Gorbachev Essay

This essay has a total of 941 words and 5 pages.


Gorbachev





March 1985 marks a turning point in the Communist rule of Russia. Mikhail Gorbachev is
elevated to the position of General Secretary. He is aware of the current social upheaval
occurring and that change must occur if Communism is to survive. He begins a program
called "Perestroika" which was the organizational restructuring of the Soviet economy and
government apparatus. Gorbachev discovers that this change will depend on other changes,
among others a more tolerant and open political environment , more public influence over
governmental and military institutions. This called for major

long term change of the political system. He began a policy called "Glasnost" which
emphasized openness with regard to discussion of social problems and shortcomings. The
purpose of these reforms was to elevate the Soviet standard of living in order to reaffirm
the citizenry’s loyalties to the Communist party and to enable the rebirth of the Soviet
economy and ideal. State control was loosened and individual initiative encouraged. He
expanded the authority of the Soviet presidency and transferred power from the Communist
party to popularly elected legislatures in the union republics. In international affairs,
he withdrew Soviet troops from Afghanistan, normalized relations with

China, signed a series of arms control agreements with U.S. Presidents Ronald Reagan and
George Bush. During this period of change strong Nationalistic opinion started in the
republics of the Soviet Union causing major upheaval. In 1991, as the Soviet economy
deteriorated, Gorbachev faced competing pressures from hard-line Communists, from
free-market reformers, and from nationalists and secessionists seeking independence for
their republics. The hard-liners, who included many top government officials, staged a
coup in August, placing Gorbachev under house arrest, but within three days the reformers
had restored Gorbachev to power. He immediately resigned as Communist party general
secretary, suspended party activities, and placed reformers in charge of the military and
KGB. After allowing Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania to become independent republics.
Nationalist forces became stronger in the republics as the year went on. The USSR voted
itself out of existence in December 1991, and Gorbachev resigned his position as president
of the USSR.



Glasnost




Continues for 3 more pages >>




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