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Revolt in Tunisia; Lebanon Hariri Tribunal; Jean-Claude Duvalier Returns to Haiti

Aired January 17, 2011 - 16:00:00   ET


BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: Tunisia names a unity government, but will the people accept it?

If these pictures are anything to go by, perhaps not.

I'm Becky Anderson in London and this is the hour we connect the world.

Images in Tunisia that may have spawned copycat protests across North Africa.

So, what's next?

Exiled dictator, Baby Doc returns to Haiti.

Why now?

The U.S. sends its drug czar south to investigate if the billions spent on Plan Colombia were worth it.



PIERS MORGAN, HOST, "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT": I don't want to terrorize guests, because we won't get anybody. I want people to feel that they've had a -- a warm and entertaining and amusing and revealing experience.


ANDERSON: Time to turn the tables on CNN's new chat show host. This hour, it's your turn to ask Piers Morgan anything you want.

That's CNN in the next 60 minutes.

Well, first, a desperate act that triggered revolutionary protests in Tunisia may be inspiring similar acts in other North African states. Algeria, Egypt and Mauritania all now reporting what could be copycat suicide attempts -- men setting themselves on fire to protest a government they feel is ignoring their needs.

An act of self-immolation in Tunisia led to something virtually unheard of in the Arab world -- a popular revolt that ousted a president. Zine El Abidine Ben Ali fled the country on Friday after weeks of street protests. He is now living in exile in Saudi Arabia.

Well, teargas filled the streets of Tunis once again today, as simmering unrest flared. But interim authorities do hope their announcement of a new unity government and unprecedented freedoms will help restore order.

Well, let's find out whether it will.

Ben Wedeman is in Tunis with the details -- Ben.

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Becky. Well, I'm coming to you from our hotel, because the 6:00 p.m. curfew is in effect for the last four hours.

The situation, politically, is very fluid. Now, we did have the announcement today of this unity government. But already, we're hearing complaints that this is not what Tunisians were looking for.

The -- the interim president, the prime minister, the foreign minister and the interior ministry are all figures from the previous regime. And speaking to dozens of people today, that seemed to be the thread running through all their criticism of this current political set up, is that they don't want to see any remnants of the old regime remain in power. They basically want to sla -- wipe the political slate clean, get rid of anybody with any associations with the Zine El Abidine Ben Ali regime that ruled this country for 23 years and, most people say they stole billions of dollars from this country. They don't want those people to remain in power -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Ben, as you speak, we are looking at pictures from earlier today. You've said there's a curfew now, of course, after dark. But clashes, once again, earlier today.

Can we expect more of the same?

WEDEMAN: Well, you know what those clashes were about, those were people protesting the continued presence in government of people from the old regime. And that was before the announcement of this new unity government that includes, as I said, many figures from the old government.

And so I think we can expect more, and, in fact, not just more demonstrations, but demonstrations around the country of a similar nature, because there's a new dynamic here. It is, in a sense, a revolution. They want to overthrow the existing order.

I was in one slum in Tunis today where these were people who took part, some of their relatives died in the revolt against the old regime. They said, we threw those people out. We want power. We want those old figures, those old politicians, out of the game altogether -- Becky.

ANDERSON: Ben Wedeman under curfew there in Tunis.

Ben, thank you for that.

Well, like Tunis' ousted president, many Arab leaders have little or no tolerance for public dissent. So they've truly been shaken that street protests in their region could grow powerful enough to topple a longstanding regime.

Libya's leader, for one, calls the Tunisian revolt regrettable.


MOAMMAR GADHAFI, LIBYAN LEADER (through translator): Sadly, Tunisia is headed to more chaos. And we do not know how it will end. Maybe tomorrow, all of the Tunisian people will enter Libya. That's why I'm so concerned with the situation in Tunisia. The country is headed for more unjustified chaos.


ANDERSON: Well, the head of the Arab League is advising regional leaders to wake up and acknowledge the significance of Tunisia's dramatic uprising.

Amr Moussa spoke at an Arab economic meeting in Egypt. According to Reuters, he said: "We have to follow closely what is happening in Tunisia. There is a lesson and there is a message." He went on to say: "Arab society has a lot of similar elements, so we can't just consider Tunisia an isolated incident."

Well, our next guest also believes the story has important regional implications, but says we shouldn't exaggerate the potential for a domino effect.

Fawaz Gerges is a regular guest on this show.

He's a professor of international relations, of course, at the LSE here in London and joins us now.

Before we talk about the regional implications, let's just talk about the makeup of what it is a new unity in invete gov -- communist government in -- in Tunisia.

Is this going to work?

FAWAZ GERGES, LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS, CONNECT THE WORLD PANELIST: No, not at all. It's not a national unity government. The leading pivotal executive decisions of ministries are in the hands of the old Emir (ph) ruling party, the defense and the interior ministry and, of course, foreign affairs. What the ruling party is trying to do, Becky, is to basically maintain its hold on power, to deceive the people. And Tunisians are not buying this particular sense (ph).

