How does the French Revolution compare and contrast to the Orange Revolution?
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One similarity between both revolutions is in how the will of the majority of the body politic was expressed extremely loud and extremely clear. There was an undeniable will of the people heard in both settings' calls for change. In both, the perceived ruling government was seen as betraying the public trust and a demand for change was heard. In the Orange Revolution, the air of corruption in the Kuchma government along with his handpicked successor, Yanukovyuch, helped to antagonize the public to a point where the fraudulent results in the 2004 election caused a groundswell of anger and resistance. In the French Revolution, anger towards the French Monarchy had reached a point of no return. In both uprisings, a vast alliance of public voices were raised in defiant opposition to the Status Quo in demand of change.
One significant difference between both revolutions was their progression from the point of public demands of change. The Orange Revolution was relatively peaceful, using civil disobedience, general strikes, and protests to accomplish its goals. The Orange color and ribbon, the color of the opposition candidate, Yushchenko, helped to forge a solidarity and alliance of people committed to political change in the Ukraine. One man died in the protests of a heart attack. Certainly, this outpouring of peaceful means of change is not embodied in the French Revolution. The violence that was part of the French Revolution along with the reprisal killings that were the Reign of Terror marked it as a bloody exercise in political change. Where the Orange Revolution accomplished its goal in the oppositional candidate gaining office, the French Revolution ended when the absolutist Napoleon gains office, ensuring that monarchy gave way to public chaos which gave way to monarchy. In this aspect of change and violence, a significant difference between both revolutions can be seen.
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