BBC Homepage BBC World Services BBC Sport BBC Education MY BBC
bbc.co.uk
Home
TV
Radio
Talk
Where I Live
A-Z Index
Front Page | World | Europe | In depth
Photo file Special features How life has changed Countdown to collapse Introduction Russian Version
Collapse of the USSR Countdown to collapse How life has changed Gorbachev webcast Photo file
Intro Mar
1985
Dec
1985
1987
1988
Mar
1989
Jul
1989
Nov
1989
Jan
1990
Jul
1990
Jun
1991
19Aug
1991
22Aug
1991
Late
1991
1988 - Perestroika hits problems

Perestroika hits its first major political iceberg. It has already been resisted by bureaucrats trying to block Gorbachev's economic reforms. Now, hardline communist newspaper Sovetskaya Rossiya publishes a clarion call for communists to resist Gorbachev's reforms. The call comes in a letter from a Leningrad chemist, Stalinist Nina Andreyeva, but Gorbachev is out of the country and hardliners are suspected of being behind it.

In the Baltic States, meanwhile, thoughts of independence are beginning to stir in the climate of change. In Estonia, the Popular Front is formed - a political party in all but name, even though only the Communist Party is allowed to exist. Latvia and Lithuania follow suit.

The first rumblings of inter-ethnic unrest are also felt, as clashes begin over Nagorno Karabakh in Azerbaijan, between Azeris and Armenians. Later, violence will also flare in Georgia, where North and South Ossetia and Abkhazia want independence.

Gorbachev marches on with perestroika and glasnost. He welcomes President Reagan to Moscow and later proposes a new presidency and elected parliament.

US President Ronald Reagan in Moscow
Cold War thaw: President Reagan was welcomed to Moscow

 From the archive: Brian Hanrahan reports on demonstrations in Estonia (11/9/88)
^^ Back to Top
 © MMV | News Sources | Privacy