FALL OF U.S.S.R. | By Dr. Mahipal Singh Rathore | Free PDF Download

What was USSR?

The ‘Union of Soviet Socialist Republics’ Russian revolution of 1917 Formally established in 1922

• 15 Sub national soviets

• Centralized economy and planning

• One party rule


Billions spent to compete with USA Firsts-

• Satellite

• Animal in space

• Cosmonaut

• Woman in space ARMS RACE

• Nuclear arsenal largest in world

• Billions spent on huge army

• Mutually Assured Destruction


• To increase communist influence, support to Cuba, North Korea, Vietnam, Laos, China and many other communist nations/parties

• Material and technology spent on these nations cost a lot of money. AFGHAN WAR • 1979-1989

• 15000 soldiers killed

• 50000+ wounded

• Draining vital resources


• Tight state control over economy and absence of free market economy was draining the USSR’s economic strength.


  • The USSR had become a totalitarian state under Stalin
  • Non Russian ethnic people did not assimilate as had hoped for.


  • General secretary of the Communist party of soviet union in 1985
  • To make socialism more efficient and bring economy out of stagnation he launched two policies- Glasnost and perestroika GLASNOST
  • Openness
  • ’’Freedom of speech’’
  • Easing of media censorship.
  • Earlier records declassified PERESTROIKA
  • Soviet political and economic structure
  • Elections, foreign investment, privately owned businesses EASTERN EUROPE Relaxed policies lead to demands of sovereignty and independence in Eastern and central Europe and also in the 15 sub national soviets. 1989 – Year of Revolutions
  • From summer of 1989 till 1991 revolutions in Poland Hungary East Germany Czechoslovakia Bulgaria Romania Yugoslavia
  • Nationalist movements to gain independence from USSR influence and communist puppet governments.
  • Gorbachev did not send army to suppress any of the protests or movements.
  • Berlin wall fell in November of 1989
  • December 1989 – Bush Sr. announces end of cold war


  • Starting from 1987 these soviets declared sovereignty or independence.
  • Estonia
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania Were the first ones
  • Throughout 1990 and 1991 one by one all the 15 sub national soviets became independent.


  •  On 19 Aug 1991, a group of senior party leaders attempted a coup d’état by placing Gorbachev under House arrest and demanding the restoration of USSR
  • Failed as the people in cities rose against it and the majority of Red Army refused to support the coup leaders.

    Boris Yelstin 

  • Leader of Moscow unit of Communist party Advocated for independent Russia Leader of public in the Coup Became the first elected President of Russia in July 1991.


After the Failed Coup 

  • Break up process accelerated .
  • 8 December 1991- the presidents of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus signed the Belavezha Accords, which dissolved the USSR and established the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) in its place.
  • Alma ata Declaration on 21 December
  • Gorbachev resigns as President of USSR on 25 Dec.
  • Supreme soviet dissolves the Union on 26 Dec AFTERMATH
  • Severe economic contraction and catastrophic fall in living standards in post-Soviet states
  • Increase in poverty, crime, corruption, unemployment, disease and income inequality,
  • Decrease in life expectancy, adult literacy, and income



  • 8 DEC- Belavezha accords
  • 21 DEC- Alma ata protocol
  • Most (9+2) of the former soviet republics joined to form the CIS on 21 December 1991 on the signing of Alma Ata Protocol
  • Baltic states, Georgia are not part of it.





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