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CONNECT THE WORLD
Canadian Parliament Resumes One Day After Shooting; Kobani Still Key Prize for ISIS; Life Under ISIS; ISIS Trading Black Market Artifacts; Syrian World Heritage Sites Damaged by Civil War; Video of Vickers With Gun After Killing Ottawa Shooter; Abu Dhabi Film Festival Opens; Parting Shots: Through the Lens
Aired October 23, 2014 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MICHAEL HOLMES, HOST: Back to work at the Canadian parliament 24 hours after a gunman terrorized its corridors. The man who prevented a far
greater tragedy given a standing ovation.
We're going to take you live to Ottawa for more on the attacker and the soldier he killed. We'll also see how the Canadian capital is coping
after the trauma.
Also ahead here on the program.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: They cut these reliefs and sell them to criminals and antique dealers, says Rasheed (ph). Usually
they just cut off the head, leaving the rest because the head is the valuable part.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: How the treasures of Iraq's past are being lost to the horrors of its present.
ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Center, this is Connect the World.
HOLMES: And welcome everyone.
Canada tries to restore a sense of normalcy in Ottawa after Wednesday's shooting that shook the capital to the core.
HOLMES: The man there on your screen is Kevin Vickers, a sergeant-at- arms who killed the gunman, and as you see receiving a standing ovation from lawmakers he tried to protect, as he lead the procession today to open
Prime Minister Seven Harper praising Vickers and the rest of the security team for their actions. He also vowed that the shooting, or any
other such attack would not prevent parliament from doing its job.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEPHEN HARPER, CANADIAN PRIME MINISTER: We will be vigilant, but we will not run scared. We will be prudent, but we will not panic. And as
for the business of government, well here we are in our seats in our chamber in the very heart of our democracy and our work.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: Well, one person was killed in Wednesday's attack, you see him there on your screen, army reservist Nathan Cirillo. Three people were
taken to hospital after the shootings. They have been released.
And we now know that the man police say was responsible for Wednesday's shootings, his name is Michael Zehaf-Bibeau. A lot of
questions remain about him, and also his motives.
CNN's Chris Cuomo now with a look at how the shootings unfolded.
STEPHEN HARPER, PRIME MINISTER, CANADA: We will not be intimidated. Canada will never be intimidated.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Prime Minister Stephen Harper promising justice after what he calls, a terrorist act on Canada's Capitol.
9:52 a.m. --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Guys, there's a shooter on the loose.
CUOMO: Shots ring out at the national war memorial in Ottawa.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Out of the way! Move, move.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All the sudden I just hear a shot, and, just, pow. CUOMO: The shooter, 32-year-old Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, a Muslim convert. But
officials say he had a troubled past and was planning to fight overseas.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The guy came from the side and came out with a rifle and shot at the man, and then the guy went falling down.
CUOMO: The suspect fatally shooting Canadian Corporal Nathan Cirillo. The 24-year-old father was one of two soldiers standing guard. Then around
10:00 a.m. the shooter hijacked this car and continued his rampage just a few hundred yards away. Entering through doors meant for officials, he
starts firing inside Canada's parliament building.
JOHN MCKAY, CANADIAN PARLIAMENT: I was literally taking off my coat, going into the caucus room and, we heard this boom-boom-boom. CUOMO:
Police scrambling to protect Canada's top officials, rushing them outside to safety. Some lawmakers in the building huddle in a caucus room piling up
chairs against the door to barricade themselves in as police exchange a barrage of bullets, with the shooter.
JOHN WINGROVE, REPORTER, "THE GLOBE AND MAIL": We are sort of flanking down the hallway. It looked like the guy popped out or they saw him. They
fired a lot, a tremendous amount of bullets fired.
CUOMO: Amid the chaos, parliament Sergeant-at-arms Kevin Vickers fires the fatal shot, but not before three others are injured. Vickers killing
the suspect near the parliamentary library, fellow officers calling him a hero.
