In hindsight it is easy to see the events of 1979 as economical problem.
By the 1980’s it was quite clear that planned economies failed to provide basic
The collapse of communism.
Line ups of people waiting to acquire goods due to lack of necessities.
Most of the line-ups were women and kids.
The men seemed to line up for Vodka.
Simple to see the failure of planned economies.
People like apparatchiks had no problem getting the provisions they needed.
It wasn’t simple economic crisis that fuelled this but it was the unfairness that….
East Germany tried to block transmission of TV for West, but people could still see.
Parts of the Soviet Union was Finnish television that influenced them.
Many of the East block countries had debts (Poland had debt to…)
Dependency of East Germany on the West German economy.
They wanted a freedom to move between the east and west blocks
You see the economic dispairity
Many of the elderly had to leave, they encouraged them to leave. They didn’t pay
Western economies subsidised the east.
Even the successful industrial companies had some admitted failures.
Governments unable to provide for their systems.
“Crisis of Legitimacy” – There was a long history of repression dating back to the
civil war. There was a hatred or reason to resent.
Stalin (d. 1953) and his successor Khrushev’s Secret Speech 1956 Exposed some of the worst atrocities od the period and what we call the
“Destalinisation” of the nation.
Revolt of E. Germany in 1953 (GDR)
1968 Prague Spring
Emergence of solidarity in Poland.
Soviet Union sent Military to crush revolts.
Marshal law was imposed. This action brought restrictions of travel and captured
the embolization of the Berlin wall.
All these factors provided evidence of the factors of legitimacy.
KGB, Stasi, Securitate with their networks of professional and part time forced
informants were part of this crisis.
International developments/System: Building in the 1980s added other
destabilising factors to the collapse.
They had to keep up with the militarization, propaganda expenses
As the USA became wealthier and used more of its means to show their power.
Soviet Union used their means to try and keep up.
War in Afghanistan 1979-1988 was costly on Afghan lives AND Soviet lives.
Loss of moral communism as right wing dictatorships in Europe, Democracy was
starting to spread.
Spain became a democracy as Franco died in 1975.
In the 1980s USA, W. Germany and UK e