The Collapse of the Soviet Union
a. Politburo – The Politburo was the ruling committee of the Communist Party
b. Soviet “hard-liners” - Hard liners were and didn’t want things to change
c. “coup” - A coup is a sudden, violent, and illegal seizure of power from a government which may result in a new government.
d. CIS - The CIS is also known as the Commonwealth of independent states and it is a loose group of former Soviet territories.
e. “shock therapy” - shock therapy was when Yeltstin lowered trade barriers and removed price controls. This ended up hurting factories.
1. Identify and define two early changes that Gorbachev made? How were these changes different from previous Soviet leaders?
Gorbachev had announced Glasnost which would promote openness within the people. This also allowed for churches to be open and for people to have more freedoms.Secondly, Gorbachev had allowed for democratization. In this case, democratization made it possible for a new legislative body.These things were different from previous Soviet leaders because these things were
gentle ways of loosening the Communist party’s grip on the Soviet Union.
2. Why would it be ineffective for the central government to decide what should be produced all over the country?
The farmers and individuals producing the products could not earn more money for creating more products because there was a set wage and a set price for the products.This caused all the workers to have very little motivation to produce anything.
3. Explain Gorbachev’s third reform and how it would help to move the country toward democracy.
Gorbachev had allowed for democratization. In this case, democratization made it possible for a new legislative body. Following this event, all the people were able to choose who they wanted to run in each office/position.
4. What was the INF Treaty? Why did Gorbachev agree to sign it? What effect do you think this Treaty had on the Cold War?
The treaty was called the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Tready. Gorbachev agreed to sign it because it banned nuclear missiles with ranges of 300 to 3,400 miles. This made it easier for the Russians and Americans to keep from bombing each other with long range missiles to sign it because it banned nuclear missiles with ranges of 300 to 3,400 miles. This made it easier for the Russians and Americans to keep from bombing each other with long range missiles.
5. What effect did Gorbachev’s reforms have on Russian ethnic minorities?
The Russian ethnic minorities had seen that the reforms had loosened the grip of the Communist party on the Soviet Union and they had decided to call for religious freedom.
6. Which satellite nation was first to defy Gorbachev? How did Gorbachev respond?
Lithuania was the first satellite nation to defy Gorbachev and when they did Soviet troops attacked unarmed civilians in Lithuania's capital. The army killed 14 and wounded hundreds.
7. What was Boris Yeltsin’s position in Soviet government? Why did he oppose Gorbachev?
He was elected by the people to be become the Russian Federation's first directly elected president. He opposed Gorbachev because he had made slow reforms and because he didn't like the way the Lithuania problem was handled.
8. What name was given to the older communist members in parliament? What opinion did they have regarding both Gorbachev and Yeltsin? Explain your answer.
Hard-liners-conservatives were upset with both Gorbachev and Yeltsin because they
didn't want to lose their privileges now that the Communist party was slowly losing power.
9. What was the “August Coup”? Who orchestrated it?
The hardliners detained Gorbachev at his vacation home on the Black Sea. While doing this they demanded that the Russian President step down from power.
10. What were the most important reasons for the failure of the Coup?
Yeltsin had more influence over the armies that were under the command of the hardliners. Since he had such a big influence on the military, they didn't follow the hard liners orders which in return changed the tide of the August Coup.
11. How did the 15 soviet Republics respond to the failed Coup?
All 15 of the Republics had declared independence from the Communist party.
12.When Gorbachev “stepped down” as president, who became the next president?
Boris Yeltsin was voted on by the people to become the new president.
13. What was the new name of the Soviet Union after this coup?
Boris Yeltsin had created the Commonwealth of Independent States.
14. What was Yeltsin attempting to do by forming the CIS? What effect would it have on the traditional Soviet Union?
He wanted to form a loose federation of former Soviet territories. This formation ment the death of the Soviet Union.
15. After the breakup of the Soviet Union, Yeltsin was faced with economic issues. What did he do to attempt to solve these issues? Did it work? Why or why not?
He attempted to use a method called shock therapy. This method did not work because it made factories lose money and slowly the factories had to slow and/or stop production of items
because they didn't have enough money.
16. When Yeltsin stepped down, a new leader was elected. What are some of the problems that faced this new leader, Vladimir Putin?
Putin had to deal with the rebellion in Chechnya. This was a popular move that helped him win the presidential election in 2000.
17. What was the Chechnya issue? How did Putin deal with it? Was he able to end this issue for the new Federation? Explain.
The Russian were at war with the Chechnya and Russia had broken promises before with these people so they took over a theater in Moscow. It took 150 dead Russians before these people could be saved. Yes, he was able to fix the problem by pulling some of its 80,000 troops out of Chechnya.
18. In what ways were the policies of Gorbachev, Yeltsin, and Putin similar?
They all wanted to help Russia move away from a Communist Rule and many of their policies were all events that led to the collapse of the Communist Party.
How many republics belonged to the soviet union?
Next to the republics that eventually became independent, identify their year of independence.
Russia - 1922
Belarus - 1922
Moldova - 1922
Ukraine - 1922
Uzbekistan - 1924
Turkmenistan - 1924
Tajikistan - 1929
Kyrgyzstan - 1935
Kazakhstan - 1936
Azerbaijan - 1936
Armenia - 1936
Georgia - 1936
Lithuania - 1940
Latvia - 1940
Estonia - 1940
Relating to our discussion on ethnic groups, which ethnic groups want to form their own country? Why? Why is Russia not willing to give them their own land?
Chechnya wanted their freedom.