Actually USSR collapsed by a one main reason - The Soviet economic system couldn't stand the unequal competition with the United States on the issue of the arms race. We has a comparable weapons with US but... we off the another parts of economy. Problems of soviet economy had a systemic nature and actually has lots of times from 1960 x where reforms were needed. Unfortunately, the USSR couldn't has same military and standards of life lvl together with a NATO, because NATO just has more people.
And really survivend of the USSR was not a matter of competence of the Soviet leaders but question of a incompetence of a US leaders. Of course exist a ways how USSR could have survived, but it's mainly lucky case and the question of brilliant leader but... Gorbachev recently said what he "was arrogant when thinking that he could remake USSR" The laws of statistics and large-numbers is rather ruthless and Soviets economican sustem was aren't effective enough to overcome the US economican superity. It's itself is incredibly that the Soviet Union played the game for so long.
So - answer why USSR collapsed is so simply. After WW-2 USA has a 55% of world GDP, when USSR has near 20% of GDP, lost 20 million civilian people and half part of USSR has devastated by the War. Russian polulation still can't recover from the atrocities of the Nazis. As a result, the USSR had to strain every power and mobilize everything when USA just had far more money and people.
All what happened after was inevitable. Perhaps we could hope for a miracle? Or coalition with a China?
Last edited by OpusTheFowl
on Sun 4 Jan 2015 20:09, edited 1 time in total.