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Twentieth Anniversary Soviet Union’s Last Day: American U Experts Available

Sunday, December 25, marks the 20th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s last official day of existence, when then-president Mikhail Gorbechev’s resignation formally ended the government Vladimir Lenin instituted in December of 1922.

American University faculty experts are available to provide commentary on the day’s significance. To request an interview, contact AU’s Communications Office at 202-885-5950 or

Anton Fedyashin, assistant professor of history and a specialist in Russian and European history, can discuss the significance of the official end of the Soviet Union. “It was a monumental and controversial event whose legacy brought as much good as it created problems,” he said. “That this event was unforeseen is a spectacular demonstration of the success of Soviet ideology directed at the West. From a sociological and anthropological point of view, the collapse demonstrated what happens when controlled societies unravel in an uncontrolled way. The post-Cold War world continues to demonstrate the tenacious persistence of Cold War stereotypes.”

James Goldgeier, dean of AU’s School of International Service, can address just about any topic relevant to the anniversary and the fall of the Soviet Union. He coauthored the book Power and Purpose: U.S. Policy toward Russia after the Cold War (Brookings, 2003.) An expert on contemporary international relations and American foreign policy, Goldgeier once worked at the State Department as a foreign affairs officer and on the National Security Council staff as a director for Russian affairs.

Additional experts are available at American University’s searchableexpert’s database.