World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Lee Teng-hui

Article Id: WHEBN0000055078
Reproduction Date:

Title: Lee Teng-hui  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Lien Chan, Chiang Ching-kuo, Kuomintang, Republic of China presidential election, 1996, Chen Shui-bian
Collection: 1923 Births, Agricultural Economists, Agriculturalists, Chairpersons of the Kuomintang, Chairpersons of the Taiwan Provincial Government, Cold War Leaders, Communists, Cornell University Alumni, Iowa State University Alumni, Japanese Military Personnel of World War II, Kuomintang Presidential Nominees, Kyoto University Alumni, Living People, Mayors of Taipei, National Chengchi University Faculty, National Taiwan University Alumni, National Taiwan University Faculty, People from Yongding, Politicians of the Republic of China on Taiwan from New Taipei, Presidents of the Republic of China on Taiwan, Taiwan Solidarity Union Politicians, Taiwanese Christians, Taiwanese Economists, Taiwanese Hakka People, Taiwanese Presbyterians, Vice Presidents of the Republic of China on Taiwan
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Lee Teng-hui

Lee Teng-hui
President of the Republic of China
In office
13 January 1988 – 20 May 2000
Vice President Li Yuan-tsu
Lien Chan
Preceded by Chiang Ching-kuo
Succeeded by Chen Shui-bian
Vice President of the Republic of China
In office
20 May 1984 – 13 January 1988
President Chiang Ching-kuo
Preceded by Hsieh Tung-ming
Succeeded by Li Yuan-tsu
Chairman of the Kuomintang
In office
27 July 1988 – 24 March 2000
Acting: 13 January 1988 – 27 July 1988
Preceded by Chiang Ching-kuo
Succeeded by Lien Chan
Governor of Taiwan Province
In office
5 December 1981 – 20 May 1984
Preceded by Lin Yang-kang
Succeeded by Chiu Chuang-huan
Mayor of Taipei
In office
9 June 1978 – 5 December 1981
Preceded by Lin Yang-kang
Succeeded by Shao En-hsin
Minister without portfolio
In office
1 June 1972 – 1 June 1978
Premier Chiang Ching-kuo
Personal details
Born (1923-01-15) 15 January 1923
Sanzhi, Taihoku Prefecture, Taiwan, Empire of Japan
Nationality Taiwanese
Political party Independent (2001–present)
Other political
Communist Party of China (1946–1948)
Kuomintang (1971–2001)
Spouse(s) Tseng Wen-hui (m. 1949)
Alma mater National Taiwan University (B.S.)
Iowa State University (M.S.)
Cornell University (Ph.D.)
Religion Presbyterian[1][2]
Lee Teng-hui
Chinese name
Traditional Chinese 李登輝
Simplified Chinese 李登辉
Japanese name
Kanji 岩里政男
Kana いわさと まさお

Lee Teng-hui (born 15 January 1923), sometimes called the "father of Taiwan's democracy",[3][4] is a politician of the Republic of China (commonly known as Taiwan). He was the President of the Republic of China and Chairman of the Kuomintang (KMT) from 1988 to 2000. He presided over major advancements in democratic reforms including his own re-election which marked the first direct presidential election for Taiwan. The first Hakka person to become ROC president and KMT chairman, Lee promoted the Taiwanese localization movement and led an aggressive foreign policy to gain diplomatic allies. Critics accused him of betraying the party he headed, secret support of Taiwanese independence, and involvement in corruption (black gold politics).

After leaving office Lee was expelled from the KMT for his role in founding the pro-independence Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU), which forms part of the Pan-Green Coalition alongside Taiwan's Democratic Progressive Party. Lee is considered the "spiritual leader" of the TSU,[5] and has recruited for the party in the past.[6] Lee has been outspoken in support for Taiwanese independence though not necessarily a formal declaration. In 2013, a first trial cleared him for his hypothetical involvement in a corruption scandal.


