The Sarmatian Review Index


Percentage decline in death from cardiovascular disease in Poland between 1992-97: 15 percent to 20 percent.

Source: Public health advocate Dr. Witold Zatoski, as reported by Kitty McKinsey in RFE/RL Daily Report, 2 July 1997.

Quality of St. Petersburg's drinking water supply: 500 times the acceptable levels of fenolam, 260 times the acceptable levels of chloroform, 700 times the acceptable levels of micro-organisms, from double to triple the maximum world standard levels of salts and heavy metals, and 200 times the acceptable levels of bacteria that cause dysentery. One in every 20 test-tubes extracted from St. Petersburg's drinking water supply contained hepatitis A.

Source: Moscow newspaper Kommersant Daily, as reported by Brian Whitmore in RFE/RL, 1 July 1997.

Number of drug addicts in Russia: 300,000. <BR>Number of drug users in Russia: 2 million.

Source: Interior Ministry officials, as reported by Reuter (Moscow), 22 July 1997.

Number of Spring 1997 applicants to Polish state colleges and universities: 293,000.
Number of openings in Polish state colleges and universities in Fall 1997: 213,000.
Percentage of 19-year-olds who attend colleges and universities in Fall 1997: 25 percent (100 percent increase over 1990).

Source: Micha Jankowski in Donosy, 2 July and 2 October 1997.

Note: figures for private colleges and universities are not available. It is estimated that the high-tuition private colleges have an additional 100,000 openings for freshmen.


Life expectancy in Poland in 1997: 68 years for men and 76.5 years for women.

Source: Donosy, 26 August 1997.

Suicide rate increase between August 1-18, 1997, in regions affected by catastrophic floods in Poland in July 1997: 46 percent (by comparison to 1996).

Source: Gazeta Wyborcza, 27 August 1997.

Percentage of American Jews who are of Eastern European origin: 95 percent.

Source: Elisabeth Farnsworth in MacNeil-Lehrer Report, 26 August 1997.

Percentage of Jews in the U.S. population: 2 percent.

Source: Michael Medved, "The Jewish Question," National Review, 28 July 1997.

Percentage of Jews in the pre-World War II Polish population: 10.1 percent, or 3.3 million.
Percentage of Jews in the Polish state in the second half of the 18th century: 5.4 percent to 8.2 percent, or 600,000-900,000 (est.).

Source: Kluszczyski's Encyklopedia Polski (1996) and Penguin's Atlas of World Population History (1980).

Damage in Poland caused by July 1997 floods: $3 billion, according to estimates by western insurance companies; $3.7 billion, according to Polish economics minister Wieslaw Kaczmarek.
Aid for victims distributed so far: $860 million, of which $40 million came from abroad.
Damage in the Czech Republic caused by July 1997 floods, according to the Czech environment minister Jiri Skalicky: $1.76 billion.

Source: Agence France-Presse, 28 August , 15 September and 3 October 1997.

President Boris Yeltsin's net worth (as declared in May 1997): $200,000, with $42,000 in 1996 earnings.
Russian Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin's net worth (as declared on 10 July 1997): $46,000 (a country home outside Moscow valued by him at $27,000, and a 1997 Chevrolet Blazer valued by him at $19,000), with $8,000 in 1996 earnings.

Source: Reuter (Moscow), 10 July 1997.

Percentage of due taxes collected during the first nine months of 1997 in Russia: 52 percent,

Source: Stephanie Baker in RFE/RL News, 31 October 1997.

Estimated percentage of the Russian economy controlled by organized crime: 66 percent.

Source: Center for Strategic and International Studies Report, as reported by Reuter, 29 September 1997.

Countries which overtook Russia in GDP size in the past seven years: Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Canada and South Korea.

Source: Andrei Ilarionov of Moscow's Institute for Economic Analysis, as reported by Agence France-Presse, 16 September 1997.