And this is why the situation remains in flux, very volatile. The next two weeks are extremely dangerous for Tunisia. But, obviously, the people in Tu -- in Tunisia have spoken.

ANDERSON: And the people being -- the majority, at least, on the streets of Tunis over the past few days or so, are middle class protesters -- a profile similar elsewhere of those who are leading what is this sense of discontent across the region.

GERGES: Yes and no, Becky. Remember, I mean the popular uprising in Tunisia, as you said, it's truly a solid middle class, liberal, secular leaning constituency. Tunisia has had one of the most solid middle class highly educated constituency. Other Arab countries don't have that -- Egypt, Yemen, Algeria. They don't have the same social structure.

That's why we should not exaggerate the applicability of the Tunisian model to other Arab countries.

But let me qualify here and say that the popular uprising in Tunisia has opened a crack in the authoritarian wall in Arab politics -- a small crack. It has sent shock waves through the veins of Arab leaders. They're terrified. They're terrified that their people will borrow a page, will borrow a page from the Tunisian chapter.

ANDERSON: But, Fawaz, who is worried most, do you think, and where?

GERGES: Well, I would say, Algeria is the most -- the most dangerous country at this particular moment, because that not only it neighbors Tunisia, but the conditions in Algeria resemble those of Tunisia.

You have Yemen, the poorest Arab country, there's tremendous dissent. Yesterday, leading dissidents -- leading opposition leaders in Yemen said that Yemen basically is traveling the same road. There's an earthquake growing in Yemen.

Egypt, I mean Egypt, again, you have the most populous Arab country, almost 80 million people. Today in Egypt, one particular Egyptian, I mean, burned himself in front of the parliament to send a message to the Egyptian regime and the Egyptian authorities.

ANDERSON: And these acts of self-immolation which we are hearing reported across the region tonight certainly, one might suggest, are as a result of what people have seen in Tunisia. We're not necessarily seeing a domain effect...

GERGES: Yes, of course...

ANDERSON: -- so far as seeing governments fall yet a -- across the region. We must be sensible to point that out.

US secretary of State, though, Hillary Clinton, said about 48 hours ago, delivering a warning to Arab leaders, effectively, that the growing unrest in the region will only get worse if they do not install economic and transparent political reforms -- slightly ripe coming from an American administration which was supportive, let's say of...


ANDERSON: -- of the old Tunisian president...

GERGES: Yes, it was.

ANDERSON: -- and his government.

GERGES: Yes, not just the Americans, the French, the -- I mean the Germans. In fact, it took President Barack Obama a few days to come out with a statement supporting and praising the courage of the Tunisian people.

Becky, the matrix is the following. Western governments, including the United States, are as much concerned about stability and security in relation to democratization. They're -- they're concerned about a vacuum of political authority, about chaos. This has been, really, one of the most pivotal aspects of Western foreign policy toward the Arab world.

But let's remember, this is really a unique moment in modern history, Becky. This is an authentic popular uprising from the bottom up, a social movement. It was not led by a foreign power. No Western invaders like what happened in Iraq. And that's why it resonates widely in the Arab world.

Arabs are embracing this particular moment. It's a light -- a small light in the tunnel of authoritarianism in the Arab world. And that's why Arab leaders are terrified. Yesterday, the foreign minister of Egypt said, well, the conditions in Egypt are different from those in Tunisia. I mean, it tells you a great deal. And if you really want to know about the official mindset in the Arab world, as you said, read the speech by the Libyan president, Moammar Gadhafi. He said the Tunisian people -- people have been orphaned because the dictator, Ben Ali, was ousted. He said he civilized Tunisia. He made Tunisia, he said, a touristic island.

It tells you about the mind set. Those are disconnected from the hopes and the aspirations of the people.

I think it's a very promising beginning. And what has happened in the last few days shatters the narrative that Arabs will not rise against dictators. Arab leaders have taken notice of what has happened in Tunisia.

ANDERSON: Fascinating stuff.

Fawaz, as ever, we thank you very much, indeed, for joining us.

Up next here on CNN, hear from the dancer at the center of a sex investigation surrounding the Italian prime minister.

She denies having sex with Silvio Berlusconi, but why did she accept several thousand dollars from him?

Well, her explanation coming up.

The U.N. files an indictment on the 2005 killing of former Liberian prime minister, Rafik Hariri -- the latest step in a case that's been a divisive issue for the country.

And stepping into Larry's suspenders -- in a few hours, Piers Morgan's new show will air on CNN.

So how is he feeling?

We're going to find out. He'll be your Connector of the Day, answering your questions, later this hour.

Stay with us.


ANDERSON: Welcome back.

You're watching CNN.


I'm Becky Anderson.