  • Early life and education 1
  • Rise to power 2
  • Presidency 3
  • Taiwanization 4
  • After the presidency 5
    • Japanese support 5.1
    • Indictment 5.2
    • Cancer 5.3
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • References 8
  • Further reading 9
  • External links 10

Early life and education

Lee Teng-hui, junior high school student days wearing Kendo armor.[7]
Lee Teng-hui (right) and his brother, Lee Teng-chin (left)

Lee was born to a Hakka family[8] in the rural farming community of Sanzhi (Sanshi-kyō), Taipei County (Taihoku, now New Taipei City), Taiwan, which was then part of Japan. As a child, he often dreamed of traveling abroad, and became an avid stamp collector. Growing up during the Japanese rule of Taiwan, he developed a strong interest for Japan. His father was a middle-level Japanese police aide, and his brother joined police academy and soon volunteered as for the Imperial Japanese Navy and died in Manila.[9] Lee—one of only four Taiwanese students in Taipei high school class—graduated with honors and was given a scholarship to Japan's Kyoto Imperial University. During his school days, he learned kendo and bushido.[7] A lifelong collector of books, Lee was heavily influenced by Japanese thinkers like Nitobe Inazo and Kitaro Nishida in Kyoto. In 1944 he too volunteered for service in the Imperial Japanese Army and became a second lieutenant officer of an anti-aircraft gun in Taiwan. He was ordered back to Japan in 1945 and participated in the clean-up after the great Tokyo firebombing of March 1945. Lee stayed in Japan after the surrender and graduated from Kyoto Imperial University in 1946.

After World War II ended, and the Republic of China took over Taiwan, Lee enrolled in the National Taiwan University, where in 1948 he earned a bachelor's degree in agricultural science. Lee joined the Communist Party of China (CPC) for two stints, in September 1946 and October or November 1947, both times briefly.[10] Lee began the New Democracy Association with four others.[11] This group was absorbed by the CPC,[12][13] and Lee officially left the party in September 1948.[14] In a 2002 interview Lee himself admitted that he had been a communist. In that same interview Lee said that he has strongly opposed communism for a long time because he understands the theory well and knows that it is doomed to fail. Lee stated that he joined the Communists out of hatred for the KMT.[15]

In 1953, Lee received a master's degree in

Political offices
Preceded by
Lin Yang-kang
Mayor of Taipei
Succeeded by
Shao En-hsin
Governor of Taiwan Province
Succeeded by
Chiu Chuang-huan
Preceded by
Hsieh Tung-ming
Vice President of the Republic of China
Succeeded by
Lee Yuan-tsu
Preceded by
Chiang Ching-kuo
President of the Republic of China
Succeeded by
Chen Shui-bian
Party political offices
Preceded by
Chiang Ching-kuo
Chairman of the Kuomintang
Succeeded by
Lien Chan
Preceded by
New title
Kuomintang Presidential candidate
1996 (win)
Succeeded by
Lien Chan
  • Friends of Lee Teng-Hui Association

External links

  • Wang, Qingxin Ken. "Taiwan in Japan's Relations with China and the United States after the Cold War." "Taiwan in Japan's Relations with China and the United States after the Cold War." Pacific Affairs. Autumn (northern hemisphere) 2000. Volume 73, No. 3. p. 353-373. Available at JStor - Discusses Lee Teng-hui's relationship with Japan at p. 358
  • Lee, T.H. (1971). Intersectoral Capital Flows in the Economic Development of Taiwan: 1895-1960. Cornell University Press.  
  • Falick, Michael (12 April 2004). "America and Taiwan, 1943-2004". 
  • Dickson, Bruce J.; Chao, Linda. Assesing the Lee Teng-hui Legacy. M.E. Sharpe.  

