An overflowing cup of praise for Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew
No word from Lee lately. Meanwhile, a scathing book review in the Vancouver Sun:
If Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore’s founding father and at 89 still the “Minister Mentor” of his patrimony, feels he has been maligned in speech or print he is always swift to bring charges of criminal libel or slander.
And Singapore’s judges, always so fair and trustworthy when dealing with civil cases on which the Lion City’s reputation as a business hub depends, have a long record of putting an extremely high valuation on the reputation of the man whose benevolent shadow still shelters his five million subjects.
But Graham Allison and Robert Blackwill, both American academics and former Washington officials, need have no fear that their new book on Lee’s pithy analysis of global trends will land them with bankrupting fines or prison terms as has happened to other commentators on the record of the Minister Mentor.
The title of this book – Lee Kuan Yew: The Grand Master’s Insights on China, the United States, and the World – gives a warning that we are entering a realm not of context, analysis and assessment but of hagiography. …
If the introduction creates an unreal world of flamboyant ego-stroking, once the reader finally gets to the words of the Grand Master himself things get seriously weird. …
The chapters are presented as Lee’s responses to interview questions, and Allison and Blackwill did have some interviews with the Minister Mentor for the preparation of this book.
But Lee’s responses have been cobbled together from numerous published interviews with several journalists as well as extracts from his own speeches and writings. …
As for the content, there are no big surprises.
Filed under: Book review | 8 Comments
Tags: graham allison, grand master, hagiography, lee kuan yew, robert blackwill