Medvedev and Putin have declared intentions to undertake an ambitious re-armament program cross all the armed forces, funded by profits realized from petroleum.Â Yet, if an opinion piece in today’s Washington Post rings true, the challenge they face in finding the manpower to build and man those forces may be considerable.Â Consider:
â€¢ Three times as many Russians die from heart-related illnesses as do Americans or Europeans, per each 100,000 people.
â€¢ Tuberculosis deaths in Russia are about triple the World Health Organization’s definition of an epidemic, which is based on a new-case rate of 50 cases per 100,000 people.
â€¢ Average alcohol consumption per capita is double the rate the WHO considers dangerous to one’s health.
â€¢ About 1 million people in Russia have been diagnosed with HIV or AIDS, according to WHO estimates.
â€¢ Using mid-year figures, it’s estimated that 25 percent more new HIV/AIDS cases will be recorded this year than were logged in 2007.
So, “bluster of the frail, not the swagger of the strong”?Â See for yourself here.