Further reading

  1. ^ 曹, 長青 (1 September 2004). 李登輝的基督信仰 (in Chinese). Epoch Times. Retrieved 26 October 2014. 
  2. ^ Kuo, Cheng-Tian (2008). Religion and Democracy in Taiwan. Albany, New York: State University of New York Press. p. 13.  
  3. ^ "Ex-Taiwan president Lee indicted on graft charge". 2011-06-30. Retrieved 2013-10-19. 
  4. ^ Jul 13, 2011 (2011-07-13). "Lee charges stir Taiwan". Asia Times Online. Retrieved 2013-10-19. 
  5. ^ Chen, Melody (1 January 2004). "Japan's criticism of referendum has Lee outraged". Taipei Times. Retrieved 30 September 2014. 
  6. ^ Lin, Mei-chun (28 December 2001). "Lee Teng-hui seeks KMT legislators". Taipei Times. Retrieved 30 September 2014. 
  7. ^ a b "再發"參拜靖國神社"論 李登輝媚日情結大起底 2010-11-03".  
  8. ^ a b "再發"參拜靖國神社"論 李登輝媚日情結大起底 2010-11-03".  
  9. ^ "再發"參拜靖國神社"論 李登輝媚日情結大起底 2010-11-03".  
  10. ^ Hickey, Dennis V. (2006). Foreign Policy Making in Taiwan. Routledge. p. 88.  
  11. ^ Wang, Chris (20 June 2013). "Lee Teng-hui says he never applied for membership in CCP". Taipei Times. Retrieved 26 October 2014. 
  12. ^ Kuo, Adam Tyrsett (30 July 2014). "Ex-president denies ever being member of communist party". The China Post. Retrieved 26 October 2014. 
  13. ^ "Lee Teng-hui responds to Communist Party rumors". Want Want China Times. 21 June 2013. Retrieved 26 October 2014. 
  14. ^ Tsai, Shih-shan Henry (2005). Lee Teng-Hui and Taiwan's Quest for Identity. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 60.  
  15. ^ Lin, Mei-Chun (8 November 2002). "Lee admits to fling with communism". Taipei Times. Retrieved 26 October 2014. 
  16. ^ Haberman, Clyde (15 January 1988). "MAN IN THE NEWS: Lee Teng-hui; Taiwan's Leader and Son of the Soil". New York Times. Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  17. ^ Tsai, Shih-shan Henry (2005). Lee Teng-Hui and Taiwan's Quest for Identity. Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 85–86.  
  18. ^ "Lee Teng-hui: From scholar to statesman". Taiwan Today. 16 June 1995. Retrieved 3 November 2014. 
  20. ^ Tsai, Shih-shan Henry (2005). Lee Teng-Hui and Taiwan's Quest for Identity. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 93.  
  21. ^ Kagan, Richard C. (2007). Taiwan's Statesman: Lee Teng-Hui and Democracy in Asia. Naval Institute Press. p. 5.  
  22. ^ Tsai, Henry Shih-shan (2005). Lee Teng-Hui and Taiwan's Quest for Identity. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 96.  
  23. ^ Wang, Qingxin Ken, p. 338. "Taiwan's former president Lee Teng Hui, who was educated in Japan and speaks fluent Japanese,[...]"
  24. ^ Crowell, Todd and Laurie Underwood. "In the Eye of the Storm." (Archive) Asiaweek. "The mainland leadership regards him as a closet secessionist and possibly too pro-Japanese (born during Japan's occupation of Taiwan, he speaks Japanese better than Mandarin)."
  25. ^ "Why Beijing fears Taiwan's Lee Teng-hui". Retrieved 4 November 2014. 
  26. ^ "Lu 'astonished' by Lee's about-face on Taiwan independence", China Post
  27. ^ Chen shouldn't fear dealing with China: Lee The China Post 31 May 2007.
  28. ^ Wang, Chris (16 October 2012). "DPP too pro-Japan on Diaoyutais: Lu". Taipei Times. Retrieved 7 September 2014. 
  29. ^ Takefumi Hayata (28 May 2001). "Japanese must look beyond Lee Teng-hui". Taipei Times. Retrieved 7 September 2014. 
  30. ^ Kastner, Jens (13 July 2011). "Lee charges stir Taiwan". Asia Times Online. Retrieved 7 September 2014. 
  31. ^ "Ex-Taiwan leader Lee backs Koizumi's visits to Yasukuni". Japan Times. 
  32. ^ Lee to visit Japan's Yasukuni war shrine The China Post 31 May 2007.
  33. ^ "Taiwan's ex-leader Lee Teng-hui came under fire Thursday after he was quoted by Japanese media as saying that a disputed archipelago in the East China Sea belongs to Japan.". Radio Netherlands Worldwide. Agence France-Presse. 13 September 2012. Retrieved 1 October 2012. 
  34. ^ "Press Conference 27 September 2002".  
  35. ^ Ex-President Lee Teng-hui indicted China Post 1 July 2011.
  36. ^ Chao, Vincent Y. (1 July 2011). "Indictment against Lee shocks pan-green camp". Taipei Times. Retrieved 7 September 2014. 
  37. ^ Chang, Rich (16 November 2013). "Court rules in favor of Lee Teng-hui in embezzlement case". Taipei Times. 
  38. ^ 鄧桂芬 (10 July 2014). "國安密帳案 下月20日宣判 (Ruling on 20th of Next Month in National Security Secret Account Case)". Archived from the original on 10 August 2014. 
  39. ^ Yang, Kuo Wen; Chen, Hui-ping; Pan, Jason (21 August 2014). "Lee cleared of embezzlement, again". Taipei Times. Retrieved 21 August 2014. 
  40. ^ Liu, Shih-yi; Yeh, Sophia; Hsu, Elizabeth (20 August 2014). "Ex-president Lee found not guilty of corruption in retrial". Central News Agency. Retrieved 20 August 2014. 
  41. ^ "Lee Teng-hui ‘recovering well’: hospital". Taipei Times. 2013-10-13. Retrieved 2013-10-19. 


