From a completely western/U.S. Point of view Gorbachev was a patriot who fought for what was best for the Soviet people, even at the risk of his own political career. From a Soviet perspective, however, he turned against the Lenin/Stalin tradition where any criticism of the state resulted in death or punishment. This also went against Russian history, where the Tsar's power made anyone who complained about Russian leadership a traitor. From this perspective, therefore, Gorbachev was a subversive. Moreover, he betrayed Soviet pride by revealing what was wrong with the Soviet Union. It is true that his goal was to improve the lives of the Soviet people, yet the Russian/Soviet pride was harmed by the revelation that the west had been right about the failures of its government. Even when a goal is to improve the lives of citizens, no one wants to see their nation's reputation tarnished. Gorbachev's policies also allowed the Soviet Union's empire, with its many satellite powers, to fall apart. When the Berlin Wall fell in 1989 the end of the Soviet Union was evident. This cheered many, but for the Soviet people it meant that they were no longer the one time superpower they had once been. This can be said to be a betrayal of the agreement the Soviet government had with its people - that if the people would work for the state the state would care for them.