Category: Democratic Transitions

1989: ‘Ideological lie’ exposed in democracy’s paradoxical moment

     

No empire in history has disintegrated as quickly or as bloodlessly as the Soviet one, in the remarkable year that saw the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989…. Read more »

Liberal democracy’s 1989 promise ‘a squandered opportunity’

     

Two great earthquakes shaped the present global order. The first, in 1989, seemed to promise an irresistible march towards liberal democracy and open markets. The opportunity was squandered by those… Read more »

Democracy under threat in post-Wall Europe: Spirit of 1989 fighting back

     

The west’s mistake after 1989 was not that we celebrated what happened in central Europe – and subsequently in the Baltic republics and the former Soviet Union – as a… Read more »

‘Brazil Apart’: Who ended ‘false starts’ to democratization?

     

The election of leftist Alberto Fernández in Argentina could strain relations with Brazil—the other largest member of the Mercosur trade bloc, which recently struck a free-trade deal with the European… Read more »

Cubazuela: A strategic occupation with global implications

     

Hundreds of representatives from governments, agencies and charity groups are gathering in Brussels for a “solidarity conference” to drum up support for millions of Venezuelans who have fled the political… Read more »

Why ceding ground to dictators doesn’t work

     

The world quickly becomes unsafe in the absence of U.S. power and will. Ceding ground to dictators is destined to work about as well today as it did when it… Read more »

The Soviet Collapse and the Charm of Hindsight: Misplaced optimism for Russian democracy?

     

On leaving Moscow in May 1992, I wrote: “I do not think it is an act of mindless optimism to look forward to a future in which Russia has developed… Read more »

The other ‘God That Failed’? The triumph and tragedy of 1989

     

“Always prepared!” For decades, it was a catchphrase of the Pioneers, an outdoorsy youth group that was a hallmark of communist indoctrination efforts targeting schoolchildren throughout the U.S.S.R. and its… Read more »