4. Repression and revolution in central and eastern Europe, 1968 to 1989

From 1968 until 1980, the states of eastern and central Europe accepted their communist governments and Soviet control; there were no more rebellions. However, resistance and resentment did not go away.  The states remained under communist one-party control with different degrees of oppression. The economies of each country failed to flourish, and in countries such as Poland, reached crisis point in the 1980s. In 1989 the governments finally started to collapse; though the specific reasons for collapse differed in each country, the impact of Gorbachev's reforms were to prove crucial in how events unfolded.

It is important to understand the impact of the Soviet economy, Gorbachev's reforms and his actions with regard to the east European states for explaining events after 1985. More discussion on this can be found here: 4. Gorbachev (1985 - 1991) (ATL) 

Poland, 1968 to 1989

Solidarity unites many social trends and associated people, adhering to various ideologies, with various political and religious convictions, irrespective of their nationality. We have united in protest against injustice, the abuse of power and against the monopolised right to determine and to express the aspirations of the entire nation. The formation of Solidarity, a mass social movement, has radically changed the situation in the country”.

Solidarity’s Programme, 16th October 1980

As you have seen from the previous page, political agitation had already taken place in Poland - in 1956 and in 1968. In both cases the unrest had been stopped by the party without Soviet intervention. However, the underlying economic and social forces that had caused the unrest had not been addressed.

In 1970, the government's decision to increase food prices by 20 per cent led to strikes in the shipyards of the port of Gdansk. At least 50 people were killed as the security forces restored order and the crisis led to Gomulka's resignation and his replacement by Edward Gierek.

Unrest continued throughout the 1970s as dissatisfaction with the PUWP grew. A new economic programme failed to deal with food shortages and new opposition forces developed, the most important of which was the Workers' Defence Committee (KOR).

As mentioned on earlier pages, the Polish church remained a dominant force in Polish society and Catholics received an enormous boost when a Polish Cardinal became the new Pope -  John Paul II. When the Pope visited Poland in 1979, Poles enthusiastically showed their commitment to the church rather than to Marxism. John Lewis Gaddis writes 'When John Paul II kissed the ground at the Warsaw airport on June 2, 1979, he began a process by which Communism in Poland - and ultimately everywhere else in Europe - would come to an end.' (Gaddis, The Cold War, Penguin 2005, pg 193)

By 1980, the Polish government was in a very weak position; Gierek's authority had been weakened by both the Pope's visit and by the economic crisis. Due to having taken out loans from the West after 1968 Poland was now in debt to the West by $25 billion and goods needed to be exported to bring in hard currency; this further increased shortages at home. When, in 1980, the government announced an increase in meat prices by 100 per cent, seventeen thousand shipyard workers in Gdansk, who were members of the newly formed trade union called Solidarity, went on strike.

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

Watch this episode of People's Century (People Power) from 18 minutes 12 seconds until 26 minutes 5 seconds

  1. What were the demands of Solidarity?
  2. What tactics did they use?
  3. What gains did they make?
  4. What was the reaction of the West (this is covered in the CNN video below)
  5. What was the reaction of other communist governments to Solidarity?
  6. What was the response of the Soviets?
  7. What was the final outcome for Solidarity?

There is also a good overview of the events of 1980 to 1981 in Poland on the CNN video episode 19. Watch this as well - or use as an alternative to the People's century video if you can not access this in your country.

Start at 35 minutes 50 seconds and watch until 41 minutes. Add notes to the questions above.

Task Two

ATL: Thinking skills

In pairs, brainstorm why Solidarity was such a threat to the Polish government and to the Soviets (click on the eye for suggested answers). To help you, refer to the quote by the photo at the top of this section.

  • it fundamentally undermined the ideology of Eastern European and Soviet dominated socialism in which workers and their practices were controlled by the state
  • it quickly evolved into a political organisation campaigning not just for improved workers' conditions but also freedom of speech and more freedom in religion
  • it was supported by both Polish intellectuals and the Catholic Church of Poland
  • it provided a channel through which Polish national consciousness could be expressed

Task Three

ATL: Thinking skills

There was huge interest in Solidarity in the West.

