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

Why did the Communist system fail in the 1980's? What were the different reasons in individual countries?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Why did the Communist system fail in the 1980's? What were the different reasons in individual countries? The communist system fell for various reasons. In time, I don't think that this could have been avoided as the communist ideal had a basic flaw in it. It misunderstood human nature. Their ideology was based on every man working to the best of his ability for the good of the nation. However, humans will not work for more than they have to and therefore this massive decline in the quality of the work in communism led to its downfall as there was no will to work. One of the main reasons that communism fell in the 1980's was that over the years, the Cold War had drained them of their money. The Space Race stripped them of 20% of their entire national income as they spent billions on their defence. This took away lots of money from their economy which they could have spent on the poor and needy but since this was not the case, the communist standard of living, especially in the USSR, declined. This caused communism to have a bad image and most of the people disliked it as they saw the riches and wealth of the west in contrast to their rags. ...read more.

Middle

However, what he didn't realise was that the machine was broken. The government had turned communism against itself. Perestroika wanted renewal and reformation of the communist party to stamp out the corruption. However, many people wanted to get rid of the party altogether. It was this hatred he underestimated. Glasnost told people to speak out but he did not realise that the satellite states had deep rooted hatred towards the communist regime and their leaders a in the case of Hungary and Czechoslovakia, they remembered how their loved ones were destroyed. That is why demonstrations occurred such as the March 1986, the unofficial Hungarian Independence day celebration. Lastly, the final breakdown of communism was the destruction of the Berlin Wall in November 1989.It was set up to prevent East Berliners to cross over to the West. Since Hungary opened its Austrian border, the wall became useless and so therefore, it was a sign to show that communism was defeated. It sparked rebellions around Eastern Europe and slowly the Soviet Union fell apart by the end of 1991. In separate satellite countries the reasons for the downfall of communism in them started with different reasons. ...read more.

Conclusion

He was afraid that the Domino effect might work in reverse and what happens in Czechoslovakia might spread to the other satellite states. Therefore, the Brezhnev doctrine is born and even though he sent in troops to Czhechoslovakia, there was no bloodshed as they surrendered peacefully. So, the 'Prague Spring' brought the Brezhnev doctrine and a hard-line communist government. As you can see these countries were both brought back under the Soviet control through force. They both had reforms passed that the USSR did not like and were therefore responded to viciously. However, in the 1980's the USSR was in a great economic crisis. It did not have the money to deal with the uprisings as it did before. With the introduction of the new president (Gorbachev), who was realistic and knew that it was inadvisable to use the same tactics as his predecessors. They had just pulled out of Afghanistan, which cost them billions and received international condemnation. If they started to attack another country, to suppress the people, not only would it take a huge toll on the Soviet economy but the international image would be very shaken and could lead to confrontation. ...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. Analyse and Discuss the Reasons Behind the Breakdown in the Relationship Between the United States a

    contiguous regions was tacitally agreed; or perhaps, more accurately the areas of these regions where each power would have spheres of influence. This meeting was to prove hugely significant in the years to come: in particular as to the thinking of Joseph Stalin.

  2. What was perestroika; why did Gorbachev introduce it; and why did perestroika fail?

    to go bankrupt, which put doubt in many people's minds about perestroika. Even a McDonalds opened in Moscow, which added to the shift towards a capitalist market, however it was too expensive for the average consumer. Although many of Gorbachev's attempted reforms to change the economy through privatisation seemed like

  1. Why were the Prague Spring reforms unacceptable to the Soviet leadership?

    despite his downfall, had made the USSR a more tolerant hegemon".9 This kind of assumption however, would prove to be fatal to Dubcek and his supporters. They are afraid of singers, tennis players, Santa Claus, archives, each other... They are afraid of truth.

  2. The Not So Free.

    "The next topic on the agenda was the calling of help from the allies. Although the time it would take the UN to decide whether or not to act would take forever and they probably not come into the war, as the system is fundamentally flawed as if one of

  1. Identify and evaluate the relative impact of the factors, which made reform of the ...

    The State's end of Sakwa's 'deals' had been left unfulfilled and therefore 'conflicts' not managed. These conflicts were contained by a crackdown on dissent by Andropov and Chernenko4 however the underlying qualms of the population still remained. Kaser (1982) argues that when the economy starts to fail the legitimacy of the government is called into question5.

  2. Tsar downfall

    of Zemstovs, who were willing to help the Tsar and his government with the war effort. Thee elected bodies formed the Zemgor, an organisation which successfully handled the war effort and dealt with the wounded. The success of this organisation highlighted the government's failures regarding the war, and was the sign that there could be an alternative to the Tsar.

  1. What did Gorbachev fail to forsee?

    The public demanded radical democratization and Gorbachev truly desired to bring about the change, but to continue to enjoy the party's support he claimed that the accomplishments and values of socialism would be preserved. In this early stage of his administration, Gorbachev knew that he serving two masters.

  2. Communist Purification in Czechoslovakia.

    de-Stalinization policy and so till that year the ties and relations with the next-door might were tense and weak. In late 1967 Novotny lost power to Alexander Dubcek, and he became the new leader from January 1968. He set up new goals for the conservative state, and planned to conduct reforms for Czechoslovakian society and economy.

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