[309] In December 1989, Gorbachev and Bush met at the Malta Summit. [369] Polls indicated that 90% of Soviet citizens disapproved of the award, which was widely seen as a Western and anti-Soviet accolade. He withdrew from the Soviet–Afghan War and embarked on summits with United States President Ronald Reagan to limit nuclear weapons and end the Cold War. [100], Gorbachev's main task as regional leader was to raise agricultural production levels, something hampered by severe droughts in 1975 and 1976. The eighth and last leader of the Soviet Union, he was the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1985 until 1991. [516] In this, he brought an end to state socialism in the Soviet Union and paved the way for a transition to liberal democracy. The last leader of the Soviet Union who oversaw the end of the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991. [296] Aware that Reagan would not budge on SDI, Gorbachev focused on reducing "Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces", to which Reagan was receptive. [527] By 1955 his hair was thinning,[528] and by the late 1960s he was bald. [263] Over 900 Soviet newspapers reprinted it and anti-reformists rallied around it; many reformers panicked, fearing a backlash against perestroika. Gorbachev was born on 2 March 1931 in Stavropol, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union, into a mixed Russian-Ukrainian family of migrants from Voronezh and Chernigov Governorates. "[574] Taubman regarded Gorbachev as being "exceptional... as a Russian ruler and a world statesman", highlighting that he avoided the "traditional, authoritarian, anti-Western norm" of both predecessors like Brezhnev and successors like Putin. Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev (sometimes spelled Gorbachov) (born 2 March 1931) is a former Soviet politician. [20] After Germany was defeated, Gorbachev's parents had their second son, Aleksandr, in 1947; he and Mikhail would be their only children. [552] Many, particularly in Western countries, see him as the greatest statesman of the second half of the twentieth century. [172] Doing so, Gorbachev secured dominance in the Politburo within a year, faster than either Stalin, Khrushchev, or Brezhnev had achieved. [113] He was surprised by how openly West Europeans offered their opinions and criticized their political leaders, something absent from the Soviet Union, where most people did not feel safe speaking so openly. [40] One of his first Komsomol assignments in Moscow was to monitor the election polling in Krasnopresnenskaya district to ensure the government's desire for near total turnout; Gorbachev found that most of those who voted did so "out of fear". He was the eighth and last leader of the Soviet Union, having served as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1985 until 1991 when the party was dissolved. [512] Doder and Branson thought that throughout most of his political career prior to becoming General Secretary, "his publicly expressed views almost certainly reflected a politician's understanding of what should be said, rather than his personal philosophy. [553] A hard worker or workaholic,[554] as General Secretary, he would rise at 7 or 8 in the morning and not go to bed until 1 or 2. But, comrades, you should not think about lifesavers but about the ship, and the ship is socialism. Age: 89. [557] Medvedev also considered Gorbachev "a charismatic leader", something Brezhnev, Andropov, and Chernenko had not been. [595] Gorbachev, together with Bill Clinton and Sophia Loren, were awarded the 2004 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for Children for their recording of Sergei Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf for Pentatone. [432][433] The following day, 26 December, the Council of the Republics, the upper house of the Supreme Soviet, formally voted the Soviet Union out of existence. Most Popular #18188. [15], The country was then experiencing the famine of 1932–33, in which two of Gorbachev's paternal uncles and an aunt died. [175] He was concerned by the country's low productivity, poor work ethic, and inferior quality goods;[176] like several economists, he feared this would lead to the country becoming a second-rate power. [171] Prominent dissidents like Andrei Sakharov were freed from internal exile or prison. [314] In 1987, Crimean Tatars protested in Moscow to demand resettlement in Crimea, the area from which they had been deported on Stalin's orders in 1944. [158] Gorbachev's first public appearance as leader was at Chernenko's Red Square funeral, held on 14 March. [492][493] In July 2016, Gorbachev criticized NATO for deploying more troops to Eastern Europe amid escalating tensions between the military alliance and Russia. [479], In 2009 Gorbachev released Songs for Raisa, an album of Russian romantic ballads, sung by him and accompanied by musician Andrei Makarevich, to raise money for a charity devoted to his late wife. [80], In March 1961, Gorbachev became First Secretary of the regional