We've been following the story out of Tunisia for you.

Let's take a look, at this point, at the other top news headlines.

And Apple's shares trading in Frankfurt have closed down around 7 percent after an announcement from CEO Steve Jobs, the second time in two years Jobs has taken medical leave to focus on his health. He'll continue as CEO, but Apple's chief operating officer, Tim Cook, will take over the running of day to day operations. No further details about Jobs' condition were revealed.

Well, the U.N. special tribunal on the assassination of the former Lebanese prime minister, Rafik Hariri, has submitted an indictment into the killing. The case has already played a part in the collapse of the government's -- the country's government.

Ivan Watson with the details for you.


IVAN WATSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Nearly six years after the assassination of former Lebanese prime minister, Rafik Hariri, in a massive explosion that killed at least 20 people here in Beirut, a prosecutor has handed down the results of an international investigation -- an indictment -- to a pretrial judge who is part of what is described as the special tribunal for Lebanon based out of the Hague in the Netherlands.

Now, the results of that investigation and the indictment are to remain sealed while the judge examines the contents for a period of at least six weeks. We could see some leaks emerging in the media in the days and weeks ahead, however.

Now, this has been a sharply divisive issue here in Lebanon. And it helped prompt the collapse of the Lebanese government just a few days ago.


The Shiite movement, Hezbollah, sharply opposed the special tribunal for Lebanon. It claimed that this was part of an American and Israeli conspiracy aimed at targeting Hezbollah. On Monday, the Lebanese president was supposed to begin consultations to appoint a new prime minister, part of a process of setting up a new government. But he opted to delay that process by at least a week.

Lebanon is likely to face weeks, if not months, of political uncertainty as rival factions engage in a power struggle over the formation of the next Lebanese government.

Ivan Watson reporting from Beirut.


ANDERSON: Well, Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, says he has never paid for sex. Prosecutors suspect otherwise. They are investigating him for allegedly having sex with a teenager. Mr. Berlusconi vehemently denies the accusations against him.


SILVIO BERLUSCONI, ITALIAN PRIME MINISTER (through translator): These accusations that they've formulated against me are completely groundless, even laughable. The police officer that would have been extorted by me denies of ever having been pressured. And the under aged person ever receiving advances from me, and even less, a sexual rapport with me. And she affirms that she introduced herself to everybody as a 24-year-old, as so many witnesses say.


ANDERSON: Well, in an interview recorded on Saturday, the dancer also denied having sex with the Italian prime minister.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You are telling me that you never had sex with him?

"Absolutely, no."

But you've received presents?

"Well, I received 7,000 euros the first evening that I went to his house."

How come?

"Because the girl that took me there knew my difficult situation. Because I had just arrived in Milan and it was a little difficult living there. She spoke with him and explained my situation, my story, my family's situation, everything. And he helped me."


ANDERSON: WikiLeaks has revealed its latest target -- Swiss banking secrets. A whistleblower and a former banker says he has handed over a treasure trove of account details to the controversial Web site. Rudolph Elmer says the information includes the details of offshore transactions of thousands of rich and famous people and of corporations.

WikiLeaks say the records could be released in a matter of weeks.

On Wednesday, Elmer is due to go on trial in Switzerland for breaking bank secrecy laws.

Well, a former dictator is back in Haiti tonight after 25 years in exile. Coming up, we'll tell you why his return has sparked more questions than answers.

And he's used to delving into the lives of celebrities, but tonight it's your turn to delve into his. CNN's newest recruit, Piers Morgan, is your Connector of the Day.


ANDERSON: Well, supporters cheer as a notorious figure from the past makes a surprise return to Haiti. Former dictator, Jean-Claude Duvalier, touched down in the capital, Port-au-Prince, yesterday evening.

The question many are asking now is why?

Widely accused of corruption, Duvalier fled Haiti in 1986 after a popular uprising. His regime was brutal and few were sad to see him leave. Known as Baby Doc, Jean-Claude Duvalier took over the presidency at the age of 19, when his father, Francois Papa Doc Duvalier, died in 1971.

Well, in total, father and son ruled Haiti with an iron fist for three decades, deploying a private militia known as the Tonton Macoutes to enforce their rule through violence and intimidation.

Well, human rights groups say Jean-Claude Duvalier should now be prosecuted for crimes against humanity. But his return appears to have caught many off guard.

These Haitian activists in Miami said that they were stunned by the news.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everybody like was in shock, you know?

Why Haiti, why now?

This news fell on us like a -- you know, a -- a brick that Duvalier, you know, was in Haiti. We are all in shock. Just when we thought that it could never get worse in Haiti, it has gotten worse.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are asking questions at this time as to why, at this time, they want Duvalier at this time to be in Haiti?

That's the question everybody is asking.


ANDERSON: Well, that same question is also being asked across Haiti tonight.

