Russia and the USA

Pascale Harter introduces personal stories, insight and wit from BBC correspndents around the world. In this edition:

Stalin's statistician - victim of the numbers
In the Russian capital, Muscovites have been marking long-suppressed events, with some public gatherings commemorating Stalin's great purge of the city's elite, 75 years ago. A new, interactive online map has been created which shows the home addresses of the purge's victims - a peppering the Moscow streetscape with tens of thousands of blood-red dots. Our correspondent Daniel Sandford has made a chilling discovery. When he looked up his former address, he found one of its former residents had been one of those hauled away to be shot - and all because of his work for Stalin's regime. During that era, everything was political, and any inconvenient truths could endanger your life. Even if it was just a statistic.

The old college cheer
In these cash-strapped times, governments all over the world are making cuts to higher education. Controversy over student loans in the UK has been fierce; campuses in Latin America and Europe have been in revolt. So how is it that some universities in the United States are still so lavishly funded? On a visit to the well-tended campus of Princeton, Dave Edmonds learned that a lot of its endowment comes from former students. Some keep on giving long after they've left - as long as 200 years later. But what does the institution itself do to create that kind of loyalty?

(Image: $100 bills. Credit: AFP PHOTO/Karen BLEIER)

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10 minutes

Last on

Tue 6 Nov 2012 04:50 GMT

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