04 January 2006

Ukraine Democracy > Aired 4 Jan 2006


The orange-revolution, led by Viktor Yushchenko, was a dramatic expression of people power. How much more democratic can political action get than in the mass exercise of the popular will?

This week we continue with the BBC series Looking for Democracy. Robin Lustig produced this week's piece, Ukraine: People's Democracy (including an interesting parallel between borscht and democratic governance).

The conditions were all in place for the campaign of street protests to be effective. There was a charismatic leader figure, a growing and educated middle class, an independent (enough) judiciary - and, a point often overlooked, a renewed pride in the country (a result, not least, of triumph in the Eurovision song contest). And yet there are real drawbacks to people power. The expectations on Yuschenko to deliver are now immense - far more so than if his victory had arisen purely through the ballot box.

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We finish with Thomas Grove's Return to Shaklat.

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