Expert: 2% of Russia’s Population Aborted Every Year, Nation Falling Apart

International   Steven Ertelt, Paul Kengor   Sep 13, 2013   |   11:59AM    Washington, DC

A foreign policy expert says Russia is falling apart culturally because as much as two percent of the nation’s potential population is victimized by abortion every year.

Ilan Berman says Russia’s population implosion may also cause problems for the United States and present worldwide issues. The Daily Caller has more on the report:

Foreign policy expert Ilan Berman says Russia is falling apart — and that could bode ill for the United States.

“The scale of social and cultural rot in contemporary Russian society is truly staggering,” Berman, vice president of the American Foreign Policy Council and editor of the Journal of International Security Affairs, told The Daily Caller in an email interview about his new book, “Implosion: The End of Russia and What it Means for America,” to be released Monday.

“Take abortion, for instance. According to official estimates, almost 1.2 million abortions are performed in Russia every year. That equals out to 300 babies every hour. According to unofficial projections, however, the true abortion rate could be as much as double that figure — which means that close to 2 percent of Russia’s potential population is being terminated every year!”

“Equally grim statistics can be found in the state of national health, in its alcoholism and drug addiction rates, and in its failing struggle to contain HIV/AIDS,” he continued. “It’s no wonder that one in five Russians now wants to live abroad — and almost half of Russians between the ages of 18 and 35 are actively considering doing so. Russia, simply put, is a dying project — and the Russians themselves know it.”

Vladimir Putin sparked international outcry by banning adoptions of Russian children by American families. His action immediately halted the departure of hundreds of Russian orphans about to board planes to journey to a new life. It was a cruel move, widely condemned as “callous” and “vindictive.”

No country adopts as many Russian children as America. According to the State Department, there have been 60,000 adoptions by American couples since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
The reality is that Russia continues to bleed population. For about a decade and a half now, projections have been that Russia’s population will plummet from 140-150 million to 104 million by 2050. What are the chief causal factors in this? There are several, but among the biggest is abortion, which occurs in Russia at an astonishingly high level. Putin has tried to slow the hemorrhage, but has failed to do so.
Abortion was legalized in Russia by the Bolsheviks shortly after they seized power in October 1917. Vladimir Lenin made good on his promise for an “unconditional annulment of all laws against abortion.” In short order, the number of abortions skyrocketed. By 1934, Moscow women were having three abortions for every live birth. The toll was so staggering that an appalled Joseph Stalin, the mass murderer, actually banned abortion in 1936, fearing a vanishing populace.

In 1955, Stalin’s successor, Nikita Khrushchev, reconstituted legalized abortion. By 1958, there were 5 million abortions per year in the Soviet Union. (This contradicted Margaret Sanger’s optimistic prediction that “neither abortions nor contraception will be necessary or desired” once a “functioning communistic society” was in full bloom in the Soviet Union.) By 1965, abortions peaked at 8.2 million, dwarfing the worst years in America post-Roe v. Wade. By 1970, some 3,000 full-time abortion doctors were performing roughly 7.2 million abortions per year. By the 1980s, Soviet citizens comprised 5-6 percent of the world’s population but 25 percent of the world’s abortions.

The Cold War and communism ended in Russia in the 1990s, but the runaway abortion rates did not. Those rates continued into the Putin era, with the election of Vladimir Putin in 2000. An illuminating article in the Washington Post in February 2003 reported that 13 percent of Russian couples are infertile, with more on the rise. “In nearly three out of four cases,” said the article, “infertility is attributed to the woman, typically because of complications from one or more abortions.” The Russian Health Ministry reported 1.7 abortions for every live birth—which is actually an improvement from previous decades, but only because contraception is being more widely used. Either way, it adds up to a decline in population.

In response,  Putin has taken major measures to try to stem this tide. In 2003, he implemented the first restrictions on abortion in Russia in almost 50 years, limiting abortions to within 12 weeks of gestation. Exemptions were allowed only for rape or the imprisonment, death, or severe disability of the husband.

Remarkably, Putin’s Russia has even gone so far as to initiate a National Fertility Day, aimed at getting the culture to produce more Russians.