Watching Mikhail Gorbachev Resign in Moscow

The day the Soviet flag was lowered for the last time


On December 25, 1991, a Moscow family gathers to watch President Mikhail Gorbachev's resignation. Minutes later, the Soviet flag was lowered for the last time, marking the formal end of the USSR.

NEXT: Archives: 1991 Edition

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  1. My understanding is that Gorbachev is lowly regarded in Russia; either a contributor to or a scapegoat for the fall of the CCCP. Some like him more in that Pizza Hut ad than as their former leader.

    1. He was a quitter.

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    3. I was there, in Leningrad/St Petersburg the summer of 1991, left the very Friday before the “coup” was announced. Lived with Russians who spoke No English. None of them could STAND Mikhail Sergeyevich—or his wife Raisa Maksimovna. They were a most refreshing change from the Gorky-mania still gripping the west even after the tanks and bloodshed in Tbilisi, Vilnius and Riga. (I did the same thing summer of 92, for a total between the two summers of over four and a half months. I’ll never forget it. Too many stories I could post)

      1. Gorby mania. FUCK YOU SPELLCHECK!!!!

  2. What will Brandon do? Will he resign before kicking the bucket? Or will he just wait for his due impeachment at the hands of a GOP-majority Congress?

    PS: Kamala should not be impeached though. She'll be the most valuable asset for the GOP's campaign for 2024.

    1. Impeach Kamala for what? Other than that fake school kids NASA video, what has she done to merit a subsequent impeachment?

      1. I said that "she should not be impeached".

        1. Understood. Am rhetorically asking why folks would pursue that. She has done nothing. Nothing right. Nothing wrong. Nothing.

          1. Well Trump didn't do anything either, yet he was impeached two or three times (who's even counting?)...

            Kamala is indeed irrelevant to the point where she didn't actually do anything noteworthy... as of yet. But once the GOP controls all of Congress they could make up any 'charge' they want against her, why wouldn't they? The only reason they shouldn't is because she's the best weapon against the Ds in 2024. But if the Ds can keep impeaching a president then the Rs can do the same (granted, Rs started the impeach-game last time around against the other Clinton.. who was of course actually guilty of many crimes, but the impeachment wasn't a good idea, especially knowing that it likely wouldn't work anyway...)

          2. Hey, somebody sent her off to France to cool them down about the sub deal!

    2. "Or will he just wait for his due impeachment at the hands of a GOP-majority Congress?"

      You planning on McConnell suffering an untimely death?

      1. Untimely? Hah!

  3. I remember that day. I got a new Atlas for Christmas. Which was immediately out of date (they did have the Baltics as separate countries, though). In spring of 1992 I had a remarkable opportunity to travel to Russia on invitation from the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church for the first officially sanctioned Easter since the revolution with a choral group my father was part of. Seemed like Russians were a lot more optimistic then, and taking full advantage of new economic freedoms.

    1. Sounds amazing. Where did you go there?

      1. Pretty much just Moscow. And we stayed at some weird country house outside the city.
        It really was amazing. To be in Red Square, which had been so symbolic of the USSR, full of people selling stuff and doing black market currency exchange and whatever else they could do to make some money. Still a huge long line for Lenin's tomb, though.
        Got to see some usually closed parts of the Kremlin when the group started singing.

    2. I remember the lead-up to that. Taking an international relations course that semester, the professor told us our books would be out of date in short order.

      1. I was about 14. Just old enough to realize what a big deal it was.

        1. Was studying German at the time when the fall 1989 protests began. Attended a talk about it with video that came from Leipzig. What would Honecker do? What would Moscow do? Watched the border open live on CNN, back when they did news.
          Also recall the turmoil in Moscow a few years later with the attempted coup and the rise of Yeltsin.
          The world seems much smaller these days.

          1. Suggested before; one of my fave books: "Post War", Judt. Covers the collapse of the Soviet colonies, one by one.

            1. My article on Romania is forthcoming. Maybe post this weekend. One interviewee is being reluctant. Will have a professor in Bucharest review it for accuracy before posting.
              I read few books not needed for my vocation; maybe I will look at that one.

  4. Did that guy not have parents to tell him don't sit that close to the tv?

    1. Soviet TVs did not emit radiation.

      1. They share noble ideas but no radiation.

        1. Chernobyl stole all of their ambient radiation.

      2. Maybe not but Soviet TVs could scare the HELL out of you! My first full day there the sisters hosting me, Nadya and Sveta asked me to turn on the TV while they retrieved something from the kitchen. As soon as I turned the knob a LOUD BANG issued forth and I could see sparks through the vent holes in the fake wood paneling. I had just jumped at least 4 feet back when Sveta run into the room smiling apologetically and saying “Oh John! We forgot to warn you, don’t be afraid! It’s just Soviet technology…”

  5. Soviet decor from the '90s looks like American decor from the '70s.


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