Monday, December 27, 2004
Let freedom ring: The pro-west opposition candidate in Ukraine, Viktor Yuschenko appears to have won the latest, valid election for president in that country.
Michael Ledeen has a few things to say in light of this development.
For those of us who have long preached the power of democratic revolution, it's a happy day, and I hope that our leaders draw the appropriate lessons:
--The mild support we gave to the democratic forces in the Ukraine proved far more powerful than most of the experts expected. The revolutionaries required a bit of guidance in the methods of non-violent resistance, a bit of communications gear, and many words of encouragement. They did the rest. The same can and should be done elsewhere in the world (Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia, China, North Korea...)
--Our democratic values are shared by the overwhelming majority of the people in the world, and are rejected, sometimes violently, by tyrants and their followers. We need to stick to our principles, which means that we cannot blindly and compulsively support all the policies of individual anti-democratic leaders just because they help us. That kind of support always gets us in trouble (as in the Middle East, where we are justly criticized for our many decades of support for corrupt tyrants). Sometimes we will have to make some compromises, but when we do, we must still support democratic forces--openly, unapologetically;
Read the whole thing.