IMF and World Bank: Tools of Empire: a War Industry Resisters Network webinar
Mon June 12 @ 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm EDT
Monday June 12th @ 8:00 pm
The International Monetary Fund and World Bank were created after World War II by the victors at the 1944 Bretton Woods Conference. Dominated by the US, both institutions were from the beginning meant to further imperialism. While the IMF became the world’s monetary police and financial gatekeeper from the get go, the World Bank’s early years mainly focused on reconstructing war-torn Western Europe and Japan. A few years later, the World Bank shifted its focus to “developing” the Global South. By the 1970s the Bank proclaimed its mission was to reduce poverty.
Driven by Reagan-Thatcher neoliberalism, both institutions launched structural adjustment loans that required borrower countries to adopt austerity measures such as downsizing and privatizing public services, making them unaffordable to the poor. Both international financial institutions plunged countries, especially in the Global South, into debt crises and extracted wealth for the global capitalist class. They complement US/NATO military interventions in enacting modern-day colonialism.
Elaine Zuckerman is President of Gender Action, an advocacy campaign holding International Financial Institutions accountable for harmful gender and climate impacts.
Ben Norton is an investigative journalist and analyst. He is the founder and editor of Geopolitical Economy Report, and is based in Latin America.
Liza Maza is a social activist and development worker. She is the General Secretary of the International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS), and works to develop friendship and solidarity with peoples and organizations fighting for national sovereignty and social liberation. She is also the Chair Emerita of GABRIELA Women’s Alliance and the International Women’s Alliance (IWA) and spokesperson of the Council for People’s Development and Governance.