The Cold War limped on through the 1970s, but during the 1980s the situation began to slowly thaw. A new Soviet Primer came to power, his name was Mikhail Gorbachev. Gorbachev was a reformer, and believed that the Soviet Union could create a market economy for itself, produce better goods, engage in open trade, and remain as it had been a unified power. Beginning in 1989 satellite nations in Eastern Europe began declaring independence. Like dominos countries began holding elections and forming democratic governments. What would the Soviet response be? On December 25, 1991 Mikhail Gorbachev The Premier of the Soviet Union resigned. In truth there wasn't much left of The USSR, but this was still a grand gesture. Later that same year Boris Yeltsen, President of The Russian Federation, began moving the government offices of Russia into The Kremlin, and for the first time in 70 years the Russian Flag flew over the land. The Cold War was over.
The former Soviet Union was to deal with a number of unique obstacles during the post-Soviet transition including political reform, economic restructuring and the redrawing of political boundaries. The discomfort associated with these changes was not felt the same in each former Soviet republic. As a general rule, states to Russia's west, such as Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic, have fared slightly better then their eastern neighbours since the collapse of the Eastern bloc, while Russia itself and countries to Russia's east experienced greater difficulties and found themselves on worse footing immediately after dissolution. A major reason that Russia's transition has been so wrenching is that the country is remaking both its Soviet-era political and economic institutions at once. In addition to institutional reforms designed to create a new political-economic system, Russia was also charged with remaking itself into a new national state following the disintegration of the Soviet Union.