Posted inAT+ Commentary

Ukraine is the hollow man of Europe

Ukraine is disappearing, for two reasons. It has one of the world’s lowest birth rates at just 1.23 children per female, and one of the world’s highest rates of out-migration. No other country has willed itself out of existence so decisively.

Ukraine’s demographic decline is so pronounced that it should be high on the list of strategic considerations. For what, and for whom, might NATO and Russia go to war?

Ukrainians vote with their feet. Nine million have work abroad, according to the National Security and Defense Council of the Ukraine, and 3.2 million have full-time jobs in other countries. There are only 21 million Ukrainians between the ages of 20 and 55, which suggests that more than two-fifths of prime working-age Ukrainians earn their living elsewhere.

I do not know whether this estimate includes half a million Ukrainian prostitutes working abroad since independence, according to one scholarly estimate.