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Approved For Release 2ooal12l11 : ctA-RDPBgB00423R0oo3oo27o016-T
The Dircctor of Central Intelligence
Wuhington, D.C.20505

National Intelligencc Council

e/^ tcC+,qrN)
N

IC 017 05-84 14 l4a rc h 1984

I''IEMORANDUI'I FOR:

Di

FROM:

Deputy Di rector of Cent ral I ntel I i gence cha i rman, Nati ona I I ntel I i gence counci \a L/

rector of Central Intel

I i gence

/

Herbert E. Meyer Vice Chairman, National Inte'l ligence Council
Mean

SU tsJ ECT :

Aborti ons i n the Sovi et Bl oc: what They

l. Romania's Nicolai Ceausescu last week reported in a widely publicized speech that of 742,000 recorded pregnancies in 1983,420,000 were ibbrted. This works out to an official abortion rate of 57%. Since it is inevitable that some pregnancies went unrecorded that were later aborted, the rea'l percentage must be higher. _ 2. For comparable figures on the Soviet Union, I Feshbach, who as you know is the l.lest's
population, the abort'ion rate
checked with Murray lead'ing soviet-bloc demographer. Feshbach estimates that the abortion rate for the USSR as a whole is between 60% and 70%. Anrong slavs and Balts, who comprise 80% of the soviet

is

75%

to

B0%.

According to a soviet medica] journal pubfished in July lgg3, a survey of 400 women in Russ'ia's Tambov oblast--women who had had at least one induced abortion--showed that these v/omen had each undergone between one and 28 abontions, w'ith 5% of the women undergoing ll or more abo rt i on s.

3. In the United States, the abortion rate .is 30%. 4. I don't think we can attribute these staggering Soviet-bloc abortion rates.entirely to the low quality of availab1e birth-control pnoducts and to clecisions by sensible, practical parents to limit the size of their families simply because their apartments lack sufficient floor space for comfort. Rather, I believe that we should view these abortion rates, at least partly, as an indication of the average couple's judgment on life in communist societies. Indeed, these abortion rates reflect a vision of the future that is bleak and despairing almost to the point of national suic'ide.

.

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5. The above forthcoming NIE on 6.

political

statistics

and their implications wil'l be addressed and economic pressures within the USSR.

in

our

Since these statistics a'll are public, you may wish to make available to policymakers for use in their own public statenents.

them

Herbert
cc:
N I 0/U SSR- EE A/N I O/U SSR- E E NIC/AG

E.

STAT

roved For Release 2008112111 : CIA-RDP89800423R000300270016-7

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NIC

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