MIKHAIL SERGUEIEVITCH GORBATCHEV took charge of a USSR in deep crisis: a collapsing economy, a staggering war in Afghanistan, a decline in international influence and a group of republics increasingly refusing to stay under Moscow’s domination. He tried to save the Union by bold innovations, namely : “ Glasnost” policy (transparency) and “Perestroika” ( economic development). He put an end to the “Unique-Party”, organized the first free elections and promoted a constitutional reform. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, for his liberalization reforms and for the end of the “Cold War”. But the collapse of USSR and a ripple effect of secession from most of the Republics led irreducible communists and militaries into a putsch. He was put under house arrest, then freed and restored, but shortly after, power swung over to Boris Yeltsin.
Copyright: Alice Labrèque and Jean Routier, Québec, 2019.