it drive Russia to attack Israel?
MOSCOW-- Russia's painful transition to a market economy has
helped cause a serious drop in population as death rates soar and birth rates
plummet, a government report concludes.
``The current mortality
rate threatens Russia's national security interests and prospects of its future
development,'' the presidential commission's report said Tuesday.
Tension over the economy appears to have caused more violence and a rise in self-destructive
behavior such as drinking, resulting in higher death rates - especially for the
Russian male, the committee concludes.
At the same time a growing
number of Russians feel they can't afford to have children, and a health-care
collapse has meant more babies die at birth, the committee said.
``The combination of a rising death rate and falling birth rate that we have here
is unprecedented for a large country in peacetime,'' commission chief Yekaterina
Lakhova said. ``Of all nations in Europe, Asia and America, Russia's mortality
rate now is only lower than Afghanistan and Cambodia.''
were 40 percent more deaths in Russia in 1995 than in 1989, the report said, while
the number of births fell 60 percent over the same period.
year, about three people died for every two who were born, and Russia's population
shrank by 475,000 people or 0.3 percent.
From 1990 to 1996, the
number of murders and deaths from alcohol poisoning doubled, the number of suicides
rose by one-half and the number of deaths caused by contagious diseases increased
by 70 percent.
The average life expectancy plunged to a record
low of 57.6 years for men and 71.2 years for women in 1994, the report said. Russia
ranks 135th in the world in life expectancy for men, and 100th for women.
Men seem to find it more difficult than women to adapt to social and
economic instability, experts say.
The report says 70 percent
of Russians are under severe stress, contributing to a rise in mental diseases,
alcoholism and drug addiction.
It notes that Russia's alcohol
consumption more than doubled from 1990 to 1995 to 3.4 gallons of alcohol annually
per average Russian - about the same as in France.
``But the quality
of drink, the drinking habits and food here is quite different, resulting in a
steady growth of alcohol-related illnesses,'' said Vladimir Yegorov, the Russian
Health Ministry's chief alcohol expert. ``When you mostly subsist on potatoes,
vodka becomes disastrous for your health.''
Some experts also
suggested Russian men may be more self-destructive than other Europeans.
``The neglect of one's health and life lies deep in the Russian male
mentality,'' said Dr. Valery Yelizarov, a demographics expert at Moscow State
University. He considered that a legacy of Soviet times, when the said the government
devalued human life.
The advisory group suggested media campaigns
to promote healthy habits and encourage Russians to reduce their use of tobacco,
alcohol and illegal drugs.
It also argued for an increase in state
spending on health care, from the current 2.8 percent of gross domestic product
to 8 percent or 9 percent - unlikely considering the cash-strapped government
is unable to meet its current financial obligations.
population stood at 147.5 million as of Jan. 1, the report said.
Balaam's Ass Speaks: Editor: We note that Russia needs a
reason in some context to attack Israel. One reason which many have been
watching would be Israel's much better food supply. Is it too far out to
also wonder if Russia would like to take captive some Jews to force them to return
to Israel as slaves? Impossible in the 20th Century? I am not sure.
Ezekiel 38-39 indicates that God will put hooks in Russia's nose
and draw her to attack Israel. It seems that God has a score to settle with
God and Magog, and God has very little choice. The hook could be just about
any fantasy that God put into the Russian mind. God has now carved Gog down to
just the original collection of peoples. The Mongolians and Middle Eastern lands
of the former USSR are now separated, so Gog can cut a deal with Gomer (Germany),
and they can go south for the spoil. Do you doubt that Germany would join
Well, Germany is also in trouble. Her constitution
guarantees virtually ANY people from the whole world the right to flee to
flee to Germany. Resorts have been 100% taken over in many areas by immigrants
who have gotten onto the public dole and have shared rooms. They are also soon
driving Mercedes cars, and the German tax payer HATES them with a passion. White
hot Neo-Nazi hatred is boiling up in Germany for these aliens.
The same conditions that prevail in Russia could easily come to pass in Germany.
I am 100% convinced that the death rate in the article above is also greatly
affected by AIDS. This subject is always left out by wimpy media people
because they don't want to go against the prevailing One World policy of keeping
AIDS a big secret. Panic could set in, and panic in Russia could be mind boggling
Germany is very promiscuous also. I don't
think there is a people anywhere in the world more gross in conversation, and
lust is splashed all over their advertising media. This means that they are then
given to fornication and adultery as a raging passion. The AIDS plague ravages
nations with no self-control on a national level, and the Germans are 100% out
of control in the area of the libido. Russia is no different.
