Ukraine still stands. When Russian President Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine in late February, he - and most everyone else - anticipated that the country would fall to Russian control in a matter of days. What few predicted was the power brought to bear by the spirit and tenacity of the Ukrainian people, who have fought valiantly for their nation and for democratic ideals for more than nine months. They have repelled Russian invaders from much of their country. They have persisted through periods of no heat, water or electricity. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, 44, adeptly rallied much of the world to send aid and weapons, and he was rightly named Time's Person of the Year. The blue and yellow flag flies in Kyiv - and around the globe.
American voters rejected extreme candidates. An alarming number of GOP contenders for office this year openly denied the 2020 election results. Some had even participated in the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection. But voters across the country largely said "No, thank you" to these candidates, especially in hotly contested statewide offices in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Arizona, Georgia and Nevada. Score one for the guardrails of the democratic system.