When Gorbachev became General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in March 1985, no-one, least of all Gorbachev himself, expected nationalism to rise from the ashes. And yet, a mere decade later, the political and cultural landscape of Central and Eastern Europe had been transformed. Four states, including his own, have disappeared-USS R, East Germany, Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia; former national states like Hungary, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia have become independent of Soviet influence; and new states have emerged seemingly out of nothing, especially in the non-Russian federation, the Central Asian republics, the Caucasus including Chechnya, and many more. A process of fusion has rejoined East and West Germany in unification nationalism. Fission has created the Czech Republic and Slovakia in a process which was so relatively painless that it became known as the Velvet Revolution. On the other hand, Yugoslavia imploded in a series of bloody wars, and gave the language of nationalism a new, chilling euphemism, ‘etnicko ciscenjie’ —ethnic cleansing.