But as John Zarrella now reports from Port-au-Prince, the former president is, for now, at least, not giving anything away.


JOHN ZARRELLA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The return of Jean- Claude Duvalier, Baby Doc, is puzzling, at best. And we still don't have any answers as to why he came back, why he chose this time to come back or how long he's going to be here.

We're outside the Caribe Hotel. And this is where Jean-Claude Duvalier has been holed up since his arrival back here suddenly on an Air France flight at 6:00 last night local time here.

Now, when he arrived at the airport, he was greeted by about 200 supporters and then he was whisked away to the hotel. We were expecting to have a news conference here a couple of hours ago, but we were told that was not going to happen, not today. Perhaps tomorrow.

We talked to a long time supporter, a friend, who said he grew up with Duvalier from the time they were boys here on the island. He told us that Duvalier told him he returned here after he saw the images of Haiti in the one year anniversary story that as being played last week and heart just told him that he needed to be here with the people.

When I pressed this friend about well, how long is he planning on staying -- because there had been reports he would be here for two or three days -- I was not given much of an answer at all, just that it would be up to Duvalier to explain why he was here and how long he was going to be here.

But again, we don't know when there's going to be.

As for the government in power, Rene Preval's government, they have said absolutely nothing about his return to this point. They've been very, very quiet.

One minister is supposed to have said late yesterday that well, if he comes back, so what?

It doesn't change the realities here in Haiti.

John Zarrella, CNN, Port-au-Prince, Haiti.


ANDERSON: All right. Well, Duvalier's arrival in Haiti comes as the country, of course, attempts to resolve a political stand-off following November's presidential election. A second round of voting was supposed to be held yesterday, but it had to be postponed following a row over who should be on the ballot paper.

So is Duvalier's return just a coincidence?

Well, let's put that to Amy Wilentz, the author of the book, "The Rainy Season: Haiti Since Duvalier."

She joins us from Los Angeles tonight.

A quote, "inadvertent" comment, happy coincidence or something more?

AMY WILENTZ, AUTHOR, "THE RAINY SEASON: HAITI SINCE DUVALIER": Well, it's not a happy coincidence. And legally, there's no chance that Duvalier can be on the ballot. He didn't run in the original election in November, so he can't be on any ballot unless it's by acclimation and totally unconstitutional and extra-legal. I guess, he could be instated as president somehow.

I don't believe that there's a popular undercurrent that's going to place him in the presidential seat. And I believe that the president of Haiti right now, the legally elected constitutional president, wants him to be there.

ANDERSON: Yes, all right. You say that and yet -- and I'm -- I'm -- I cavat this -- caveat this by saying our pictures don't suggest what the hole of Haiti feels, but there are certainly some on the streets who were celebrating his arrival earlier.

WILENTZ: Yes, of course there are people celebrating his arrival. I heard there were a few thousand even demonstrating in his favor. But to me, this, you know, we have to wait and see what it really means.

There are a lot of friends and family, friends and family of his and his father, who are very positive about his arrival. But I can't imagine that this would be true of the whole of Haiti.

On the other hand, people want change. It's been a very rough year- and-a-half.

ANDERSON: What sort of legacy did Duvalier leave, Amy?

WILENTZ: Well, he and his father, the dictatorship that lasted for so long, from 1957 to 1986, left a legacy of political repression, murder, torture of political opponents, complete suspension of freedom of the press and freedom of expression, freedom of assembly -- all the freedoms we hold dear were -- were non-existent in Haiti under the Duvaliers. That's why Duvalier had to leave.

ANDERSON: I guess the issue is this, that many of the population that lives in Haiti today will be too young to remember the reign of the Duvaliers, won't they?

Will that make a difference, do you think...


ANDERSON: -- as to why he's there and how long he might stay?

WILENTZ: Well, I don't know if that makes a difference about why he came back. He came back because advisers and he himself felt that it was a right moment during a political vacuum for him to return and possibly somehow turn events to his favor.

But in terms of the young population who doesn't know him, that's people from 35 and younger, probably, who don't really know who this man is and what he represents. They hear from their parents, but even their parents may not remember so well. And I think that will make a difference if he decides to become a political player in Haiti.

Of course, there are many judicial kind of problems for him. He -- he really should be brought up on trial for both fraud and corruption and for various human rights abuses.

ANDERSON: He's taking a risk, then.

Amy Wilentz on the story of the day today out of Haiti.

We thank you, Amy, very much, indeed, for joining us.

Up next, the world headlines. And it's an extremely expensive program with a critical goal, but most experts give Plan Columbia only mixed results.

The question now is, will the new -- new U.S. Congress want to continue funding the anti-drug initiative?

We're going to investigate that after this.


* ANDERSON: You're back with CONNECT THE WORLD here on CNN. It's just after half past nine in London. I'm Becky Anderson. Coming up, battling the drug cartels in Colombia. The US plowed millions of dollars into a program, but did it work?

