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A decade of democracy
 1.Yeltsin defiant
 2.After the coup
 3.Rebel parliament
 4.Nationalist backlash
After the coup

Mikhail Gorbachev returned to Moscow from Crimea, where he had been held during the attempted coup, physically unscathed but politically crippled. The Communist Party had lost any remaining authority, and the Soviet Union was disintegrating as constituent republics declared independence. Power was passing inexorably to Boris Yeltsin. For four months Gorbachev tried to hold the Union together, before resigning on 25 December 1991. In a televised address he recalled the end of the Cold War, the death of totalitarianism and the birth of democracy.

Video The BBC’s Ben Brown on the resignation of Mikhail Gorbachev, 25 December 1991
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