Why perestroika failed

Source: Niskanen Center
by Ed Dolan

“Mikhail Gorbachev will be remembered both for what he did not do and for what he did. Beyond a few violent but brief interventions within the USSR itself (Lithuania, Georgia), what he did not do was send in the Soviet army to prevent Poland, Czechoslovakia, and the rest of the Soviet empire from reclaiming their independence. For that he will be remembered with gratitude and respect. The things he did were to implement glasnost (often translated as ‘openness’) and perestroika (economic reform, or ‘restructuring’). … perestroika, the economic component of Gorbachev’s reforms, was a failure. It pulled the rug out from under the already tottering structure of central planning while doing little or nothing to lay the foundation for a real market economy. In retrospect, we can see three key impediments that doomed perestroika from its inception.” (09/14/22)