Plus, we head to Ukraine to find out how preparations are going for the Euro 2012 football championship. And --


PIERS MORGAN, CNN HOST, "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT": Did you come close to doing it?

OPRAH WINFREY, HOST, "THE OPRAH WINFREY SHOW": No, not -- you know, I did stupid things like drinking detergent and all that kind of crazy stuff.


ANDERSON: Talk show host Oprah Winfrey opening up to new CNN talk show host Piers Morgan. Coming up, we put him in the hot seat and get him to answer your questions.

Those stories are just ahead in the next half hour for you. First, let's get you a very quick check of the headlines.

Tunisia has announced a unity government charged in taking the country into new elections. The interior minister says that 78 people were killed in weeks of political turmoil. The country's ousted president fled to Saudi Arabia on Friday.

Former Haitian dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier has unexpectedly returned to Haiti. Duvalier, known also as "Baby Doc," arrived on Sunday after some 25 years in exile, mostly in France. His visit comes as the Caribbean nation struggles to choose a new leader.

Apple's CEO Steve Jobs is taking medical leave again. He'll continue to be CEO and be involved in major strategic decisions during his leave. Jobs was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2003 and had a liver transplant in 2009.

Hollywood kicked off its awards season on Sunday with the Golden Globes. "The Social Network," the movie about Facebook, won Best Drama and three other awards. Other honors went to Natalie Portman for Best Actress in a Drama Movie and Colin Firth for Best Actor in a Drama Movie.

Those are your headlines. Now, would you invest hundreds of millions of dollars a year into a project if you weren't certain of its success? Well, the United States has been heavily funding what they call Plan Colombia for years, a program primarily meant to fight drug trafficking. But as Rafael Romo now tells us, Washington now wants a progress report. So, it sent its drug czar to Colombia.


RAFAEL ROMO, CNN SENIOR LATIN AMERICAN AFFAIRS EDITOR (voice-over): It's the largest producer of cocaine in the world, and a key supplier of heroine to the United States. According to the CIA, Colombia produces more than 500 metric tons of cocaine a year, most of it for the US market.

Martha Lucia Ramirez is a former minister of defense and one of the architects of Plan Colombia. Ramirez says the $7 billion plan has helped Colombia fight narco-terrorism in the last ten years. But the high drug demand in the US makes it difficult to eradicate production at home.

MARTHA LUCIA RAMIREZ, FORMER COLOMBIAN DEFENSE MINISTER: I really think that the American strategy against drugs is not enough. It's probably a failure. It's something that they have to make a review.

ROMO (voice-over): Colombia welcomes US drug czar Gil Kerlikowske this week. His visit includes a progress evaluation of Plan Colombia. Experts say the plan has improved security, but has fallen short on reducing drug production in the region.

AURELIO SUAREZ, SECURITY ANALYST: On the quantity of the drug production of the countries like Bolivia, Peru, and Colombia, is one and the same as ten years ago.

ROMO (voice-over): Salud Hernandez, a journalist who has traveled extensively in areas where coke has grown says drug traffickers just move to a different area if attacked by the army.

SALUD HERNANDEZ, JOURNALIST: There's still drug dealers. There's still a lot of drug trafficking. There's still a lot of corruption in may regions of the country.

ROMO (voice-over): What's even more troublesome, the Washington-based Inter-American Dialogue says roughly 90 percent of cocaine sold in the United States still comes from Colombia.

ROMO (on camera): Colombia's problems go well beyond drug trafficking and security. Fifty percent of Colombians live in poverty, and 60 percent have no regular employment. Now that security has improved, many are asking the government to focus on issues like social inequality and long- term development. Rafael Romo, CNN, Bogota, Colombia.


ANDERSON: All right. Well, let's get more on the future of Plan Colombia, shall we? We're joined by Michael Shifter this evening out of Washington, for you. He's president of the Inter-American Dialogue in Washington, which is a think tank that specializes in Latin American policies.

Sir, thank you for joining us. A $6 billion success or failure?

MICHAEL SHIFTER, PRESIDENT, INTER-AMERICAN DIALOGUE: I think it's a mixed picture. I think -- Colombia was considered a possible failed state ten years ago. It's not a failed state today. The state has reasserted its authority. Things are under control, kidnappings and homicides have gone down dramatically.

But the drug problem continues, and Plan Colombia started because there was a concern about the availability and price of drugs in US cities. And that continues. That hasn't gotten better. So, the drug policy has really been unsuccessful, a lot of disappointment after many years and a lot of money invested --

ANDERSON: All right.

SHIFTER: You really can't say very much.

ANDERSON: Michael --

SHIFTER: But Colombia's in a better position because it used some of that money from the United States to strengthen the capacity of its security forces, its army, and its police forces --

ANDERSON: All right --

SHIFTER: To provide security for its citizens. And I think that's a welcome progress.

