TIME Crime

Read President Reagan’s Best Jokes About Being Shot

April 13, 1981, cover of TIME
TIME The April 13, 1981, cover of TIME

After a March 30, 1981, assassination attempt, the President tried to keep the country's spirits up with these one-liners

When President Ronald Reagan was shot on this day, March 30, in 1981, it was anything but funny. The assassination attempt by John W. Hinckley Jr. required the President to undergo surgery and seriously wounded three others.

But Reagan knew it was also important to convey to the country that he was going to be OK. And — before he was told that others had been injured — he knew that humor could get that message across, perhaps better than any other official reassurance. According to TIME’s coverage of the assassination attempt, the very first thing he said to the First Lady when she arrived at the hospital was, “Honey, I forgot to duck,” a reference to a one-liner used by boxer Jack Dempsey.

The magazine compiled this list of his best reactions to the shooting and his own injuries:

> To surgeons, as he entered the operating room: “Please tell me you’re Republicans.”

> In a written note, upon coming out of anesthesia in the recovery room (paraphrasing Comedian W.C. Fields): “All in all, I’d rather be in Philadelphia.”

> In another note, recalling a Winston Churchill observation: “There’s no more exhilarating feeling than being shot at without result.”

> In a third note: “Send me to L.A., where I can see the air I’m breathing.”

> In yet another note written while surrounded by medical staff: “If I had this much attention in Hollywood, I’d have stayed there.”

> Complimented by a doctor for being a good patient: “I have to be. My father-in-law is a doctor.”

> To an attentive nurse: “Does Nancy know about us?”

> To a nurse who told him to “keep up the good work” of his recovery: “You mean this may happen several more times?”

> To Daughter Maureen: The attempted assassination “ruined one of my best suits.”

> Greeting White House aides the morning after surgery: “Hi, fellas. I knew it would be too much to hope that we could skip a staff meeting.”

> When told by Aide Lyn Nofziger that the Government was running normally: “What makes you think I’d be happy about that?”

And TIME wasn’t Reagan’s only admirer on the humor front: That year’s Oscars took place the following day, and host Johnny Carson joked that he wanted to call in the President to help punch up the script.

Read TIME’s full coverage of the assassination attempt, here in the TIME Vault: A Moment of Madness

TIME Congress

Harry Reid’s Early Retirement Announcement Shows How Much He Likes to Plan Ahead

Harry Reid
Douglas Graham—Roll Call/Getty Images Harry Reid on July 10, 2000

The Senate minority leader will not seek reelection in 2016

By announcing early that he will not run for reelection next fall, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid has freed up party resources that might have been spent on what would have been a tough race for other elections — a major reason behind his early decision, as he told the New York Times. That kind of planning ahead is not unusual for the minority leader.

Reid’s personal background might not peg him as a super planner: as TIME explained in a 2004 profile, he was once an amateur boxer, the son of “a hard-drinking gold miner.” (His mother’s pay came from taking in laundry from brothels.) But he devoted himself to finding stability, including through a conversion to Mormonism, and ended up the kind of person who famously carries around notecards on which to record every promise he makes, with the idea that he’ll later be able to record when he fulfills them.

One of the best illustrations of that forward-looking nature was explained in that same 2004 article, in which TIME’s Douglas Waller laid out how the Senator prepared for a filibuster:

Harry Reid is the kind of adversary who might just wear you down. Last year, for example, the Nevada Senator staged a one-day filibuster, standing on the Senate floor and talking for eight hours and 35 minutes straight to put majority leader Bill Frist hopelessly behind schedule on other bills that he wanted to rush through before the Thanksgiving recess. Reid planned everything carefully, down to his diet. So he wouldn’t be forced to go to the bathroom and lose his right to the floor, he ate only a slice of wheat bread and a handful of unsalted peanuts for breakfast, kept Senate pages from refilling the water glass at his desk and made sure he sipped only half of it during the day.

One thing he can’t plan, of course, is the one thing that many Washington-watchers will wonder most: who will take his place as the leader of the Senate Democrats.

Read the full 2004 story, here in the TIME archives: Herding the Democrats

TIME Aviation

Why We May Never Be Certain the Germanwings Crash Was Deliberate

A similar 1999 crash remains shrouded in mystery

As investigators continue to search for clues about the crash of Germanwings Flight 9525, a new theory has emerged: a French prosecutor said on Thursday that the flight’s co-pilot brought the plane down on purpose.

