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The Sarmatian Review Index

January 2006

Volume XXVI, No. 1

German salaries vs. Polish immigration to Germany

Percentage by which German salaries would have to be cut in the next six years to avoid massive immigration from the East and/or bankruptcy of the German social services system: 20 percent.

Source: Martin Werding of Ifo, an economic think tank in München, Germany, in a conversations with Rzeczpospolita’s Jędrzej Bielecki, 2 May 2005.

Perception of instability in the Russian Federation

Percentage of Russians who fear that problems facing Russian society could in time cause the country to disintegrate: 52 percent.

Percentage of Russians who think that the treat of disintegration exists now: 30 percent.

Source: Public Opinion Foundation poll, as reported by Jonas Bernstein in Russia Reform Monitor, no. 1264 (5 May 2005).

Russian demography in 2005

Number of Muslims in the Russian Federation: 23 million (out of the total population of 143 million).

Number of Orthodox believers in Russia: 80 million, according to Russian Orthodox Church authorities; 40 million and declining, according to religious experts.

Number of Muslims in Moscow: 1.5 million.

Source: Jeremy Page (Moscow), “The rise of Russian Muslims worries Orthodox Church,” The Times of London, 5 August 2005.

Dimensions of corruption in the Russian Federation

Amount of money spent by Russians on bribes in 2004: 319 billion dollars.

Size of an average personal bribe in 2001 and 2005: 10,200 dollars and 136,000 dollars, respectively.

Distribution of personal bribes in 2004: 584 million dollars to professors and teachers (mostly for admission to prestigious schools); 401 million dollars to physicians and other medical personnel; 354 million dollars to military authorities to avoid military service; 201 million dollars to judges; 183 million dollars to traffic policemen; 143 million dollars to persons deciding about employment. These figures do not include nonpersonal (business) bribes.

Source: Moscow Foundation INDEM research (, as of 24 July 2005; UPI (Moscow), 21 July 2005.

Civil rights organizations in Russia

Percentage of funding civil rights organizations receive from foreign sources: 95 percent.

Source: Aleksei Levchenko, “Putin v’ekhal,” <>, 20 July 2005.

Age of HIV/AIDS carriers in Russia and the United States

Percentage of persons who have HIV/AIDS in Russia that belong to the 15-29 age category: 83 percent.

Same percentage in the United States and Europe: under 30 percent.

Source: Demographer Murray Feschbach, as reported by UPI (Moscow), 15 July 2005.

Polish minority in Lithuania

Percentage of Lithuanian population who list Polish as their nationality: 7 percent.

Source: Source: “Litwa: Kłopoty z nowelizacją ustawy o mniejszościach narodowych,” Rzeczpospolita, 27 May 2005.

Poles and Ukrainians in Lviv (Lwów) in 1940

Percentage of persons of Polish nationality in Lviv/Lwów in 1940 (before two “ethnic cleansings” of Poles in that city): 55 percent.

Percentage of Ukrainians in Lviv in 1940: 14 percent.

Source: Lviv City Council member Anatolii Romanchuk, as quoted in Maja Narbutt’s “Miecz dla żołnierza,” Rzeczpospolita, 18 June 2005.

The follow-up to communism in Bulgaria

Estimated number of people who emigrated from Bulgaria since 1989: 700,000.

Source: Associated Press Online (Sofia, Bulgaria), 24 June 2005.

Bulgaria’s estimated population in 2005: 7.450 million.

Source: 2005 CIA World Factbook Online (

Bulgaria’s population in 1959: 7.8 million

Source: Encyklopedia Popularna (Warsaw: PWN, 1962).

Differences between Poles and Czechs

Percentage of people for whom religion plays a fundamental role in life: 86 percent in Poland (the highest in the poll) and 34 percent in the Czech Republic (the lowest in the poll).

Percentage of people in Poland and the Czech Republic who support abortion rights: 47 percent in Poland (the lowest) and 81 percent in the Czech Republic (the highest).

Percentage of people unequivocally opposed to death penalty: 43 percent in the Czech Republic and 39 percent in Poland (the lowest).

Source: Sofres opinion poll among EU members (sample consisted of 10,000 people), as reported by Rzeczpospolita, 24 May 2005.

Russian grain harvests

Size of the bumper grain harvest in the Russian Federation in 2005: 21.8 million tons, up 2.8 million tons from last year.

Source: Russian Agriculture Ministry, as reported by UPI (Moscow) on 25 July 2005.

Aging and Social Security in the United States

Percentage of Americans who take their reduced SS benefits before they are 65: over 75 percent.

Percentage of men 65 and older who were working in 1950 and in 2004: 46 percent and 20 percent, respectively.

In 2004, percentage of workers who retired at 62: 60 percent.

Percentage of those who so retired because of illness or downsizing: 38 percent.

Source: Ellen Goodman, “Pause, reflect before engaging in leisure-class warfare,” Houston Chronicle, 27 June 2005.

Russia’s defense budget changes

Percentage increase in the Russian defense budget in 2006 by comparison to 2005: 22 percent.

Source: Russian news agencies, as reported by Jonas Bernstein in Russia Reform Monitor, no. 1299 (21 August 2005).

2005 UN rankings of the quality of life in the world

Ranking of Poland in the UN report: 36, behind Czech Republic and Hungary, ahead of Slovakia, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia.

GDP per head in Poland, Czech Republic, Norway, and Luxemburg: 5,500 dollars, 9,000 dollars, 48,000 dollars, 59,000 dollars.

Percentage of GDP which Poland and the United States dedicate to helping the world’s poorest: 0.05 percent and 0.15 percent, respectively.

Source: United Nations Annual Report 2005 at <> as of 7 September 2005; Rzeczpospolita, 7 September 2005.

Export and wealth

Percentage of world exports that come from the world’s wealthiest countries representing 15 percent of the world’s population: 66 percent.

Source: Source: United Nations Annual Report 2005 at <> as of 7 September 2005.

Russian exports to China

Oil, ferrous metals, timber, and chemicals as percentage of total Russian exports to China: 70 percent.

Machinery and equipment as percentage of total exports: 3 percent.

Source: Sergei Blagov in Eurasia Daily Monitor, vol. 2, no. 181 (29 September 2005).

GDPs of Poland, Russia, and Germany as measured by diverse standards

2003 GDP in dollars of Poland, the Russian Federation, and Germany: 209.6 billion dollars, 432.9 billion dollars, and 2,403.2 billion dollars, respectively.

2003 GDP of the same countries in PPP (purchasing power parity): 434.6 billion dollars, 1,323.8 billion dollars, and 2,291.0 billion dollars.

Source: United Nations Annual Report 2005 at <> as of 7 September 2005.

Russia and the Australian kangaroos

Australia’s best customer for kangaroo meat: Russia, which in 2004 paid 11 million dollars for it.

Russian way of consuming kangaroo meat: put it in sausages and do not tell the public about it.

Source: Novosti, as reported by UPI (Moscow) on 3 August 2005.

Intellectual life after seventy

Number of books the philosopher Mortimer Adler wrote after he turned 70: over 20.

Source: Mortimer Adler’s biography at <>, as of 30 August 2005.

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Last updated 1/13/06