ANDERSON: So, is it that the plan was a failure in Colombia, or is it that the plan actually forgot to -- remember, as it were, that the demand for drugs is still there in the US?

I guess what I'm saying is, could US Congress basically say, "Look, we're not going to spend the money in Colombia anymore because there's no point. The demand is in the States, and as long as that continues, there's nothing we can do in -- about the supply."

SHIFTER: Well, I think that -- clearly, that there is a fundamental problem. And I think you could find very few people in Washington that really believe in the drug policy today. They realize there really is a question of the market that's driving this problem. It's a global problem. It's huge. And there really needs to be a serious rethinking of alternatives.

In the meantime, however, there are some sensible things that can be done to try to address the problems. Their alternative development has really not been tried as seriously as it might have. It's not -- there's really not cooperation internationally. Everybody, all the countries look to the United States.

There are some steps in Latin America and even in the United States towards decriminalization of certain kinds of drugs. These steps can be helpful overall. So, there are ways to make the problem a little bit more manageable than it's been.

ANDERSON: So, you would be surprised if you saw money from Plan Colombia, going forward, diverted, for example, to a Plan Mexico as Clinton suggested about a year ago. You don't think that's going to happen at this point?

SHIFTER: Well, there is money that's going to Mexico, quite a bit of money that's called Plan Merida. They deliberately avoided the term "Plan Colombia" or calling it "Plan Mexico" because people would make the comparison between Mexico and Colombia, and Colombia's still controversial.

But it's a different kind of problem. Mex -- Colombia has an insurgency, Colombia's a cocaine coca producer, Mexico is not. Mexico doesn't have a guerrilla insurgency. There's a problem of cartels that are fighting battles largely against each other.

So, the nature of the problem, I think, is very different in Mexico, and the nature of the response needs to be different. But it is true that money, resources are being diverted to -- from Colombia and elsewhere to Mexico, because there is growing concern and alarm in Washington about the violence, which seems to be out of control, in Mexico on the US border.

ANDERSON: With that, we're going to leave it there. Michael, we thank you for your thoughts this evening. Mike Shifter, for you, out of Washington.

Up next on CONNECT THE WORLD, we turn the spotlight for you tonight on Ukraine. The Eastern European country is racing to be ready for the Euro Cup next year. So, we're going to go on site to see how preparations are shaping up. That coming up after this.


ANDERSON: Well, Ukraine is marking a milestone this year. It's been two decades since the country gained independence following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Well, this week, we're putting the spotlight on the country and how this Eastern European nation is making a new mark on the global stage and on the future.

Well, 2011 is -- well, it's going to be a challenging year for Ukraine as it prepares to co-host the Euro 2012 football championship. The clock is ticking on this major event, so will the country be ready? Diana Magnay gives us the odds.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am looking for --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I am looking --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I look for -- I am looking for --


DIANA MAGNAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Kiev's policemen deep in study. A weekly English course, part of their preparations for the European football championships, which Ukraine co-hosts with Poland.

MAGNAY (on camera): Are you looking forward to the championships?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Of course. I like to play in foosball -- football -- football? And, of course, I like to watch football matches, and my famous (sic) team is Manchester United.


MAGNAY (voice-over): Ukraine's bid to host the championships wasn't looking good as late as May last year after a series of site visits in April. UEFA said it was considering giving the tournament to Poland because of delays to Ukraine's construction schedule.


MAGNAY (voice-over): The $400 million state-of-the-art Donbass Arena in the eastern city of Donetsk, opened with huge fanfare in August 2009, made little difference, not when Kiev's Olympic Stadium, down to host the finals, still looked like this.

MAGNAY (on camera): The government described last summer as the country's toughest because of the sheer amount of effort that construction workers had to put in to bring stadiums like this up to UEFA's requirements.

But UEFA now says it's satisfied Ukraine can build the infrastructure necessary by 2012. And as you can see, even in the depths of winter, the workers are still hard at it.

MAGNAY (voice-over): This was one of the Soviet Union's key stadiums when it hosted the 1980 Summer Olympics, now going through a complete overhaul alongside other core infrastructures stuck in a Soviet time warp.

BORYS KOLESNIKOV, DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER (through translator): Before Euro 2012, we had no real international airports in the country. We had post-Soviet airports, which were transformed into something like international airports.

For 2012, we have four brand-new terminals, which will have very convenient flight schedules, will have high-speed trains, and each city will be three or four hours from Kiev.

MAGNAY (voice-over): Ads showing Ukraine at its glossiest are beginning to air internationally, designed to entice fans to book their tickets and experience the country's charms. Now, the pressure's on the national team to make sure they do their country proud.

ANDRIY SCHEVCHENKO, UKRAINE FOOTBALLER: For me, personally, I want to play, because it's a big event for Ukraine. And I hope Ukraine prepares very well and people are so excited to achieve the event in Ukraine.

