A new period in the development of the Russian language, characterised by an intensification of all linguistic processes and the liberalisation of language usage, began with perestroika. This was a programme launched by the then General Secretary of the Communist Party Mikhail Gorbachëv in 1985, in order to revive the Soviet system and establish a more humane, economically efficient and politically liberal kind of socialism. Instead, the reforms proved to be impossible to implement, constrained as they were by the inflexibility of the Communist regime they were supposed to enhance. The failed antiGorbachëv coup of 19-21 August 1991 accelerated the collapse of Communist rule and the disintegration of the USSR.