The Third Wave I’m wondering

by Nathan Hamm on 12/15/2003

The Third Wave
I’m wondering if the democratic tide is coming in. It appears that the third wave
of democratization may be making a comeback after receding for more
than a decade. If it grows to include Middle Eastern states, I might
call it a fourth wave.
Why such wild optimism out of me? I’ve kind of mentioned Ukrainian
anger and that the Rose Revolution has been an inspiration to
Ukrainians fighting corruptiion in their government. Transitions Online
reports that many of the fault lines are present
in Ukrainian society that were in Georgia. Add to that the
aformentioned inspiration from the Georgian example, and President
Kuchma may face tough times ahead. The enthusiasm and optimism
following the disintegration of the Soviet Union was, in my opinion,
largely unfounded (but understandable). In hindsight, only small, but
very significant, changes have occurred in the NIS. I would surmise
that it is in the next decade that you can expect to see real
democratic gains in the region as people begin to realize that
independence alone is hollow without opportunity to build a livelihood.

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– author of 2991 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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