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the future belongs to the fertile

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Oct 20, 2005

Writing in the U.K. Spectator, Mark Steyn gives Russia a grim prognosis:

Russia is literally dying. From a population peak in 1992 of 148 million, it will be down to below 130 million by 2015 and thereafter dropping to perhaps 50 or 60 million by the end of the century, a third of what it was at the fall of the Soviet Union. It needn't decline at a consistent rate, of course. But I'd say it's more likely to be even lower than 50 million than it is to be over 100 million. The longer Russia goes without arresting the death spiral, the harder it is to pull out of it, and when it comes to the future most Russian women are voting with their foetus: 70 per cent of pregnancies are aborted. ...

At a time when Russian men already have a life expectancy in the mid-50s -- lower than in Bangladesh -- they're about to see AIDS cut them down from the other end, killing young men and women of childbearing age, and with them any hope of societal regeneration. By 2010, AIDS will be killing between a quarter and three-quarters of a million Russians every year. It will become a nation of babushkas, unable to muster enough young soldiers to secure its borders, enough young businessmen to secure its economy or enough young families to secure its future. True, there are regions that are exceptions to these malign trends, parts of Russia that have healthy fertility rates and low HIV infection. Can you guess which regions they are? They start with a 'Mu-' and end with a '-slim'.

So the world's largest country is dying and the only question is how violent its death throes are. Yesterday's Russia was characterised by Churchill as a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma. Today's has come unwrapped: it's a crisis in a disaster inside a catastrophe.

Wasn't there a Slavic chap recently who had something to say about a Culture of Life?

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