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Belarus Blues

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As I’m sure many known, Belarus holds presidential elections on March 19. Unfortunately time doesn’t allow me to provide extensive comments on the Lukashenka government’s crackdown on the opposition. I hope to write something on the role of youth in the election in the coming days. In the meantime, let me point readers to some places that are providing news and analysis.

Radio Free Europe has sent up a special section called Belarus Votes 2006 which has daily coverage. I also recommend the hour long panel discussion (Real Audio Windows Media) on the elections sponsored by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Eurasian Home also has a special section on the elections.

I have only one quick observation about the reporting. I find it interesting, and frankly quite predictable, that the elections about being placed in a narrative of the Ukraine’s Orange Revolution. In fact, some are already giving the would-be “revolution” a name—the “Denim Revolution.” The drama is certainly building with all the physical attacks on the opposition. Let’s see how this narrative plays out in reality. To me this poses all sorts of questions about how “democratic” elections in the Former Soviet states are being framed in the West.