Photo Gallery 'Glasnost Isn't Dead'

In a SPIEGEL interview, former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev discusses the dangers of poor relations between Russia and the West in the Ukraine crisis, saying there is a danger that things could get worse. Germany, he says, has a significant role to play.
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Gorbachev's policies of perestroika and glasnost helped to usher out the Communist era. In 1989, he appeared in this iconic photograph with East German leader Erich Honecker (right) in East Berlin to celebrate the country's 40th anniversary. Weeks later, the Berlin Wall would fall.

Foto: DPA
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Gorbachev has often been criticized for his relatively positive relationship with current Russian President Vladimir Putin. "He is an experienced president who has done and continues to do much for Russia," Gorbachev told SPIEGEL in his interview. "At the same time, some things have to be said openly to him."

Foto: Alexey Druginyn/ Ria Novosti/ Kremlin Pool/ DPA
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Gorbachev (second from left) is seen at the commemorations of the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Wall in Berlin in 2009, with Lech Walesa (right) and German Chancellor Angela Merkel (center). Of Merkel, Gorbachev says, "I like her as a person and a politician. But that doesn't mean that I don't have the right to criticize her, just as she has the right to criticize me." He also offers highly criticial remarks about the Germans. "Many in Germany seem to want to participate in the new division of Europe," he says.

Foto: Eckehard Schulz/ AP
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