Write a report about Solidarity for a Western newspaper. The date is the end of December 1981 after Solidarity has been banned. You will need to explain the reasons for the Trade Union movement, its achievements and the current situation as of the end of December. Include interviews with prominent figures such as Lech Walsea. Use the information in the videos above and the websites below:

International Centre of Nonviolent Conflict

The View East

Radio Free Europe

Why did Soviet control collapse in Poland?

'What happened in Poland before the opening of the German-German border was not the prologue to revolution, but its first and decisive act. Only the Poles had engaged in recent mass opposition to communist rule in eastern Europe.'

Historian Timothy Snyder


As you have seen, General Jaruzelski declared martial law in 1981 and declared a state of emergency; Solidarity was banned and Walsea and many other members of Solidarity were imprisoned. However while communist rule, backed up with Soviet support survived, dissent simmered beneath the surface; Solidarity continued to operate underground publishing hundreds of underground books and acting as an inspiration to radical reformers in other Eastern Bloc states. Meanwhile the economic situation continued to deteriorate; in 1986 the government defaulted on $1.4 billion of debt repayments to the West and the government failed to win enough support in a referendum in 1987 on introducing an austerity package. By 1989 Poland's economy had entered another crisis. Its debt now stood at $56 billion while the cost of food had gone up by an average of 48% in 1988 which led to further strikes.

Task Four

ATL: Thinking skills

Watch the CNN cold War series episode 23 from 9 minutes 30 seconds until 12 minutes.

1. Make notes on the events that now led to the legalisation of Solidarity and to Lech Walsea now becoming prime minister of Poland.

2. Discuss in pairs: What factors now allowed Solidarity to be successful?

Task Five

ATL: Thinking skills

According to Judt, what factors contributed to the eventual downfall of the Communist rulers in Poland?

The helter-skelter quality of the last months of Communist Poland should not blind us to the long and quite slow build up that went before. Most of the actors in the drama of 1989...had already been on the stage for many years. The country had passed from a brief flourish of relative liberty in 1981 into martial law, followed by a lengthy, uncertain purgatory of repressive semi-tolerance that finally unraveled in a re-run of the previous decade's economic crises. For all the strength of the Catholic Church, the countrywide popularity of Solidarity and the Polish nation's abiding loathing of its Communist rulers, the latter clung to power for so long that their final fall came as something of a surprise. It had been a long goodbye.'

Tony Judt, PostWar, page 608

Task Six

ATL: Self-management skills

Refer back to previous pages in this section and create a timeline of key events in Poland from 1945 to 1989. Make sure the timeline is to scale.

You could use mark on events in Poland above the line and events within the Soviet Union and other satellite states that had an impact on Poland below the line

Task Seven

ATL: Thinking and self-management skills

Add details to the mind map below to show the different factors that led to the collapse of communist control in Poland.

Hungary, 1968 to 1989

As mentioned on the previous page Kádár had shown some degree of flexibility in running Hungary after 1956 and some limited freedoms had been allowed in the 1960s and 1970s. Multi-candidate elections became compulsory from 1983, and in 1985 some independent Party candidates were voted into parliament. This relatively liberal system of government was known informally as 'Goulash' Communism. During the 1970s, the Kádár government relied increasingly on loans from Western banks to finance the material incentives that constituted an essential element of 'Goulash communism'.

However, there were still limits to these changes and many younger Party members were frustrated by the lack of economic reform.

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

Read this article by the BBC on Kádár.

What do Hungarians see as the positive aspects of Kádár's rule? Why was he also criticised?

Why did Communist rule collapse in Hungary in 1989?

'It was a curiosity of the Hungarian exit from Communism that it was conducted by the Communists themselves..it was the only passage from a Communist regime to a genuine multi-party system effected entirely from within''.

'[the symbolic reburial of Nagy] was an admission of defeat, an acknowledgement that the Party and its leadership had lived and taught and imposed a lie'

Tony Judt, Postwar, pg 610

With the poor economic situation, and inspired by Gorbachev's reforms, a domestic opposition emerged in Hungary in the mid 1980s. In September 1987 the Hungarian Democratic Forum (HDF) was formed, followed by the Allince of Young Democrats (FIDESZ) and other parties. Although Kádár had allowed some freedoms, he was unable to tolerate any kind of fundamental reform of the system and this attitude was no longer sustainable; it was clear that geneuine economic reform could not take place without political reform to accompany it. Thus, Kádár was removed and replaced by Karoly Grósz.