Black box recordings suggest that when the pilot left the cockpit, the co-pilot locked the door and deliberately flew the plane into the mountain, not responding to the pilot’s pounding on the door or, in fact, saying a single word during the descent.

The shocking revelation may remind observers of another crash, when on Oct. 31, 1999, Egyptair Flight 990 went down on its way from New York City to Cairo. When the black box from that flight was retrieved, this, as per TIME’s recounting, was what was heard:

The cockpit door opens, then closes. Silence. After four or five minutes, a calm voice utters three words in Arabic. “Tawakalt ala Allah”: “I put my faith in God,” or “I entrust myself to God.”

It is 1:49 a.m. and 46 sec. on Oct. 31. EgyptAir Flight 990 is cruising uneventfully at 33,000 ft. on its normal heading from New York City northeast across the Atlantic toward Cairo. At that moment, two distinct clicks of a button on the control yoke disconnect the autopilot guiding the plane. Eight seconds later, the control yoke is pushed forward, tipping the tail up, pitching the nose down, and the aircraft tilts into a precipitous but controlled dive. Fourteen seconds later, the aircraft reaches 90% of the speed of sound and zero gravity–weightlessness–as it plummets through the night sky.

The cockpit door opens again. The master alarms start to whoop. A voice demands, “What’s going on?” or “What’s happening?” Then the same voice urges, “Pull with me! Pull with me!” Twenty-seven seconds into the dive, the horizontal elevators on the tail that normally operate in tandem to stabilize the aircraft wrench in opposite directions: the left side pulls to make the plane climb, the right one pushes to keep it in a dive. Gravity and the two powerful Pratt & Whitney engines on the Boeing 767 continue to force the plane down. A second later, a small shield is flicked up over the twin-engine control levers on the central console, and both engines switch off. Four seconds after that, the plane’s speed brakes, panels deployed atop the wings rise into the airstream, disrupting the lift in an effort to slow down the descent. Suddenly, the plane begins to climb.

After an additional 11 sec., the flight-data recorder and cockpit voice recorder stop working; the altitude-reporting transponder quits. Land radar tracks the plane as it climbs 8,000 ft. with a force of gravity 2 1/2 times normal. Then the aircraft stalls, lurches downward, breaks apart and leaves nothing on the radar screen but a cascade of neon debris falling into the sea.

Those bare clicks, murmurs and whines recorded by the plane’s two black boxes, then synchronized with ground-control radar tracks, are all the “facts” investigators have so far to construct a picture of what happened to Flight 990. But do they add up to the terrible possibility that one of the pilots deliberately sent the plane into its death dive, committing an unspeakable act of self-destruction and mass murder?

In that case, despite the recording and other evidence that the pilot did not try to avert the crash, the suicide-by-crash theory still, over 15 years later, remains unproven. The National Transportation Safety Board took the hypothesis seriously from the beginning but, TIME reported, those on the Egyptian side of the investigation denied that it was a possibility.

Responding to those who interpreted the pilot’s actions as a murderous, terroristic act, many in Egypt and its allies saw a cultural presumption in the idea that a prayer in Arabic — which could also be an expression of surprise or concern — could indicate a link to terrorism. And to those who saw it as an act of personal desperation, many Egyptians said that was also an insult, given the extreme shame associated with suicide in their culture.

The pilot’s family rushed to provide evidence that the pilot, Gamil El Batouty, was a happy man with no reason to crash a plane on purpose, and officials questioned whether his recorded prayer would be interpreted in such a sinister fashion if the speaker had been Christian. For months, even as the NTSB stuck by the suicide theory, Egypt continued to press the case for alternate possibilities.

Egyptair Flight 990 and Germanwings Flight 9525 are not exactly the same situation, but they do share a few key elements. In both cases, black box recordings suggest that the person flying the plane caused and/or failed to stop the descent, and in both cases the actual wreckage will be hard to retrieve, meaning that a full review of the plane’s mechanical systems may prove impossible. But in both cases, at least so far, there is also a lack of the kind of evidence that often speaks for suicides after the fact: no note, no explicit evidence of anguish.

The lesson of the Egyptair crash, then, is that the chance is high that Germanwings investigators will never be able to say for sure what happened. The only person who could answer their questions with confidence can no longer do so.

