Before the Fall: Soviet Cinema in the Gorbachev Years

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All of us, including artists, film-makers, intellectuals and ordinary citizens can do something to make the world safer and better, to prevent another division of Europe. Our global world is facing so many common problems — fighting terrorism, climate change, the challenge of poverty, inequality. None of those problems can be solved by military means or if nations remain divided and act alone. We can only do it together.

We can only do it through cooperation on the basis of common interests. The experience we gained during the years of perestroika and new thinking, when we moved toward ending the cold war, should help us in achieving this goal.

Fall of the Soviet Union

I want to tell you that I am convinced that our two nations, Germans and Russians, which did so much to abolish the Cold War, must now make a decisive contribution to overcoming of the current very alarming situation. Let us demand that our political leaders act now and take concrete steps to save our continent and our planet. More than 25 years ago, calling for reunification of their country, Germans took to the streets and chanted: We are one nation.

I wish all of you, who participate in this event tonight, to have a good evening and a good discussion of the vital issues of our time. I am quite confident that, working together, we will resume moving along the path that brought us to the end of the Cold War.

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We must firmly commit ourselves to this path. This must be our common choice. Site development. Sign up to news feeds: Media reports Mikhail Gorbachev in the press News. Media reports. Social networks.

The Fall Of The Soviet Union

The Cinema for Peace Gala Berlin , which took place in the heart of the German capital tonight, gathered 1, filmmakers, activists and artists from around the world to put the spotlight on films addressing human suffering and injustice around the world. In the last couple of days, he had created a fascinating installation with life vests and a rescue boat from the Greek island of Lesbos at the Konzerthaus, which was widely discussed among the 1, VIP guests from Germany and abroad.

For the event, he sent this message from Moscow: "More than 25 years ago, calling for reunification of their country, Germans took to the streets and chanted: We are one nation. The Cinema for Peace jury unites members of the film industry, e. He made his first film in at age 19; since then he has produced, written, and directed more than 60 features and documentaries, published more than a dozen books of prose, and directed as many operas.

Three-Session Class October 16 - 30, Meeting Gorbachev Loading the player Sign in to manage your personalized schedule. Thursday, May 30, Friday, May 31, Friday, July 5, Saturday, July 6, Sunday, July 7, When he opened the box, Muratov found a cellular phone, which was an extremely rare commodity in Russia at the time. This was not the last time Gorbachev offered generous financial support to the paper. However, it soon became clear that if Novaya Gazeta was to develop in the long term, the newspaper would require a steady and strategic stream of investment.

The former head of state solved that problem, as well. Muratov recalled receiving an unexpected call from a man who introduced himself as Alexander Lebedev; Lebedev said it was none other than Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev who told him to make contact with the newspaper. Lebedev, a banker and a millionaire, first gave money to the publication in , according to Muratov, and he became a full-fledged investor ten years later. Muratov is not the only journalist who has found favor with Gorbachev. The former president is also on good terms with, among others, Yevgenia Albats and Alexey Venediktov, the chief editor of the radio station Echo of Moscow.

In the late s, what was once the most widely broadcast radio station in the USSR, by then renamed Radio-1 , lost much of its former status and fell into more than a million dollars in debt to its creditors. In May of , the station was purchased by Gorbachev Foundation affiliate institutions, and more than a third of the company came to be owned by Gorbachev himself and his daughter.

The new owners of Radio-1 were unable to resurrect the station. In , Radio-1 ceased to exist entirely. The final sound that issued from the station, which had been broadcasting since , was an excerpt from the soundtrack to the film Mission: Impossible.

Everything You Think You Know About the Collapse of the Soviet Union Is Wrong – Foreign Policy

Gorbachev himself has remained practically silent about the project. Apart from Gorbachev, the bloc was to include Grigory Yavlinsky, the founder of the centrist political party Yabloko; the general Alexander Lebed; and the ophthalmologist Svyatoslav Fyodorov, who had also expressed presidential ambitions. When Gorbacheva understood that there would be no persuading her husband, she stayed by his side during the entire campaign.

It was a long and complex effort. Nearly every time Gorbachev held a public rally, the first row would be occupied by communists who blamed the former general secretary for breaking their country apart and plunging it into destitution. Just come onstage and crucify me right here! Gorbachev actively pursued the youth vote as well and collaborated in that effort with the electronic musician DJ Groove.