  • Wang, Qingxin Ken. "Japan's Balancing Act in the Taiwan Strait." Security Dialogue. September 2000. Volume 31, No. 3. p. 337-342. DOI: 10.1177/0967010600031003007. Available at SAGE Journals.


See also

In late 2011, Lee underwent surgery to remove stage II colon adenocarcinoma, the most common form of colon cancer.[41]


On 30 June 2011, Lee, along with former KMT financier Liu Tai-Ying were indicted on graft and money-laundering charges and accused of embezzling US$7.79 million in public funds.[35][36] He was acquitted by the Taipei District Court on 15 November 2013.[37] Prosecutors appealed the ruling,[38] but Lee was cleared of the charges again.[39][40]


During the 2012 China anti-Japanese demonstrations, on 13 September 2012, Lee remarked "The Senkaku islands were Japanese territory in the past and are still so at present."[33] Ten years previously, he had stated, "The Senkaku Islands are the territory of Japan."[34]

In August 2001, Lee said of Junichiro Koizumi's controversial visit to Yasukuni Shrine, "It is natural for a premier of a country to commemorate the souls of people who lost their lives for their country".[31] In a May 2007 trip to Japan, Lee visited the shrine himself to pay tribute to his older brother. Controversy rose because the shrine also enshrines World War II Class A criminals among the other soldiers.[32]

Lee enjoys a warm relationship with the people and culture of Japan. Lee often assures Taiwanese audiences that Japan will support Taiwan if it formally announces its Taiwan independence. Taiwan was colonized by Japan from 1895 to 1945 and natives of the island who grew up in that period, such as Lee, attended schools where Japanese language, songs, and stories were taught. Lee's father was a middle-level Japanese police aide; his older brother died serving in the Imperial Japanese Navy in World War II and is listed in the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo. During his youth Lee had a Japanese name, Iwasato Masao (巖里政男).[8] Lee speaks fondly of his upbringing and his teachers and has been welcomed in visits to Japan since leaving office. Lee's admiration and enjoyment of all things Japanese has been the target of criticism from both the Pan-Green Coalition[28] and Pan-Blue Coalition[29] in Taiwan, as well as from China,[30] due to the anti-Japanese sentiment formed during and after World War II.

Japanese support

In February 2007 Lee shocked the media when he announced that he has never backed Taiwanese independence, when he was widely seen as the spiritual leader of the movement.[26] Lee also said that he supported opening up trade and tourism with China, a position he had opposed before. Lee later explained that Taiwan already enjoys de facto independence and that political maneuvering over details of expressing it is counterproductive. He maintains that "Taiwan should seek 'normalization' by changing its name and amending its constitution."[27]

The concern shared between the United States and the People's Republic of China was the possible unilateral change of the cross-strait status quo by President Chen, leading to a public rebuke of Chen from the United States President

During the 2004 Presidential campaign, President Chen Shui-bian publicly campaigned with Lee Teng-hui and developed a campaign platform, including a call for a new constitution adopted by referendum, which could be interpreted as an opportunity to make the symbolic changes which Lee supports. There was concern in the United States and in the People's Republic of China that Chen would be supportive of Lee's positions, a belief which was reinforced by Lee's own actions while President and by Lee's public statements that Chen Shui-bian agreed with him.

He dismisses both the notion that the strategy will trigger an invasion by the Chinese government and the notion that Taiwan benefits economically by developing economic ties with China. He argues the People's Republic of China is a paper tiger and both its military strength and economic strength have been far overestimated. Lee asserts that when presented with a united and assertive Taiwan, Taiwan will receive support from the international community and also from the United States and that the PRC will be obliged to back down. He also believes that the PRC economy is doomed to collapse and that unlimited integration with the PRC economy, on the part of Taiwan or any country, is unwise.

Lee has also stated that he believes that Taiwan cannot avoid being assimilated into the People's Republic of China unless it completely rejects its historical Chinese identity and that he believes that it is essential that Taiwanese unite and develop a unified and separate identity other than the Chinese one. Furthermore, in reference to Mainlanders, he believes that to be truly Taiwanese, one must assume a "New Taiwanese" identity.

