Mikhail Gorbachev is one of the prominent people believed to have played a key role in stopping the Cold War, by playing a significant role in stating the end of belief in superiority ideologies and brought forth the idea of a united front that would help calm the crisis between the U.S.S.R and the United States of America. Gorbachev was elected the CPSU general secretary and in his tenure, he went a long way in building ties with the U.S and other nations. His main agenda was to unite nations to solve problems facing humanity and resolving religious and ideological differences so as to realize a progressive, productive and a healthy world (Gorbachev, 2011).
On the 7th of December 1988, Mikhail Gorbachev addressed the United Nations General Assembly, at the time when United Nations was a pinnacle of world leadership and all international issues were addressed. Gorbachev chose the United Nations as his platform for the speech that was the beginning of the end of the Cold war. The international organization had the authority to dictate the ideologies that were allowed in any nation for the wellbeing of the world as a whole. He addressed and advocated for an end to mistrust and warfare among states on the basis of differences in leadership concepts and religious backgrounds. He also voiced the desire and intention of the Soviet Union government to disarm the Soviet army in the East and the Chinese border. He insisted on cooperation through co-creation and co-development, the development of nations at anothers expense was becoming outdated (Astro.temple.edu, 2016).
Gorbachev always insisted on removal of ideologies among states, that is the removal of all forms of hostility among states due to differences in opinions on addressing issues such as the economy and other mechanisms and techniques of governance. Social differences had been pillars of the strife among states in the late 1960s to the late 1980s; Mikhail insisted on international cooperation through the harnessing of these differences for the betterment of humanity and the development of a new world order. He insisted that there is need to put away self-interest of nations as the only way of getting rid of deeply entrenched ideologies and political orientations. He proclaimed the message of finding a balance in the international framework; this meant putting away the differences for the sake of survival and progress. Freedom of choice is a universal principle and the fact that states and humanity may have different preferences, it should not be the cause of divisions among the human race.
De-ideolization meant the formation of a united bloc with the common interests of the progress of humanity. Super powers of the world had to come to a compromise and find a way to work together in harmony. Gorbachevs speech had implications that spanned across all the superpower states. The U.S.S.R, U.S, China, the United Kingdom and other states like France went ahead with military disarmament and downsizing the number of troops stationed in other nations. Most super power nations had to cut ties with their allies for the sake of world peace. Peace and development treaties were forged among super power states (Gorbachev, 2011). Cooperation in fighting as a united front against the common enemy of progress and perpetuation of human freedom and civil rights became the new tune.
Force can no longer be an instrument of foreign policy (Astro.temple.edu, 2016) he said this regarding the past activities of super power nations. He was quoting past events like the 1st and the 2nd World Wars and the latest at the time, the Cold War. The atrocities committed and lives lost during those doom days are unimaginable, everything lost cannot be brought back. The logic of world development through the use of force to subjugate other states into accepting the ideals of another can never bring forth anything short of death and destruction. Mikhail suggested the need for cooperation for the purposes of development and a new world.
The Soviet bloc went ahead and reduced their military force by 500,000, and the volume of conventional arms was significantly reduced (Bunce, 1991). The Soviet bloc was disbanded and ties with allies were abolished. Nations that had been under the jurisdiction of the Soviet Union were granted their independence. States like Czechoslovakia, Hungary, and GDR, saw the reduction of Soviet military, this meant freedom for states within the Soviet bloc and independence to hold government ad conduct free and fair elections for their preferred leadership.
Mikhail Gorbachev had a vision of super power states being the agents of change and development in the world. He envisioned the formation of a new world through an interplay and cooperation of super power states. Through the development of cooperation for technological and scientific progress and environmental protection sates will be able to find mechanisms of solving issues like hunger, disease, underdevelopment, illiteracy and other ills affecting humanity. Cooperation among super power states would aid immensely in the quest for a better world.
Astro.temple.edu,. (2016). Gorbachev. Retrieved 20 February 2016, from http://astro.temple.edu/~rimmerma/gorbachev_speech_to_UN.htm
Bunce, V. (1991). The Soviet Union under Gorbachev: Ending Stalinism and Ending the Cold War. International Journal, 46(2), 220. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/40202859
Gorbachev, M. (2011). Mikhail Gorbachev. Forest Row, East Sussex [England]: Clairview.
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