The revolution has a beginning. It has no end

Analytics | Dosym Satpayev | 13-12-2017, 22:30

A hundred years after the October Revolution, new revolutionary waves with certain regularity cover both countries and even entire regions of the world.


From "velvet revolution" to "color revolution"

This circumstance gives reason to think about the nature of such a change of power, which sometimes leads to completely different results.

Shortly before the collapse of the USSR and immediately after the anti-communist wave, "velvet revolutions" took place in the countries of Eastern Europe and even in Mongolia, and relatively calmly and peacefully.

In the first half of the 2000s, the "color revolutions" burst in the former Soviet Union - in Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, and Ukraine.

Nevertheless, the results of these revolutions vary. So far, only the Georgian model of political development has proved successful. At the same time, the post-revolutionary situation in both Georgia and Ukraine later led to territorial losses.

Today, there are certain successes in political development in Kyrgyzstan, where two revolutions of 2005 and 2010 generated more or less competitive elections, for the first time in Central Asia.

And the political and economic conflict between Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan is among other things, a conflict between two models of political behavior that have roots in different systems of social organization.

In any case, it is interesting that once we all came out of one "Soviet overcoat", but twenty-six years after the collapse of the Union began to differ from each other. In some political systems more or less democratic regimes were created, in others - different forms of authoritarianism.

At present, there are various forms of post-Soviet transit, such as progressive (qualitative evolution), regressive (retreat to closed systems) and retrospective (modified projection of some elements of Soviet political ideology), which is currently observed in Russia.


Sparks and flames

In the history of mankind there have been three ideas behind which masses marched. First, the idea of social justice. Secondly, the salvation of the nation. Third, religious purification. Although often they can all combine well with each other. And the bulk of the revolutions and coups took place usually under these slogans in different variations.

Lenin said that a revolution does not arise from any revolutionary situation. In other words, any revolution requires much more factors than simply the presence of social tension or the imposition of an economic crisis on the political one.

The revolution has a beginning. It has no endBy the way, John Reed, the author of the book Ten Days That Shook the World, on the October Revolution of 1917, called the insurrection of the Bolsheviks "the most amazing adventure," whose result was not clear to the initiators themselves. This is understandable: for a long time the Bolsheviks were not only banned as a political organization, but also could not boast of a large number of their supporters. On the contrary, the Party of Socialist-Revolutionaries (SR) had about a million members by the summer of 1917. The Constitutional Democratic Party, better known as the Cadets, in the same year numbered about 50,000. And the number of Bolsheviks in the revolutionary February was only 24,000.

This indicates that the quantity is not yet a sign of strength. And this is one of the lessons for many modern political regimes, where they sincerely believe that a large number of members of pro-presidential parties guarantees political stability and loyalty of the population.

Certainly, a combination of favorable circumstances, including external ones, is necessary. In 1917 this was the people's weariness from the First World War. Before its fall, the Soviet Union was also in a state of severe economic crisis, also because of sharp fall in oil prices, in which many saw the hand of the United States and Saudi Arabia.


Hope is replaced by disappointments

At the same time, not all revolutions justified the hopes cherished on them. 100 years ago it happened likewise with the February and October revolutions. Disappointment in the results of the first revolution led to the emergence of the second, after which a serious struggle for power kicked off: first between the "reds" and "whites", and then among the winners, which gave rise to political repression, in the fire of which many representatives of the Kazakh intelligentsia burned, including the founders of the Alash party.

The point of view of the leftist sociologist and publicist Alexander Tarasov, according to whom, the Stalinism was in fact "a counterrevolutionary regime in revolutionary clothes.”

"Revolutions of disappointments" are characteristic for modern politics. In some cases, it is much easier to displace existing power than to form a new working political system.

A clear example was the revolutionary wave in 2011, which caused a "domino effect" in the Arab world. But in some cases, like in Libya, it led to chaos and anarchy, while in Tunisia, from where everything started, on the contrary, to the appearance of a relatively democratic form of government based on a political consensus between Islamist parties and supporters of the secular way of development.

As a result, in 2015 the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet for its decisive contribution to the creation of pluralistic democracy in the country after the Jasmine revolution of 2011. As one of the theorists of anarchism, Mikhail Bakunin, noted: "The question is not whether the revolution will happen or not, but whether its outcome will be peaceful or bloody."

The Arab spring pointed to a new and interesting trend. It is youth, the new generation of the post-colonial period, who is more educated and less satisfied with its social situation that becomes the driving force behind the destruction of the established political systems that have existed for decades.


Getting out of the impasse

Sometimes it is impossible to save a system that is doomed. You can only prolong its agony. In other cases, there is still a chance to carry out systemic reforms to move from political impasse to evolutionary development. Some experts believe that reforms should start not with democratization, but with preliminary liberalization of the regime from above.

In political science, this is called "abdication," or reform from above, the end result of which is the creation of a competitive system that consists not of political fakes, but of strong institutions, from parties and parliament to local government bodies.

And revolutions often break out not only because upper classes can no longer manage the old way, and lower classes can no longer live the old way, but because upper strata do not even realize the existence of this problem.

Nikolai Berdyaev has a very good idea: "The sins of the past are redeemed in the revolution. The revolution always says that the authorities who have not fulfilled their purpose. "

The decomposition of the system begins when monolithic power becomes loose, fragmented and incompetent, while the elite faces disorder, vacillation and corruption bacchanalia begin. The irony is that once it ruined the tsarist regime and then the USSR.

A few years after the October Revolution, there was nothing left of the Socialist-Revolutionaries, Cadets and other parties. The same happened to the Communist Party with 18 million members in most of the former Soviet republics. Also because the majority saw in this party only career lift upwards, where the Soviet nomenklatura itself ceased to believe in its own words about the "bright future". And in parallel, "kitchen democracy" and the "doublethink" syndrome had long engulfed the society.

We see similar trends in Kazakhstan, where careerists and temporary are often eager to get into power. It can hardly be called a solid foundation for the political system.

If history is a policy that cannot be corrected, then politics is history that can still be fixed.


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Dosym Satpayev

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