Lee has publicly supported the Name Rectification Campaigns in Taiwan and proposed changing the name of the country from the Republic of China to the Republic of Taiwan. He generally opposes unlimited economic ties with mainland China, though he supports free trade.

Since resigning the chairmanship of the KMT, Lee has campaigned actively on behalf of pan-green coalition candidates and opposed candidates of his former party who took pro-unification positions since the 2004 presidential elections. He has stated a number of political positions and ideas which he did not mention while he was President, but which he appeared to have privately maintained. Lee was expelled from KMT on 21 September 2001.

After the presidency

Lee Teng-hui, during his term as president, supported Taiwanization. The Taiwanization movement has its roots in the home rule and independence groups founded during the Japanese era and sought to put emphasis on Taiwan as the center of people's lives as opposed to China or Japan. During the Chiang regime, China was promoted as the center of an ideology that would build a Chinese national outlook in a people who had once considered themselves Japanese subjects. Taiwan was often relegated to a backwater province of China in the KMT-supported history books. People were discouraged from studying local Taiwanese customs, which were to be replaced by mainstream Chinese customs. Lee sought to turn Taiwan into a center rather than an appendage. This shift was widely supported in Taiwan and found expression in Taiwanese literature movement. He further stated that he believed a Chinese identity and a Taiwanese identity were ultimately incompatible, a notion controversial in the KMT, even among those members who generally supported Taiwanization.


Since leaving office Lee and the new party he went on to found, the TSU, have generally supported "green" causes in Taiwan. Lee continues to travel, make speeches, campaign for TSU candidates, and offer independent-minded commentary on Taiwan politics. "Lee Teng-Hui University" in Taiwan is named after him. KMT officials expressed dissatisfaction with efforts to "localize" the KMT and his tacit support of the new Chen administration.

Supporters of rival candidates Lien Chan and James Soong accused Lee of setting up the split in the KMT that had enabled Chen to win. Lee had promoted the uncharismatic Lien over the popular Soong as the KMT candidate. Soong had subsequently run as an independent and was expelled from the KMT. The number of votes garnered by both Soong and Lien would have accounted for approximately 60% of the vote while individually the candidates placed behind Chen. Protests were staged in front of the KMT party headquarters in Taipei. Fuelling this anger were the persistent suspicions following Lee throughout his presidency that he secretly supported Taiwan independence and that he was intentionally sabotaging the Kuomintang from above. Lee resigned his chairmanship on 24 March.

Lee, observing constitutional term limits he had helped enact, stepped down from the presidency at the end of his term in 2000. That year Democratic Progressive Party candidate Chen Shui-bian won the national election with 39% of the vote in a three-way race. Chen's victory marked an end to KMT rule and the first peaceful transfer of power in Taiwan's new democratic system.

Lee, in an interview that same year, expressed his view that a special state-to-state relationship existed between Taiwan and mainland China that all negotiations between the two sides of the Strait needed to observe.[25]

1996 Republic of China Presidential Election Result
President Candidate Vice President Candidate Party Votes %
Lee Teng-hui Lien Chan Kuomintang 5,813,699 54.0
Peng Ming-min Frank Hsieh Democratic Progressive Party 2,274,586 21.1
Lin Yang-kang Hau Pei-tsun Independent 1,603,790 14.9
Chen Li-an Wang Ching-feng Independent 1,074,044 9.9
Invalid/blank votes 117,160
Total 10,883,279 100

On 23 March 1996, Lee became the first popularly elected ROC president with 54% of the vote. Many people who worked or resided in other countries made special trips back to the island to vote. In addition to the president, the governor of Taiwan Province and the mayors of Taipei and Kaohsiung (as leaders of provincial level divisions they were formerly appointed by the president) became popularly elected.

The prospect of the first island-wide democratic election the next year, together with Lee's June 1995 visit to Cornell University, sparked the Third Taiwan Strait Crisis. The previous eight presidents and vice presidents of the ROC had been elected by the members of the National Assembly. For the first time the President of the ROC would be elected by majority vote of Taiwan's population. The People's Republic of China conducted a series of missile tests in the waters surrounding Taiwan and other military maneuvers off the coast of Fujian in response to what Communist Party leaders described as moves by Lee to "split the motherland." The PRC government launched another set of tests just days before the election, sending missiles over the island to express its dissatisfaction should the Taiwanese people vote for Lee. The military actions disrupted trade and shipping lines and caused a temporary dip in the Asian stock market. Ironically, the 1996 missile launches boosted support for Lee instead.

