Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that it is true that the last Soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbachev, changed the course of history. He also realized that there was a need for reform. But he was mistaken in believing in ‘eternal love’ with the West.
According to Putin, he introduced reforms, but was unable to prevent the collapse of the Soviet Union, and many Russians blamed him for years of unrest.
“He deeply understood that reforms were necessary,” Putin said. So he tried to provide his own solution to the urgent problem. But he misunderstood the relationship with the West’.
The last meeting between Putin and Gorbachev took place in 2006. From then on, Putin’s relationship with Gorbachev was not going well. However, Putin expressed deep grief over Gorbachev’s death on Tuesday. Gorbachev, 91, died Tuesday in a Moscow hospital.
Gorbachev also expressed displeasure with Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine, although he supported Putin during the 2014 annexation of Crimea.
Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said Gorbachev ‘sincerely believed that the Cold War would end and that a new Soviet Union would begin its journey through it. And the Soviet Union’s ‘eternal love affair’ with the West as well as the rest of the world would begin. But his idea proved wrong.’
The death of Mikhail Gorbachev, the last leader of the Soviet Union, in the 1990s brought renewed discussion about the end of the Cold War, Russia’s internal turmoil at the time.
Western political leaders are mourning the death of Mikhail Gorbachev in droves and praising his role.
To the West he was the ‘liberator of billions of people imprisoned in Soviet prisons’, while to many in Russia, young and old, he was the villain, ‘who ground Russia’s global influence to the ground’.
At the height of the Cold War, this man, who was in charge of one of the world’s most powerful alliances, embarked on a mission to radically change the Soviet socialist regime through glasnost and perestrika. His mission, political openness, and a series of shocks of free-market economic liberalization changed the map of Eastern Europe in just a few years. History also changes. He ended the Cold War bloodlessly but failed to prevent the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Gorbachev’s two liberalization programs, perestroika and glasnost, are said by his critics to hasten the decline of socialism in Russia.
When the Soviet Union, created by the legendary communist leader Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, collapsed in 1991, 15 separate nation-states emerged, the largest of which is today’s Russia.
Many Russians are said to still not be able to forgive Gorbachev for turning Russia from a superpower to a troubled country.