1989 or 1991?

<![CDATA[A professor at Cal State San Marcos, teaching about politics in Russia, recently asked the class who remembered 1991?

I thought it was going to be 1989. That was the year the “fall” of the Soviet Union began. I wrote a lecture calling it the Year of the People. The Soviets pulled out of Afghanistan, and stopped interfering in the governments of Eastern Europe, under Gorbachev’s orders. He pressed for arms cuts. The Berlin Wall was torn down overnight, and the Brandenburg Gate reopened. A lot happened: see the list at the BBC.

It’s true that in 1991 Yeltsin was elected president, but surely the official date of the new nation is not the date of the revolution? Or could it be that I’m just hung up on the symmetry of the French Revolution of 1789 and this one, two hundred years later?]]>

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