Here are a few reasons government forecasters at the National Hurricane Center and emergency management officials are so concerned about Sandy:
1. Sandy is one of the largest hurricanes ever to strike the U.S. Sandy's winds cover an area of more than 1,000 miles in diameter. That's enormous by hurricane standards. So instead of affecting an area a couple of hundred miles across, Sandy will cut a huge swath. That means many millions of people are probably going to be exposed to high winds, heavy rains, and, for those on the coast, powerful storm surge.
I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, just in time for Halloween, a new book for kids and tweens offers some fun facts and some frights about the great ghost stories of history. That's just ahead.
But, first, we take a look at the work of building education and fostering peace in Nigeria. You might have followed the stories about an anti-Western terrorist group called Boko Haram that had been blamed for a series of deadly bombings and other assaults mainly in Northern Nigeria.
China is about to get new leaders for the first time in a decade, and it comes at a sensitive moment for the world's most populous nation. Economic growth, which surged for decades, has slowed. Demands for political reform have increased and the Communist Party has been hit by scandal. In a series of stories this week, NPR is examining the multiple challenges facing China. In our first story, Louisa Lim looks at how the Chinese view the Communist Party in the place where it took shape.
The frail 79-year-old in a pale brown shirt with close-cropped hair sitting at a fast-food restaurant table looks absolutely unremarkable. But Bao Tong has a lightness in his eyes, a confidence that speaks of a man whose conscience is clear, a man with nothing to fear.
"I have become my own person," he says. "When I was a Communist Party member, I had to follow party discipline. When they threw me out of the party, my brain was set free."