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9/21/2006

imf-world bank and the little red dot

The Little Red Dot has done it again. It is a coup of another kind over the last 10 days. No litters, no smoking, no chewing gums, and yes, no public and violent demonstration. We have uniformed men all over Suntec City, just like the Thais have their uniformed soldiers all over Bangkok. Both were there to keep the peace, albeit of a different kind. For once, the IMF-World Bank Meeting had gone without a hitch, without demonstrators pushing and fighting with the police. A bloodless coup. And this is Singapore. We have told the world that there can be discussions and exchanges of views in a civil and orderly manner, and getting the points across. Would this brand of protestorless and bloodless Meetings be continued into the future? If it does, then Singapore would have taught the world a lesson, the Singapore way of doing things. There were a little edginess initially. And the strongest or loudest protest came not from the CSOs but from the President of the World Bank himself, Paul Wolfowitz. But I think deep down inside him he was a happy man with Singapore taking the blame for a peaceful and sensible international Meeting here. And so were all the delegates despite the little utterings of how artificial the zoo was. So clean, so free and so safe. And all the food being serve on a silver platter. The Little Red Dot called the shot and set the agenda on how the Meeting should be conducted. And the world is pleased.

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