• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

To What Extent Was Gorbachev Responsible For the Collapse of the Soviet Empire?

Extracts from this document...


TO WHAT EXTENT WAS GORBACHEV RESPONSIBLE FOR THE COLLAPSE OF THE SOVIET EMPIRE? Gorbachev was responsible for the collapse of the soviet empire to a point. In 1985 when he came to power, he realised that the soviet economy was devastated and facing many problems with communism making the situation much worse. Gorbachev realised that reforms were needed to stabilise the economy. He was responsible because he did not do anything to stop solidarity which allowed people to have more freedom. This weakened the hard line adopted by Jaruzelski much more difficult to maintain. He encouraged solidarity by introducing his reforms that of Perestroika-restructuring the soviet economy - and Glasnost - where public opinion about government policy was allowed. ...read more.


However Gorbachev was not responsible because even though he encouraged solidarity he did not start it. It was because of the oppression the people received from communism that they rebelled. The leaders were very hard lined which created discontent in the people. Gorbachev did not do anything to prevent Germany. He was not responsible for the Hungarian uprising in 1956 and Czechoslovakia in 1968 which showed that the communist government was band to collapse prior to the discontent and revolt between the communist people. In fact, Gorbachev was not responsible as even though we lowered the arms expenditure, more money would be saved by the government, for example to improve industry and its products and besides there were already low morale and attitudes to work Gorbachev was not responsible for causing the Berlin Wall to collapse; again it was due to the discontent people shared from Stalin's and Brezhnev's actions. ...read more.


Furthermore, there were many new issues that were coming up in USSR like there were many new groups like the Islamic Fundamentalism which Gorbachev had to think about. Moreover the Soviet empire was changing in political circumstances made buffer zone unnecessary as now no more land attacks would take place but instead use missiles e.g. ICBM's Overall I do think that Gorbachev was responsible for the collapse of the Soviet empire, because if it was not for him, there would be few demonstrations and people would not have freedom of speech and expression and would still have been deprived of freedom to criticise the Government. It was due to the introduction of his reforms which cause the Soviet Union to collapse but on the other hand there were other reasons to the collapse of the Soviet Union. HUSSEIN KAPASI ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. To what extent was Hitler solely responsible for the Holocaust

    intellectual developments and sociological theories, such as the concept of Social Darwinism which was adopted and adapted by many scholars whom claimed that they were in fact leading races (the Aryans) and inferior races- the Jewry. The anti-Semitism at this time was further enhanced by a number of German scholars, whom made it seem fashionable and respectable.

  2. How important were developments in Eastern Europe to the collapse of the Soviet Union?

    of the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe would not have had an impact domestically at all, as in the case of West and East Germany - strong nationalistic movements only arose in the East after its Gorbachev-initiated reforms of glasnost and perestroika.

  1. What did Gorbachev fail to forsee?

    Gorbachev failed to gather around him a body of loyal advisors and lieutenants. Even before his downfall, he, president of the state, had become politically isolated. The last example of poor foresight is that Gorbachev may have tried to reform what could not be reformed.


    After 1931 most people were paid by piecework, yet average income was probably about 50% of that in 1928. * There were severe shortages, so queuing was a way of life. Fresh foods were often not available. Most people ate meals in the communal canteens at their place of work rather than cook at home.

  1. Examine the claim that Hoover was responsible for the dramatic collapse of the economy ...

    Although Hoover attempted to improve it, his efforts were not successful. One of his biggest mistakes was freezing war debts from European countries. He proposed a one year moratorium of the payments, which was signed by 15 nations by July 1931.

  2. The Collapse of Communism in the USSR and Eastern Europe

    instrumental figures, and was viewed "not merely as an expression of America's weakness but also as a cause of it."2 In addition, U.S. failures such as Vietnam and Watergate had damaged Western morale, and President Jimmy Carter was under pressure to make a strong reinstatement of American prestige.

  1. Why did the Soviet Union maintain a presence in Eastern Europe? And why did ...

    It had become clear to Stalin that the collapse of capitalism in the West was not immanent and capitalism was more stable than previously recognised. The Soviet Union would have to be at the forefront of a competition with the west which would demand the economic and political compliance of Eastern European states to support the effort.

  2. Why did tsarism collapse?

    The Prime Minster, Stolypin , attempted reform seeing the necessity to strengthen Russia following Japan which meant distribution of land to the peasants which he thought would contribute to rebuilding and modernising the economy, the successful could make their living off the land while the rest would populate the factories.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work