Реферат: The Fall Of Communism In Russia Essay

The Fall Of Communism In Russia Essay, Research Paper

Communism in the USSR was doomed from the

onset. Communism was condemned due to lack of support

from other nations, condemned due to corruption within its

leadership, condemned due to the moral weakness of

humanity, making what is perfect on paper, ineffective in

the real world. The end of this system was very violent. It

left one of the two most powerful nations in the world

fearful of what was to come. Communism can either be

called a concept or system of society. In a society that

follows the communist beliefs groups own the major

resources and means of production, rather than a certain

individual. In theory, Communism is to provide equal work,

and benefits to all in a specific society. Communism is

derived from many ancient resources, including Plato?s

Republic and early Christian communities. In 1917, Karl

Marx and Friedrich Engels in their Communist Manifesto

finalized the philosophy of Communism. («Communism,»

Microsoft(R) Encarta(R) 98 Encyclopedia) In the

beginning, people in Russia thought of Communism as a

utopian ideal. (Funk & Wagnall?s) The elimination of social

classes, and guaranteed employment sounded outstanding

to the people who lived in Russia. Communism did call for

a role of socialist dictatorship to help control any form of

protest. Through persuasive tactics this new government

seized power and in 1917 Vladimir Ilich Lenin came to

power. Under his control the Soviet Union underwent

many radical changes that led to the development of NEP

(New Economic Policy). This policy called for some

private ownership of the means of production and business.

Still the government controlled the majority of production.

Throughout Lenin?s government there were many

achievements. It ended a long civil war against the remnants

of the old Czarist military system and established institutions

in government. He later died in 1924, and was quickly

succeeded. In 1924 Joseph Stalin became head of the

Soviet Communist Party. He soon became the most

powerful man in Russia. He ran the Soviet Union with brut

power, removing all that opposed him and the Communist

beliefs. This time period was known as the ?Great Purge.?

Stalin systemically executed anyone who stood in his path.

Stalin had millions of people arrested and killed. The

government once again changed in its economic status. All

private ownership was ended. Industrialization

commenced, and the strength of the Soviet?s Military

significantly increased. The only downfall was agriculture

production slowly diminished. This eventually led to food

shortages. During this time period the Second World War

broke out and drained most of what was left of the already

impoverished state. However after the war, national unity

was improved and the Soviet Union once again became a

super power of the world. (" Stalin and World War II,"

Microsoft(R) Encarta(R) 99 Encyclopedia) Stalin?s death

in 1953 marked the end of the supreme power for the head

of the Soviet party. Stalin?s successor, Nikita Khrushev,

marked the beginning of the fall of Communism in the

Soviet Union. Khrushev became the first Secretary of the

Communists party («Nikita Khrushev,» Microsoft(R)

Encarta(R) 98 Encyclopedia). He believed Stalin?s actions

were unnecessary and harmful to the process of moving the

Socialist government to its goal of complete Communism.

During his period of control the public was given some say

in the government. A new policy of economy was brought

in known as ?New Course.? It helped to balance the

agriculture and increase food production so there were less

food shortages. Although Nikita Khrushev started a

process of reform he was dismissed due to massive

shortage of dairy products, and the fact that he failed to

meet any of his initial objectives. After the dismissal of

Khrushev, Leonid Brezhnev became the Soviet Communist

Party Secretary General in October of 1964. Under his

control central power was brought back into effect. Stalin?s

disciplinary policies were restored. One of the causes of

Brezhnev?s loss of power was in the way he controlled the

land of Russia. During this time there was an inefficient use

of land, which resulted in an economic slacking once again.

The 1980?s saw a dramatic drop in the standards of the

Soviet citizens. This led to strikes against the government,

which greatly threatened the stability of the Soviet Union.

The people were angered at the fact that the Communist

Party had not lived up to what it had promised which was

in return for their obedience. (B, Ulam, ?Looking at the

Past: The Unraveling of the Soviet Union? pg.112) March

1985 marked a turning point in the Communist Rule of

Russia. Mikhail Gorbachev was elevated to the position of

General Secretary. He was fully aware of what he had to

do to keep Communism alive in Russia. He began a

program called ?Perestroika? which was intended to help

rebuild the government and military, but the main purpose

of this program was to improve the Soviet standard of

living. In the end ?Perestroika? turned out to be a complete

failure. In 1991, the economy deteriorated before the eyes

of Gorbachev, and he could do nothing to stop it. Soon

following, the USSR voted itself out of existence in

December 1991, and Gorbachev resigned as president of

the former Soviet Union. Eventually Communism

completely destroyed the Soviet Empire. The parasite of

Communism finally drained the last bit of strength from the

Russian nation in the late 1980’s and 1990’s, resulting in a

sensational break-up of Soviet control. The break up of the

Communist regime in the Soviet Union was more than a

political event. The powerful bond between the economy

and politics of Russia created an uncanny situation for the

successor states of the Soviet Union. The people of Russia

were so accustom to the way of life under Communism;

they were left with little democratic tradition. Russia was

faced with one of the toughest tasks, economic

democratization. But freedom did not take hold in Russia

after the break-up. Instead of forging ahead with property

rights and free markets, Russians devolved into a collection

of turf wars, with ethnic groups, former rulers, organized

crime and various other groups competing to survive. Out

of the former Soviet-controlled states, the one that

proceeded fastest and furthest with free-market reform

instead of controlled business — the Czech Republic — has

done the best economically by far. The ones that at least

moved closer to free markets, including Latvia, Estonia,

Lithuania and Poland, are doing all right but still struggle.

Russia, who moved least to free markets, whose economy

continued to be based on payoffs, bribes and tribute, has

done the worst economically and culturally. Yet this

catastrophe is often blamed on moving too fast with

economic reforms. («Soviet Union,? 99 World Book

Encyclopedia) Today Russia?s economy is in disorder. The

standard of living for most people in incredibly low. It may

be even lower now then during the Communist rule due to

the long-term effects of the break up of the Soviet Union.

One of the major factors for the fall of Communism is the

government did not live up to it?s promise of a better life for

all, and the failure of government to deal properly with

social and foreign affairs. Russia is now faced with a task

that may seem impractical, and a journey that may take

many years, but it is believed one-day Russia may regain a

well-balanced government.

: 1.?Everything

About Russia (History Section).? Http://www.russia.net (6

Dec. 1999) 2.?CNN Interactive (Russian Archive).?

Http://www.cnn.com (8 Des.1999) 3. B, Ulam, ?Looking

at the Past: The Unraveling of the Soviet Union? Source:

February 5, 1996 Associated Press article (11 Dec. 99)

4.?The Electric Passport to Russia and Communism?

www.mrdowling.com/707russia.html (11 Dec. 1999)

5.»Russian human rights commission reports gross

violations, practically disbands," Source: February 5, 1996

Associated Press article (11 Dec. 99) 6. ?Karl Marx,

Manifesto of the Communist Party?

www.hartford-hwp.com/cp-usa/manifesto.html (12

Dec.99) 7. George W. Simmonds University of Detroit

?World War II Commemoration- Stalin?

gi.grolier.com/wwii/wwii_stalin.html (18 Dec.99) 8.

?Marx and Engels’ Writings?

english-www.hss.cmu.edu/marx/ (17 Dec.99)

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