The Glasnost was a highly influential government policy in the Soviet Union during the latter half of the 1980s. As the head of state of the Soviet Union during that time, Mikhail Gorbachev introduced it to improve the leadership of the Soviet government as well as the Communist Party. This period was marked by greater freedom of information and less censorship. For those who wish to find out the real reason why Gorbachev implemented Glasnost, here is a quick take on Soviet history and the different events that led to such important decision.
The Significance of the Implementation of Glasnost to the Soviet Union
Why did Gorbachev implement Glasnost? The main idea behind this move was to make the Soviet government as transparent as possible. It called for freedom of information and openness from the leaders of the country, especially after the Chernobyl incident in 1986. When the nuclear plant exploded, people in the surrounding areas were harmed because they were not informed properly.
Gorbachev believed that such move was also a very good policy to fight off corruption in the government. Likewise, it also aimed to reduce the abusive power of the Central Committee. After this decision, the country saw enhanced freedom of information and reduced censorship especially in terms of government issues. More importantly, this move called for open debate, which provided its citizens with the right to question things that appeared inappropriate.
The freedom of the people improved extensively with the help of this all-important policy. Libraries and previously prohibited reading materials were opened to the public. The media was the greatest beneficiary of this move. The censorship in television, radio and publishing was reduced significantly.
Additional Information about the Glasnost
After the implementation of this policy, the Communist Party lost its control over the media. It made the government vulnerable. Economic and social problems were exposed for everyone to understand. Among the most influential issues that were exposed included the low-status of women in society, increased mortality rates and pollution. It also increased the awareness of people regarding other issues such as alcoholism, food shortages and poor housing.
This policy led to political openness, which undermined the internal political repression during that time. It also weakened the capacity and power of the central Moscow government of the USSR to control its constituent republics. These republics called for independence including Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. Moreover, this move also freed thousands of dissidents and political prisoners. In the end, the primary goal of this policy failed, particularly the reformation of the Soviet Union.