So we see that Gomer (Germany) and Russia (Gog) would have no
inhibition at all to go south and rage against Israel. Lack of food, economic
malaise, and lack of national identity have frequently been the prelude to war.
Why? Answer: To simply get the people's minds off of their troubles.
Thinking people-- Bible believer Christians-- have NEVER imagined that the Kaiser's,
Bismark's, and Hitler's mindless lust for power, and hate for Jews, have
been cleansed from the Germanic and Russian peoples. We do not point this
out in hate for these people, and we ought to send them missionaries and Bibles
so that they can be delivered of this spirit from Satan, But, prophetically,
we also ought to be realistic about the Ezekiel 38-39. If you are a German
or Russian and living out this depraved life, why not repent and be delivered
of this doom your nations are certain to soon choose?
Note that Russians already are taking up arms in fear:
Valery Alexsayev looked his customer straight in the eye.
have to decide what you want the gun for,'' he said. ``If it's for self-defense,
this Saiga is the piece. The clear choice.''
a stocky, square-jawed man in a hip-length leather jacket, nodded gravely on the
other side of the counter.
``And if you want to ride with your
friends outside once in a while and shoot a duck, you can use this Saiga too,''
Alexsayev added. He cradled the rifle in his arms, and ran his fingers down the
It was just what Surikov was looking for. Few freedoms
in the new Russia have been celebrated quite so enthusiastically as the right
to bear arms. Gun sales, legal and illegal, have soared in the past few years
- so much so that the Interior Ministry calls the domestic arms market ``the most
destabilizing factor'' facing Russian crime-fighters.
a day passes without a report of a gangland hit. Some Moscow restaurants require
patrons to check their guns at the door.
And so far, there hasn't
been a peep of protest from Russia's gun-control movement, and with good reason:
Remarkably, given the scale of gun-related crime, no such movement exists.
``No,'' said retired Col. Viktor Kirilyuk, director of the Central
Sports Shooting Club of the Russian Defense Society. The very notion of a gun-control
movement seemed to puzzle him. In Russia, he finally said, there is ``no such
Actually, Russia's gun laws are far more restrictive
than those of the United States. Handguns are illegal here, as are automatic weapons.
And just as there is no mass movement to further control guns, there is no mass
movement - no National Rifle Association - pressing to liberalize Russia's gun
Kirilyuk, an avid firearms advocate whose office is festooned
with brightly colored pennants from sports shooting clubs and tournaments around
the world, recoiled at the thought of legalizing automatic weapons.
``You know,'' he said, ``we don't have so many animals that we should be shooting
them with automatic weapons.''
But animals - and, more to the
point, people - are being shot with automatic weapons, not to mention handguns.
Russian newspapers are filled with stories about the black market in illegal weapons
- many of them stolen from the army and from arms factories.
its crime report, the Interior Ministry said it had identified 27 organized crime
gangs that specialize in illegal arms sales. It said 9,500 crimes were committed
with guns in 1996 - a pittance by U.S. standards, but a huge leap compared to
A recent article in the weekly newspaper Argumenty
i Fakty estimated that there were 100,000 illegal weapons on the streets of Moscow
During the Soviet era, all adults theoretically had the
right to own one gun. In practice, not that many did, although most learned how
to handle guns in school and competitive shooting sports were popular.
Under a 1994 law, Russians now have the right to own up to five guns, including
gas-powered pistols, which use gas cartridges instead of gunpowder. The Interior
Ministry, which licenses gun owners, refused to say how many guns are owned legally
At the Central Sports Shooting Club, home of one of
Moscow's largest indoor shooting ranges, interest in sports shooting has actually
declined, following a decline in state-sponsored shooting clubs. Still, the place
crackles with the sound of gunfire every afternoon and weekend, when whole families
come to squeeze off a few rounds for target practice.
grown is the business at the club's adjoining gun shop.
On a weekday
afternoon, customers streamed into the shop to admire its selection of American,
European and Russian weapons at prices ranging from less than $90 for a Russian-made,
gas-powered pistol to $2,300 for an Italian deer rifle.
popular gun in the shop is the Saiga 20 - named after a Siberian antelope, a Russian-built,
.20-caliber, smooth-bore carbine with a detachable butt. At about $500, this is
the gun that attracted the attention of Alexander Surikov.
a 32-year-old security guard at Russia's Central Bank, previously had not owned
a gun, but decided it was time. ``I'll feel more comfortable in our difficult,
turbulent time,'' he explained.
