In these anxious days, it doesn’t necessarily take a flight of imagination to envisage some consequences of the still-expanding COVID-19 pandemic. The societies that had experienced turmoil before the outbreak of the corona-crisis will quite probably experience a re-energized surge of protests temporarily subdued by the health concerns. The unfolding economic recession is set to aggravate the pre-existing tensions, so unstable governments will face heavy odds.
The deal struck last Friday by the leaders of the so-called Independent Square protest and the President Viktor Yanukovich may prove a major progress in the Ukrainian crisis. The agreement has put an end to the violent clashes with the police that in the previous days had reportedly caused more than a hundred dead in Kiev and across the country, pushing back the prospect of a potentially devastating civil war.
In its approach to the demonstrations in Bolotnaja Square in December 2011 following Putin’s second presidential bid, Russian policy had to deal with unexpected protests triggered by Russian blogs, a new communication medium that appeared around 2008, and by a new “peculiar” political blogger, Aleksej Navalny. Russia underwent a revolution of new-generation communication and information exchange.
The ongoing mass movement in Turkey is without precedent in the country’s history. The peaceful demonstrations that started during the last week of May have turned out to be a blow to the Erdogan’s government international reputation following the much-publicized police interventions and the on-going nature of the situation, which has shown no sign of easing for a long time.
The extent of Russian on-off polit-ical protests ongoing since De-cember 2011 has astonished ex-perts, politicians and activists themselves. The Russian opposi-tion brings people out to the square notwithstanding the ex-tremely strict or none access to mass media. The peculiarity of the Russian media landscape consists of the coexistence of the government-controlled Television and the uncensored Internet. This gap pushed extra-parliamentary opposition online. How do the new technologies benefits or shortcomings favor or hinder the political activism in Russia?