JOHN VICKERS, SERGEANT-AT-ARMS, VICKERS BROTHER: When you hear those gunshots and know that your brother was in the middle of all of that, it
was a very surreal experience and horror.
CUOMO: This is the second time this week Canada waking up to headlines of terror. On Monday Canadian authorities say a radicalized Islamist hit
and killed a Canadian soldier with his car.
BARACK OBAMA, (D) PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I had a chance to talk with Prime Minister Harper.
CUOMO: President Obama says we have to remain vigilant.
OBAMA: When it comes to dealing with terrorist activity, that Canada and the United States has to be entirely in sync. Not only is Canada one of
our closest allies in the world, but they are our neighbors and our friends.
HOLMES: That report from CNN's Chris Cuomo.
We're going to bring you the latest on the shooting investigation from Ottawa, a live report coming up from Deborah Feyerick in about 10 minutes
from now right here on Connect the World.
Well, as we watch the chaotic situation unfold in Canada on Wednesday, a remarkable story broke concerning one of the ugliest episodes in the U.S.
war in Iraq. We found out that four Americans who worked as private security contractors for Blackwater have been convicted for their roles in
a 2007 mass shooting that left 17 Iraqi civilians dead. It was a massive event at the time.
One of the men was found guilty of first-degree murder, the rest of them voluntary manslaughter.
That incident only deepened the resentment of the U.S. among average Iraqis on the street. And as CNN's Jomana Karadsheh reports for us now,
survivors still feel the trauma of that day.
JOMANA KARADSHEH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Ali Abdul Razzaq's life ended with a bullet to the head on September 16, 2007. Ali was not
yet 10. Ahmad Rubaie was studying to become a doctor. His life, too, tragically ended on that September day.
These are some of the faces of the 17 Iraqi victims of the shooting rampage in Baghdad's Nisur Square seven years ago in an incident involving
the U.S. security firm known at the time as Blackwater Worldwide.
The firm said the State Department convoy it was protecting was in danger and that it had come under attack in the central Baghdad square,
something eyewitnesses interviewed by CNN at the time said wasn't true.
The Iraqi government called the shootings unprovoked and premeditated murder.
The incident sparked a diplomatic crisis and was a turning point in U.S.-Iraqi relations. It also changed the rules on the ground for security
contractors who now operate with no immunity and under strict Iraqi regulations.
For survivors like lawyer Hasan Jaber Salman the physical wounds may have healed, but the memories haunt him, he says.
HASAN JABER SALMAN, LAWYER (through translator): No matter how you try to describe this, you can't do it justice. They killed 17 people in
cold blood. Families have lost a father, a son, a child. It's a tragedy I cannot describe.
KARADSHEH: Salman was driving to work when he got trapped in the traffic in Nisur Square. When the shooting started, like many others he
tried to flee. He was shot three times.
SALMAN (through translator): It was horror. People were terrified. People running out of the cars were being shot at. Anything that moved in
Nisur Square was shot: women, children, young people. They shot at everyone.
KARADSHEH: The defendants say they acted in self-defense.
SALMAN (through translator): I felt that there are people who care about this case. I felt the U.S. judiciary was interested, even if it's to
show the media that America is just and guarantees people's rights. I have trust that there will be justice.
KARADSHEH: For the families of the victims, the long wait for justice will not bring back their loved ones, but may finally mean closure.
Jomana Karadsheh, CNN, Baghdad.
HOLMES: The World Health Organization says the Ebola epidemic in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone remains a public health emergency of
Still, President Obama says there is reason for some cautious optimism, particularly in the United States, but Washington remaining
Starting on Monday, people traveling to the U.S. from those three West African nations at the epicenter of the outbreak will be actively monitored
for 21 days.
Of course, most of the victims to date by far have been in those three West African countries: Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. And a closer
look at conditions in Sierra Leone shows why the numbers are still rising.
Here's ITV's Dan Rivers.
