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D. II.2. 'Electoral Revolutions' (and 'Critical Elections') in Individual Countries

The literature available in English on campaigns centred primarily on elections in post-communist and post-Soviet states is variable, from good coverage of the overthrow of Milosevic in Serbia (2000) to limited coverage of the ‘critical election’ in Croatia (2000). The 2009 protests against a disputed election in Moldova (which failed) have also not been well covered (and Moldova is not listed separately below) – but see

Pipidi, Alina Mungu ; Monteanu, Igor, Moldova’s “Twitter Revolution”, Journal of Democracy, Vol. 20, issue 3 (July), 2009, pp. 136-143

This section does cover ‘critical elections’ – where civil society mobilization to promote voter turnout and ensure independent electoral monitoring helped achieve an ideologically significant opposition victory over the ruling party – in Bulgaria, Slovakia and Croatia. In these countries there were also popular protests and demonstrations on various issues in advance of the elections. The democratization literature on post-Communist states generally cites Romania 1996 as the first ‘critical election’, where the opposition defeated an illiberal ruling part in the ballot (see Bunce; Wolchik, Defeating Authoritarian Leaders in Post-Communist Countries (D. II.1. Comparative Assessments) above). But although there was civil society activity related to the elections, and Romanian activists did give advice to groups in the Slovak opposition, events in Romania do not really qualify for inclusion in a bibliography on nonviolent action.

Information on individual campaigns can generally be found on internet sources such as the International Crisis Group, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, and also OSCE and/or EU reports on specific elections. Very short but informative articles can also sometimes be found in the journal The World Today.