The Sarmatian Review Index


Estimated number of people in post-communist countries who died from smoking-related illnesses in 1995: 700,000.

Estimated number of people in Russia who die annually from smoking-related illnesses: 280,000.

Estimated number of children in post-communist countries who start smoking every day: 10,000.

Source: World Health Organization and Witold Zatonski, director of Warsaw's Sklodowska-Curie Memorial Cancer Center, as reported by K.P. Foley and Julie Moffett in " East: Polish Physician Says Eastern Europe Smoking Itself To Death," Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 7 April 1998.

Number of people infected with syphilis in the Russian Federation: one in 400.

Frequency of syphilis in Russia by comparison to western Europe: 200:1.

Rate of increase over the last seven years: 50 times higher than in 1991.

Source: Stuart Parrott, "The East: Rise In Syphilis May Worsen AIDS Epidemic," RFE/RL, 3 April 1998.

Number of drug addicts in the Russian Federation in 1998: 12 million.

Source: Editorial in Izvestiya, 24 July 1998 (as reported by Russia Today, 24 July 1998).

Confirmed number of HIV carriers in Russia and Ukraine in 1997: 4,400 and 15,000, respectively.

Estimated number of HIV carriers in Russia and Ukraine in 1997: 40,000 and 110,000.

Word used in describing the rise of HIV-positive persons in CIS countries over the last four years: 'astronomical.'

Source: Joint UN Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), as reported by Agence France-Presse, 21 April 1998.

Confirmed number of HIV carriers in Poland in 1997: 4,215, of whom 263 have already died.

Estimated number of HIV carriers in Poland in 1997: 20,000.

Source: AFP, 28 April 1998.

Percentage of the national budget which the Republic of Belarus spends yearly on illnesses related to the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in neighboring Ukraine in April 1986: 18 percent.

Estimated cost of Chernobyl to Belarusian economy: $235 billion over 30 years.

Percentage of Belarus contaminated by Chernobyl explosion: 23 percent.

Percentage of the total radioactive fallout that fell on Belarus: 70 percent.

Number of people displaced by the blast: 120,000.

Source: Belarusian Ambassador to France Vladimir Senko, as reported by Agence France-Presse, 17 April 1998.

Number of people put to work cleaning up after the Chernobyl nuclear reactor disaster in 1986 who have since died: 12,500 (out of 350,000, of whom 83 percent are ill with no prospect of recovery).

Source: Ukrainian Health Minister Andry Serdiuk, as reported by AFP (Kyiv), 22 April 1998.


Number of pilgrims expected by the Vatican in 2000: 30 million.

Number of tourists expected to visit Great Britain in 2000: 12 million.

Source: The Economist, April 18-24, 1998.

Breakdown by ethnicity of Hungary's minorities (ten percent of the population): 600,000-800,000 Roma (Gypsies), 220,000 Germans, 110,000 Slovaks, 90,000 Croats, 30,000 Romanians, 10,000 Armenians, 10,000 Ukrainians, 6,000 Bulgari ans, 6,000 Greeks, 5,000 Slovenes, 5,000 Poles, 4,000 Serbs and 2,000 Ruthenians.

Source: Agence France-Presse, 17 March 1998.

Percentage of Polish Roman Catholic priests who favor Poland's integration with the European Union: 84 percent.

Percentage of Poles with higher education who favor Poland's integration with the European Union: 84 percent.

Source: A poll reported by Michal Pawlak in Donosy, 24 March 1998.


Drop in the Russian GDP between 1991-1996: 33 percent.

Unemployment in Russia in 1991 and 1996: 1.1 percent and 13 percent.

Percentage of the Russian population who ran a small business in 1997: 2 percent.

Percentage of Russians who worked in private firms in 1997: 20 percent.

Source: Sociologist Michael Hout in Bay City News, 26 March 1998; July 1998 issue of the American Journal of Sociology.

Percentage of Russia's 27,000 collective and state farms that have been divided up into private enterprises: 1.5 percent.

