IMF Chief’s moral trepidations

PROSECUTORS in New York have charged the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Dominique Strauss-Kahn, with a criminal sexual act and the attempted rape of a hotel maid. The charges follow allegations made by a 32-year-old woman who worked as a maid at a Manhattan hotel, where Strauss-Kahn had been staying in a $3,000-a-night suite.A police spokesman said Strauss-Kahn does not have diplomatic immunity. The 62-year-old Strauss-Kahn, one of the world’s top international diplomats tasked with handling financial crises, was taken off an Air France plane at New York’s John F. Kennedy airport minutes before it was due to leave for Paris. Strauss-Kahn was on his way to Europe for a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel today.

He was due to attend a meeting of European Union finance ministers in Brussels on May 16 to discuss the bailouts of Portugal and Greece. Strauss-Kahn has also has been considered a possible Socialist Party candidate in the French presidential election next April. Strauss-Kahn, a former French finance minister, took over the IMF in November 2007. In October 2008, Strauss-Kahn apologized for “an error of judgment” for conducting an affair with a female subordinate, but denied he had abused his position.The latest allegation will be a massive embarrassment to the IMF, which has authorized billions of dollars in lending programs to troubled countries and has played a major role in the eurozone debt crisis.

It has now been learnt that Dominique Strauss-Kahn will plead not guilty, Sky News TV channel reported on Sunday, citing his lawyer Benjamin Brafman. The IMF chief is expected to be charged with a criminal sexual act, attempted rape and unlawful imprisonment following an alleged attack on a hotel maid in New York. New York Police Department spokesman Paul Browne said the police had been called to the hotel shortly after the alleged incident.

Strauss-Kahn had already left the hotel, leaving behind his mobile phone and other personal items, departing from the scene of the crime in a hurry.It is now abundantly clear that people like Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who deal with the economic future of underdeveloped countries, making them beg for tiny morsels and imposing stringent conditions for every Euro loaned, like the proverbial Shylock in Shakespeare’s drama “Merchant of Venice”, demanding their pound of flesh are themselves mere pygmies, with human weaknesses, indulging in moral trepidation. Developing countries are placed at the mercy of such people, who have weak ethical fibber but assume the moral high ground when approving economic assistance to the needy and poor of the world. – dailymailnews