MAGNAY (voice-over): A chance to put the country, its culture, and its football on the front foot. Diana Magnay, CNN, Kiev.


ANDERSON: Euro 2012 kicks off in June next year, and tomorrow night, we're going to switch from football to food. These chickens have helped give rise to a new breed of millionaires in Ukraine. We're going to meet the agricultural baron that they have made very rich. He says the secret is in the country's soil. That is tomorrow night here on CONNECT THE WORLD.

Tonight, its show time for Mr. Piers Morgan, the "America's Got Talent" judge takes over from a CNN chat show legend. So, is he worried about living up to the King? Piers Morgan joins us as your Connector of the Day, up next, here on CNN.


ANDERSON: Well, he has interviewed stars including Sharon Osborne, Simon Callow, and Elton John. He even made several of his guests cry. Well, now he's going to do it all right here on CNN.

In a few hours, former UK newspaper editor and judge on "America's Got Talent," Piers Morgan, officially takes over the mantle from Larry King with his new show, "Piers Morgan Tonight." And first up to get the Morgan treatment, US talk show host Oprah Winfrey, who claims it was her toughest interview in years.

So, what better time to turn the tables, then? Your Connector of the Day, Piers Morgan joins me now live from New York. Toughest interview ever? What did you say to Oprah?


PIERS MORGAN, CNN HOST, "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT": Well, thank you, Becky, for that wonderful introduction. I said to her things like, "How many time shave you been properly in love?"

And that triggered the most extraordinary answer, where she revealed that she'd actually had her heart broken by this guy when she was younger, and she's kept the letters that he sent her in her safety deposit box ever since.

And we never knew about this guy or what he did. And she laughed and said that when she dies, she's left instructions for Gayle King, her best friend, to run to the deposit box and destroy the letters. So, quite a discovery, that.

ANDERSON: You talk about the "art of re-defining the interview." What do you mean by that, Piers? Because some people might think it sounds a bit pompous.


MORGAN: I probably agree with you. I think it's -- look. In the end, I've been spending the last two months talking about these interviews sounding increasingly pompous and ridiculous. And the reality is, watch the Oprah show tonight, and you will get a much better idea of what I mean.

I like interviews to be fun, entertaining, engaging, dynamic, hopefully quite creative in the way that I ask questions. I like the dynamic to be warm, but also challenging, so that the guests, particularly if it's somebody like Oprah, who's been interviewed so many times, emerges afterwards, as she did, with a huge grin on her face that's saying that she had to go home, run a hot bath, and have two Anadin.

ANDERSON: Good stuff. Stuart Evans from Old South Wales in the UK says, "Are you worried about being a British journalist stepping into what is a somewhat sacred US television role?" Let's remind people, this is Larry King's old spot, for goodness sake.

MORGAN: Well, I love Larry King. In fact, he's just gone on Twitter and wished me every success tonight with the new show, which is typically gracious of him. He's a remarkably gracious guy. I've met him in Los Angeles, and he just wished me all the luck in the world. And there's no bigger fan of Larry King than me. I mean, the guy is preeminent in this kind of interview show.

All I can do is do it my way, and you know, back in the UK, I've had a pretty successful run with "Life Stories" and got bigger and bigger guests, and they've been increasingly revealing and emotional in a way they've gone about doing interviews. So, I'm hoping that all the practice I've had back home, I can now bring to this wider market.

ANDERSON: Faizan Uddin, one of our viewers, has written to us, Piers. He's from Pakistan, and he says, "How are you different from Larry King?" Are you worried that people are going to be comparing you with the big man?

MORGAN: Well, Larry's 77 and I'm 45. And I've only had two wives --


ANDERSON: You're a liar, you're not 45.

MORGAN: And he's had eight so far. So, I'm hoping that there aren't too many comparisons.


ANDERSON: All right. Annette has asked a very simple question. She says, "How do you select interviewees?"

MORGAN: I like to choose people that I think I'll have fun with. It doesn't matter if they're a politician. For example, I interviewed Condoleezza Rice, and it goes out on Wednesday night. And everyone said to me, she's very serious, you've got to be very careful, you mustn't talk about anything naughty, because she's Dr. Rice and she'll take it all terribly seriously.

Well, it was fine. I did three segments on Iraq and Afghanistan and her time at the White House and all that stuff that you'd expect Condi Rice to be talking about.

And then, I suddenly thought, let's just try and stir things up a bit. So I said, "Dr. Rice, can I ask you? You've always been one of my favorite pinups from Washington, and you've always remained unmarried. You're the great sort of un-got bachelorette in Washington. If I was to, hypothetically, try and seduce you, how would you recommend that I do that successfully?"