Komsomol,[81] in which position he went out of his way to appoint women as city and district leaders. [265] Yakovlev and Gorbachev's rebuttal claimed that those who "look everywhere for internal enemies" were "not patriots" and presented Stalin's "guilt for massive repressions and lawlessness" as "enormous and unforgiveable". [391] His support among the intelligentsia was declining,[392] and by the end of 1990 his approval ratings had plummeted. Facebook: Mikhail Gorbachev | Facebook. [426] On 20 December, the leaders of 11 of the 12 remaining republics–all except Georgia–met in Alma-Ata and signed the Alma-Ata Protocol, agreeing to dismantle the Soviet Union and formally establish the CIS. [89], Cleared for travel to Eastern Bloc countries, in 1966 he was part of a delegation visiting East Germany, and in 1969 and 1974 visited Bulgaria. [464] Facebook: Mikhail Gorbachev. [521] Taubman noted that by 1989 or 1990, Gorbachev had transformed into a social democrat. Gromyko's report opposed calls for assisting Tatar resettlement in Crimea. [234] An agreement was then reached to meet with Reagan in Reykjavík, Iceland in October 1986. [144] Gorbachev continued to cultivate allies both in the Kremlin and beyond,[145] and also gave the main speech at a conference on Soviet ideology, where he angered party hardliners by implying that the country required reform. Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev (born 2 Mairch 1931) wis a Soviet leader. [356] His compromise that Germany might retain both NATO and Warsaw Pact memberships did not attract support. [422] Gorbachev only learned of this development when Shushkevich phoned him; Gorbachev was furious. He worked with combine harvesters on huge farms as a teen. By the final weeks of 1991, Yeltsin began to take over the remnants of the Soviet government including the Kremlin itself. [235] Both leaders agreed with the shared goal of abolishing nuclear weapons, but Reagan refused to terminate the SDI program and no deal was reached. [324] In August 1989, protesters formed the Baltic Way, a human chain across the three republics to symbolize their wish for independence. Proceeds from the event went to the Raisa Gorbachev Foundation. [288] The West German Chancellor, Helmut Kohl, had initially offended Gorbachev by comparing him to Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels, although later informally apologized and in October 1988 visited Moscow. [484], Gorbachev was in increasingly poor health; in 2011 he had spinal operation and in 2014 oral surgery. Never in his worst nightmare could he have imagined that perestroika would lead to the destruction of the Soviet Union". "[497] Mlynář noted, however, that unlike most other Soviet students, Gorbachev did not view Marxism simply as "a collection of axioms to be committed to memory. [307] He then met with Reagan and President-elect George H. W. Bush; he rushed home, skipping a planned visit to Cuba, to deal with the Armenian earthquake. [68] Later biographer William Taubman suggested that Gorbachev "embodied" the "reformist spirit" of the Khrushchev era. It reflected a compromise: ministers would retain the ability to set output targets but these would not be considered binding. [253] In 1989, Soviet responsibility for the 1940 Katyn massacre was finally revealed. [218] Gorbachev later described the incident as one which made him appreciate the scale of incompetence and cover-ups in the Soviet Union. [223], Gorbachev had inherited a renewed period of high tension in the Cold War. He recalled in a memoir that "In that terrible year [in 1933] nearly half the population of my native village, Privolnoye, starved to death, including two sisters and one brother of my father." In 1979 he became, at the age of forty-nine, the youngest member of the Politburo (Political Bureau of the Central Agency). [62] In January 1957, Raisa gave birth to a daughter, Irina,[63] and in 1958 they moved into two rooms in a communal apartment. [157] Although not a well-known figure to the Soviet public, there was widespread relief that the new leader was not elderly and ailing. His father, named Sergei Gorbachev, was a tractor driver. In this context, Gorbachev argued that the Communist Party had to adapt and engage in creative thinking much as Lenin had creatively interpreted and adapted the writings of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels to the situation of early 20th century Russia. [506] However, as Gooding noted, the changes that Gorbachev proposed were "expressed wholly within the terms of Marxist-Leninist ideology". He secured 1,329 in favor to 495 against; 313 votes were invalid or absent. In December 1986, riots broke out in several Kazakh cities after a Russian was appointed head of the region. [8] His parents were poor,[9] and lived as peasants. [117] In 1977, the Supreme Soviet appointed Gorbachev to chair the Standing Commission on Youth Affairs due to his experience with mobilizing young people in Komsomol. [335] In most countries, like Poland and Hungary, this was achieved