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Why did the Soviet Union collapse - Essay Example

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The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was founded in the year of 1922 after the Bolshevik Revolution. The USSR had a great impact on the political affairs of the world ever since but could not maintain this impact after its downfall…
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Why did the Soviet Union collapse
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Download file to see previous pages The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was founded in the year of 1922 after the Bolshevik Revolution. The USSR had a great impact on the political affairs of the world ever since but could not maintain this impact after its downfall. The Soviet Union underwent a rapid collapse in the late twentieth century which was inevitable due to the policies and conditions that Russia was undergoing in these times. After the World War II the Soviet Union turned out to be a super power which was becoming a threat for the United States and for this reason many blame the United States to be the main cause of Russian collapse. The Soviet power was never able to expand much under the influence of the U.S agenda. It was under the leadership of Mikhail Gorbachev that Russia began to undergo a political change which could not be handled and thus led to a political turmoil. The United States itself did not play a direct role in the collapse of Soviet Union but it did play an indirect role in the collapse. This essay would further revolve around the factors which led to the collapse of the Soviet Union (Watson 1998; Weiss 2009). To understand the massive collapse of the Soviet Union one has to understand the basic principles on which the country was made. From a historical point of view it can be seen that the Soviet Union consisted of people belonging to different ethnicities and races. The political ideology of the country was based on the principles of communism in accordance to the theories laid down by Karl Marx. The Communist party was leading the government offices in Soviet Union and the leaders in the party were following a level known as ‘nomenklatura’ which helped them to access the resources of the state as they wished to (McCauley 2001 p. 86). A variety of factors led to the fall of the Communist State which have formed a debate amongst the historians. Many believe the sole factor of Afghanistan was enough to collapse the Soviet Union whereas opponents argue that a lot of other factors came into play along with the Afghanistan war which led to the collapse of the state. The major reasons for the collapse of the Soviet Union are cited as the Afghan intervention, the role of Poland, the varying prices of oil in the world and the reaction of the minorities to the government (Usitalo & Whisenhunt 2008). It has been found that the Soviet Union always had a conflict of interest with the West and this is the reason because of which the leaders had always aimed to excel from the west. The domestic problems along with the structural problems were the internal problems that the Union was facing because of which it underwent a political unrest. Tilly defines the collapse of the Soviet Union in the following words [O]ne of Europe’s more peculiar revolutions: the shattering of an empire and the dismantling of its central structure without the direct impact of a war . . . the costly stalemate in Afghanistan, itself a product of a hugely expensive Cold War with the United States, provided the closest equivalent to those earlier empire-ending wars” (Tilly 1993 p 231). In December 1991 the Soviet Union collapsed into fifteen independent countries. The West was victorious in disintegrating the nation and considered the collapse as a victory of capitalism over socialism. After the creation of Soviet Union it was seen that the leaders were implementing a plan through which they could unite all the nations of the Soviet Republic. To carry out such a plan the assimilation process began and Russian was taught to everyone. However more than fifty percent of the population living in the Soviet Union belonged to non Russian back grounds and it became difficult for them to assimilate with the newly laid principles. The economic policies of the state also failed which can be witnessed in the arms race that they had with the United States. The arms race with United States led to an economic turmoil for the country itself because of which they finally collapsed. The last leader of the country ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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