Category: Democratic Transitions

Fresh hope for Ukraine on Maidan, Holodomor anniversaries?

     

Do new faces in politics in Ukraine, Moldova, Kazakhstan, and Slovakia mean real change, New Eastern Europe asks. ‘Is this part of a wider trend that indicates deeper social transformation’,… Read more »

Arab Spring 2.0?

     

Recent disturbances in Arab countries have not yet become as far-reaching as what ensued after a Tunisian fruit vendor immolated himself in protest nine years ago, but observers are already… Read more »

Post-1989 structures need ‘remodeling, even democracy,’ says Walesa

     

Did Central Europe’s democratic forces defeat one form of authoritarianism, but fail to anticipate other threats to freedom? The post-Cold War disruption in job markets, economic inequities, and disputes over… Read more »

Velvet Revolution dissidents warn of new threats to Czech freedom

     

Protests broke out in Prague Saturday on the 30th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution after courts confirmed that Prime Minister Andrej Babis collaborated with the StB, the Communist era secret… Read more »

Democracy doomsayers question causes of backsliding

     

Are the causes of democratic erosion the same in the advanced liberal democracies as seen in Venezuela, Hungary, Turkey, Spain before the Spanish Civil War, and Germany and Italy before… Read more »

‘Underestimating democracy’ invites demagoguery, says Walesa

     

Authoritarians are resurgent because of the failure to create a new global system of democratic values, said former Solidarnosc leader and Polish president Lech Walesa. “Polish democracy in practical terms… Read more »

Arab democrats need ‘realistic pathways for change’

     

As a fresh wave of protests generates speculation about an Arab Spring 2.0, the challenge for MENA democrats is to move beyond calls for regime change and focus on building… Read more »

Baltic Road to Freedom: Rhetoric vs. realpolitik

     

As Soviet communism following the fall of the Berlin Wall, the experience of Baltic “freedom fighters” like Vytautas Landsbergis of Lithuania and Lennart Meri of Estonia demonstrated the  “almost unbridgeable… Read more »

Communism’s Shadow: How post-1989 liberal dream became illiberal nightmare

     

Central and Eastern Europe’s transition to democracy has not been smooth. But there are grounds for hope, notes Alison Smale. What would Vaclav Havel have made of post-1989 developments? she asked… Read more »

Europe’s East and West again divided – by values, not walls

     

Thirty years after the Berlin Wall fell, ending the Cold War in Europe, new political divisions are rising between East and West. Despite the economic success of German reunification and… Read more »