Nigel Farage says Mikhail Gorbachev 'would have been dismayed' when Russia invaded Ukraine as last Soviet leader dies aged 91

Mikhail Gorbachev "would have been dismayed" when Vladimir Putin ordered Russian forces to invade Ukraine, GB News' Nigel Farage claimed

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Mikhail Gorbachev, the man who brought down the Iron Curtain by introducing Glasnost and Perestroika to the Soviet Union, has died aged 91.

The Russian leader, alongside Britain's Margaret Thatcher and US President Ronald Reagan, is widely credited with bringing an end to the Cold War.

But he leaves a troubled legacy, as his efforts to open up his home nation were later undermined by current leader Vladimir Putin.

And, commenting on Mr Gorbachev's remarkable life after his death was confirmed on Tuesday evening, GB News' Nigel said Mr Putin's actions would have left the 91-year-old "dismayed".

Mikhail Gorbachev stands with Margaret Tharcher during a meeting in London
Mikhail Gorbachev stands with Margaret Tharcher during a meeting in London
Nigel Farage commenting on Mikhail Gorbachev's death on Tuesday
Nigel Farage commenting on Mikhail Gorbachev's death on Tuesday

Appearing on Dan Wootton Tonight, Nigel told GB News' Dan: "I can only guess, but in the last six months he would have been dismayed to see Russia cast out very much to the outer edges of Western civilisation.

"To see Russia driven into the arms of the Chinese Communist Party must have been a pretty depressing thing for him."

It comes as Prime Minister Boris Johnson led tributes to the “courage and integrity” of the former Soviet leader.

Mr Gorbachev’s death at the age of 91 has inspired an outpouring of tributes from world leaders.

Many made reference to the timing of his death during the worst period of relations between Russia and the West since the end of the Cold War.

In a Twitter post, Mr Johnson said he was “saddened” to hear the news at a “time of Putin’s aggression in Ukraine”.

The PM wrote: “I’m saddened to hear of the death of Gorbachev.

“I always admired the courage and integrity he showed in bringing the Cold War to a peaceful conclusion.

“In a time of Putin’s aggression in Ukraine, his tireless commitment to opening up Soviet society remains an example to us all.”

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said Mr Gorbachev was “one of the great figures” of the last century who will “forever be remembered”.

He added: “One of the great figures of the 20th Century, Mikhail Gorbachev’s pursuit of reform forged a path for diplomacy over conflict.

“He will forever be remembered as the last leader of the Soviet Union who had the courage and conviction to end the Cold War.”

Mikhail Gorbachev with Ronald Reagan
Mikhail Gorbachev with Ronald Reagan
Russia's Vladimir Putin with Mikhail Gorbachev
Russia's Vladimir Putin with Mikhail Gorbachev

Irish premier Micheal Martin said: “I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Mikhail Gorbachev, one of the most significant political figures of the late 20th century.

“At a time when the threat to the world of nuclear destruction was very real, he saw the urgent need for rapprochement with the West and for greater openness and reform – glasnost and perestroika – in the then Soviet Union.

“His leadership helped to end the arms race between the East and West, end the Cold War and bring down the Iron Curtain that had divided Europe since the Second World War.”

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen praised the late politician’s legacy as “one we will not forget”.

She said: “He played a crucial role to end the Cold War and bring down the Iron Curtain.

“It opened the way for a free Europe.

“This legacy is one we will not forget. RIP Mikhail Gorbachev.”