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Following the collapse of the Russian Empire during World War I, a civil war was fought between various factions for control of Russia, with the winning faction becoming a splinter communist faction under Leon Trotsky, establishing the Greater Union. President Trotsky believed the only way to achieve world peace was through unifying the world under one government, as quickly as possible before other ideologies would combine to destroy communism, and through force is necessary. Trotsky's ideology became known as Unitarianism, and launched industrialization campaigns to bring the Union up to par with the rest of the world's great powers. Following Russia's victory in World War II, power transferred to Ivan Konev.
Under Konev, Russia became one of the world's dominant superpower, only rivaled by the United States. Konev attempted to speed up the process of unification by moving Russian families to occupied territories and forcing occupied territories to adopt Russia as a language and teach Russian in schools. The Cold War emerged between the Russian-led "Unified World" and the American-led "Free World". Konev ruled with an iron first and greatly increased Russia's power until his death in 1981. He was replaced by Alexei Kirilenko, who was pressured by growing nationalist underground movements in occupied territories. The depression in the West following oil shortages caused by the First and Second Arabian Wars led to Russia taking on the leading role as the world's leading exporter of oil and other natural resources.
Kirilenko was replaced by Yeltsin upon his death. Initially, under Yeltsin, Russia boomed. Riding the economic prosperity, Yeltsin began the first step to unifying the world by annexing various occupied nations on Russia's borders. However, Russia's economy collapsed in the late 1990s, as it was discovered there wasn't as much resources available as thought, and the major discovery that Yeltsin and other corrupt officials had embezzled billions of rubles during the decade. The nationalist movements rose in rebellion, and Yeltsin's corruption proved too much for the military to handle. In the Winter Coup of 2003, Unified Forces led by military leaders stormed the Kremlin and killed Yeltsin in a coup. Mikhail Gorbachev announced the dissolution of the Union to be replaced by a federation.