And there was like this moment of silence where I thought the enormity of the question hit home, and then she burst out laughing and began to tell me. And I can give you a little clue. It involves fried chicken, a large bowl of gumbo, and lots of football, which makes her almost the prefect woman, I would've thought.


ANDERSON: Which makes the show on Wednesday a very appealing one, I think, for many of our viewers around the world.


ANDERSON: Catarina asks, "What's the interview question --"

MORGAN: Becky, do you try and pull yourself together, is that what you're getting into -- oh, good, there's interview.


ANDERSON: Catarina asks, "What's the interview question you dread being asked the most, and what's the answer to it?"

MORGAN: Well, the problem is, I ask everybody when I do my GQ interviews whether they're good in bed. So I now get asked that question in every interview that I do. And, honestly, I'm far too gentlemanly to give the answer. And I'm assuming that you would be far too worthy, being a CNN anchor woman, to even dare ask it?

ANDERSON: How many people have you slept with? No, I'm joking. Don't.


MORGAN: I can't believe you just asked me that.

ANDERSON: Here's one from a viewer who says --

MORGAN: A gentleman would never reveal such things.


ANDERSON: Here's one from a viewer, Piers. "You have one day to live. What would you do?"

MORGAN: One day to live. That's a very good question. I think I would fly to the south of France with a load of my friends from my village where I grew up in East Sussex in the south of England, and we would go and watch reruns of the latest Ashes cricket series while drinking Puligny- Montrachet and some fine Chateau Latour 1961. I couldn't think of a finer way to go.

ANDERSON: So you wouldn't be watching reruns of your shows, then? You think the Ashes would be more excited, would it?

MORGAN: Well, obviously, I'll take a few -- I would take a few of my own shows, as well. I like to think I could die watching myself on TV. That would be a great way to go. At least I'd die with a smile on my face.

ANDERSON: Eden Lane asks, "How will you personally measure your success?" And it is a really good question and one a lot of people want answered, because these are big shoes to be stepping into, aren't they?

MORGAN: I think the best yardstick for how I can measure the success of this particular venture was when I was at a party for Colin Firth and "The King's Speech" in New York earlier this week. And Kim Cattrall from "Sex in the City" came running up to me and said, "My God, you're enormous!" Which is not something you get every day.

And then I said, "Sorry?" And she said, "You've got one of the biggest ones I've ever seen!" And I said, "Kim, you're going to have to clarify this quite urgently." I could see Colin Firth's eyebrows raising, and she said, "Your billboard in Times Square. It's one of the biggest I've ever seen in my life."

And I guess in Hollywood terms, it's all about the size of the Times Square billboard, and mine is pretty vast.

ANDERSON: Good man. One of our viewers actually asks, "Do you manage to secure tables in restaurants that are booked because they actually think you are Colin Firth?"

MORGAN: Well, it's funny, when I interviewed Colin, and I've interviewed him already, it's taped and goes out next week, I actually asked him in reverse whether he gets the same problem that I do. And he said that when he goes to the supermarket, he gets these women running up to him saying, "Piers! Piers! You're so sexy!"

ANDERSON: He was trying to make you feel good, I think, wasn't he? Really? Come on, admit it.


MORGAN: No, no, he was serious. He said it only gets worse for him when they say, "Are you Nick Clegg?"


ANDERSON: Who is, of course, the deputy prime minister in the United Kingdom. Do you get on with Nick Clegg, by the way? I can't remember whether --

MORGAN: Yes, sorry, I have to explain that, of course.

ANDERSON: Yes, you do. Yes, and you had a long article about him, and he was quite cross about it, wasn't he? You are a big Arsenal fan. Can the Gunners beat --


ANDERSON: Barca in the Champions League? A number of people asked that question.

MORGAN: Well, we got absolutely flattened last year four-nil at the Nou Camp when Messi was completely, outrageously brilliant. But I've got a funny feeling this year, because Arsenal's first team, if they stay fit, I actually think could give anybody a game.

And we're going to find out quite soon. The games are coming up in the next two weeks, and we will find out whether the Wenger Revolution has finally come to fruition. I've got quite a good feeling.

ANDERSON: Listen, from us here at this show, you're going to be leading into us going forward from tomorrow, so Piers Morgan, the very best of luck. Looking forward to seeing you, and welcome to the CNN family from us all here at CONNECT THE WORLD. Piers Morgan, your Connector of the Day --

MORGAN: Well, thank you, Becky. I hope I'm -- I hope I'm going to give you the best lead-in you've ever had.

ANDERSON: Thank you, Piers. Mr. Morgan, for you, this evening. And Oprah Winfrey, just the first of a week of big names on "Piers Morgan Tonight." You heard about Condi Rice. There's also Howard Stern and George Clooney. For viewers in Europe, it all begins Tuesday at 20:00 -- 20:00 in London, 21:00 in Berlin.

That is your world connected. I'm Becky Anderson. "BackStory" up next after this short break.