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The End of the Cold War Essay

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Updated: Mar 23rd, 2021

History Discussion

The ideas suggested by Mikhail Gorbachev had a pernicious impact on the USSR and the whole communist society. The fact is that these new policies contradicted the ideological principles of the Soviet Union that had been fundamental for its existence and evolution for decades. Additionally, the majority of communist leaders were not able to accept these alterations because of their radical character and contradictory nature (Sanders, 2014). The principles of glasnost and democratization were introduced with the primary aim to reduce the power of the Communist party which was central to the state (Sell, 2016). In such a way, the principles mentioned above destroyed the basis of the USSR and preconditioned its further collapse.

The Cold War was one of the most important and complex periods in the history of human civilization. The confrontation between two superstates resulted in the appearance of numerous security concerns. Additionally, the emergence and fast evolution of nuclear weapons posed a new threat to the whole world. Incidents like the Caribbean Crisis proved the existence of critical discrepancies between the USSR and the USA (Sell, 2016). In such a way, the given period of history preconditioned the evolution of the modern world and the formation of peoples mentalities and the modern international discourse. That is why the Cold War period impresses by its fundamental role in the newest history.

Analyzing Gorbachevs actions and his incentives in the economy of the USSR, it is possible to conclude that the primary aim of these actions was the destruction of the welfare of the country, the growth of peoples dissatisfaction, gradual decline, and collapse. For instance, Gorbachevs anti-alcohol campaign resulted in colossal financial problems as about 100 billion rubles were lost during these years (Sell, 2016).

Correctly realizing the importance of this item of income for the budget he wanted to undermine the power of the USSR and trigger the growth of peoples dissatisfaction with the existing state. For this reason, using this factor and some other pieces of evidence, one can conclude that Gorbachevs primary intention was to destroy the USSR.

At the end of the Cold War, the USSR experienced significant economic problems caused by unwise Gorbachevs reforms and attempts to liberalize the Soviet society. Additionally, the focus on the rapprochement between the Eastern and Western camps accompanied by the proliferation of nuclear weapons resulted in the decrease in the level of tension between these superstates (Sanders, 2014). In such a way, the combination of these factors and the growth of peoples dissatisfaction in the state stipulated the peaceful resolution of the opposition and breakup of the Soviet Union.

Perfectly realizing the fact that the reformation initiated by Gorbachev would serve American interests, Reagan supported the First President of the USSR in his incentives. Being a vigorous anti-communist, Reagan reconsidered his attitude to soviet policy and tried to convince the USSR that cooperation remains the only choice for positive outcomes (Matlock, 2008). In such a way, both these leaders contributed to the peaceful resolution of the Cold War by engaging in close cooperation and demonstrating supportive behaviors.

Speaking about the final phase of the Cold War, we should admit the critical difference in relations between the leaders of the USSR and the USA if to compare with the previous ones. The fact is that both Reagan and Gorbachev made steps in the same direction which was unusual for these states Presidents (Matlock, 2008). At long last, it accelerated the collapse of the USSR and the peaceful resolution of the Cold War.

References

Matlock, J. (2008). Reagan and Gorbachev: How the Cold War ended. New York, NY: Random House Trade Paperbacks.

Sanders, T. (2014). The world in the twentieth century: From empires to nations (7th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.

Sell, L. (2016). From Washington to Moscow: US-Soviet relations and the collapse of the USSR. Durham, NC: Duke University Press Books.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "The End of the Cold War." March 23, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-end-of-the-cold-war/.

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IvyPanda. (2021) 'The End of the Cold War'. 23 March.

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