Once in power, revolutionary movements tend to stagnate ideologically, while circles around the defeated regimes undergo an intellectual revival – witness the “anti-revolutionary” revival in Russia, or the faltering of the Orange Revolutionaries now they are in government. Revolutions can also cause a reactionary backlash abroad, says the Belarusian social scientist. The “coloured revolutions” have been a lesson on the formation of democratic, non-violent opposition for the Russian and Belarusian governments, who have developed sophisticated techniques for undermining the opposition. In the forthcoming elections in Belarus, the “denim revolutionaries” must prove they are effective.
25 November 2005