DAN RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Entering the high-risk zone of Freetown's only functioning Ebola treatment center. It has 120
beds, but only the staff to tend to 90 patients. Doctors and nurses here operate in full protective gear, rehydrating Ebola suffers, only a quarter
of the patients are dying.
Among the adults, several children fighting off the virus and hoping to be declared Ebola free.
For 9-year-old Daniel, who arrived last week, this must seem like a prison. But keeping him behind these walls is stopping the virus
spreading. And the care he gets inside is life-saving.
The problem is this tiny clinic is serving a population of more than 1.3 million people. Two other centers might open next month, including a
British funded facility, but officials here say that's totally inadequate.
DONAL BROWN, UK JOINT EBOLA TASK FORCE: That's not enough. That really is not enough. I think we need something with something around 50
to 1,000 beds for western area.
RIVERS: How many do you have now?
BROWN: This is only 220 beds that is functional. 100, 120 beds (inaudible) beds.
RIVERS: You only have a tenth of what you need?
BROWN: Yes, you are right. We need help. We need help.
RIVERS: Ababatu Jallow (ph) is a nurse who caught Ebola while trying to save others. She says as a nurse I want this to end, because people are
dying. People are suffering.
She arrived here on Sunday. And since then, more than 100 people have been infected in greater Freetown. She's worried about her mother who
lives here in one of Freetown's poorest slums. You can see how vulnerable it is, children playing in open sewers, houses packed together.
The concern is for places like this: Ube Slum (ph) in Freetown, 35,000 people living without sanitation. If Ebola takes hold here, it could
That, a terrifying prospect for residents like James Songu (ph).
JAMES SONGU (PH), RESIDENT: If Ebola is to take hold of Ube (ph), well, it would be seriously disastrous for us, because we are congested.
RIVERS: Ebola might be the killer, but it is poverty and ignorance that is allowing it to thrive. Without more resources here, it is West
Africa's most vulnerable and will continue to perish.
Dan Rivers, ITV News, Sierra Leone.
HOLMES: Still to come here on the program, why western youths join extremist groups. We're going to explore the rise of radicalization.
Also, another battle against ISIS: fighting to save Iraq's ancient artifacts from the black market. Plenty to discuss here on Connect the
HOLMES: Welcome back everyone. You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World with me, Michael Holmes. Thanks for your company today.
OK, let's return now to our top story. Canadian authorities working to piece together the terrifying sequence of events in Ottawa on Wednesday
and figure out what led that gunman to open fire on Parliament Hill and in fact inside the Parliament building.
Deborah Feyerick joining us now live from Ottawa.
Deb, what more have we learned about the attacker, his motivations?
DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, his motivation, all of that is under investigation right now. Authorities have told us that he
was a Muslim convert. Keep in mind, though, his father is Libyan.
But they're also saying that he may have become radicalized -- there's also the possibility this was sort of a sudden jihad syndrome where he just
decided that he was going to wage jihad here in Canada.
We know that his passport was confiscated. He had shown an intention to go overseas to try to join up with terrorists and join the jihad fight
there. Authorities, Canadian authorities said, no. They're really trying to crack down on people who are traveling for that reason, that's why they
designated him a high-risk traveler and flagged him so that he wouldn't be able to go overseas.
Whether that triggered this, all of that right now under investigation.
Also, whether in fact he was acting alone, whether he had sort of decided to do this on his own, or whether he had spoken somebody, met
somebody, perhaps who inspired him to do this and then it becomes sort of more of, you know, who was the network that he was involved in, who was it
he was speaking to.
Though, Michael, you know as well as I do that a lot of people are going to look at this in ISIS and other terrorist groups and claim this as
a victory, use it for their own propaganda purposes.
He is 32-years-old, he had a birthday last week. His mother works at the immigration office here in Canada. She was as surprised as anyone,
saying that he thoughts now are not with her son, but with the actual victim.
So, right now there's a lot of information that being looked into as to why he committed this act and also you know, look, he was being
monitored by Canadian authorities. However, they had no grounds on which they could hold him. They're going over -- an intention to go fight
overseas. You can confiscate a passport so they don't go, but you don't have other charges.
