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The collapse of the

Soviet Union
Alyssa Barr

Russian Civil War

october 1917-1922
The civil war occurred because after November 1917,
many groups had formed that opposed Lenins Bolsheviks.
it was an event to tear Russia apart for the 3 years between 1918-1921

Creation of the Politburo(1917)

The Politburo was the executive committee and highest body for the Central Committee of
the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. The Politburo was set up in 1917 by Vladimir Lenin
, the leader of the Bolsheviks. At the end of the 1970s it consisted of fourteen full, and eight
candidate members.

Stalins Five year plan

Stalin maintained export levels, shipping food out of the country even as rural residents
died by the hundreds of thousands. Any protest of his policies resulted in immediate death.
the Soviet Union was unprepared for the extreme violence and oppression that Stalin
unleashed in 1928.This plan focused on rapid industrialization and initiated the
collectivization of agriculture. For the Second Five Year Plan, Stalin expanded the goals of
his previous plan and placed an emphasis on heavy industry. This plan aimed to advance the
Soviet Unions communication systems, especially railways, which improved in both speed
and reliability.

World War 2(1939)

began in September 1939 when Britain and France declared war on Germany following
Germany's invasion of Poland. The german-Soviet Boundry Friendship treaty is signed
between them, as a result the western zone was under the german control and the eastern
zone under the soviet union.

Hydrogen bomb(1949)
The latter provided the first Soviet H-bomb, successfully tested on 12 August 1953. This
invention originally was considered to be related to weaponry, but in 1956 Kurchatov
disclosed this and some other formerly secret Soviet ideas during a visit to the British
nuclear center in Harwell. The research on controlled fusion subsequently became a
declassified and open field, and an arena for international competition for building a
practically unlimited peaceful source of energy.

Warsaw Pact(1955)
was a collective defense treaty among 8 communist states of central and easter europe in
existance during the cold war. The warsaw pact was the Soviet Unions response to West
Germany joining NATO and came into being in may 1955.


The successful launch of the unmanned satellite Sputnik I by the Soviet

Union in October 1957 shocks and frightens many Americans. As the tiny
satellite orbited the earth, Americans reacted with dismay that the Soviets
could have gotten so far ahead of the supposedly technologically superior
United States.

Laika and Sputnik(1957)

Aboard the Soviet's Sputnik 2, Laika, a dog, became the very first living creature to enter
orbit. However, since the Soviets did not create a re-entry plan, Laika died in space. Laika's
death sparked debates about animal rights around the world.

Creation of the Berlin Wall

The official purpose of this Berlin Wall was to keep Western fascists from entering East
Germany and undermining the socialist state, but it primarily served the objective of
stemming mass defections from East to West. a Soviet blockade of West Berlin aimed to
starve the western Allies out of the city.

Invasion of Czechoslovakia(1968)
the Soviet Union led Warsaw pact troops in an invasion of Czechoslovakia to crack down on
reformist trends in PragueAlthough the Soviet Unions action successfully halted the pace of
reform in Czechoslovakia, it had unintended consequences for the unity of the communist

Salt 1
The Soviet government offered to hold negotiations on the issues of nuclear arms control.
Nixon immediately accepted and the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks, commonly known as
SALT, were arranged. They took place in two phases: SALT I ran from 1969 to 1972

Salt 2
In late 1972, negotiations began for SALT II and continued for seven years. Finally on June
18, 1979, in Vienna, Brezhnev and President Jimmy Carter signed the SALT II treaty.

Voting Reforms By Gorbachev

When Brezhnev died in 1982, most elite groups understood that the Soviet economy was in
trouble. Due to senility, Brezhnev had not been in effective control of the country during his
last few years, and Kosygin had died in 1980. The Politburo was dominated by old men, and
they were overwhelmingly Russian.

Soviet- Afghan War

the Soviet Union pulled its last troops out of Afghanistan, ending more than nine years of
direct involvement and occupation. The USSR entered neighboring Afghanistan in 1979,
attempting to shore up the newly-established pro-Soviet regime in Kabul.

was a political movement for reformation within the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
during the 1980s, widely associated with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and his glasnost
policy reform.

was a policy that called for increased openness and transparency in government
institutions and activities in the Soviet Union.When Mikhail S. Gorbachev stepped onto the
world stage in March 1985 as the new leader of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics
(USSR), it was immediately clear that he was different from his predecessors.

Chernobyl Disaster
catastrophic nuclear accident that occurred on 26 April 1986 at the Chernobyl Nuclear
Power Planttin Ukraine (then officially the Ukrainian SSR, which was under the direct
jurisdiction of the central authorities of the Soviet Union. An explosion and fire released
large quantities of radioactive particles into the atmosphere, which spread over much of the
western USSR and Europe.

Lithuania and Latvia protesters

On 23 August 1939 foreign ministers of the USSR and Germany - Vyacheslav Molotov and
Joachim von Ribbentrop, as ordered by their superiors Stalin and Hitler, signed a treaty
which affected the fate of Europe and the entire world. This pact, and the secret clauses it
contained, divided the spheres of influence of the USSR and Germany and led to World War
II, and to the occupation of the three Baltic States - Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

Free Elections in Poland

Czechoslovakia, Hungry
The socialist economies in Eastern Europe had been suffering along with that of the Soviet
Union, with Gorbachev looking toward glasnost (openness) as a remedy for their economic

Fall of the Berlin Wall

as the Cold War began to thaw across Eastern Europe, the spokesman for East Berlins
Communist Party announced a change in his citys relations with the West.More than 2
million people from East Berlin visited West Berlin that weekend to participate in a
celebration that was, one journalist wrote, the greatest street party in the history of the
world. People used hammers and picks to knock away chunks of the wallthey became
known as mauerspechte, or wall woodpeckers

Gorbachev becomes leader

Mikhail Gorbachev was the last General Secretary of the Soviet Union. He brought about
massive economic, social, and political changes and helped bring an end to both the Soviet
Union and the Cold War

Gorbachev steps down

Mikhail Gorbachev announces that he is resigning as president of the Soviet Union.
Gorbachev remained adamant that he never had any regrets about the policies he
pursued. Gorbachev had lost much of his power and prestige in the Soviet Union even before
the establishment of the CIS. The economy was unstable. No one seemed pleased by
Gorbachev-some opponents demanded even more political freedom while hard-liners in his
government opposed any movement toward reform.

Boris Yeltsin becomes president

Russian politician, who became president of Russia in 1990. In 1991 he became the first
popularly elected leader in the countrys history, guiding Russia through a stormy decade of
political and economic retrenching until his resignation on the eve of 2000.Yeltsin was
demoted to a deputy minister for construction but then staged the most remarkable
comeback in Soviet history. His popularity with Soviet voters as an advocate of democracy
and economic reform had survived his fall, and he took advantage of Gorbachevs
introduction of competitive elections to the U.S.S.R.

citations page
"The Russian Civil War". HistoryLearningSite.co.uk. 2014. Web.