Reaction to the death of Mikhail Gorbachev, as with his life, was divided sharply into two main camps.

He was especially revered in the West and among some Russians for bringing down the curtain on the brutal, oppressive Soviet system, ending the tense years of the Cold War that had brought the world to the brink of a nuclear confrontation.

Some Russian hard-liners and others reviled him for the very same thing, damning him for letting the power of the Soviet Union dissipate.