The World: School for Revolutionaries

In the late 18th century, Australia was a British penal colony. Nowadays, to hear Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew tell it, the place is not a bad reform school. Lee has been dealing with budding campus revolutionaries in his tight little island nation by packing them off with scholarships to universities in affluent industrial democracies like Australia. "What you want to do is disperse them and open them up to new ideas," Lee says enthusiastically. Results? "They've come back fairly middle class and comfortable, although still armchair critics."

Lee's revelation prompted a flurry of embarrassed denials from Australian Prime Minister William...