Lee on Beijing Olympics, Tibet, ASEAN and the EU

05May08

More bits and pieces of the April 29 interview, with a promise to air more footage today.

Beijing Olympics Air Quality to Meet World Standards, Lee Says

Beijing will curb pollution in time for the Olympics, based on past efforts to clear the air for landmark events, Singapore Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew said. …

“Had they engaged the west, all this would have turned out differently,” said Lee. “Why didn’t they? Because there was a chasm between their mental makeup and that of the west. So they say all western correspondents out, that means you’ve got something to hide. I think that was not very wise.”

Lee said the Chinese should learn to “take the western media on the western media’s terms.”

If protesters get into the Olympic stadiums waving “Free Tibet” banners, China should shrug it off, he said.

“If I were them I would expect that and say `so what?”’ Lee added. “Unfortunately they are still in the old set way they react, but they’re learning.”

Lee said China will run the Olympics “properly” and there will be no terrorism.

“At the end of the day, the people who matter will know that they are dealing with a very determined China and a China with the people solidly behind the Olympics and fiercely resentful of this putdown,” Lee said, referring to anti-Chinese protests along the Olympic torch relay.

Singapore’s Lee Says Southeast Asia Will Be Like European Union

Lee Kuan Yew, the founding father of Singapore, predicted that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations eventually will allow people and money to move freely within the region like the European Union.

“It may take 50 years, 100 years, I don’t know, but that’s the future,” Lee, 84, told Bloomberg Television in an interview on April 29 that airs today.

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