Vilnius: Call Gorbachev To Account

Since 1985, there has been reason to hope that the Soviet Union would finally mature into a nation ruled by law instead of the jackboot. Under Mikhail Gorbachev, the press was freed. Independent thinking, open debate, and new political parties were encouraged. The Communist Party lost its 73-year-old monopoly on power. This new attitude fostered brilliant diplomacy by the Kremlin that allowed Eastern Europe to go free without bloodshed, ended the cold war, and seemed ready at last to open up the Soviet Union to the outside world.

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