There was no indication, no proof, no evidence that he planned to commit any sort of a crime here in Canada until it actually happened
HOLMES: Yeah, Deb, thanks so much. Deb Feyerick there on the spot for us in Ottawa.
Let's continue our coverage of what happened there.
Those shootings, all the hallmarks of homegrown radicalization, many people asking, of course, as they have done for some time now what drives
young people to extremes and especially extremes of Islam. Can they be rehabilitated from that? Atika Shubert covering this angle for us as she
joins us now from London.
This is, as we said, Atika, a concern around the world right now, radicalization of people at home and the reasons why. What have you been
learning about those reasons?
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, a lot of different countries have different approaches to this, but what they do
tend to look at is they try and figure out what is driving a lot of these young men, and increasingly, a number of young women, to join into these
violent extremist movements.
And what they're finding is that basically they have a feeling that they want to be a part of a community. They don't feel connected to the
society that they're in now. And they're also driven by idealism. They want to make a change. They want to make their life worth something. And
so you find that they feel that they're fighting for a cause, and that's what drives many of them to travel, for example, to Syria and Iraq to join
militant groups like ISIS.
But when they're frustrated, this is also another reason why they may lash out violently. And so different countries have different approaches
to this and how to monitor it. But it's always going to be a tough call. I'm trying to find that balance, like Canada did in terms of monitoring
somebody they know might be a problem, but they can't, for example, put him in prison. This is the kind of balance that they're looking at.
And I suppose, you know, when you're looking at disaffected people in that way, the challenge is to take the oxygen, if you like, out of the
message, dissuade those for whom jihad such as it is, is so attractive.
You know, I've just come back from Denmark where they have a very interesting program. It's -- when returning fighters from Syria and Iraq
come, they're not put into prison, they're not -- they are given a sort of a questioning process. And if they've been found to have committed any
crimes overseas, proven to, then they'll go through the judicial system, but if they're not then they're actually helped to find a job, get an
education if they want, to try and reintegrate them back into society.
And the idea is to take the sting out, to take out any sort of move towards violence. They can keep a lot of their radical extremist beliefs
that the Danish government may not agree with, but they say there's a limit. If they start thinking of taking violent action, that's when it
becomes a problem.
In the meantime, they try and keep them within society and see if gradually over time they'll be able to let go of some of that violent
HOLMES: Yeah, fascinating approach, too. Atika, thanks so much. Atika Shubert there in London.
Live from CNN Center, this is Connect the World. Still to come on the program, show us the suspect. Relatives of a murdered transgender woman
storm a U.S. military base in the Philippines. They want to know why the Marine accused in the killing is being kept out of sight. We'll have that
and much more still to come here on Connect the World.
HOLMES: Welcome back to Connect the World with me, Michael Holmes live from CNN Center.
And a brutal murder in the Philippines getting global attention now. A U.S. Marine stands accused of killing a transgender woman earlier this
month. This happened in a motel room near Subek Bay about 130 kilometers northwest of Manila. The victim's family furious about how the case is
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: Outside, Philippine Military Headquarters, added security and mounting anger.
HAROLD CABUNOC, SPOKESMAN, PHILIPPINES ARMED FORCES: I'm sorry, but it is not allowed to come inside. This is a military facility.
HOLMES: But the family and boyfriend of slain transgender woman Jennifer Laude did not heed the warning, instead demanding to see the U.S.
Marine suspected in her death.
Marine Private First Class Joseph Scott Pemberton is accused in Laude's October 11 murder. He was moved from the U.S. vessel where he was
being held here to Camp Alginaldo (ph).
The Marine Corps will not comment on the case until Pemberton is formally charged. And Pemberton has remained largely out of sight. He did
not attend a preliminary hearing before prosecutors Tuesday, angering Laude's supporters and fueling doubt that he was in fact still on
HARRY ROQUE, LAUDE FAMILY LAWYER: We do not understand why these Americans are barring us from seeing the person who is the suspect in the
killing of Jennifer. I am here with the mother of Jennifer. And all she wants is the satisfaction of seeing that the person who killed her son is
in fact in Philippine soil.