A group of 'New' Communists in Hungary now pushed for economic and political reform. In March 1989, the Communists began talks with an alliance of opposition parties known as the Opposition Round Table. In October 1989, the reformers within the Communist party triumphed at an Extraordinary Congress and the Party's name was changed to the Hungarian Socialist Party (HSP). However, the reformed communist party failed to convince the Hungarian population and in a referendum on the constitution held in November the HSP did badly. Then, following the parliamentary elections of March and April 1990, which were the first completely free parliamentary elections in the Eastern bloc, the HSP secured only 8 per cent of the vote. The HDF in coalition with two other parties then established the first non-communist government since the 1940s.

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

Watch the CNN Cold War video episode 23  from the start until 15 minutes 15 seconds. (the section from 10 minutes until 12 minutes covers events in Poland which you will have watched above).

  1. What was Gorbachev's reaction to Hungary's plans for multi-party elections?
  2. What was the signficance of the government's new interpretation of the Hungarian Rising?
  3. What other important development took place? What was the significance of this act?
  4. What was the reaction of East Germany?
  5. What signficant events took place at the Warsaw Summit with regard to Hungary?
  6. What was the response of the US to events in Poland and Hungary

Task Two

ATL: Self-management skills

Refer back to the previous ATL pages in this topic to remind yourself of developments in Hungary during this time period.

1. Draw a timeline from 1945 to 1989 and mark on key events.

You could use mark on events in Hungary above the line and events within the Soviet Union and other satellite states that had an impact on Hungary below the line.

2. Compare this time line with your timeline for Poland. What similarities can you identify between developments in the two countries? What are the differences? What similarities and differences can you see in the reasons for the collapse of communism and Soviet control in each country?

East Germany, 1968 to 1989

As you have read in the previous section, the building of the Berlin Wall succeeded in keeping in the East Germany population and allowed the country to achieve more economic and political stability. Honecker, who replaced Ulbricht in 1971 with the support of Brezhnev, was also a hardliner who continued to strengthen the border between both Wast and East Germany and between West and East Berlin. Anyone attempting to cross to the West could be shot; during Honecker's time in office around 125 East Germans were killed while trying to reach the West. Nevertheless  whereas the leadership's stated objective had been a reunified Germany under socialist leadership, the goal was now one of 'separate development'  (Argrenzung) which reflected more accurately the actual political situation. He also moved towards normalising relations with West Germany. A Four Power Agreement was signed in 1971 which reaffirmed the special status of Berlin and new trade and travel arrangements between West Germany and Berlin. Even more significant was the 1972 Basic Treaty between the two Germanies; they now recognised each other's sovereignty and equal status. In 1973, in what is considered as one of Honecker's greatest political successes, both East and West Germany joined the United Nations as separate nations.

In 1984 improved relations continued when the mines along the borders between the GDR and the FRG were removed. His achievements in this area were welcome to many ordinary Germans because divided families were now more easily able to make contact.

There were also some changes in economic and social policy under Honecker's leadership. East Germany adopted a programme of 'consumer socialism' which led to an improvement in living standards; more emphasis was placed on consumer goods and more attention paid to development of housing. Social benefits were also  increased. Indeed, the standard of living in East Germany was higher than in other countries in the Warsaw pact and the regime derived much prestige from its success in the Olympic Games.

All of these developments allowed Honecker to believe that he was secure and would not face threats to his power when Gorbachev started his political and economic reforms and when unrest started elsewhere in Eastern Europe.

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

Discuss the following questions in pairs:

Why might Honecker believe that his position in East Germany was secure?

Despite Honecker's optimism regarding his position in East Germany, there were many reasons for public discontent:

  • Despite the improved economic conditions in East Germany it was increasingly difficult to disguise the disparity between East and West Germany in living standards
  • the Party's elite became increasingly associated with corruption and incompetence
  • The Stasi (see 3. Support and cooperation, repression and protest (1945 - 1968) ) remained ever vigilant and no political dissent was allowed; the SED remained firmly in power

Most signficantly, Honecker was determined not to consider any programme on the lines of perestroika or glasnost

Why did Communist rule collapse in East Germany?