peacefully, but in Romania the revolution turned violent and led to Ceaușescu's overthrow and execution. World Leader #32. They also provisionally accepted Gorbachev's resignation as president of what remained of the Soviet Union. It is more the fault of the raw material he worked with than of his own real shortcomings and mistakes that Russian democracy will take much longer to build than he thought. [577] McCauley noted that in facilitating the merger of East and West Germany, Gorbachev was "a co-father of German unification", assuring him long-term popularity among the German people. [289] In June 1989 Gorbachev then visited Kohl in West Germany. Werner Herzog, left, and Mikhail Gorbachev, in front of window. [389] By this point, Gorbachev was isolated from many of his former close allies and aides. [534] He was protective of his private life and avoided inviting people to his home. [440] In 1992, he toured the U.S. in a Forbes private jet to raise money for his foundation. Age 89 years old. Otherwise he could not have survived politically. It was there that Gorbachev proposed to the Duma a law that would reduce many of the presidential powers established by Yeltsin's 1993 constitution. [397] Fearing more civil disturbances, that month Gorbachev banned demonstrations and ordered troops to patrol Soviet cities alongside the police. Gorbachev cherished his wife,[535] who in turn was protective of him. [115] He formed close connections with various Western leaders, including U.S. President Ronald Reagan. [7] His relationship with his father, Sergey Andreyevich Gorbachev, was close; his mother, Maria Panteleyevna Gorbacheva (née Gopkalo), was colder and punitive. Gorbachev attended its first congress in June, but soon found it dominated by hardliners who opposed his reformist stance. Birthday March Mar 2, 1931 . Some of you look at the market as a lifesaver for your economies. [510] With perestroika, Gorbachev had wanted to improve the existing Marxist-Leninist system but ultimately ended up destroying it. [439] While he still believed that Russia was undergoing a process of democratization, he concluded that it would take decades rather than years, as he had previously thought. [306] Arriving there, Gorbachev gave a speech to the United Nations Assembly where he announced a unilateral reduction in the Soviet armed forces by 500,000; he also announced that 50,000 troops would be withdrawn from Central and Eastern Europe. This granted Gorbachev significant power over the Stavropol region. [13] Gorbachev's maternal grandfather joined the Communist Party and helped form the village's first kolkhoz (collective farm) in 1929, becoming its chair. Fri 8 Nov 2019 08.00 EST. [124], In 1978, Gorbachev was appointed to the Central Committee's Secretariat for Agriculture, replacing his old friend Kulakov, who had died of a heart attack. [221] On becoming leader, Gorbachev saw withdrawal from the war as a key priority. [94], In April 1970, Yefremov was promoted to a higher position in Moscow and Gorbachev succeeded him as the First Secretary of the Stavropol kraikom. [593] In 2002, Gorbachev received the Freedom of the City of Dublin from Dublin City Council. In 2014, he defended the Crimean status referendum that led to Russia's annexation of Crimea. [449] Many of his critics attacked him for allowing the Marxist-Leninist governments across Eastern Europe to fall,[584] and for allowing a reunited Germany to join NATO, something they deem to be contrary to Russia's national interest. [269], These proposals reflected Gorbachev's desire for more democracy; however, in his view there was a major impediment in that the Soviet people had developed a "slave psychology" after centuries of Tsarist autocracy and Marxist-Leninist authoritarianism. [156] He thus became the eighth leader of the Soviet Union. [125] Gorbachev concentrated his attentions on agriculture: the harvests of 1979, 1980, and 1981 were all poor, due largely to weather conditions,[126] and the country had to import increasing quantities of grain. This further alienated the liberalizers but was not enough to win-over hardliners. [17] After his December 1938 release, Gorbachev's maternal grandfather discussed having been tortured by the secret police, an account that influenced the young boy. Stating that it would not contest the forthcoming elections, Gorbachev declared: "We are fighting for power, but only for power over people's minds". A year later as a full member of this Institution. Russia can succeed only through democracy. [34] He and other rural students felt at odds with their Muscovite counterparts but he soon came to fit in. Fish is the astrological symbol and The Twelfth House is the ruling house of Pisces. We can do business together". [597], 1985–1991 General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, "Gorbachev" redirects here. [461] In September she fell into a coma and died. [559] McCauley thought Gorbachev displayed "great tactical skill" in maneuvering successfully between hardline Marxist-Leninists and