Read next: Why the Black Box Recordings Deepen Germanwings Crash Mystery

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TIME Music

See Historic Photos of Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash in Nashville

A new exhibition looks at how Dylan changed the Tennessee city's music scene

Nashville has a reputation, and a well-earned one too: the Tennessee city is the home of country music.

But, as the Country Music Hall of Fame points out with a new exhibition opening Friday (Dylan, Cash, and the Nashville Cats: A New Music City, from which the artifacts and photographs above are drawn), that deserved reputation doesn’t mean that Nashville’s musical horizons are limited to one genre alone.

Rather, the fact that the city has long been home to accomplished session musicians — like the “Nashville Cats” of the 1960s and ’70s who are the focus of the exhibit — has attracted rock, folk and pop musicians to record there as well. And one of those not-totally-country musicians was particularly powerful in starting that trend: Bob Dylan, who came to the city to record Blonde on Blonde in 1966. Nashville’s conservative country rep was solid, but the results he achieved with local musicians — and his fruitful relationship with Nashville’s Johnny Cash — spoke for themselves.

“His decision to record here in the ’60s was a catalyst for many others to look at what must have seemed like an unusual destination at such a polarized time,” says the Hall of Fame’s Michael Gray. “If Dylan is doing it,” he says other musicians thought, “we should think about going there and checking out those musicians and studios too, in spite of its reputation as a conservative town.”

The dozens of rock and folk albums produced in Nashville during the ’60s and ’70s opened the door for the many artists who followed, a broadening that Gray says continues to this day; he cites Jack White and the Kings of Leon as examples of Dylan’s Nashville descendants. And that’s only part of the reason why Nashville has been proclaimed “the South’s Red-Hot Town” by TIME.

“Nashville is changing now,” Gray says. “The story we’re telling with this exhibit is that Dylan was changing perceptions of Nashville 50 years ago.”

TIME Military

The Desertion Charge for Bowe Bergdahl Was Months in the Making

TIME Photo-illustration. Bergdahl: U.S. Army/Getty Images The June 16, 2014, cover of TIME

Bergdahl's saga was TIME's cover story on June 16, 2014

Nearly a year after he was brought home through a prisoner exchange, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl will be court-martialed, a military official revealed Wednesday. The charges will be “desertion and avoiding military service” as well as “misbehavior before the enemy.” An official U.S. military announcement will come later Wednesday.

Last summer, when Bergdahl first returned to the United States, the chance that he might face such charges was already clear. Throughout a time of heated debate over the resources and compromises that had been necessary to bring him home, the Army promised to investigate what had happened. “Depending on the details, the facts of the case might support a charge of desertion–one of the most serious crimes a soldier can commit,” TIME’s David von Drehle explained.

And the details were bedeviling. As the story continued:

Sometime after midnight on June 30, Bergdahl made a neat pile of his armor, along with a note of farewell, then disappeared. He left his firearm behind, preferring to carry only water, a knife, a camera and his compass. More than 24 hours later, U.S. intelligence intercepted Taliban radio calls indicating that they had captured an American soldier.

The next part of the story was recounted by angry soldiers in magazines, on television and in Facebook posts in the wake of Bergdahl’s release. (In some cases, their accounts were facilitated by Republican political operatives eager to turn up the heat on Obama.) Each version brought its own details, but a clear picture emerged of the Army in Afghanistan urgently redirected to the task of finding the runaway soldier.

Read the rest of the story here on TIME.com: No Soldier Left Behind

TIME Music

Library of Congress Selects Joan Baez Album for Preservation

Nov. 23, 1962, cover
TIME The Nov. 23, 1962, cover of TIME

TIME's take on Joan Baez has been acknowledged by the Library of Congress

Every year, the Library of Congress selects 25 recordings — songs, spoken-word pieces, speeches — that will join the National Recording Registry, an archive of hundreds of sounds that will be specially preserved as crucial parts of America’s history.

This year’s batch, announced early Wednesday morning, features Joan Baez’s eponymous 1960 album, and the selection note from the Library of Congress explains that the groundbreaking artist released it shortly before TIME crowned her the Queen of the Folk Singers. The magazine did not actually use those exact words until later in the decade, but the general idea of her dominance was strongly conveyed in a November 1962 cover story about the folk movement.

