Fidel Ramos y Valdez (March 18, 1928, Lingayen, Philippines – July 31, 2022, Makati) was a Filipino general and politician who served as the 12th President of the Philippines from 1992 to 1998.
His father, Narciso Ramos, was Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1965–1968. Fidel Ramos graduated in civil engineering from the National University of Manila. He then went to the United States, where he graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point and studied military engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, at the bachelor's level. He then obtained a master's degree in this field from the Philippine National Defense Academy (Dalubhasaan ng Tanggulang Pambansa ng Pilipinas) and obtained the same degree in business administration from the Ateneo de Manila University.
After his studies, he became a soldier, participated in the Korean and Vietnam wars. During the rule of President Ferdinand Marcos (his distant cousin), he was one of the main organizers of the repression after the declaration of martial law and eventually became the Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. In this position, he made a major U-turn during the anti-Marcos uprising of 1986, opposing the dictator Marcos. This step decided the rebellion. He then pledged allegiance and loyalty to the new government of President Corazon Aquino. In her cabinet, he eventually became Minister of National Defense (1986–1991). In this position, he pacified several military coup attempts. In 1992, he was elected president with 23.58% of the vote, the lowest margin of victory for the presidency in Philippine history. In the process, he defeated the popular Minister of Agrarian Reform, the "Iron Lady of Asia", Miriam Defensor Santiago.
During his six years in office, Ramos restored international confidence in the Philippine economy as he heavily liberalized it. It also withstood the Asian financial crisis of 1997. He fought corruption, especially in the ranks of the police, and tried to limit population growth in the Philippines with campaigns for family planning. He made peace agreements with two guerrilla groups, the communist New People's Army and the Muslim separatists of the Moro National Liberation Front.
He remained active after retirement, his authority considerable, as one of the most successful Philippine presidents of all time. He served primarily as an advisor to his successors.
This article used a translation of the text from the Fidel Ramos article on the English Wikipedia.
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