Kim Dae Jung Biography

Kim Dae Jung Biography

Enjoy reading life story of Kim Dae Jung, birthday on December 3rd, education, facts, Kim Dae Jung quotes, awards, death, Kim Dae Jung career achievements.Kim Dae Jung (1925 - 2009) - Eminent President of South Korea

The President of South Korea and Nobel Prize recipient, Kim Dae Jung is popularly known as “Nelson Mandela of Asia”. He advocated democracy and human rights throughout Asia. He served as President of South Korea from year 1998 to 2003.

Born: December 3, 1925, Hauido, Sinan County, South Jeolla, South Korea
Died: August 18, 2009, Seoul, South Korea
Presidential term: February 25, 1998 – February 25, 2003
Awards: Nobel Peace Prize
Books: Mass-participatory economy, Prison writings

Birth Details

Born on December 3, 1925 in a small village on a South Korea’s island lying on its south western coast. He was born in a rural family having little political influence.

Personal Biography

Kim Dae Jung was the fifteenth President of South Korea and was a firm believer of democracy. His contribution in the field of human rights is still remembered. He carried out a long term struggle against authoritarian rule in Korea. He was the leader of the democratic movement in Korea and faced several hurdles by the erstwhile government.

Kim became President after many trials and tribulations and also after two failed attempts to reach to the post of Presidency. He was abducted, endured house arrests and five attempts on his life before he gained this coveted position.

He completed his studies from a commercial high school in 1943. During the administration of Syngman Rhee, the First President of Korea, Kim started his political career.

Achievements

In 1961, he was elected representative to the National Assembly but unfortunately there his tenure was short lived as National Assembly was dissolved by a military coup. This coup was headed by Park Hunghee who later proclaimed himself as a dictator. 

In 1963 as well as 1967, Kim won a seat in the house and this gave his political career a head start. He became a distinguished leader of the opposition and was also appointed as Spokesperson of the Democratic Party in 1965. In 1966, Kim became the Chairman of the party’s policy planning committee.

For the first time, Kim ran for the President’s position against Park in the year 1971. Although he could not succeed, he became quite popular in the country and gained unwavering loyalty of his party members.

President Park was assassinated after some time and this event led to the restoration of Kim’s political rights. But on the charges of treason, Kim was again thrown into the jail. During this period Kim suffered jail sentences as well as exile to the US where he lived in Boston and taught at Harvard University.

In 1987, all charges on him were withdrawn. In the same year, Kim was defeated by Roh Tae-woo in Presidential elections and again suffered a defeat when Kim Young-sam defeated him. These failures disheartened Kim and he took a brief hiatus from politics. He returned back in 1995 and stood for the Presidential elections and won. After a controversial victory, Kim was sworn in as fifteenth President of South Korea in the year 1998.

Awards

Kim was awarded Nobel Peace Prize in 2000.

Quotes

"American presence is, you know, the major cause of balance of power and the stability in this region."
- Kim Dae Jung

"You know, North Korea situation is far worse than East Germany, and South Korea is weaker than West Germany."
- Kim Dae Jung

"But such IMF pressure is very much helpful for me to push such a, you know, reform. So in this sense I think IMF is very much helpful for alien society."
- Kim Dae Jung

"Well, that is very imperative to let North Korea open door to outside."
- Kim Dae Jung

"I think a major cause of present Asian economic difficulties that mainly come from, you know, lack of market economy."
- Kim Dae Jung

"Unification is one thing, and stability in Northeast Asia is another thing."
- Kim Dae Jung

"If America would withdraw from South Korea, there could be a power struggle between such as China and Japan."
- Kim Dae Jung

"So for mutual interest, I do want American presence in this region."
- Kim Dae Jung

"Unification is not our present goal. That is a future program."
- Kim Dae Jung

"So if North Korea continues present isolation, then with such economic difficulties the North Korean government must meet a very serious situation in the future."
- Kim Dae Jung

"So in Asia I want to make - I want to succeed to make a model of what success, practicing democracy, and market economy. Then that will give a good influence over Asian countries."
- Kim Dae Jung

"There is some sign that North Korea is changing recently. There is ongoing successful negotiation to have a military talk to Pyongyang, which has been stopped for seven years."
- Kim Dae Jung

"So moderate is insisting that North Korea should open door to outside."
- Kim Dae Jung

"So such an American troops presence in Korea in the South and Japan, total some 100,000 should stay there forever, even after unification of Korean peninsula."
- Kim Dae Jung

"To realize peace on the Korean peninsula, and to develop exchange, cooperation between both Koreas, they are the, you know, immediate target of our government."
- Kim Dae Jung

"So South Korean ability is very much limited to handle North Korean, you know, difficulties. So we don't want to see an immediate collapse of the North Korea regime."
- Kim Dae Jung

"So now we are pushing economic reform, bank reform and enterprise reform. So we can finish that reform this year, in September or October. Then our economy may be much more, you know, normalized."
- Kim Dae Jung


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