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The USSR or the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics lasted from 1922 to 1991 in Russia. in 1917 the Bolsheviks siezed power after the final Czar Nicholas II was overthrown. They promised “Peace, Land, and Bread” to the people of Russia. The Bolsheviks were a communist group. As communist they controlled the economy and many other aspects of everyday life. They withdrew Russia from WWI and surrendered mush land to Germany. Eventually a civil war broke out between the Bolsheviks and anti-Bolsheviks, the Bolsheviks emerged as the winners in 1922 and establish the USSR. The leader of Russia at that time died in 1924 and Joseph Stalin became leader. Stalin killed anyone who opposed him and many Russians were killed because of this, or died because of starvation, physical hardships, or labor camps. He took control of farms and factories and made Russia become a huge industrial country. As Russia became industrialized neither the government nor the industrialists payed attention to the pollution from factories and the damaging of other environmental aspects.

In 1991 the USSR was overthrown. Leading up to this the USSR had a weakening economy. Like the U.S. had during the late 1800s and early 1900s when it was becoming industrialized, Russia had poor workers who worked in dangerous conditions with insufficient wages and who lived in crowded unsanitized areas. There leader just became wealthier and wealthier and this lead to the break up of the Soviet Union. in 1985 Mikhail Gorbachev assumed control of the USSR and put in place a reconstruction of economy which he called perestroika.

Today Russia is a democracy and has a market economy, but some aspects of the economy like farming are still governed like a communist economy would. Although the USSR discouraged anyone from being anything other than Russian there are many diverse ethnic groups in the country today. During the Soviet era the USSR government did not have any laws protecting its environment from pollution, today they have laws established to protect it but they are still dealing with the negative effects on the environment today.

Boehm, Richard G., and Dinah Zike.Glencoe world geography and cultures. New York: McGraw-Hill/Glencoe, 2012. Print.

“Britannica Online Encyclopedia.” Britannica Online Encyclopedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Feb. 2013. <http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/513251/Russia/38565/Collapse-of-the-Soviet-Unionhttp://&gt;.

“USSR Wallpapers.” DesktopArt.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Feb. 2013. <http://www.desktopart.com/ussr-wallpapers.html&gt;.

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