liberalisers for most of his time as leader, although added that he was "much more skilled at tactical, short-term policy than strategic, long-term thinking", in part because he was "given to making policy on the hoof". Mikhail Gorbachev, the soviet union’s first president, is credited for ending the cold war, and trying to implement democratic beliefs in a communist nation . He never expected to win outright but thought a centrist bloc could be formed around either himself or one of the other candidates with similar views, such as Grigory Yavlinsky, Svyatoslav Fyodorov, or Alexander Lebed. [523] However, in 2006, he expressed his continued belief in Lenin's ideas: "I trusted him then and I still do". [146], In April 1984, he was appointed chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Soviet legislature, a largely honorific position. [259], In August 1987, Gorbachev holidayed in Nizhniaia Oreanda, Ukraine, there writing Perestroika: New Thinking for Our Country and Our World at the suggestion of U.S. Although Gorbachev later stated that he had had private concerns about the invasion, he publicly supported it. He was also the country's head of state from 1988 until 1991, serving as the chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet from 1988 to 1989, chairman of the Supreme Soviet from 1989 to 1990, and president of the Soviet Union from 1990 to 1991. [4] At the time, Privolnoye was divided almost evenly between ethnic Russians and ethnic Ukrainians. [399] A referendum on the issue brought 76.4% in favor of continued federation but the six rebellious republics had not taken part. [10] Few in the government imagined that he would be as radical a reformer as he proved. Domestically, his policy of glasnost ("openness") allowed for enhanced freedom of speech and press, while his perestroika ("restructuring") sought to decentralize economic decision making to improve efficiency. [446], Gorbachev had promised to refrain from criticizing Yeltsin while the latter pursued democratic reforms, but soon the two men were publicly criticizing each other again. [46] She was engaged to another man but after that engagement fell apart, she began a relationship with Gorbachev;[47] together they went to bookstores, museums, and art exhibits. [239] He made clear his desire for Soviet membership of the Asian Development Bank and for greater ties to Pacific countries, especially China and Japan. Best known for his role as the last and most recent leader of the Soviet Union before its dissolution in 1991. The reason of Gorbachev's presence is the Committee wants someone from the First Chief Directorate to oversee Colonel Kravchenko's investigation about the mole. [21] Gorbachev did not want to return but when he did he excelled academically. [357] In May 1990, he visited the U.S. for talks with President Bush;[358] there, he agreed that an independent Germany would have the right to choose its international alliances. He added: "all agreements aimed at nuclear disarmament and the limitation of nuclear weapons must be preserved for the sake of life on Earth. [84] In January 1963, Gorbachev was promoted to personnel chief for the regional party's agricultural committee,[85] and in September 1966 became First Secretary of the Stavropol City Party Organization ("Gorkom"). [303] They reached an agreement on notifying each other before conducting the ballistic missile test and made agreements on transport, fishing, and radio navigation. He was appointed the First Party Secretary of the Stavropol Regional Committee in 1970, in which position he oversaw construction of the Great Stavropol Canal. [364], In August 1990, Saddam Hussein's Iraqi government invaded Kuwait; Gorbachev endorsed President Bush's condemnation of it. [56] He had wanted to remain in Moscow, where Raisa was enrolled on a PhD program, but instead gained employment in Stavropol; Raisa abandoned her studies to join him there. [229] As well as discussing the Cold War proxy conflicts in Afghanistan and Nicaragua and human rights issues, the pair discussed the U.S.' Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI), to which Gorbachev was strongly opposed. [529] Throughout the 1960s he struggled against obesity and dieted to control the problem;[87] Doder and Branson characterized him as "stocky but not fat". [114] He later related that for him and his wife, these visits "shook our a priori belief in the superiority of socialist over bourgeois democracy". [354] Amid a growth in Russian nationalist sentiment, Gorbachev had reluctantly allowed the formation of a Communist Party of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic as a branch of the larger Soviet Communist Party. [438] On a visit to Japan, he was well received and given multiple honorary degrees. Local troops tried to quell the unrest but were attacked by mobs. And what are his/her social media accounts? [409] However, the coup's leaders realized that they lacked sufficient support and ended their efforts. 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