THE WORLD MOURNS THE LAST LEADER OF THE USSR, MIKHAIL GORBACHEV.
Written by AIGBOKHAEBHO OKHUELEIGBE on August 31, 2022
The last leader of the Union of Social Soviet Republics, USSR, Mikhail Gorbachev is dead. He died at the age of 91 after a long illness in the Russian capital, Moscow.
Gorbachev, who took over in 1985, is best known for opening up the Soviet Union and for his friendly disposition towards the West.
The last leader of the Soviet Union and for many the man who restored democracy to then-communist-ruled European nations was mourned on Wednesday as the loss of a rare leader who changed the world and for a time gave hope for peace among the superpowers.
He won the 1990 Nobel Peace Prize for his role in ending the Cold War. He was however not able to prevent the collapse of the then-world power of the Cold War era in 1991.
He is remembered for his Glasnost and Perestroika economic policies which did not fare well for the Russian economy.
Leaders across the world have paid tribute to a man some described as a great and brave leader.
Outgoing British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
In a time of Putin’s aggression in Ukraine, his tireless commitment to opening up Soviet society remains an example to us all.
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres remembered him as:
A one-of-a-kind statesman who changed the course of history and did more than any other individual to bring about the peaceful end of the Cold War.
French President Emmanuel Macron described Gorbachev as:
A man of peace whose choices opened up a path of liberty for Russians. His commitment to peace in Europe changed our shared history.
Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida noted Gorbachev’s important role in the reduction of nuclear weapons held by the Soviet Union and the US, saying he had made “great achievements”.
While Former United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said in a tweet that:
His life was consequential because, without him and his courage, it would not have been possible to end the Cold War peacefully.