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In 2004 Mr Yanukovych was ousted from office by vast street protests, only to be re-elected to the presidency (with the help of huge amounts of Russian money) in 2010, after the opposition politicians who replaced him turned out to be just as hopeless. Where autocrats have been driven out of office, their opponents have mostly failed to create viable democratic regimes.
Over the years, I have come up with somewhat of a formula for student success. First off, knowing what success means to you then effort, teamwork and competition.
Throughout history, we see successful people that do not fit our current student success paradigm.
After the fall of Athens, where it was first developed, the political model had lain dormant until the Enlightenment more than 2,000 years later.
In the 18th century only the American revolution produced a sustainable democracy.
The new regime stumbles, the economy flounders and the country finds itself in a state at least as bad as it was before.
This is what happened in much of the Arab spring, and also in Ukraine’s Orange revolution a decade ago.By 2000 Freedom House, an American think-tank, classified 120 countries, or 63% of the world total, as democracies.Representatives of more than 100 countries gathered at the World Forum on Democracy in Warsaw that year to proclaim that “the will of the people” was “the basis of the authority of government”.A report issued by America’s State Department declared that having seen off “failed experiments” with authoritarian and totalitarian forms of government, “it seems that now, at long last, democracy is triumphant.”Such hubris was surely understandable after such a run of successes.But stand farther back and the triumph of democracy looks rather less inevitable.These ideals may not fit the paradigm of student success held by a school.Therefore, student success is a difficult subject to understand.That so many people in so many different parts of the world are prepared to risk so much for this idea is testimony to its enduring appeal.Yet these days the exhilaration generated by events like those in Kiev is mixed with anxiety, for a troubling pattern has repeated itself in capital after capital. Regime-sanctioned thugs try to fight back but lose their nerve in the face of popular intransigence and global news coverage.Yet just a few years ago democracy looked as though it would dominate the world.In the second half of the 20th century, democracies had taken root in the most difficult circumstances possible—in Germany, which had been traumatised by Nazism, in India, which had the world’s largest population of poor people, and, in the 1990s, in South Africa, which had been disfigured by apartheid.