whether he was useful to the right because he could carry the Left along with the right wing economic agenda or perhaps he even believed he could make a difference. A comprehensive account of his career is reported here on WSWS ( )

Before moving onto the key aspects of Strauss-Kahn's time at the IMF, clearly if he is guilty then he should face justice, but in recent years we are so used to seeing secret renditions and orange jumpsuits, execution by drone and trial by media that the key cultural thing that separates us from elements of the barbaric past is the concept of innocent until proven guilty. The crimes of the IMF over the past few decades of largely destroying the Third World and many other places and basically asset stripping them of resources is another matter but which should remain firmly in the spot light. We ought to recognise that the rise of the megaslums throughout the world went hand in hand with the switch from to financial imperialism which really got going in the 1970s onwards and we have to consider how many millions of women and children have been sold into prostitution and other slave like conditions because of the terrible poverty caused by institutions like the IMF and World Bank.

Returning now to the story, here are some quotes from the article by Mike Whitney in IMF chief Strauss-Kahn caught in "Honey Trap" at

Strauss-Kahn had enemies in high places, too, which is why this whole matter stinks to high-Heaven. First of all, Strauss-Kahn was the likely candidate of the French Socialist Party who would have faced Sarkozy in the upcoming presidential elections. The IMF chief clearly had a leg-up on Sarkozy who has been battered by a number of personal scandals and plunging approval ratings.

But if Strauss-Kahn was set up, then it was probably by members of the western bank coalition, that shadowy group of self-serving swine whose policies have kept the greater body of humanity in varying state of poverty and desperation for the last two centuries. Strauss-Kahn had recently broke-free from the "party line" and was changing the direction of the IMF. His road to Damascus conversion was championed by progressive economist Joesph Stiglitz in a recent article titled "The IMF's Switch in Time". Here's an excerpt:

"The annual spring meeting of the International Monetary Fund was notable in marking the Fund’s effort to distance itself from its own long-standing tenets on capital controls and labor-market flexibility. It appears that a new IMF has gradually, and cautiously, emerged under the leadership of Dominique Strauss-Kahn. ........

That push had been advocated by Western financial markets – and the Western finance ministries that serve them so loyally. Financial deregulation in the United States was a prime cause of the global crisis that erupted in 2008, and financial and capital-market liberalization elsewhere helped spread that “made in the USA” trauma around the world....The crisis showed that free and unfettered markets are neither efficient nor stable." ("The IMF's Switch in Time", Joseph Stiglitz, Project Syndicate)

So, Strauss-Kahn was trying to move the bank in a more positive direction, a direction that didn't require that countries leave their economies open to the ravages of foreign capital that moves in swiftly--pushing up prices and creating bubbles--and departs just as fast, leaving behind the scourge of high unemployment, plunging demand, hobbled industries, and deep recession.

Strauss-Kahn had set out on a "kinder and gentler" path, one that would not force foreign leaders to privatize their state-owned industries or crush their labor unions. Naturally, his actions were not warmly received by the bankers and corporatists who look to the IMF to provide legitimacy to their ongoing plunder of the rest of the world. These are the people who think that the current policies are "just fine" because they produce the results they're looking for, which is bigger profits for themselves and deeper poverty for everyone else.

So for those who oppose capitalism a kinder gentler one is only slightly better and just allows it to live longer and for those who somehow still believe in it or some kind of hybrid then a kinder gentler capitalism surely is what you want.

And continuing with further quotes from the above story: Here's Stiglitz again, this time imparting the "kiss of death" to his friend Strauss-Kahn:

"Strauss-Kahn is proving himself a sagacious leader of the IMF.... As Strauss-Kahn concluded in his speech to the Brookings Institution shortly before the Fund’s recent meeting: “Ultimately, employment and equity are building blocks of economic stability and prosperity, of political stability and peace. This goes to the heart of the IMF’s mandate. It must be placed at the heart of the policy agenda.”

Right. So, now the IMF is going to be an agent for the redistribution of wealth.... (for) "strengthening collective bargaining, restructuring mortgages, restructuring tax and spending policies to stimulate the economy now through long-term investments, and implementing social policies that ensure opportunity for all"? (according to Stiglitz)

Good luck with that.

Can you imagine how much this kind of talk pisses off the Big Money guys? How long do you think they'd put up with this claptrap before they decided that Strauss-Kahn needed to take a permanent vacation?

Not long, I'd wager.

The full story can be viewed at:

In yet another story by Paul Craig Roberts titled The Amerikan Police State Strides Forward, he comes to the same conclusions as Whitney and writes:

The International Monetary Fund’s director, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, was arrested last Sunday in New York City on the allegation of an immigrant hotel maid that he attempted to rape her in his hotel room. A New York judge has denied Strauss-Kahn bail on the grounds that he might flee to France.

President Bill Clinton survived his sexual escapades, because he was a servant to the system, not a threat. But Strauss-Kahn, like former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer, was a threat to the system, and, like Eliot Spitzer, Strass-Kahn has been deleted from the power ranks.

Strauss-Kahn was the first IMF director in my lifetime, if memory serves, who disavowed the traditional IMF policy of imposing on the poor and ordinary people the cost of bailing out Wall Street and the Western banks. Strauss-Kahn said that regulation had to be reimposed on the greed-driven, fraud-prone financial sector, which, unregulated, destroyed the lives of ordinary people. Strauss-Kahn listened to Nobel economist Joseph Stiglitz, one of a handful of economists who has a social conscience.

Perhaps the most dangerous black mark in Strauss-Kahn’s book is that he was far ahead of America’s French puppet, President Sarkozy, in the upcoming French elections. Strauss-Kahn simply had to be eliminated.

The full story can be found at:

There will be many still not convinced but you have to consider that this whole episode does not add up. Why does somone like this at the very top of probably one of the most powerful institutes in the world suddenly end up in jail? Compare this with all the dictators, mass murderers, war mongers. Or how many from the financial crisis ended up in jail beside Maddoff (in the US) who literally put his hand up and turned himself in. It is too simple to fall in behind the media and let the anger of IMF and EU bailouts be focused on this one figure. We all know there is no real justice in the world especially in global affairs, so it is extemely odd and unlikely that it is happening here.

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