The magazine had been tracking her career since 1960, when she was identified as an up-and-comer, and by mid-1962, by which time she had “sold more records than any other girl folk singer in history,” that prediction had clearly been vindicated. For the November story about the movement, a painting of Baez adorned the cover, and John McPhee — then a contributing editor at TIME — was selected to write.

McPhee’s take on folk wasn’t quite a wholehearted embrace (“Anything called a hootenanny ought to be shot on sight, but the whole country is having one,” was his first sentence) but, even so, it was clear that Baez was doing something special:

The people who sit in the urban coffeehouses sipping mocha Java at 60¢ a cup are mainly of college age. They take folk singing very seriously. No matter how bad a performing singer may be, the least amount of cross talk will provoke an angry shhhh.

These cultists often display unconcealed, and somewhat exaggerated, contempt for entertaining groups like the Kingston Trio and the Limeliters. Folk singing is a religion, in the purists’ lexicon, and the big corporate trios are its money-changing De Milles. The high pantheon is made up of all the shiftless geniuses who have shouted the songs of their forebears into tape recorders provided by the Library of Congress. These country “authentics” are the all but unapproachable gods. The tangible sibyl closer to hand, is Joan Baez.

Her voice is as clear as air in the autumn, a vibrant, strong, untrained and thrilling soprano. She wears no makeup and her long black hair hangs like a drapery, parted around her long almond face. In performance she comes on, walks straight to the microphone, and begins to sing. No patter. No show business. She usually wears a sweater and skirt or a simple dress. Occasionally she affects something semi-Oriental that seems to have been hand-sewn out of burlap. The purity of her voice suggests purity of approach. She is only 21 and palpably nubile. But there is little sex in that clear flow of sound. It is haunted and plaintive, a mother’s voice, and it has in it distant reminders of black women wailing in the night, of detached madrigal singers performing calmly at court, and of saddened gypsies trying to charm death into leaving their Spanish caves.

A side note for those nostalgic for a 60-cent cup of joe: that’s $4.64 with inflation. If you’re going to be sad about your Starbucks, complain about the lack of live and legendary music, not the prices.

Read the full cover story, here in the TIME Vault: Sibyl With Guitar

TIME Style

When Elvis Got Drafted, So Did His Hair

Take It All Off
Hulton Archive / Getty Images Elvis Presley receiving a haircut from a US Army barber at Fort Chaffee, Ark., in 1958

At ease, sideburns

When Elvis Presley reported to be inducted into the Army on this day, March 24, in 1958, his legions of fans weren’t exactly taken by surprise. It had been early 1957 when TIME reported that he was likely to go:

Tooling up to a Memphis induction center in his li’l ol’ unpretentious cream-colored Cadillac, Dreamboat Groaner Elvis Presley, a hulking 21, went bravely inside, peeled off his inconspicuous scarlet and black jacket and other trappings, permitted medicos to examine him. The doctors’ verdict: a fine broth of a lad, pelvis and all, eligible for drafting—probably to serve in some special services division, tote some such gone weapon as a guitar. Before rolling off in his Caddie, Elvis allowed that the intelligence test he had taken was a breeze. Groaned the bobby-soxers’ golden calf: “Di’nt seem hard a’tall. Ah’m sure Ah passed!” (He did.)

But the big question wasn’t whether he would pass the test. The big question was what the Army would do about his hair.

About a month after Presley was declared draft-eligible, lawmakers like New Jersey Senator Clifford Case were investigating, on their constituents’ behalves, whether the singer could get an exemption to buzz-cut regulations that would allow him to keep his sideburns and pompadour. Though the Army did not make an official statement on the matter, officials did declare that he would not receive any special treatment.

The singer was originally ordered to report for a draft-board physical on Jan. 20, 1958, but he ended up getting a “hardship deferment” in order to finish making a movie. (The hardship was the studio’s, which had already invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in the picture, not his own.) He finally reported to the Army in March — but, by then, the hair question had already been at least partially resolved.

As TIME reported late that February, he “jumped the clippers by getting a ‘normal’ haircut that shortened his sideburns a good inch, left him still looking much too dreamy for the Army.”

And that was that. When Sergeant Presley’s two years of service ended, he announced that, though he would return to rock ‘n’ roll, his sideburns were gone for good.

