Sat, Jan 08, 2005 - Page 8 News List


Long live revolutions

Jonathan Steele wrote an interesting article about democracy in Ukraine ("Democracy is too important to be brought about in this way," Jan. 3, page 9.) Unfortunately, he has a distorted view of the situation in Ukraine.

Steele might consider visiting the New Ukraine and getting a sense of the positive change the Orange Revolution has brought to 48 million Ukrainians who have risen up against corruption and a government that has systematically suppressed human rights and ordered the murder of a number of opposition leaders and journalists. It has systematically pillaged government coffers and served the interests of a few power brokers.

Steele's article suggests that democracy can be won in some smooth, negotiated fashion. That may be true when dealing with democratically elected governments. Outgoing president Leonid Kuchma's government was a sham and former prime minister Viktor Yanukovich's criminal record would preclude him from holding office in any government.

The Ukrainian Orange Revolution is a people's revolution, fought mostly by young Ukrainians who have had enough of a dozen years of "pseudo-democracy." Real democracy is their choice.

The only blood spilled in this revolution was by some of Yanukovich's allies committing suicide as they realized that they must pay the piper for their misdeeds. Other "pseudo-democracies" around the world (there are many) should take note: you could be next.

I support the Orange Revolution, and every citizen of the global village we live in should do the same. To do otherwise undermines everything democracy stands for. Let the Orange Revolution be one of many to come.

Yanukovich will be judged harshly by history. He and his quickly-disappearing team (some are committing suicide or hastily requesting diplomatic visas to leave the country) are yesterday's news, relegated to the trashheap of history. Opposition leader Viktor Yushchenko will do his part to move Ukraine forward in the new millennium.

He has unleashed the spirit of freedom in the Ukrainian people. Let his destiny unfold as he serves his people.

Eugene Roman

Toronto, Canada

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