The Ukrainian vote for independence in December 1991 effectively ended the existence of the Soviet Union, and propelled one of Europe's submerged nations on to the world stage. The study of nationalities and nationalism in the former Soviet Union is incomplete without a survey of developments in the second largest republic and one of the most important states to have emerged from the ruins of the USSR in an unstable and under researched region of Europe. Ukraine, a country the size of France in land and population, will play an increasingly important role in regional and world affairs as a new military and potential economic power. This book surveys the range of developments in the fields of politics, society, independent parties, the Communist Party, independent media, foreign and military affairs on the road to independence, using primary official, samizdat and other sources. The main theme of the book is the transition in Ukraine from the policies of perestroika and glasnost, first introduced by Mikhail Gorbachev, to the ultimate break with Moscow which brought an end to both the Soviet empire and his own career. This second edition is expanded and updated to include greater detail of developments within Ukraine within a broader Soviet context.