Alexsayev, the salesman, resplendent
in a billowing white shirt under a black suede vest, said Surikov was a typical
customer. ``As they say, `For my family, for my home.' It's for self-defense.''
Personally, he'd prefer a handgun, Alexsayev said. Something unobtrusive,
easy to tuck away in a car.
He broke off the conversation to attend
to a new customer. Picking up the Saiga 20S, he began his sales pitch. As he spoke,
he pointed the gun at a cockeyed angle toward the ceiling and absentmindedly pulled
the trigger, over and over and over.
And, to complicate things, are the big guns are about to fire?
Recent malfunctions of equipment controlling Russia's nuclear arsenal have switched
missiles to ``combat mode'' on several occasions, increasing the risk of an unauthorized
attack on the United States, a newspaper said today.
Times quoted a classified CIA study that said ``command and control equipment
often malfunctions and on more than one occasion has switched spontaneously to
But the CIA report said that switching the missiles
to combat status ``would not necessarily result in an unauthorized missile launch''
because of safeguards, including codes that control locks on weapons and supply
target data to the missile.
The Times said the report was produced
in March after warnings by Russian Defense Minister Igor Rodionov that control
systems for Russia's nuclear weapons were deteriorating rapidly and the armed
forces were partially blinded by a shortage of spy satellites.
Unless the military got more money, ``the system could fall apart'' for controlling
the nuclear arsenal, Rodionov said in February. A senior Pentagon official,
briefing reporters in advance of Rodionov's visit Tuesday with Defense Secretary
William Cohen, said he would not comment directly on intelligence reports. But
he pointed out that the report quotes a former officer in the strategic rocket
forces, adding, ``That is at best, hearsay.''
``I've never seen
any credible report from our intelligence services - across the board - that would
indicate the risk of unauthorized or accidental launch has been raised,'' said
the official, who is a specialist on nuclear matters. ``This is not something
that's keeping me up at night,'' the official added at another point. He said
he was far more concerned about the safety of the Russian's stockpile of chemical
weapons, and the failure of the Russian Parliament, or Duma, to ratify the Chemical
Another Clinton administration official, also
speaking on condition of anonymity said, ``We are confident that the Russian strategic
rocket forces continue to maintain necessary levels of security and protection
of nuclear weapons.''
In Moscow, a Defense Ministry duty officer
declined comment today except to note there have been similar news reports, including
one today by the military daily Krasnaya Zvezda. The military publication carried
an item signed by Maj. Gen. Vitaly Denisyuk, chief of the Russian Strategic Nuclear
Force's Central Command post.
``Since I became a duty officer
at the Central Command post in 1985 ... there have been no cases of spontaneous
switching to combat mode at any of the Strategic Nuclear Force command posts,''
But, he added, ``Recently, the funding of planned
replacements of combat control systems at control stations has been disrupted.
If this tendency continues, a moment will come when the combat control systems'
reliability will stop to meet the requirements.''
The CIA rated
the chance of unauthorized nuclear missile launch as low under ``normal circumstances''
because ``many safeguards'' remain.
``However, if that system
and its safeguards continue to degrade because of a lack of funding and maintenance,
our concern will increase, especially if a crisis arose that splintered the armed
forces,'' the report said. The newspaper said a CIA spokesman had no comment
on the report.
Lest you, dear reader, think Russia is also
mindlessly pagan, that condition is now more common in the USA. Note the
MOSCOW-- A Russian TV station canceled a
broadcast of ``The Last Temptation of Christ'' for a second time Friday after
a rally outside its studios by protesters who called the film blasphemous and
The independent television station NTV originally
tried to show the Martin Scorcese film on the eve of Russian Orthodox Easter last
month, but pulled it under pressure from religious organizations and members of
NTV made a second attempt to show the movie, rescheduling
it for late Friday night. But after a protest by several dozen people from the
Orthodox Church and political groups outside its offices Friday, station executives
yielded to demands to cancel it.
The Pamyat nationalist, patriotic
group had announced earlier that it could not guarantee ``the safe existence of
the NTV staff'' if the movie were broadcast, the Interfax news agency reported.
Scorsese's 1988 film has been criticized for depicting Christ
marrying and having children, and has been banned in several countries. He received
an Academy Award nomination for best director for the film.
INTERESTING SITE ON GOMER AND GOG
BACK TO THE TITLE PAGE