HOLMES: Under the visiting forces agreement, Pemberton will remain in U.S. custody through the judicial proceedings, but must stay in the
Philippines. He will be held in a container, then, with iron bars at the Philippines camp secured by U.S. and Filipino forces for the rest of the
CHIEF GREGORIO PIO CATAPANG, PHILIPPINES ARMED FORCES: Inside the container van, there would be one U.S. soldier. And then outside the
container van, there will be another U.S. soldier. And then on the gate (SPEAKING IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE) will be two MP of the armed forces.
HOLMES: The U.S. isn't seeking special treatment for Pemberton and is cooperating fully with Philippine authorities.
HOLMES: Live from CNN Center, this is Connect the World. Your headlines are coming up. Also, how the ancient treasures of Iraq's past
are funding ISIS's future. Stay with us right here on CNN. We'll be back in a moment.
HOLMES: Welcome back to CONNECT THE WORLD. We've go the top stories for you this hour. And first of all, our top story, a development to bring
you, actually, coming into CNN. We're not only getting details about the suspected shooter in Ottawa yesterday, we now have an image of him to bring
We told you earlier officials have identified him as Michael Zehaf- Bibeau, 32 years old, born Michael Joseph Hall. Sources say he changed his name after converting to Islam. Also had a bit of a criminal history,
including a drug conviction, and also one for making threats.
Canada's "Globe and Mail" newspaper reports that his father is a Quebec businessman, his mother works in Canada's Immigration and Refugee
board. They divorced 15 years ago. The "Globe and Mail" also quoting friends as saying Zehaf-Bibeau was asked to stop attending prayers at one
mosque because elders there found his behavior erratic.
Sources tell us that Canadian authorities seized his passport when he learned that he might -- planned to go overseas, and that was their effort
to stop him doing so. They couldn't lock him up, however. But there you have the image that we have of the shooter.
The Canadian parliament, meanwhile, reopening 24 hours after that deadly attack that stunned the nation. Lawmakers giving that man there a
standing ovation. He is the Sergeant-at-Arms who shot and killed the gunman. An investigation into the shooting is underway.
And moments ago, we learned that a plainclothes constable detailed to parliament security was shot in the leg during this encounter. The
constable among the first on the scene when the shooter entered the building. Officials say his injury not life-threatening.
Another man has jumped over the White House fence on Wednesday night, but this time he was quickly pounced on by authorities -- or to be more
precise, dogs. The 23-year-old was not armed. His father says he suffers from mental illnesses.
Of course, coming just weeks after a man jumped the fence and actually managed to get inside the White House before being tackled by an off-duty
secret service officer. This time, the hounds were released.
Police and Jerusalem say a three-month-old girl was killed when a Palestinian man rammed his car into people waiting at a light rail stop.
Surveillance video of the incident there, which several other people -- which injured several other people. Police actually shot and killed the
driver as he tried to flee.
A Syrian human rights group says more than 500 people have been killed in Syria after a month of airstrikes by the US-led coalition. The group
says the vast majority of those killed were ISIS militants; 32 civilians also dying in the airstrikes, according to that activist group.
ISIS not giving up on the northern Syrian city of Kobani. Capturing that city would give the militants a direct route from their strongholds in
Syria right through to the Turkish border. Nick Paton Walsh is on that dividing line and filed this report on the fighting and the brutal version
of Islamic law ISIS is enforcing in their de facto capital, Raqqa.
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Michael, ISIS, it seems, reinvigorating their fight for Kobani, pushing to the east
and the south, but also, it seems, to the west of the city as well. The Kurds, by one account, saying they have, in fact, killed 17 ISIS fighters
who were attempting to move towards a key hill on the outskirts of town.