'The German uprising of 1989 ..was perhaps the only truly popular - i.e. mass - revolution of that year'

Tony Judt, Postwar, pg 616

By 1989 there were serious undercurrents of unrest emerging and  events in Hungary acted as a catalyst to this situation when 25,000 East Germans supposedly 'holidaying' in Hungary succeeded in crossing the border into Austria. As you will already have seen from watching the CNN video, Honecker was very worried about events taking place in Poland and Hungary and the fact that the Soviet Union was failing to intervene.

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

Continue watching episode 23 of the CNN Cold War series from 16 minutes 55 seconds until the end which covers the growing protest within East Germany and how it led ultimately to the collapse of the Berlin Wall.

Take notes on the sequence of events leading up to the Berlin Wall coming down and then consider the questions in the next task.

Task Two

ATL: Thinking skills

From the video, and any other research that you have done, consider the following questions in pairs:

  • How significant were the actions of Honecker in the allowing the protest to develop? Is there any thing that he could have done to appease the protesters?
  • To what extent was the visit of Gorbachev, 6 October 1989, the catalyst for the fall of Honecker?
  • How significant was the role of Egon Krenz?
  • What factors led to the Berlin Wall coming down?
  • What justification is there for Judt's claim that 'neither the Party (as in Hungary) , nor the opposition (as in Poland) can claim much credit for the course of events'. (Postwar pg 615)

Following the fall of the Wall, the SED voted 420 - 0 to delete from the GDR's constitution the clause declaring that the state is 'led by the working class and its Marxist-Leninist party'. Four days later the Politburo resigned, the old Communist leadership was expelled from the party, round table discussions began with representatives of Neues Forum and free elections were scheduled.

The first democratically elected GDR Government was formed on 9 April. However, it would also be the last as now there was a push for reunification with West Germany which would take place in October 1990.

Czechoslovakia, 1968 to 1989

Following the crushing of the Prague Spring, Dubček was replaced by Gustáv Husák who followed a policy of 'normalisation'. This meant a period of repression; intellectuals and writers had to repudiate the events of the Prague Spring in order to be published and the secret police, the StB, was active in watching for any sign of dissent. It also meant that there was no more innovation in the economy which stagnated.

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

Watch this video in which Martin Butora, a Slovak writer and activist, talks about the period of 'normalisation'.

  1. What does he say happened to many people who had played an active role in the 1968 rising?
  2. Why was there a feeling of frustration (including with the West)?
  3. Why did the Helsinki Accords provide a degree of encouragement?

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

In 1975, Havel wrote this letter to Husák

What can we learn from this letter about the extent of repression under Husák?

As mentioned by Martin Butora in the video above, the Helsinki Accords of 1975 changed the situation within Czechoslovakia. In the Helsinki Agreement, signed between the West and the USSR, the USSR agreed to respect human rights and freedoms, such as freedom of thought, conscience, or religion, and freedom of travel. This acted as a catalyst for the emergence of a protest movement. In Czechoslovakia, as well as in other east European countries, 'Helsinki Groups' emerged dedicated to holding their governments accountable on human rights issues. One prominent group was Charter 77. Inspired by the Polish group KOR (see above) it was set up by a group of over 200 Czechoslovak intellectuals including writer Václav Havel. Charter 77 issued a charter demanding that the Helsinki Accords and the United Declaration of Human Rights be fully implemented in Czechoslovakia. However, unlike Poland, such dissent remained amongst the intellectual elite; the working class remained passive supporters of the regime - and this was mainly because the economic situation ensured reasonable living standards for workers (despite its industry being outdated an uncompetitive). Nevertheless, the new organisations such as Charter 77 received widespread publicity within the West.

Another source of moral opposition was the Catholic Church which was becoming more powerful again by the 1980s.

Why did communism collapse in Czechoslovakia in 1989?

Husák had no intention of following Gorbachev's lead in carrying out reforms. In 1987 he was replaced by Miloš Jakeš.

Gorbachev sent a telegram which congratulated Jakeš and declared that:

“We are confident that the Central Committee under your leadership will ensure the fulfillment of wide-scale tasks facing the party in the field of the further development and renewal of socialism on Czechoslovak soil, the restructuring of the economic mechanism, the democratization of the public and political life of the country.”