TIME politics

What the Supreme Court Could Say About Ted Cruz’s Canadian Past

US-VOTE-REPUBLICANS
Paul J. Richards—AFP/Getty Images US Senator Ted Cruz( R-TX) smiles at the crowd while delivering remarks announcing his candidacy for the Republican nomination to run for US president March 23, 2015, inside the full Vine Center at Liberty University, in Lynchburg, Va.

The 'natural born citizen' clause has never really been tested

When Sen. Ted Cruz launched his presidential campaign Monday at Liberty University, he began by telling his parents’ stories of immigration from Cuba, on his father’s part, and overcoming the odds at home, on his mother’s part. One much-discussed element of Cruz’s personal story, however, got only a brief nod: “When I was three, my father decided to leave my mother and me,” Cruz told the audience. “We were living in Calgary at the time.”

Calgary, though part of Cruz’s American story, is not in the United States; it’s in Alberta, Canada. Though Cruz was born in Alberta, he only learned as an adult that his birthplace gave him Canadian citizenship, which he officially renounced last summer.

Though it’s a common misconception, being born in Canada does not necessarily exclude Cruz, the child of an American citizen, from the White House. In fact, he’s one of many potential presidents over the years who have been born abroad.

The confusing constitutional clause behind that misconception — “No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President,” per Article II — most recently made news with the campaigns of John McCain, who was born in the Panama Canal Zone. As the New York Times laid out during his 2008 campaign, being born to a military officer in a military zone, as McCain was, was seen as largely uncontroversial, even though legal experts still debate whether “natural born” means “born in the U.S.” or merely “not naturalized later in life.” The real issue is that the Supreme Court has never really had to say either way. The natural-born citizen qualification is untested in practice, and it’s not even clear who would have legal standing to challenge a president like McCain or Cruz on that matter.

Further, as TIME explained in a 1962 article about the candidacy of George Romney (Mitt Romney’s father, who was born in Mexico because his grandfather had fled there to avoid U.S. antipolygamy laws), that hypothetical legal challenger would have a tough case:

His Mexican birth has raised some questions about Romney’s constitutional qualifications for the presidency. Article Two of the Constitution specifies that only a “natural-born citizen” is eligible. Some legal authorities say that this means only those born on U.S. soil. But a law enacted by the first Congress in 1790 stipulated that children born of U.S. citizens beyond the boundaries of the country “shall be considered as natural-born citizens of the U.S.”

In theory, that 1790 law could be unconstitutional too, were the natural-born citizen issue to make it to the Supreme Court — but, on this count, Cruz has an even harsher challenger to overcome. Nobody who would have provided the opportunity to put the law to the test has ever actually won the election. Other born-abroad politicians in the Times round-up include a Connecticut Senator born in Paris and FDR’s son Franklin Jr., who was born in Canada.

The closest the country has ever come to having a President not born on its soil (or, alternatively, living there at the time of the founding) was in the late 1800s, with Chester A. Arthur — maybe.

Arthur ended up in the White House in 1881, having served as the Vice-President for James Garfield, who died of complications from wounds sustained during an attempted (and ultimately successful) assassination. Though Arthur’s official biography at the White House lists his birthdate as 1829 and the place as Fairfield, Vt., both the year and the place have been challenged over the years. As the Associated Press explained in a 2009 story about the Chester A. Arthur Historic Site — his purported birthplace — rivals claimed that Arthur was actually born in Canada, where his mother’s family lived.

Records from the 1820s were predictably shoddy, and there has never been any way to prove 100% where Arthur was born. Should Cruz win the race in 2016, he’ll be the first President definitely born in Canada — and the first definite chance, unlikely though it may be, for the Supreme Court to test and define the clause in question.

Read next: How Ted Cruz is Using Spanish in His Presidential Campaign

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TIME politics

‘We Need to Get This Right': Obamacare Turns Five

Health Reform Cover
Cover Credit: PHOTO-ILLUSTRATION BY ANN ELLIOTT CUTTING FOR TIME. INSET: BRYCE DUFFY FOR TIME. The April 5, 2010, cover of TIME

The Affordable Care Act was signed on March 23, 2010

When President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act on March 23, 2010, it was obvious that making “Obamacare” official was still only the beginning of the law’s story. “Now for the really hard part,” TIME proclaimed in a cover story about the new law.

