How 5 revolutions got their names
Questions are cropping up about the appropriateness of calling Tunisia's uprising the "Jasmine Revolution" – stemming from the fact that the term has been used in reference to Syria in 2005 and even the path that brought ousted Tunisian President Ben Ali to power. But the moniker could stick, at least partially because it's become a tradition of sorts to name the revolutions of the 2000s after colors and flowers and even household items. Here's an overview of some of the popular revolutions – and their nicknames – that preceded Tunisia's ... whatever you want to call it:
Bulldozer Revolution – Yugoslav Republic (Serbia), 2000
The uprising credited with opening the door to other democratic revolutions in Soviet republics in the 2000s is the Bulldozer Revolution, which overthrew Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic in 2000 (The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was later renamed Serbia and Montenegro).
The protests were a response to Mr. Milosevic’s political maneuvering to secure another term as president. The opposition parties rallied to run an opposition candidate who could beat Milosevic and declared victory in the election. When the electoral commission said there would need to be a runoff because neither Milosevic nor the opposition won a majority, demands intensified for Milosevic step down. He refused.
A general strike and widespread protests commenced, with people coming to Belgrade from all over the country. They stormed the parliament, overwhelming the police stationed there and setting part of the parliament building on fire. The opposition candidate declared victory by the end of the day, and Milosevic resigned.
The name comes from a famous but factually questionable incident in the protests, in which one protester used a bulldozer to storm the parliament building.
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