The “fairest” world order lasted 70 years

Communism failed to make any significant inroads beyond its homeland for a long time, except for an episode in Spain in the 1930s. Only the aggressive policies of Nazi Germany and its defeat paradoxically helped its ideological nemesis to prosper. After World War II, communism dominated many European and Asian countries under the aegis of the Soviet Union and nearly provoked a nuclear conflict between the great powers in Cuba, Central America. A communist empire was born, consisting of de facto independent states, effectively ruled by the Soviet Union, a powerful guarantor of communism. What did [Russian] communism bring to these satellite states, which could be locally influenced by their traditional national and cultural traits? The Soviet Union, aware of its absolute superiority, usurped the patent on the interpretation of communist ideology and its protection. The practice of communist ideology in other countries showed signs of diversity, for example, the possibility or complete prohibition of petty trade (East Germany x Czechoslovakia) and the allowance or exclusion of religious influence (Poland x Czechoslovakia). These differences did not provoke a major reaction in the Soviet leadership, probably because they did not threaten communism itself. But whatever tendencies there were, for example, toward the reestablishment of genuine national independence, suggestions of party pluralism, individual freedom and group restraint, and better relations with Western democracies, they were mercilessly crushed by military force in Hungary in 1956 and in Czechoslovakia in 1968. Poland barely escaped the same aggression in the early 1980s. At least, like Yugoslavia, it was thrown into an ideological cage.
Gradually, however, the exhaustion of communism began to become apparent. The naive but sincere ideological zeal and conviction of the older cadres were replaced by a new generation of communist rulers, whose crafted routine of half-heartedly cramming boring slogans became the subject of various folkloric adaptations and shenanigans instead of mobilizing for action. [For example, the call to “Not a single grain of the fifth five years will be wasted” was supplemented with “Not a single grain of the sixth five years will be wasted. Farewell.” The claim that “in capitalism man was exploited by man, but in socialism it is the other way around” also gained popularity. The political weakening of communism was accompanied by difficulties in the economy, widespread elitism, and growing corruption. The communist icon of the fighter for rights, equality, and justice for all was replaced by the image of the official who maximizes every superior opportunity not available to the common man for his own benefit. Attempts at redemption (a return to the ideal) failed and led to the collapse of communism in Europe. Symbolically, where communism originated and spread in the middle of the last century, its downfall also began.