Draft Russian budget for 1998, approved by the government on 21 August 1997: $58.6 billion, or 12.4 percent of the estimated GDP. Planned deficit: 4.8 percent of the GDP. Reuter-estimated deficit: 5.35 percent of the GDP.

Source: RFE/RL, 22 August 1997.

The largest borrowers from the World Bank in the fiscal year ending June 1997: first, China; second, Russia ($1.7 billion); sixth, Ukraine ($989.6 million); ninth, Romania ($625 million).

Source: Robert Lyle in RFE/RL, 16 July 1997.

Amount of money paid by the Turkish government official for Batyskaf, a Polish Arabian horse, during the yearly auction in Janów Podlaski in August 1997: $450,000.

Source: Donosy, 18 August 1997.

Direct foreign investment in Poland over the last five years: $16 billion.
Estimated further investment by companies which have already invested in Poland: $9.2 billion.
Breakdown of investors by area: 54.6 percent the European Union, 23.1 percent the United States, 4 percent Asia.
Percentage of foreign investors who reinvest their money in Poland: 85 percent.

Source: Agence France-Presse (Warsaw), 27 August 1997.

Amount of money Ukrainians spent in Poland in 1996: Zl. 1.2 billion ($463 million).
Rankings of Poland's neighbors by the amount of money they spent in Poland in 1996: Germans, Ukrainians, Czechs, Slovaks, Belarusians.
Total amount of money spent by these neighbors in Poland in 1996: Zl. 8.8 billion.

Source: Micha Jankowski in Donosy, 25 September 1997; The Washington Post, 24 November 1997. Percentage decline in Russian farm output in 1997 since peak levels in the Soviet era: 40 percent.

Source: Lynnley Browning of Reuter (Moscow), 2 July 1997.

IMF forecast of GDP growth in central and eastern Europe in 1997: Ukraine, minus three percent; Croatia, 5.5 percent; Poland, 5.5 percent; Belarus, 5 percent; Slovakia, 4.5 percent.
Decrease in Russian exports in the first seven months of 1997 (as compared to 1996): 2.8 percent, with a total of $47.9 billion.
Increase in Russian trade surplus in the same period of time (as compared to 1996): $100 million, to $12.7 billion.

Source: Agence France-Presse, 17 September 1997.

Percentage of foreign investment in Russia that comes from the US government-sponsored sources: one-third.

Source: US Vice President Albert Gore in Moscow on 23 September 1997, as reported by Agence France-Presse on the same day.

Value of Ukrainian exports to Russia in 1996: $5.4 billion, or 40 percent of Ukraine's exports.
Value of Russian exports to Ukraine in 1996: $8.7 billion.

Source: Agence France-Presse, 27 September 1997.

Percentage of apartments in Poland that are privately owned: 61 percent.

Source: Micha Jankowski in Donosy, 25 September 1997.

Subscriptions to all Russian newspapers and magazines in the second half of 1997: 7 million.

Source: Nezavisimaia Gazeta, 27 August 1997.

Percentage of Russian army draftees in 1997 who have a criminal record: 20 percent.

Source: Agence France-Presse, 12 November 1997.

Number of generals in the Russian military as of July 1997: 2,865.
Planned number of generals by the year 2,000: 2,300.

Source: President Boris Yeltsin, as reported by the UPI, 2 July 1997.

Number of Russian military officers currently without housing: 97,000.

Source: RFE/RL, 11 August 1997.

Republics v. empires
Percentage of Russians who believe that the best way to settle the Chechen problem is to let Chechnya secede: 41 percent.
Percentage of Russians who regard Chechnya as already independent: 35 percent.
Percentage of Russians who still see Chechnya as part of Russia: 31 percent.
Percentage of Russians who are pessimistic about the chances of normalizing relations with Chechnya: 56 percent.

Source: September 1997 Public Opinion Foundation survey of 1,500 Russians, as reported by Interfax

and Agence France-Presse, 25 September 1997.

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The Sarmatian Review
Last updated 01/21/98