Special Forum

Democracy came to Mongolia in the aftermath of the Cold War as one of the uplifting success stories of that era, and it has survived for three decades despite conditions that many regard as hostile. Given the legacy of communism and the pressures attributed to Beijing and Moscow, this sparsely populated, landlocked country has not been regarded as a likely stalwart of democracy in the 2010s when overall optimism about the course of democratization has been receding. Here, I consider the reasons for success in sustaining democracy as well as evidence of its vulnerability, paying attention to recent debates indicative of national identity as well as foreign policy factors that continue to operate.

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