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The Forum > Article Comments > Remembering Mikhail Gorbachev and his legacy > Comments

Remembering Mikhail Gorbachev and his legacy : Comments

By Tristan Ewins, published 2/9/2022

Gorbachev's policies of Glasnost ('openness') and Perestroika ('Restructuring') opened the way for reform, but also perhaps sadly the disintegration that then followed.

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"In retrospect it would have been better if the USSR had not collapsed." For whom? Certainly not for the 2 million people who made it happen by forming a 600 kilometer human chain across the Baltic States 33 years ago last week. "Socialism" is a strange name for your ideology.
Posted by Little, Friday, 2 September 2022 8:52:01 AM
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Dear Australians,

I'll excuse your sycophantic ignorance, at that of the Western press, if you excuse me if I throw up a little in my mouth on reading some of the western press releases on Gorbachev's death.

What they ALL seem to fail to say is that this man was responsible for

a brutal murderous crackdown in Kazakhstan (1986),
a massacre in Georgia (1989)
Black January in Azerbaijan (1990) and
the bloody events in Lithuania and Latvia (1991)
the murder of countless civilians - all the while trying desperately to SAVE the USSR.

He also tried similar in Estonia but it failed because by then, because, towards the end, his Soviet killing apparatus was bureaucratically corrupt and inefficient.

Any reforms he ultimately achieved were the actions of a desperate man that already realised that the breakup of the Soviet Union was inevitable. Then, having absolutely no choice, but to save his own skin by adopting the persona of a leader of a "people's revolution."

Overall, he achieved little, and rather is an accidental man, unjustifiably lauded by the West, for events that he had earlier tried to undermine. Re his death, one could more justly say, "Good riddance!
Posted by Yuri, Friday, 2 September 2022 10:31:38 AM
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Lots of misinformation here, the man wasn't a saint, but all too often credited with actions taken by brutal generals/field marshals? But I believe he was a social democrat who put the cart before the horse. And should have worked to build prioritized consensus at home first! Before doing deals with the west. That said, the best most human leader Russia produced last century! RIP Mikhail.
Alan B.
Posted by Alan B., Friday, 2 September 2022 11:13:59 AM
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Or Yuri, as you and I would attest, the only good politician is a dead one: But is anarchy a better option? Russia has suffered a fair share of that one, which is one of the reasons they end up with the Gorbachevs and the Putins and the Starlins, and at the very bottom of it all, the Russians themselves poor souls.

Dan
Posted by diver dan, Saturday, 3 September 2022 7:34:34 AM
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The evaluation of Gorbachev depends on who does
the evaluation.

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda told Reuters:

I think of him as a jail warden, who decided to "reform"
the jail by repainting its facade. Countries on the
outside saw the changing facade of that prison system,
while we saw the jail from the inside. But the prisoners
wanted freedom and when they saw the opportunity they took
it. They did it against Gorbachev's will."

For which many people are grateful that Gorbachev's
policies of Glasnost (openess) and Perestroika ( re-structuring),
gave them the opportunity they wanted. Which at the time he had
not anticipated.

Mikhail Gorbachev was a divisive, often detested figure in
Russia, and the state he led - the Soviet Union - no longer exists.
His policies of Glasnost and Perestroika are considered to be
at the heart of the USSR's disintegration in 1991.

We can only trust that Putin will not succeed in his attempts
to restore it.

Just for a bit of light relief:

What do you call Russia's dictator when he's mad?

Put-out.
Posted by Foxy, Saturday, 3 September 2022 1:04:45 PM
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Foxy. Putout is something you do rather than apply as a label.
Love and kisses, Alan.
Posted by Alan B., Sunday, 4 September 2022 10:22:43 AM
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