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20 - Mikhail Gorbachev


Mikhail Gorbachev

(1931 - )


From 1945 to 1989 the most serious threat to world peace was the 'Cold War'. The cpaitalist and democratic nations of Western Europe and the United States were at times on the brink of war with the communist nations of Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union.

On becoming Communist Party General Secretary in 1985 Mikhail Gorbachev launched perestroika, a radical programme to reform and restructure the Soviet system. A policy of glasnost, openness, increased civil liberty, press, freedom, public debate and cultural expression.

The last President of the Soviet Union, he reduced military expenditure, ended the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan and pursued detente and nuclear desarmament with the West. In accepting changes in Eastern Europe he did more than anyone to ease international tension and end the Cold war.


Note : Gorbachev ended the internal exile of Andrei Sakharov, Nobel Peace Prize Winner of 1975.

Created by toussa01
Last modified 2005-01-14 04:08 PM

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