However,  Jakeš was unwilling to implement such reforms.  But without Gorbachev's support and the threat of Soviet intervention, and and with the economic situation deteriorating, dissident opposition started to grow. The 20th anniversary of the Prague Spring in 1988 was marked by student demonstrations in Prague involving up to 10,000 protesters thus suggesting that opposition was growing beyond the intellectual circles of Charter 77. Protests continued into 1989 when Havel was also arrested. Events in the GDR further radicalised opposition; the fleeing of thousands of East Germans to the West German embassy in Prague in order to escape, and then the fall of the Berlin Wall acted as a flashpoint. Protests were co-ordinated by Civic Forum, a new group that was established to coordinate opposition activities. Once Gorbachev had made it clear that he would not repeat the repression of 1968, it was only a matter of time before the communist government collapsed.

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

Watch CNN Cold War video episode 24 below from 5 minutes in until 8 minutes.

Also Watch People's Century (above) from 36 minutes 50 seconds until 40 minutes.

  1. Using the information above and the videos discuss the factors which led to the final collapse of the communist government in Czechoslovakia.
  2. Why was it known as the 'Velvet Revolution'?

A new coalition government, mostly consisting of non-commuists, was announced on 3 December 1989. The key moment came on 29 December 1989 when Husák was replaced by Havel as President of Czechoslavakia by a unanimous vote in parliament. Havel gave amnesty to 16,000 political prisoners on 1st January 1990; the old regime was clearly over.

Democratic parliamentary elections were held in June 1990 and Civic Forum won most of the seats, though as it was only a coalition of different interest groups it soon split up into five parties. Then, in 1992, the country split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Bulgaria 1968 to 1989

Bulgaria was ruled by Todor Zhivkov between 1954 and his fall from power in 1989. This long rule was possible due to his tight control of domestic and foreign policy, his support from the Soviet Union and his eradication of all domestic opposition. Also key was the fact that, for a long time, his economic policies were successful.

Task One

ATL: Research and thinking skills

Using the following articles for Zhivkov; make notes on Zhivkov's policies and reasons for his long rule.

Consider: relationship with the Soviet Union, successes and failure of economic policy, treatment of opposition, treatment of the country's Turks

New York Times obituary

The Independent obituary

Vagabond article

Why did Zhivkov's rule end in 1989?

In 1987, Zhivkov responded to an economic downturn and also to developments in the Soviet Union by announcing the 'July Concept' -  promising liberal reforms. Economic growth had fallen from over 5 per cent in 1986 to 0.4 per cent in 1989, while foreign debts mounted. However, while some economic restructuring took place (as with perestroika in the Soviet Union) there was no attempt to allow any 'glasnost' or openness and the government argued that there could be no attack on the principles of Socialism.

IN 1989, inspired by events elsewhere in Eastern Europe a reform demonstration took place in Sofia but was broken up. Zhivkov was already facing a scandal due to his Turkish policy (see here for more details on this) which had led to 300,000 Bulgarian Turks crossing to Turkey. With the regime looking increasingly unstable, an anti-Zhivkov conspiracy in the Party hierarchy developed. This was supported by the military and the day after the Berlin Wall fell, the Central Committee deposed Zhivkov.

The collapse of Zhivkov was thus due to the Party itself rather than from popular opposition. In fact popular participation developed only after the coup. The Communists renamed themselves as the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) and opposition groups established themselves under the umbrella of the Union of Democratic Forces (UDF).

Romania 1968 to 1989

Romania under Nicolae Ceaușescu followed an independent line with regard to relations with Moscow. Romania's independence was shown in its good relations with China and Yugoslavia and in 1968, it condemned the invasion of Czechoslovakia and continued to limit its role in both COMECON and the Warsaw Pact. Ceaușescu also had good relations with the West; indeed the West saw Romania as a country where they could secure some influence and so made great efforts to court Ceaușescu. As a result, Ceaușescu joined the IMF and the World Bank and got preferential trading status with the European Community. Thus ironically, while Ceaușescu was one of the most repressive rulers of the eastern and central states, he was also the one that the West favoured the most.

However, such an independent line was not shown in the treatment of ordinary Romanians where  tight communist control was maintained. Ceaușescu developed a strong personality cult and nepotism was rife within the party. His wife was very powerful and by the late 1970s four members of Ceaușescu's family were on the Party Central Committee. Despite the introduction of multi-party elections to parliament in 1974, the reality was a growing personal dictatorship. Economic development was slow with chronic food shortages. National groups such as the 1.6 Hungarians within Romania suffered even more due to a programe of 'Romanisation' which aimed to weaken their national identity; the autonomous Hungarian region of Romania suffered the lowest economic development in the country.

