Mikhail Gorbachev

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Gorbachev: We're Facing 'New Cold War'

Former Soviet leader warns of Western 'triumphalism'

(Newser) - Tensions between the major powers have pushed the world closer to a new Cold War, former Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev said today. The 83-year-old accused the West, particularly the United States, of giving in to "triumphalism" after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the dissolution of the... More »

Putin: Crimea Was Always Part of Russia

Blasts West as Kremlin approves annexation treaty

(Newser) - Vladimir Putin opened his mouth and let the West have it today during his fiery formal proposal to annex Crimea, which he claimed "has always been part of Russia"; he likened the annexation to the reunification of East and West Germany. Putin declared the referendum to join Russia "... More »

UK Snubs Argentina at Thatcher Funeral

Cristina Fernandez persona non grata

(Newser) - The latest fallout from the Britain-Argentina Falkland Islands feud : A government source tells Reuters that Argentine President Cristina Fernandez is not invited to Margaret Thatcher's funeral next week because Thatcher's family doesn't want her there. Thatcher led Britain during the Falklands war, and "it's about... More »

As Russia Erupts, Gorbachev Steps In

More rallies expected for today

(Newser) - Mikhail Gorbachev is stepping into the fray, and urging Russian authorities to annul the results of Sunday's scandal-ridden elections and hold a new vote. His voice is joined by those of thousands of Russians who have taken to the streets of Moscow and St. Petersburg since Monday, and Gorbachev... More »

Gorbachev Slams Russia's 'Sham Democracy'

Ex-Soviet leader attacks 'conceited 'Putin regime

(Newser) - Mikhail Gorbachev has launched his most blistering attack yet on Vladimir Putin's regime. The last Soviet leader, speaking at a press conference ahead of his 80th birthday, described Putin's Russia as a sham democracy, the Guardian reports. "We have everything—a parliament, courts, a president, a prime minister and... More »

Saddam Sought Soviet Help in '91

Declassified records reveal attempt to head off US attack

(Newser) - A frustrated Saddam Hussein pleaded with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev for diplomatic assistance as the Operation Desert Storm ground battle began in 1991, reveal newly declassified records from Iraqi archives. The records—part of a huge archive containing millions of documents and thousands of hours of video footage captured after... More »

It's Time for the US to Sign a Nuclear Test Ban

START was a good first step, but let's get serious

(Newser) - The START treaty was a great first step in the quest for a nuclear-free world, but now that it’s ratified “we can speak of a serious step forward for both countries,” writes Mikhail Gorbachev in the New York Times . That serious step: a complete ban on nuclear... More »

Gorbachev: Russia Is Reverting to Bad Old Days

He writes critical op-ed on 25th anniversary of perestroika

(Newser) - Mikhail Gorbachev warns that Russia is in danger of backsliding into the dark days of the Soviet Union in a critical op-ed piece that seems aimed directly at Vladimir Putin. The country's parliament is no better than a rubber stamp, its courts lack independence, and there's still no real party... More »

Gorbachev: Take It From Me, Leave Afghanistan

'No prospect' for military victory, says former Soviet president

(Newser) - Mikhail Gorbachev—the man who pulled the Soviet Union's troops out of Afghanistan after a decade of stalemate—says the US should do the same. "There is no prospect of a military solution," he tells Bloomberg . The nation is too fragmented among clans, dooming even a troop surge... More »

'Tear Down This Wall' Not So Confrontational

Reagan 'defeated' Soviets with diplomacy, not bravado

(Newser) - Prepare to see a lot of clips in the coming days of Ronald Reagan declaring, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” The 20th anniversary of the Berlin wall’s fall is days away, and in our collective memory, Reagan brought it down with sheer bravado. But that’s... More »

Russians Kasparov, Karpov Rekindle Chess Rivalry

Russian grand masters meet in Spain for series of matches

(Newser) - More than 25 years after their rivalry gave chess, and Russia, a much-needed jolt, former champions Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov will face off for a series of matches in Spain, beginning tomorrow, the Telegraph reports. The younger Kasparov took Karpov’s world title in 1985, and then seemed to... More »

Thatcher Urged Gorbachev to Block German Reunification

British leader warned Soviets that the change would endanger security

(Newser) - Margaret Thatcher called on Mikhail Gorbachev to halt German reunification months before the Berlin Wall came down, newly unearthed Kremlin documents reveal. Thatcher—telling the Soviet leader he should disregard NATO pronouncements on the issue—said the breakdown of the Warsaw Pact wasn't in the interests of the West, the... More »

Obama Meets Putin, Touts Democracy in Speech

(Newser) - Barack Obama began his second day in Russia by meeting with Vladimir Putin at the president-turned-prime minister's country home outside Moscow. The two leaders both expressed a desire for improved relations, and observers said they had a cordial discussion. The president then addressed a Moscow economics university, where he told... More »

US vs. Russia: Who's Won Summits Past?

(Newser) - As Barack Obama arrives in Moscow for his toughest diplomatic challenge since taking office, the Guardian looks back on earlier US-Russia showdowns to gauge who had the upper hand.
  • Kennedy vs. Khrushchev, 1961: The ultimate cold war summit, shadowed by the space race and the Berlin Wall. A draw, although
... More »

Gorbachev Ballads Album Fetches $160K at Auction

(Newser) - A CD of Mikhail Gorbachev singing traditional Russian ballads has sold for $164,940 at a charity auction in London, the Guardian reports. The sole copy is now in the hands of an “anonymous British philanthropist.” The benefit was held to raise money for a foundation, named after... More »

The US Needs Its Own Perestroika: Gorbachev

Global financial crisis calls for economic restructuring

(Newser) - Mikhail Gorbachev has been saying for years that the US needed change, and for the first time, he writes in the Washington Post, people have been meeting him with applause rather than skepticism. America needs a perestroika—a restructuring—because, like Russia in the 1980s, it can no longer revert... More »

West 'Wasted 20 Years' After Berlin Wall Fell: Gorbachev

Former Soviet states should unite, he suggests

(Newser) - Europe has squandered two decades of potential cooperation since the Berlin Wall fell, Mikhail Gorbachev says. At a Moscow event sponsored by his foundation, the former Soviet leader criticized Western leaders who viewed the 1989 event as their victory over Eastern Europe, rather than an opportunity for common good, Reuters... More »

1988: Reagan, Right; Putin, Left

(Newser) - It’s 1988. President Ronald Reagan is making a visit to the Soviet Union, where he tours Moscow’s Red Square alongside Mikhail Gorbachev. He stops and takes questions from a group of tourists about human rights in the United States. Except they’re not tourists, Radio Free Europe reports.... More »

Gorbachev: Blame Georgia

Former Soviet leader blasts one-sided America coverage

(Newser) - It is important to remember that Georgia, not Russia, struck first in the conflict over South Ossetia, writes former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev for the New York Times. Russian leadership is strong domestically and did not need a victory to rally support—rather, Moscow “was dragged into the fray... More »

Gorbachev: Peace Remains Possible

Western powers must tread lightly in Georgia, ex-Soviet prez warns

(Newser) - The situation in Georgia dates to at least 1991, when the government slapped a lid on South Ossetia, setting off a "time bomb," Mikhail Gorbachev writes in the Washington Post. The ex-Soviet president outlines his vision for regional stability. "In addition to patience, this situation requires wisdom,... More »

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