Source: International Finance Corporation (an investment arm of the World Bank), as reported by AFP, 13 March 1998.

Russian foreign debt in 1998: $120 billion.

Russia's debt servicing commitments in 1993 and 1998: $700 million and $6.85 billion, respectively.

Source: Russian Prime Minister Sergei Kiriyenko in April 1998, as reported by the AFP, 7 May 1998.

Estimate of Russia's overall state debt: $250 billion, or about 50 percent of the GDP,

Source: AFP, 14 May 1998.

Estimated capitalization of the Russian market in July 1998: $40 billion.

Source: AFP, 9 July 1998.

Estimated Polish GDP in 1998: $141.2 billion.

Source: Grzegorz Wójtowicz, "Trade Balance: Not As Bad As It Seemed," The Warsaw Voice, 5 July 1998.


Russia's defense expenditures in 1995, 1996 and 1997 (in billions of then-year U.S. dollars): $17.6 billion, $28.4 billion and $31.8 billion.

Source: Richard F. Staar, "Russia's New Blueprint for National Security," Strategic Review (Spring 1998), 31-41.


Day on which the Polish Senate passed the resolution that the Soviet-occupied Poland was a non-democratic and totalitarian state; that its political structures violated the 1935 constitution which remained valid until the 1997 constitut ion was adopted; and that the 1952 constitution imposed by the communists was invalid and did not supersede the 1935 constitution: 16 April 1998.

Breakdown of vote in the Senate: 50 for, 29 against, eight abstentions.

Names and affiliation of senators who submitted the resolution: Wieslaw Chrzanowski and Krzysztof Piesiewicz, both representing Solidarity Electoral Action [AWS].

Source: Polska Online-Wiadomosci Dnia, 16 April 1998 and Michal Jankowski in Donosy, 17 April 1998.


Number of libraries and bookstores in Poland in 1998: 10,000 and 3,000, respectively.

Number of book stands at the 1997 Warsaw International Book Fair: 341.

Number of countries participating in the Fair: 31.

Percentage of bookstore-and-supermarket book sales in Poland (as opposed to mail sales): 70 percent.

Average number of copies sold of a featured book: 6,000.

Source: Herbert Lottman, "Warsaw Fair: Window on a New Market," Publishers Weekly, 23 February 1998.

Number of young women auditioning in Warsaw for the role of the Romantic heroine Zosia in a film version of Adam Mickiewicz's poem Pan Tadeusz [1834]: 700 on the first day, 1,000 on the second.

Source: Michal Jankowski in Donosy, 15 and 18 May 1998.

Name of the young woman chosen: Anna Curus-Bachleda, a 15-year old niece of the mayor of Zakopane.

Source: Rzeczpospolita, 26 June 1998.


Percentage of ethnic Russians who consider themselves Eastern Orthodox and are associated with the Old Believer movement: 50 percent.

Source: Lawrence A. Uzzell in The Catholic World Report, June 1998.


Percentage of land under the city of Moscow that originally consisted of lakes and marshes: 60 percent.

Source: Sergei Pichurichkin in Ogonyok, 25 May 1998.


Number of copies sold in Poland of Norman Davies' God's Playground: A History of Poland, 2 vols. [1984]: 180,000.

Source: Herbert Lottman, "Warsaw Fair: Window on a New Market," Publishers Weekly, 23 February 1998.


Number of years of imprisonment to which Adam Humer was sentenced by a Polish court on 3 July 1998 for torturing Polish political prisoners in the 1940s and 1950s in Soviet-occupied Poland: 7.5.

Name of person who ordered the police not to interfere in the Kielce murder of Jews on 4 July 1946: Adam Humer.

Names of office holders who are currently examining new materials concerning the Kielce pogrom: Prosecutor Lucjan Nowakowski and Professor Witold Kulesza, former chairman of the Coordinating Committee for the Study of Crimes Against the Polish Nation.

Source: Gazeta Wyborcza, 6 July 1998; Zycie, 4-5 July 1998.