Looking back at that story by Karen Tumulty and Kate Pickert that announced the law’s arrival, it’s noteworthy just how tempered expectations were.

As TIME explained:

Economists and health care experts have long agreed on the problems that ail the health insurance system in America. It leaves too many people out. Even those who have coverage may be one diagnosis away from financial catastrophe. On the other side of that same equation lie the waste and excess created by paying doctors and hospitals for the quantity of treatment they provide rather than what works best. By some estimates, as much as 30% of the more than $2 trillion Americans spend on health care each year goes toward treatments that are unnecessary and even harmful. And what does the U.S. get for that staggering investment? Shining hospitals packed with cutting-edge technology but also a population whose health and life expectancy lag behind those of most other industrialized democracies.

Will these reforms turn all that around? We won’t know for years, probably not for decades. The most ambitious element of the new health care law–the expansion of coverage to an additional 32 million Americans–won’t even take effect until 2014. “It’ll take four years to implement fully many of these reforms because we need to implement them responsibly,” Obama said as he prepared to sign the legislation. “We need to get this right.”

The charts that accompanied the 2010 story included predictions for 2019. There number of uninsured Americans was predicted to drop by 28 million — from 50 million at the time of publication, to 22 million — during that time. If those changes happened steadily over the intervening nine years, about 15 and a half million Americans would have gained insurance in the first five years.

Just last week, the Department of Health and Human Services announced that about 16.4 million previously uninsured people have already gained insurance since the law was passed.

Read TIME’s 2010 cover story about the new health-care law, here in the TIME Vault: What Health Care Means for You

TIME remembrance

Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew Made Modern Asia

Dec. 12, 2005, cover of TIME Asia
Cover Credit: PHOTOGRAPH FOR TIME BY PAUL HU / ASSIGNMENT ASIA The Dec. 12, 2005, cover of TIME Asia

TIME interviewed the godfather of Singaporean politics in 2005

Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore’s first prime minister and the man credited with creating modern Singapore, was involved in the country’s politics since Singapore separated from Malaysia in 1965.

Just as Singapore has felt his presence as a constant throughout the years, so too has his office. When TIME’s Zoher Abdoolcarim, Simon Elegant and Michael Elliott visited with Lee over the course of two days in the fall of 2005, they observed that he had occupied the same rooms since the 1970s.

But that didn’t mean that Lee Kuan Yew was stuck in the past. In fact, during that interview he offered up his views on some of the most newsworthy issues of the day, from the rise of China to the threat of radical Islam. And though he admitted some faults — he should have fostered free enterprise more, he said — he was defiant in the face of other criticisms: “I’m not guided by what Human Rights Watch says. I am not interested in ratings by Freedom House or whatever. At the end of the day, is Singapore society better or worse off? That’s the test. What are the indicators of a well-governed society? Look at the humanities index in last week’s Economist, we’re right on top,” he told TIME.

And no matter what one thinks of Lee’s record, it’s hard to argue that he didn’t earn the right to his opinion. As TIME pointed out:

Lee can be forgiven for lifting his eyes to the horizon. Once the subject of withering criticism from human-rights groups for his authoritarian ways and intolerance of dissent, he is now widely acknowledged as Asia’s most respected senior statesman. Others may pen lengthy memoirs and seek to use their years on the world stage to tout their punditry and powers of prediction. Some can even lay claim to having guided far larger countries or served as leaders for longer than Lee. But Lee is unique. It is not just that his cold-eyed, totally nonideological analysis has set him apart from other observers of Asia. There is another factor that is just as important an explanation of Lee’s influence. From his days as a clerk and a black-market broker during the brutal Japanese occupation of Singapore — which he was lucky to survive — through his years as an agitator for independence from Britain, from his time spent talking to the Americans during the Vietnam years to his role as a confidant of China’s leadership, Lee has seen it all. He has been a participant observer of the most significant historical shift of our times — the steady ascent of Asia, home to 60% of the world’s population, from the twin shames of Western colonialism and poverty to its coming economic and political dominance. Everyone who lives in Asia today thinks they are watching history being made; Lee Kuan Yew is one of those who can say, without fear of contradiction, that he helped make it.

Read the full interview with Lee Kuan Yew, here in the TIME archives: Lee Kuan Yew Reflects

Read TIME’s take on the interview, here in the TIME archives: The Man Who Saw It All

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