End of the Warsaw Pact

Soviet Superpower

Russia 1991.0225

End of the Warsaw Pact

The Cold War from the Soviet Union's view (25 February 1991)

Historical Map of Russia & the former Soviet Union

The collapse of communism in eastern Europe weakened the Warsaw Pact, which had mostly functioned as a tool for maintaining Soviet hegemony. East Germany was the first to leave when it united with West Germany in 1990, effectively joining NATO. The following year, Poland and Czechoslovakia fought alongside NATO members to liberate Kuwait from an Iraqi invasion. By now the Pact had lost all purpose and it was declared disbanded in February.

Main Events

Bulgarian National Assembly formally abolishes Communist Party's leading role

Lithuania declares independence from the Soviet Union

Iraq invades Kuwait

German reunification

January Events

In response to Lithuania's bid for independence, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics begins military actions in Lithuania. Soviet troops seize buildings in the capital, Vilnius, and other cities and fire on protesters. After two days and international condemnation, Soviet forces withdraw.

Operation Desert Storm

Coalition forces led by the United States of America conduct a five-week aerial and naval bombardment of both Iraq and Iraqi-occupied Kuwait. On 24 February, a ground assault is launched from Saudi Arabia. In a one hundred-hour land campaign, the coalition defeats the Iraqi military, liberates Kuwait, and occupies much of southern Iraq.

End of Warsaw Pact

Defense and foreign ministers of Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics meeting in Hungary declare the Warsaw Treaty Organization of Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance (Warsaw Pact) dissolved. The Warsaw Pact is formally disestablished in Prague, Czechoslovakia, on July 1.

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