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The collapse of communism in Eastern Europe and in The Soviet Union has presented an array of new opportunities but also problems for much of this region Although with this collapse the opportunity arises to establish a democratic government and a market economy exists the process has shown to be a slow one With the attempt to restore civil liberties and the hope of enjoying the standard of living similar to that of Western Europe communist parties are still in existence under new names and titles and Eastern Europe is still struggling to become free both economically and politically The problems facing Eastern Europe and The Soviet Union are both political and economic First economically this region is falling apart Unemployment is widespread and most of the plants and factories run by the communists are gone As a result of being poor and unemployed hundreds of thousands of people have migrated from Eastern to Western Europe in hopes of finding work This has led to much resentment especially from countries such as Germany Outbreaks of opposition and physical violence have erupted leading to increased ethnic tension In turn immigration is being restricted in many of the Western countries In addition to the economic troubles there is an environmental effect Many of the closed down plants and factories are so polluting that they have left many areas virtually unlivable This pollution has left the former communist nations with some of the worst environmental problems in the world This has in turn contributed to the immigration problem 2 The nations of Western Europe facing high costs themselves related to the collapse of communism are hesitant to send any relief funds to the East This is especially true in Germany where costs of their own unification have been very high East Germany and West Germany are still at odds over state aid that has been mostly directed to the East Other parts of Europe being
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