A decade since Ukraine’s Maidan revolution, the protest that led to war

Peace leapt into the air there is today 10 years in Ukraine. On November 21, 2013, the then Ukrainian government, led by the authoritarian regime Viktor Yanukovychannounced its intention to strengthen its relations with Russia and not sign a long-negotiated agreement with the European Union (EU) for greater integration of the Slavic country into the community club.

It was the spark that lit the fuse of Euromaidan (Fromaidan). A citizen protest that ended three months later with dozens of deaths, Yanukovych’s flight from the country and the end of international balances existing between the West and Moscow since the end of the Cold War. What was broken was not put back together.

Several smoldering crises since the dismemberment of USSR (of which Ukraine was a part), and geopolitical fault lines with an enormous draft, they overcame at that time and contributed to the outbreak of the revolt.

On the one hand, his the pulse with Moscow (firmly opposed to moving away from its sphere of influence to the neighboring country) and the West (favorable to the integration of Ukraine into its international organizations); on another side, the internal contrast between the two Ukraines, one Russian-speaking (mainly in the industrialized south and east) and more economically integrated with Russia, and the other determined to break this link; underlying everything, the unresolved question of generalization corruption and social injustice which afflicts this country endowed with great resources and enormous potential.

The antecedent

So much so that the Euromaidan protest arose from the ashes of the so-called Orange Revolutionfueled in 2004 mainly by opposition political parties, but which then betrayed many promises policies, legitimate desires for change and protests from a population also tired of a real scourge in the Slavic country: its oligarchs. Millionaires who, in many cases, after independence from Ukraine (1991) looted strategic industries and they massively occupied the spaces of economic and political power of the new state.

This has widened the gap between those who have more and those who have less. “Ukraine is a potentially rich country turned into poor because of a tragic story. In the years since independence, Ukraine has grown with the region, but despite high expectations, it has been a bitter disappointment,” reads a 2012 report from the Carniege Institute.

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