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

Watch the first 46 minutes of this documentary on Ceaușescu's Romania.

Make notes on

  • the characteristics of his regime
  • the economic situation
  • the attitude and actions of the West towards Ceaușescu
  • the reasons why Romanians supported him

Why did Ceaușescu's rule collapse in 1989?

The stranglehold which Ceaușescu held over the country meant that change was slower to take place. Any dissent was quickly and brutally suppressed. However, in 1987 a secret 'National Salvation Front' organisation circulated a document calling for Ceaușescu's removal. In December 1987, following Ceaușescu's re-election as head of the Party, the authorities tried to deport a popular Hungarian priest, László Tőkés; this was an attempt to deal with the thousands of Hungarians who were fleeing into Hungary. In response, Romanians and Hungarians demonstrated; 71 were killed. A state of emergency was declared in Timosoara.

In an attempt to regain control and rally support, László Tőkés convened a rally in Bucharest. However, the crowd turned against Ceaușescu.

Task One

ATL: Thinking skills

Continue watching People's Century (above) from 39 minutes 55 seconds.

Also continue the documentary on Ceaușescu

  1. Make notes on the key events of the final days of Ceaușescu.
  2. In pairs, discuss the reasons for the collapse of communism in Romania.

 Conclusions and review

'[the countries of central and eastern Europe were] 'a sandpile ready to slide' (Gaddis, The Cold War, pg238)

In the space of a few  months all the countries of the Eastern Bloc had undergone major political changes.

Why did communist governments collapse so easily and so quickly in 1989? Even with all the economic weaknesses of the eastern and central European states, no one had predicted such an event.

Certainly the 'domino effect' was key; once one country had fallen it was difficult for the governments of other countries to maintain their credibility and their argument that they were the logical product of a historical process.

The speed with which the collapse took place is quite astonishing and this was largely due to the impact of communications media; the people of eastern and central Europe were watching events unfold on television and this inspired them further.  As Judt writes 'Communism's crucial asset, its control and monopoly of information was lost'.

Why were the revolutions so peaceful (other than in Romania)? Judt argues that the revolutionaries of 1989 had 'a distaste for violence'. The people who challenged the communists were a mix of reform Communists, social democrats, liberal intellectuals, free-market economists, Catholic activities, trade unionists and many others; this variety of opposition gave them a strength. The Communist governments began to see the impossibility of holding onto power as slim - even if they used force.

Gaddis gives credit to this 'people power': 'What no one understood, at the beginning of 1989, was that the Soviet Union, its empires, its ideology - and therefore the Cold War itself - was a sandpile ready to slide. All it took to happen were a few more grains of sand. The people who dropped them were not in charge of superpowers or movements or religions: they were ordinary people with simple priorities who saw, seized, and sometimes stumbled into opportunities, In doing so, they caused a collapse no one could stop. Their 'leaders' had little choice but to follow'. (Cold War, Penguin 2005, pg 238)

Gorbachev's actions remain key for allowing them to happen, and for ensuring that there was no bloodshed.

'By indicating that he would not intervene he decisively undermined the only real source of political legitimacy available to the rulers of the satellite states: the promise (or threat) of military intervention from Moscow. Without the threat the local regimes were politically naked.' (Judt, Postwar, pg 632)

'Gorbachev ensured that the great 1989 revolution was the first one ever in which almost no blood was shed...In both its ends and its means, then, this revolution became a triumph of hope. It did so chiefly because Mikhail Gorbachev chose not to act, but rather to be acted upon. (Gaddis, Cold War, pg 239)

Task One

Self-management skills

For each of the eastern and central European states discussed above, create a timeline to show the key events in the country from 1945 to 1989 (you will need to refer to the previous pages for earlier events).

Task Two

Thinking and self-management skills

The factors above impacted on most of the revolutions. However, the character of each revolution was different, and in each of the revolutions, different factors were at play or had different degrees of influence in how events unfolded

Consider the list of factors below and discuss in pairs which were relevant in each country; justify your argument with reference back to events of each of the revolutions.

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