But clear in the minds of so many who were inside Kobani is quite what life would be like were the city to fall to ISIS. And we have been getting
some testimony from those in ISIS stronghold, a city called Raqqa, exactly what life is like under the new regime there.
WALSH (voice-over): ISIS rules Raqqa, but not every soul there. Only in the dead of night, though, do those who resist dare spray anti-ISIS
slogans. Filming can get you killed, so imagine the courage needed by the cameraman here as they distribute leaflets.
At dawn, they put up this poster. Syrian president "Bashar al-Assad and ISIS," it says, "are two sides of the same coin. Syria is free. Free.
ISIS get out."
These images, filmed secretly by activists inside Raqqa, documenting life under ISIS. Its fighters on Raqqa's quietest streets.
WALSH: There is no corner, no generation they do not impact upon. They call children here to listen, to ignore or not tell their parents, and
to come. Notice the balaclava, and hear what they have to say to the youngest.
WALSH: "I swear to God we will see a caliphate based on the prophecy," he says. "This state is a ship, fueled with the blood of the
martyrs. Be with this state or, I swear, you will be with the ones who get killed, who get killed because they fought God and the Prophet. I swear
you'll be killed like a sheep, a chicken, a cow. I swear to God if you don't accept the religion of God."
Daily life infected with fear -- there are some gruesome images ahead -- when it's not possible to walk through the center of town without seeing
their victims. These, Syrian soldiers, killed and then beheaded. Their bodies on the streets, heads on spikes. This is the town center. These
are normal people going about their day -- however possible under ISIS normal is.
WALSH (on camera): Michael, amongst one of the more chilling things we heard while researching that report was testimony saying how people,
frankly, are just scared to talk to each other often, almost like they're living like ghosts in their own city.
One chilling image of children, apparently, who find some of those severed heads we talked about just a few moments ago, in fact, playing with
them in the streets. A deeply distressing new life for those who find ISIS in control of their areas. Michael?
HOLMES: All right, Nick Paton Walsh, our thanks to you. Fighting ISIS on another front, now. The battle to protect ancient Iraqi artifacts
from falling into the hands of ISIS. Here's CNN's Ben Wedeman with that.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Few are the lands that can boast a history as deep and rich as Iraq, and
nowhere is that more apparent than in Baghdad's Iraqi Museum. Director Qais Hussein Rashid takes us on a tour.
"This is from 3000 BC," he says, pointing to a Sumerian mosaic. Thousands of years before the birth of Christ, the people of Mesopotamia
mastered the first writing system, mathematics, astronomy, literature, and law. Iraq's past, however, is threatened by the nightmare of its present.
WEDEMAN: The group calling itself the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, ISIS, is not only at war with the Iraqi state, it's also at war with
Iraq's very identity, blowing up religious shrines, slaughtering and enslaving minorities, executing its enemies. And what it hasn't destroyed,
ISIS is selling on the black market.
"They cut these reliefs and sell them to criminals and antique dealers," says Rashid. "Usually, they just cut off the head, leaving the
rest, because the head is the valuable part." The area around Mosul is replete with ancient ruins, now in peril.
WEDEMAN (on camera): These artifacts come from the ancient city of Hatra, or al-Hadr in Arabic, which dates back to more than 300 BC. It's
located just south of Mosul, where ISIS took over a few months ago. They're now using the site to store weapons and ammunition, to train
fighters, and to execute prisoners.
WEDEMAN (voice-over): Hatra's fate keeps Rashid up at night. "There are palaces, temples, and statues there, and ISIS is living among them," he
tells me. "I'm afraid they'll do something crazy."
ISIS has taken over Mosul's museum, turning it into an office to collect jizya, the tax levied on non-Muslims. The fate of he antiquities
there is unknown.
Iraq's history is full of catastrophes. One of the worst was the Mongol sacking of Baghdad in 1258, when it's said the Tigris ran red with
blood and black with the ink of thousands of priceless manuscripts tossed into the river.
