Role of Gorbachev- end of the Cold War

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  • Role of Gorbachev
    • New Thinking
      • needed to end the Cold war due to poor economy and living standards
      • needed to end tensions before he could embark on the perestroika needed at home
        • Link between foreign and domestic policy
      • refused to accept the Cold war was 'normal conditions of international relations'
    • Policies
      • GLASNOST
        • was a policy that called for increased openness and transparency in government  and activities in the Soviet Union.
        • gave the EE communist satellite states the freedom to choose their own political system
      • PERESTROIKA
        • was a political movement for reformation within the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
      • Ending the Brezhnev Doctrine
        • Chernenko's funeral 1985- told EE leaders his intentions to give them autonomy
        • Dec 1988 speech rejected Marxism-Leninism and formally abandoned BD
          • gave the EE communist satellite states the freedom to choose their own political system
    • Eastern Europe Bloc and People Power
      • allowed satellite states to hold free elections without intervention
      • April 1989- each country 'should find its own path to socialism'
      • Encouraged Krenz to open Berlin Wall
        • Turning point- countries such as Czechoslovakia and Romania encouraged to reform by Gorbachev's liberal stance
      • Irony being that he was a reformer and not a revolutionary
        • expected EE to choose socialism. Misjudged the popular desire for Capitalism
    • Transformed relations with USA
      • Common security
        • spoke at 'Forum for a Nuclear-Free World and the Survival of Humankind' international conference
          • different language from previous leaders
            • 'not rivalry and competition'
            • 'interdependence'
        • Built trust with Reagan and Thatcher
          • 'A man I can do business with' -Thatcher
        • Pugwash movement and Palme commission
      • Nuclear Arms control and the end of Zero Sum thinking
        • 1986 Reykjavik
          • happy to make concessions on INF deal (1987)
            • Oka rockets (outside of 500-5000km range)
        • made far more concessions than Reagan and therefore more of a key figure
          • similar to Nixon at SALT, Reagan tried to maintain advantage
            • refusal to give up SDI as part of arms treaty
        • agreed to START agreement which reduced nuclear arsenals to 30%
    • abandoned Third World expansion
      • withdrew forces from Afghanistan (1989)
      • reduced Soviet troops in EE by 500,000
      • Ended aid to Ethiopia, Vietnam, Cambodia

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