Despite these efforts, Gorbachev could not seem to persuade his electorate. He lost so badly in the election that Yeltsin stopped seeing him as a serious competitor entirely. With a humiliating 0. His drubbing in the election did not deter Gorbachev from maintaining a high level of political involvement. At the height of the political standoff of , when it seemed that the Kremlin had once again weakened and might lose its power to a new political alliance led by Evgeny Primakov and Yuri Luzhkov, the former president decided to take the helm of the United Russian Social Democratic Party.

The move united him with Gavriil Popov, the first democratically elected mayor of Moscow, and the advisory board of the party included figures like the actor Armen Jigarhanyan and the director Yuri Lyubimov. The party was established in March of , and in Gorbachev was approached by Konstantin Titov, the governor of Samarskaya Oblast, who had also run for president and failed miserably with 1.

Gorbachev did not ask where the regional governor got his money. Sources close to Titov said that he had a wealthy son who invested in the party along with one of his business partners. The Social Democratic team did not last long. In , Gorbachev left the party when he realized that nobody in it intended to participate in federal elections. When Titov learned about the topic of this article, he declined to speak with Meduza.

Gorbachev, you have already done things that no one else in history was able to do. There is no place for a social democratic party. Also in , Gorbachev came to lead the nonprofit Union of Social Democrats. When he turned on his radio, he heard an unexpected bit of news. At the time, Rio de Janeiro was hosting the UN Conference on Environment and Development, the most significant environmental summit of the late twentieth century. Nonetheless, he was in no rush to refute the announcement. In , the Soviet president said in one of his speeches that the seriousness of the global environmental situation demanded something analogous to the Red Cross.

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In the end, the former general secretary agreed to become the founder of the Green Cross. According to Gorbachev himself, the clergyman Metropolitan Pitirim of Volokolamsk and Yuyryev played an important role in that decision. As one of the most influential figures in the Russian Orthodox Church at the time and the Church official responsible for international ties, Pitirim was deeply concerned about environmental issues and was himself present at the Rio de Janeiro summit.

The Metropolitan was quite close to Raisa Gorbacheva and with Gorbachev himself, and it did not take long for him to convince his friend to change his mind. At first, the Green Cross headquarters was located in the Netherlands, but it later moved to Geneva.

There was even a time when Russia stopped funding the destruction of its chemical weapons entirely. That was when Gorbachev managed to arrange a one-on-one meeting with Putin; after that, things finally got going. The former general secretary even dug up support for the Green Cross in the Russian Defense Ministry, which allowed the organization to build a plant in Saratov region and outfit it for the destruction of chemical weapons. At first, its construction was planned for Chapaevsk, near the city of Samara, but it was moved after local residents objected.

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He did not mention Mikhail Gorbachev. The Green Cross oversaw a number of other important projects, as well, and as a result Gorbachev became one of the first globally significant politicians to take environmental protection seriously in a truly public way. The organization also found important if unintentional support in the environmental activism of the unsuccessful U.

It was, of course, the same prize that Gorbachev had received almost two decades earlier. For his part, Gorbachev continued to travel the world, actively campaigning for the Green Cross in meetings with world leaders like Angela Merkel and Barack Obama. For example, the designer Giorgio Armani sends the Green Cross up to two million dollars annually to provide water to African schools that are located far from safe water sources.

After Hurricane Katrina, the Green Cross arranged for the funding and construction of eco-houses that collect their own energy through solar panels. The Green Cross has also overseen a number of successful publicity campaigns. For example, amid the first sales campaigns for hybrid automobiles, the organization negotiated to ensure that Hollywood stars would ride hybrids to the Oscars ceremony. She came to be a close friend of the former president. Gorbachev even visited her home in Los Angeles often enough that local residents began to gossip about the possibility that their friendship had turned into something more, especially after Gorbachev was widowed.

According to Likhotal, Gorbachev befriended Meyer just as he befriended her husband and always preferred to stay in hotels rather than her private home.

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  6. A few years ago, the former president asked the founder of Novaya Gazeta to attend a lecture he was giving at the journalism department of Moscow State University. Muratov sat in the last row and, at some point during the lecture, received a handwritten note. Then, we went to a little Georgian restaurant across from the cemetery and remembered her.