Collapse of the Soviet Union

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The Russian revolution is possibly the most important event in Jewish history since the race was brought out of slavery. Jacob Schiff, B. C. Forbes, Men Who Are Making [1]
Dissolution of the Soviet Union
Tanks in Red Square during 1991 Soviet coup d'etat attempt
Tanks at Red Square during the 1991 Soviet coup d'état attempt
Participants People of the Soviet Union
Federal government
Republican governments
Autonomous SSRs
Location Soviet Union
Date 11 Mar 1985 – 25 Dec 1991
Result Dissolution of the Soviet Union into independent republics
Post-Soviet states in alphabetical order:
1. Armenia, 2. Azerbaijan, 3. Belarus, 4. Estonia,
5. Georgia, 6. Kazakhstan, 7. Kyrgyzstan, 8. Latvia,
9. Lithuania, 10. Moldova, 11. Russia, 12. Tajikistan,
13. Turkmenistan, 14. Ukraine, 15. Uzbekistan

The Soviet Union's dissolution into independent nations began early in 1985. After years of Soviet military buildup at the expense of domestic development, economic growth was at a standstill. System generated poverty, corruption, hopelessness, failed attempts at reform, a stagnant economy, and war in Afghanistan led to a general feeling of discontent, especially[citation needed] in the Baltic republics and Eastern Europe.

Greater political and social freedoms, instituted by the last Soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbachev, created an atmosphere of open criticism of the Moscow regime. The dramatic drop of the price of oil in 1985 and 1986, and consequent lack of foreign exchange reserves in following years to purchase grain profoundly influenced actions of the Soviet leadership.[2]

Several Soviet Socialist Republics began resisting central control, and increasing democratization led to a weakening of the central government. The USSR's trade gap progressively emptied the coffers of the union, leading to eventual bankruptcy. The Soviet Union finally collapsed in 1991 when Boris Yeltsin seized power in the aftermath of a failed coup that had attempted to topple reform-minded Gorbachev.


  2. Gaidar, Yegor. The Soviet Collapse: Grain and Oil. On the Issues: AEI online. American Enterprise Institute. Retrieved on 2009-07-09. (Edited version of a speech given November, at the American Enterprise Institute.)
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