In other words, maybe the Orange Revolution never really happened at all. Obviously, the events on Kiev’s Maidan in late 2004 happened, leading to Yuschenko’s becoming president, but it is possible that in the excitement of the moment, too much was read into these events. The victory in December of 2004 by a former prime minister under Leonid Kuchma over Kuchma’s sitting prime minister may simply not have been the pivotal and revolutionary moment which it looked like at the time. Rather, it may have been another stage in Ukraine’s continuous path from Soviet republic to something else.
Speculation about who will win the election, and how that person will govern, can overshadow the democratic advances Ukraine has made since the Orange Revolution of 2004, particularly when contrasted with Georgia and Kyrgyzstan, the other two post-Soviet countries to have Color Revolutions in the last decade. All three Color Revolutions were, at the time they occurred, hailed as democratic advances, but Ukraine is the only one of the three countries that can accurately be said to have experienced greater democratization since those dramatic events. According to Freedom House, for example, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan have the same level of democracy as they did before the Rose and Tulip Revolutions, while Ukraine has become more democratic that it was before the Orange Revolution.