Detente • After Khrushchev was ousted from power Leonid Brezhnev ruled as Premier from 1964-1982. • His economic reforms continued the failure of communism, but he did adopt a policy of Détente (understanding) with the U.S. and Western Europe.
SALT Talks • SALT (Strategic Arms Limitation Talks) limited kinds of weapons and limited the development of anti missile systems.
1979 • Two major events of the 20th century in one year! • 1. The Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan provoking a long war with serious long-term implications for several nations. • 2. The Iranian Revolution and hostage crisis.
Iranian Revolution • In 1979 the Ayatollah Khomeini came to power in Iran. Islamic revolutionaries seized the U.S. embassy in Iran taking more than 60 Americans hostage. • They demanded that the U.S. return the former leader of Iran (the shah) for the release of the hostages. • They were released after 444 days.
Ronald Reagan • In 1980 a popular anti-communist was elected President of the U.S. • He once called the USSR the “Evil Empire”, told Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall and planned to build a missile defense system he called “Star Wars”. • Reagan is seen by many as the man who won the Cold War.
Mikhail Gorbachev • Gorbachev became Secretary General of the Communist Party in 1985. The Soviet Economy was in crisis and Gorbachev proposed sweeping economic reforms. • He signed a treaty eliminating most intermediate nuclear weapons. • He began a policy noninterference in Eastern Europe. (Gorbachev Doctrine)
Fall of the Berlin Wall • November 9th 1989 East Germany relaxed travel restrictions to the West and thousands of people gathered looking for a chance at freedom. • By October of 1990, Germany reunited under a democratic government!
Glasnost • Glasnost was Gorbachev’s policy of openness with the hopes of ending the secrecy of Soviet life and government. • People were allowed to publicly be critical and openly have opposing viewpoints. Banned music, books, and art would now be allowed.
Perestroika • Perestroika (restructuring) of the economy. Unlike political freedom economies take years to change. • In August 1991 Gorbachev was ousted in a coup d ‘etat. Boris Yeltsin defied the takeover, kept the loyalty of the army and became a national hero. The people lost their fear of the Communist Party because it looked like a failure at even forced takeovers……
Boris Yeltsin • Yeltsin declared Russia to be an independent state, not governed by the communists of the Soviet Union provoking a swift breakup of the USSR and the creation of the Commonwealth of Independent States. • In 2000 Vladimir Putin won election as President of Russia. http://www.history.com/topics/cold-war/fall-of-soviet-union
Sources • World History -McDougal Littell 2003 • Let’s Review: Global History and Geography 5th Edition