It's Good to Be the President-For-Life
Brushing some fitful attempts at revolution aside, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko started the third of an eventual seven (I'm guessing) terms today with some old-fashioned iron-fisted rhetoric.
"They want to humiliate our nation and turn it into another testing ground for a color revolution," he said in a reference to protests that helped oust unpopular governments in other ex-Soviet nations, such as Ukraine's "Orange Revolution."
Lukashenko lashed out at his foes, accusing them of being manipulated by the West.
To be fair, Lukashenko's victory would have come even without the vote-rigging alleged by opposition leaders. His 83% of the vote gave a cushion that Ukraine's luckless Viktor Yanukovych would have killed for. (Possibly literally.)
UPDATE: I guess I wasn't clear on Lukashenko's victory. I don't think he held a fair election, but it wasn't election-day rigging that gave it to him. That's the difference between this race and the Ukraine race, which was close enough for opposition to argue that it was stolen.