In May 1991 Lee spearheaded a drive to eliminate the Temporary Provisions Effective During the Period of Communist Rebellion, laws put in place following the KMT arrival in 1949 that suspended the democratic functions of the government. In December 1991, the original members of the Legislative Yuan, elected to represent mainland China constituencies in 1948, were forced to resign and new elections were held to apportion more seats to the bensheng ren. The elections forced Hau Pei-tsun from the premiership, a position he was given in exchange for his tacit support of Lee. He was replaced by Lien Chan, then an ally of Lee.

1990 saw the arrival of the Wild Lily student movement on behalf of full democracy for Taiwan. Thousands of Taiwanese students demonstrated for democratic reforms. The demonstrations culminated in a sit-in demonstration by over 300,000 students at Memorial Square in Taipei. Students called for direct elections of the national president and vice president and for a new election for all legislative seats. On 21 March Lee welcomed some of the students to the Presidential Building. He expressed his support of their goals and pledged his commitment to full democracy in Taiwan. The moment is regarded by supporters of democracy in Taiwan as perhaps his finest moment in office. Gatherings recalling the student movement are regularly held around Taiwan every 21 March.

As he consolidated power during the early years of his presidency, Lee allowed his rivals within the KMT to occupy positions of influence: when Yu Guo-hwa retired as premier in 1989, he was replaced by Lee Huan, who was succeeded by Hau Pei-tsun in 1990. At the same time, Lee made a major reshuffle of the Executive Yuan, as he had done with the KMT Central Committee, replacing several elderly waisheng ren with younger bensheng ren, mostly of technical backgrounds. Fourteen of these new appointees, like Lee, received PhDs in the United States. Prominent among the appointments were Lien Chan as foreign minister and Shirley Kuo as finance minister.

Chiang Ching-kuo died in January 1988 and Lee succeeded him as President. The "Palace Faction" of the KMT, a group of conservative mainlanders headed by General Hau Pei-tsun, Premier Yu Kuo-hwa, and Education Minister Lee Huan, was deeply distrustful of Lee Teng-hui and sought to block his accession to the KMT chairmanship and sideline him as a figurehead. With the help of James Soong—himself a member of the Palace Faction—who quieted the hardliners with the famous plea "Each day of delay is a day of disrespect to Ching-kuo," Lee was allowed to ascend to the chairmanship unobstructed. At the 13th National Congress of Kuomintang on July 1988, Lee named 31 members of the Central Committee, 16 of whom were --bensheng ren: for the first time, bensheng ren held a majority in what was then a powerful policy-making body.


As a skilled technocrat, Lee soon caught the eye of President Chiang Ching-kuo as a strong candidate to serve as Vice President. Chiang sought to move more authority to the bensheng ren (residents on Taiwan before 1949 and their descendants) instead of continuing to promote waisheng ren (mainland Chinese immigrants who arrived in Taiwan after 1949 and their descendants) as his father had. President Chiang nominated Lee to become his Vice President. Lee was formally elected by the National Assembly in 1984.

In 1978 Lee was appointed Mayor of Taipei, where he solved water shortages and improved the city's irrigation problems. In 1981, he became governor of Taiwan Province and made further irrigation improvements.

Shortly after returning to Taiwan, Lee joined the KMT in 1971 and was made a cabinet minister without portfolio responsible for agriculture.

Rise to power

Lee speaks Mandarin Chinese, Taiwanese Hokkien, English,[22] and Japanese. Lee speaks Japanese fluently.[23] As of 1996, he was more proficient in Japanese than he is in Mandarin.[24]

Lee encountered Christianity as a young man and in 1961 was baptised.[20] For most of the rest of his political career, despite holding high office, Lee has made a habit of giving sermons at churches around Taiwan, mostly on apolitical themes of service and humility.[21]

In the mid-1960s Lee returned to the United States, and earned a PhD in agricultural economics from Cornell University in 1968. Lee's doctoral dissertation, Intersectoral Capital Flows in the Economic Development of Taiwan, 1895–1960 (published as a book under the same name) was honored as the year's best doctoral thesis by the American Association of Agricultural Economics and remains an influential work on Taiwan's economy during the Japanese and early KMT periods.[19]

[18].National Chengchi University at East Asian Studies and taught at the Graduate School of [17]National Taiwan University During this period, he also worked as an adjunct professor in the Department of Economics at [16]

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.