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The Collapse Of The Gorbachev's Reforms (Essay Sample)


Do not consult outside sources (anything from Wikipedia or another encyclopedia to scholarly works and reviews).

It might be tempting to move quickly from what you read to general thoughts or big questions. I want you to resist this move and force yourself to stay with the text. Which part of the text are you concerned with? What does the author say – exactly? One way to do this is to give a brief quotation that is central to the author's argument. What is his/her take on the issue? Once you have clarified this, you can move on to your own reflections. NOTE: This is not a research paper. Do not consult outside sources (anything from Wikipedia or another encyclopedia to scholarly works and reviews).
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Your essay should be interpretive and critical; it should not repeat the substance of the assigned text but instead should advance a coherent argument (a “thesis”) that lays out your view/interpretation. This thesis should be substantiated with evidence that is duly footnoted in the body of the essay and you need to wrap up your memo with a conclusion that pulls everything together.
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The Collapse of the Gorbachev Reforms: A Study in Lack of Policy Planning


Mikhail Gorbachev is one of the most discussed leaders of the Soviet Union. Before being chosen as the leader of the Soviet Union, Gorbachev had served the party at different levels. While he was not the one with the highest qualification to head the Politburo, his dedication to the party saw him being given the most prestigious position of Chairman. Upon assuming office, Gorbachev launched a series of political and economic reforms that he believed would make the Soviet Union an even greater force. Even though Gorbachev’s vision was to create a united Soviet Union, he lacked a clear strategy of how he would achieve the vision. Apart from this, Gorbachev faced a revolt from party insiders that believed his plans would lead to the death of communism. This paper concludes that even though Gorbachev had good plans for the Soviet Union, the reforms were a failure because he lacked a clear strategy on how to create the new Soviet Union and he also failed to consult the party insiders who in turn sabotaged his reforms.

Unlike most of his predecessors who were products of the Stalin movement, Gorbachev was an outsider who believed that the Soviet Union was supposed to change how it approached the issues surrounding it. According to Anya Bremzen, Gorbachev was different from his predecessors who were technocrats and engineers (218). He had studied law and his approach to Soviet Union problems was from a humanitarian and social perspective. During his studies, he had been exposed to western ideas and had a clear vision of the disparities between the Soviet Union and the rest of the world. The motivation to introduce sweeping changes was motivated by the need to make the Soviet Union a thriving economy like Japan, the United States, and Western Europe. To move the region forward, Gorbachev focused on addressing inefficiency, backwardness, and poor morale (Thompson 311).

According to Gorbachev, the Soviet Union was lacking adequate technology that would place the region on the global map. The Soviet Union was also characterized by corruption that had made the region to become inferior in the area of political power and international affairs. To achieve his objective, Gorbachev wanted to a “productive, efficient, technologically advanced economy, a rational and relatively humane system, and a peaceful, mutually beneficial relationship with the rest of the world” (Thompson 311). Once these objectives were attained, Soviet society would be a clear example of the advantages that socialism presented to society.

Ideally, Gorbachev had a noble idea of ensuring that the Soviet Union did not remain isolated from the rest of the world. To achieve his objective, he had to introduce sweeping reforms that would change the manner in which the Soviet Union dealt with the outside world. His change policies saw the introduction of Western goods and technology into the USSR. For many years, the Soviet Union had been run as a communist state and democracy was unheard of. Under the communist state, the Soviet President and his governing

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