Sergey Stankevich, a former advisor to Boris Yeltsin, said he was sure that Mikhail Gorbachev, the first president of the Soviet Union, sought to preserve the Soviet Union, except that he was unlucky.
"There are factors, such as unexpected and unwanted consequences," Yeltsin's former adviser said in a press statement. "This happens all the time in history. And this is the case with Gorbachev." Stankevich said that Gorbachev had really wanted to save the Soviet Union, but the coup attempt in August 1991 prevented him from doing so, adding in this context that "all republics that were ready to remain in the Soviet Union fled from Moscow."
The former advisor to the first president of Russia expressed the view that the Soviet Union collapsed because the Soviet Communist Party led it to a dead end, and that the reforms were "embarrassing", while the second reason was the attempted coup.
Stankevich concluded that the attempted coup was a "decisive blow, after which there was nothing left but an attempt to remain alone."
It is noteworthy that the Soviet Union practically collapsed on December 25, 1991, when Gorbachev announced, in a speech to the Soviet people his resignation from the post of head of state, and preceded that the leaders of Russia, Belarus and Ukraine signed on December 8 the "Belovichskaya" agreement, which stipulated the end of the existence of the Soviet Union and the declaration of Founding of the Commonwealth of Independent States.
And in 1990, all the Soviet Federated Republics declared their independence. To stop the dissolution of the Soviet state, a referendum was held on March 17, 1991, in which more than three-quarters of the electorate voted in favor of preserving the Soviet Union.
Based on the results of the referendum in the spring of 1991, a draft treaty on "the federation of sovereign republics" appeared, and was scheduled to be signed on August 20, but this did not happen because of the coup attempt between 19 to 21 August.