Mikhail S. Gorbachev

One of the most in­flu­en­tial polit­ic­al fig­ures of the 20th cen­tury, Mikhail S. Gorbachev used his more than six years as lead­er of the So­viet Uni­on to in­tro­duce peres­troika and glas­nost.

On Sept. 12, 1985, The Times pub­lished an opin­ion piece writ­ten by Steph­en F. Co­hen, pro­fess­or of polit­ics at Prin­ceton Uni­versity, about Gorbachev’s first six months as gen­er­al sec­ret­ary of the Com­mun­ist Party.
On Mar. 3, 1985, The Times re­por­ted that hours after the an­nounce­ment of Pres­id­ent Kon­stantin U. Chernen­ko’s death, his young­est lieu­ten­ant, Mikhail S. Gorbachev, took power in a light­ning shift away from the aged elite that has rule the huge, se­cret­ive So­viet state for two dec­ades.
On Dec. 16, 1984, The Times re­por­ted that upon his ar­rival at Lon­don’s Heath­row Air­port, Mikhail S. Gorbachev said “There are no types of arma­ments that the So­viet Uni­on would not agree to see lim­ited and even­tu­ally banned in agree­ment with oth­er states on a re­cip­roc­al basis.”
On Feb. 14, 1984, The Times re­por­ted that Kon­stantin U. Chernen­ko, 72, was chosen as the new lead­er of the So­viet Uni­on.
On Feb. 10, 1984, The Times re­por­ted that So­viet lead­er Yuri V. An­drop­ov, 69, who had ruled the So­viet Uni­on in ill health for only 15 months was dead.
On Nov. 12, 1982, The Times re­por­ted that former KGB chief Yuri V. An­drop­ov was un­an­im­ously elec­ted to suc­ceed Le­onid I. Brezh­nev as Com­mun­ist Party lead­er.