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This week’s front page editor


Francesc Badia i Dalmases is Editor and Director of democraciaAbierta.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

The impacts of Ukraine’s political crisis are felt in east-central Europe, Russia, the European Union, and the United States. openDemocracy writers assess its significance.

Ukraine: what next?

There was a way out of the Ukraine crisis this week, through dialogue and accommodation. But the regime, backed by Russia, chose to pursue victory instead. It will be a Pyrrhic one—but the international community can shorten the agony.

How was he to know? The cracking of the Ukraine regime

Ukraine’s parliament has abandoned the law to curb public protests only recently introduced and the prime minister has resigned. What lies behind these dramatic events?

Ukraine, and a Europe-Russia crack

The conflict in Ukraine is part of a wider tussle over eastern Europe's political orientation. The European Union remains pivotal to progress, says Krzysztof Bobinski.

Ukraine: a crisis of self-identity

Ukrainian identity has historically been defined in opposition to Russia, but an anti-Russian agenda is unable to bind together a state with a large ethnic Russian population. With the Yanukovych administration now taking a neo-Stalinist approach to history and education, airbrushing out nationalist heritage, David Marples asks: where does Ukraine go from here?

The struggle after people power wins

With peaceful but forceful civic mobilization in 2004, Ukrainians managed to reverse a rigged presidential election. Later, disappointed in politicians who failed to deliver on promises of political and economic change, many Ukrainians distanced themselves from politics, thereby helping Victor Yanukovych become president in 2010. Civil society moved its residual activism from political to social problems, which could strengthen civil society as it prepares to counter democratic backsliding.

Rescuing Ukraine from NATO

President Yanukovich sees it as his mission to protect the country from NATO. That’s why he extended that lease allowing Russia’s fleet to stay in Crimea. For as long as the fleet stays in Ukraine, the country cannot join NATO

Russia's fleet in Crimea: what's the real deal?

President Yanukovich’s unexpected extension of the lease on Russia’s fleet in Crimea has Ukraine in an uproar. No one knows the full extent of that agreement. It was clearly not just about cheap Russian gas

The Prorizna Street rebellion

A spirited protest in central Kyiv embodies the ethos of a new, civic Ukraine whose people - despite their politicians - have internalised the values of the “orange revolution”. Alexander J Motyl reports for openDemocracy

Partition Ukraine? I think not

It is irresponsible to fan the flames of partition as Ethan Burger does in his openDemocracy article ”Could partition solve Ukraine’s problem?” Neither the facts nor opinion polls support such wild speculation, says Adrian Karatnycky

Could partition solve Ukraine’s problems?

In the light of Ukraine’s election result, Ethan S. Burger offers a proposal for the creation of a new Ukrainian state. Partition would do more than better reflect the country’s national/ethnic composition, he suggests. It could also make the country economically viable, while enhancing European stability.

Ukraine: beyond the orange coalition

The changing fortunes of the two allies of the "orange revolution" of 2004 are a key to understanding Ukraine's political dynamics, says Taras Kuzio.

(This article was first published on 17 July 2008)

How Ukrainians became citizens

The massive popular protest against Ukraine’s fraudulent election is a pivotal moment in the country’s – and Europe’s – history, says Alexander Motyl.

(This article was first published on 25 November 2004)

"Virtual politics" in the ex-Soviet bloc

The post-Soviet states still practice forms of political manipulation that are more radical, more pervasive and more corrosive of real democracy than anything attempted by spin-doctors or K-Street consultants in the West, says Andrew Wilson.

Ukraine's crisis of governance

A fresh compromise may salve the major political faultlines in the troubled Ukrainian polity. But the depth of the country’s institutional, regional, and personal divisions make repair far harder, says Andrew Wilson.

Two years after the Orange revolution: Ukraine in a funk

The romance of revolution is long gone as Ukrainians learn to cope with democracy's disillusions, says Alexander J Motyl.

Ukraine and Russia: divergent political paths

Ukraine is in post-orange political meltdown while Russia is reinventing itself as a successful energy superpower. Right? Wrong, says Alexander J Motyl, who looks beneath the surface of a changing relationship.

Ukraine's inspiring boredom

The sheer normality of Ukraine’s election indicates how profound its post-orange political transition has been, finds Patrice de Beer.

Ukraine: free elections, kamikaze president

An "orange coalition" is still the most likely outcome of a Ukrainian election won by the revolution’s opponent, says Taras Kuzio.

Ukraine's post-orange evolution: Askold Krushelnycky interviewed

After fifteen turbulent months of a hard-won democracy, Ukraine's people are again calling their leaders to account. Askold Krushelnycky talks to Toby Saul about how far the orange revolution's ideals have survived.

On 26 March 2006, Ukrainians vote in parliamentary elections which may see Viktor Yanukovych regain a significant share of the vote for his Party of Regions after being swept out of power in the orange revolution of November 2004-January 2005.

Ukraine's new political complexion

Whatever the result of the 26 March parliamentary elections, Ukraine after the orange revolution is moving towards normal democratic politics not back to authoritarianism, says Alexander J Motyl.

Ukraine vs Russia: the politics of an energy crisis

The bitter gas dispute between Russia and Ukraine reveals the stark difference in the character of the two states. The European Union should take note, says Alexander Motyl.

Russia's post-orange empire

Ukraine's orange revolution was Russia's 9/11, and its result is to convince Moscow that the European Union is its major strategic rival, argues Ivan Krastev.

Democracy is alive in Ukraine

Kyiv’s governmental crisis will not derail Ukraine’s democratic development, says Alexander Motyl.

Ukraine and Europe: a fatal attraction

The “orange revolution” in Ukraine is not the last of Europe’s post-1989 “velvet revolutions” but the first of the European Union-inspired revolutions of the 21st century, says Ivan Krastev.

After three tumultuous weeks in Ukraine, it seems overwhelmingly likely that the opposition candidate in the presidential election, Viktor Yushchenko, will be voted president of the republic after the re-run, third round on 26 December 2004.

Ukraine should not be part of a "great game"

Both the European Union and Russia need to learn an important lesson from the Ukraine crisis: how to reconcile strategic interests and political values in order to help Ukraine’s people realise their own aspirations.

Ukraine, Poland, and a free world

The Ukrainian revolution has catapulted Poland into the leadership of the European Union and released a new political dynamic across the region, says Marek Matraszek.

America's Russian question

Has America forgotten Russian national interests in pursuit of its own? In the sixteenth of our Letters to Americans series, Sergei Markov, director of the Institute for Political Studies in Moscow, writes to Robert V Daniels, professor at the University of Vermont and author of ‘Russia’s Transformation’.

Poland's nervous 'return' to Europe

Poland is the largest of the ten states joining the European Union on 1 May 2004. But economic pressures, political strains and global fears make this a moment of worry rather than celebration for its 40 million citizens, reports Krzysztof Bobinski from Warsaw.
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