Photograph by Gerd Ludwig
The Broken Empire
Magnitogorsk, Russia. 1993
From the skin to their genes, children of the old empire pay for their elder's follies. At Magnitogorsk birth defects are reported to have doubled since 1980. Space in the homes for mentally retarded youngsters is at a premium. Fifteen  year old Dima, front right, declares: "I love America; I will go there and become president."
RealAudio: "I had to leave..."

Sumgait, Azerbaijan. 1993 
More than the stifling smell, the air in Azerbaijan is laden with chemicals. Pollution from chemical plants is considered one of the leading causes of the breakdown of the immune system, especially in children. This boy died from this condition within an hour after the picture was taken.

Photograph by Gerd Ludwig
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