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You're reading: Despite leadership failings, nation more mature than five years ago

Konrad Adenauer, the former German chancellor, said: “History is the sum total of things that could have been avoided.” It is an appropriate epigraph to what Ukraine has lived through since the Orange Revolution five years ago last weekend.

There are different views on what happened, but it is clear there are no winners and losers. Ukraine has been united by common disillusionment.

The bitter taste of frustration gave people some hope. Perhaps politicians are still not fully aware, but Ukrainians have become wiser and more mature. Upcoming presidential elections on Jan. 17 no longer split the country: people understand they are regular occurrences and not an irreversible choice.

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