Soviet Union break-up still a valid lesson

Source:Global Times Published: 2013-10-11 0:28:02

Recently, the dissolution of the Soviet Union has again caused a stir among public opinion in China. It is understandable that controversialists holding different values come up with diverging conclusions regarding the fall of the once great power.

The fall of the Soviet Union altered in a profound way the international political architecture shaped after World War Ⅱ. The US became the biggest beneficiary of the collapse of the Yalta system and other Western countries also saw their interests served.

Its disintegration further worsened the external environment for China's commitment to its socialist path on the one hand, but enormously reduced the geopolitical pressure on northern China on the other. Therefore, it has had a mixed impact on China.

The breakup of the once great power into 15 separate countries suddenly sabotaged economic ties within the Union, bringing poignant pains for a period of time. Most of the first beneficiaries in newly separate nations included former officials, political activists and adventurous entrepreneurs.

In terms of politics, Russia has undergone the greatest changes, but the two generations of its government leaders are closely connected with the authorities of the former Soviet Union. The "opposition party" has never obtained political opportunities it desires.

At that time, Russia witnessed full economic recovery; Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan also realized relatively high national incomes thanks to their abundant resources. Nevertheless, more than half of the newly-formed nations became losers because of the dissolution. For instance, our neighbors Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan are listed as some of the poorest countries in the world.

Furthermore, it is the 20 million or so Russians living beyond the borders of Russia who suffered most from the disintegration of the Soviet Union, because they became minorities overnight and found themselves in tough predicaments in new countries that suffer severe tensions with Russia.

As the main inheritor of the former Soviet Union, Russia remains powerful with a large territory and ample resources. It experienced unstable politics and in particular the war in Chechnya until Vladimir Putin took office, putting in place strong domestic and foreign policies.

 The Russian people now lead a much better life, with free education and healthcare as well as increasing incomes. The state takes the expansion of its influence as one of its major diplomatic targets and does its utmost not to descend to a "second-class" nation.

China, on the other hand, has achieved inconceivable accomplishments owing to the adoption of the reform and opening-up policy, but it is ridiculous to make meticulous comparison between the two countries.

Other nations draw lessons from former Soviet Union and put in place continuous reforms to avoid sliding into a similar crisis and consequent disintegration. This constitutes the minimum requirement for a country's authorities.

Posted in: Editorial

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