He looked straight at me, he has an inexpressive face but an intense gaze, shook hands and motioned toward one of the room’s pale blue leather sofas (I had already been told by his press secretary on which one to sit).

Lee Kuan Yew was the prime minister of Singapore from 1959 to 1990, making him the longest-serving PM in history. Learn more about Lee’s life and political career in this article. During his long rule, Singapore became the most-prosperous country in Southeast Asia.

There were no smiles, no jokes, no bonhomie. Lee Kuan Yew is unlike any politician I have met. During his long rule, Singapore became the most prosperous nation in Southeast Asia.

Lee Kuan Yew, politician and lawyer who was the first prime minister of Singapore, serving from 1959 to 1990. After 30 awkward seconds, I realized that there would be no small talk.