Argument

Democracy Lab Weekly Brief, June 15, 2015

To keep up with Democracy Lab in real time, follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Ievgen Vorobiov explains why the appointment of Mikheil Saakashvili as governor of Ukraine’s Odessa region has reignited a struggle inside the country’s political elite. Nafees Syed takes Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi to task for failing to stand up for her ...

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To keep up with Democracy Lab in real time, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Ievgen Vorobiov explains why the appointment of Mikheil Saakashvili as governor of Ukraine’s Odessa region has reignited a struggle inside the country’s political elite.

Nafees Syed takes Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi to task for failing to stand up for her country’s persecuted Rohingya minority.

Ilya Lozovsky demonstrates how Azerbaijan’s expensive lobbying efforts in Washington are paying off in the halls of Congress.

Jeffrey Tayler explores the appeal of Leopoldo López, Venezuela’s highest-profile political prisoner – and a potential challenger to President Maduro.

Juan Nagel looks at a hit website where Venezuelan intellectuals find refuge from the pressures of pro-regime media.

In the wake of Turkey’s repudiation of President Erdogan’s authoritarian ambitions, Cenk Sidar lays out the urgent reforms that lay ahead.

And now for this week’s recommended reads:

In Foreign Affairs, Michael Koplow argues [paywall] that the recent Turkish election was actually not a loss for President Erdogan and his ruling Justice and Development Party.

Writing for the World Bank’s Development Impact blog, David Evans, Markus Goldstein, and Anna Popova list the key take-aways from the Bank’s annual conference on Africa.

In BloombergView, Jonathan Bernstein argues that voters’ “ignorance” about politics doesn’t mean their votes are meaningless.

OpenDemocracy’s Michael Caster reports on the student protest movement in Burma.

In the Register, Charles Brett breaks down why Estonia has been so successful at implementing its digital government initiatives.

Writing for Malay Mail Online, Sum Dek Joe looks at the relationship between democracy and economic development.

A Stratfor Global Intelligence correspondent, reporting from the Syrian city of Tartus, explains why the Alawite heartland is fed up with Bashar al-Assad’s unwinnable war. (The photo shows a wall with portraits of soldiers from Tartus who have died in the civil war.)

In the Washington Post’s Monkey Cage blog, Kim Yi Dionne interviews Adam Branch and Zachariah Mampilly, the authors of Africa Uprising, about a new wave of popular protest in Africa.

Meanwhile, in BloombergBusiness, Jose Enrique Arrioja, Bill Faries, and John Quigley report on a series of protests in Latin America, fueled by corruption and stagnating economies.

And finally, for a change of pace, check out Sean Penn’s magisterial Huffington Post op-ed on the development community’s failures in Haiti. Who said movie stars can’t write?

Photo credit: JOSEPH EID/AFP/Getty Images

 

Ilya Lozovsky is assistant editor of Democracy Lab. Prior to joining Foreign Policy, he worked as program officer for Eurasia at Freedom House, providing emergency support to human rights activists and organizations across that continent. @ichbinilya

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