Featured Book:

Mikhail Gorbachev

Essential Thoughts

This book sets out the ideas and ideals, the spirit and vision that guided Mikhail Gorbachev in his world-changing agenda, in a concise form.

It also offers Gorbachev’s insights into how each of us can help to restore humanist values and personal responsibility as the foundation of global politics.

This wealth of wisdom is an invaluable resource for overcoming the huge social and environmental challenges that humanity faces today. The boundless optimism and confidence of this colossal world figure can inspire each of us to play our role, large or small, in helping to create a sustainable and peaceful future for our planet earth and all its inhabitants.

“We are one mankind, we are one planet!”
                                            – Mikhail Gorbachev

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About the editor

The book’s editor, Michael S. Karlen of Switzerland, has selected text passages by Mikhail Gorbachev to shed light on a number of current challenges such as the new political thinking, leadership and responsibility, US-Russia relations, climate change and more. Karlen says: “Having studied the subject for over two decades, I felt there was a huge treasure of wisdom, knowledge and practical know-how that should not be lost and that could be of great value and importance to overcome today’s challenges. I have attempted to gather these gems and present them in a concentrated and easily accessible format for a wider audience.”

The majority of texts in this book are selected from Mikhail Gorbachev’s books, speeches, letters and interviews, some never before available in English. Commentaries from contemporaries and historians related to Gorbachev and his work are added to give additional historical context and understanding of the Soviet leader’s impact. The book is richly illustrated with historic photographs that offer further glimpses into the personality of this fascinating world figure.

Quotes from Essential Thoughts

Perestroika was not a choice for me:
it was a direct extension of my personality,
my philosophy, and my moral feelings.

Quotes from Essential Thoughts

“My most urgent message is that
it is time for every person and
every nation to rethink their role
in global development.
Everyone needs to be involved.
Everyone has a role to play.
And it is the personal involvement
of each and every individual that will
allow a new civilization to flourish on.”

Quotes from Essential Thoughts

“Today it is my dream that every
aware citizen should be
‘a president of the Earth’
and take responsibility for its fate
upon himself or herself.”

Quotes from Essential Thoughts

“It is my firm belief that the infinite
and uncontrollable fury of
nuclear weapons should never
be held in the hands of any
mere mortal ever again,
for any reason.”

Quotes from Essential Thoughts

“The only way towards genuine peace
is to eliminate these weapons altogether.
To embark on this path means to pass
a historic maturity test.”

Quotes from Essential Thoughts

“A historic milestone in the chronicle
of man’s eternal quest for a world
without wars.”
(after the signing of the INF Treaty, 1987)

Quotes from Essential Thoughts

I believe that the environmental challenge
is the number one problem on the
[international] agenda. If we don’t succeed,
then no theory, no system will matter,
all the current disagreements will seem
like peanuts compared to the destructive
impact of the conflict between man and
his environment.

Gorbachev changed the course of history.

• Ending the Cold War
• Limiting nuclear weapons
• Giving freedom to millions
• Creating a global environment organization
• Bringing to world politics a unique humanist and ecological perspective

There is much we can
learn from him today.