Chapter 22: Comparative
Political Systems
Section 3
Objectives
1. Understand how regimes can change
from dictatorship to democracy.
2. Describe the fall of the Soviet Union.
3. Explain the factors necessary for
democratic consolidation to take place.
4. Analyze why some countries experience
setbacks or failed transitions to
democracy.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Key Terms
• hard-liners: those who fight to maintain the
status quo
• soft-liners: those who want to reform the
policies of the current government
• democratization: the change from
dictatorship to democracy
• democratic consolidation: a process that
occurs as a country firmly establishes factors
needed to sustain a democracy
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 3
Key Terms, cont.
• genocide: the attempted extermination of
a cultural, racial, or national group
• failed states: governments that have little
control over large sections of their own
territory and which face severe economic,
educational, health, and security
challenges
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 4
Introduction
• How successfully have some nations achieved
democratic government?
– Some countries like Russia achieved formal
democracy, but retain some aspects of dictatorships.
– Other countries, such as Iraq, are just beginning to
develop democratic systems.
– A large group of countries, like Somalia, have tried
but failed to create working democracies, leading to
failed states.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 5
Openings for Democracy
• Democracies tend to emerge in waves across the
world and the number of democracies has increased
over time.
• Many democracies replace failed dictatorships,
which have limited basic rights.
– People living under dictatorships may question why they
do not enjoy the freedoms of people living in democracies.
– Internal splits between hard-liners and soft-liners can also
divide a dictatorship.
– Individual reformers like Lech Walesa in Poland and
Vaclav Havel in Czechoslovakia have also helped bring
about democratic changes.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 6
Fall of the Soviet Union
• The fall of the Soviet
Union was the result
of a series of events,
including:
– The fall of the Berlin
Wall that divided East
and West Germany
– The collapse of
Communist regimes in
Eastern Europe
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 7
Fall of the Soviet Union, cont.
• Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev was a reformer in
the 1980s.
– His perestroika policy restructured Soviet political and
economic life, while glasnost allowed more freedom
of expression.
• The USSR fell apart in 1991 after Boris Yeltsin
became president of Russia and challenged a
military coup by hard-liners.
• Russia created a new constitution that set up a
democratic republic with protections for individual
rights.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 8
Independent Russia
• Vladimir Putin (below, far right) became Russian
president in 1999. He limited civil liberties, gave
the presidency more power, won questionable
elections, and picked his own successor in 2007.
• Russia’s economy
has improved, but
it may once again
be a dictatorship.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 9
Democratic Consolidation
• Checkpoint: What is democratic consolidation?
– Democratic consolidation is the process by which a
country establishes a sense of common trust among
its citizens, which enables them to support a longterm democracy.
– Key factors include the creation of a free press, a
multiparty system, a fair economic system, and a
professional civil service, as well as establishing
civilian control of the military.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 10
Haiti
• The process of democratization in the Caribbean
nation of Haiti has been difficult.
• The Duvalier dictatorship ended with the election of
President Aristide in 1990, but after being
overthrown and returning to power, he became a
dictator himself.
• Currently Haiti is ruled by a provisional government
and a UN peacekeeping force. The country suffers
widespread poverty and lawlessness.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 12
Iraq
• The United States overthrew Iraq’s dictatorship
in 2003 and has since faced great challenges
trying to establish a democracy there.
– There are few democratic or cultural traditions to unify
Iraq’s Shia and Sunni religious groups and its ethnic
Kurds.
• In 2005, Iraqis did elect a parliament that drafted
a democratic constitution approved by the
people.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 13
Divisions in Iraq
• A large majority of Iraq’s
inhabitants are Muslim,
but they adhere to
different forms of Islam,
belong to many different
ethnic groups, and speak
different languages.
– How can religious and
linguistic divides pose
challenges for a new
democracy?
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 14
Setbacks
• Some countries attempt democracy and
fail, becoming threats to other countries.
• Ethnic violence erupted when the country
of Yugoslavia broke apart in the late
1980s.
– Bosnia-Herzegovina was attacked by Serbia
and Croatia and nearly 200,000 civilians
suffered genocide before NATO stepped in to
stop the fighting.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 15
Failed States
• Countries like Afghanistan, Sudan, and Somalia
cannot control large parts their own territory.
• In such failed states, the economy struggles and
the government provides little security,
healthcare, or education for the people.
• International terrorist groups have found refuge
in failed states.
– Al Qaeda set up bases in Afghanistan from which
they struck at the United States in 2001.
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 16
Review
• Now that you have learned about how
successfully some nations have achieved
democratic government, go back and
answer the Chapter Essential Question.
– How should you measure different
governments?
Chapter 22, Section 3
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Slide 17
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Chapter 22: Comparative Political Systems Section 3