To Rashid, the Mongols barbarity pales in comparison with that of ISIS. "They're people from another planet," he says. "They take pride in
nothing. Their mentality is completely petrified. They don't think of all of this as the accomplishments of humanity."
Aliens with an alien ideology bent on destroying humanity's patrimony.
Ben Wedeman, CNN, Baghdad.
HOLMES: Extraordinary stuff. Let's stay on the subject. The destruction of ancient artifacts not just happening in Iraq. It is also
happening in Syria due to the civil war there.
I am joined, now, by Susan Wolfinbarger, one of the directors of the American Association for the Advancement and Science. And she's been
studying satellite images of Syria's world heritage sites. Just give us an overview of what you're seeing. Because it's not good news.
SUSAN WOLFINBARGER, AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF SCIENCE: No, it's not good news at all. We've started our analysis with
analyzing by all of the world heritage sites in Syria. There are six total.
And we found damage at five of the six. And so, this is really distressing to us, considering the wide range of sites that we're looking
at and their historical significance.
HOLMES: And Aleppo, let's talk about Aleppo for a moment. I want to get on to Palmyra as well, because we've got some striking images there,
but talk to me about Aleppo. And I know that that contained one of the most ancient marketplaces in the world, and various other things as well.
And that place has just been destroyed.
WOLFINBARGER: Yes. Aleppo has been on the front lines of this conflict since the beginning, and because of that, there has been massive
amounts of damage across the entire city, but also to the world heritage site that's the ancient city in the center.
And we've seen damage due to explosives and shelling all across the ancient city. The Souq al-Madina, which is the market that you referred
to, it's the oldest open-air covered market in the world. It's been heavily damaged.
The Great Mosque that's there has also been damaged. And famously, the minaret that was on the mosque was destroyed last year. We've seen
many, many buildings that have been destroyed, a lot of them from the Ottoman Empire period.
HOLMES: It's just horrible. I remember very early on in the conflict that the souq was -- I remember it burning, it was on fire. This really is
I want to talk about Palmyra now. Let's have a look at a couple of images, and I hope you can see them, too. We've got an image there. The
top one --
HOLMES: -- on your screen, that was in October 2009. The bottom one is March of this year. You can see Palmyra's Norse Roman Acropolis
disrupted by, well, road construction. Just terrible things being done.
Mounds of earth, there you can see the pink arrows on the bottom there that show a lot of that. And this is all to provide cover for military
vehicles. The yellow arrows, they point to those. What does this do to you as a professional, just to even look at that?
WOLFINBARGER: Well, it's extremely disturbing to see things like this happening, particularly since this is a world heritage site. This is an
area of Roman and Persian ruins. And so, we've seen the bulldozing of parts of the site to make these earthen berms, to make military
We've seen military vehicles hiding in the area. Part of the ancient Roman wall was destroyed, it was bulldozed. And so, the destruction is
complete of the history of that area, because they've just taken a bulldozer and gone through.
HOLMES: Yes. What --
WOLFINBARGER: And it's just devastating
HOLMES: -- what man can do. I mean, this is an area that a lot of people call the cradle of the civilization. I remember being down in
Babylon during my times covering the war there, and US troops at one point set up camp on top of some historical sites, there.
I was there when the looting was going on at the museum, and that place was left undefended while the oil ministry was very much defended.
What can be done? Can this be turned around? Or is this now -- I mean, that's a done deal for a lot of these sites.
WOLFINBARGER: Well, for some of the sites, it is, like some of the bulldozing that's happened in Palmyra. But some of the sites that we've
see, where they're a little bit more sturdy, they've been damaged but not completely destroyed, so there are some reconstruction efforts that are
Also, with the University of Pennsylvania and the Smithsonian Institution, we're doing trainings that are helping Syrians that are museum
professionals learn how to safeguard the areas that they are working in, how to shelter in place and how to protect the things that they can't move.
And so, we have a lot of Syrian colleagues that are doing some very dangerous work, and we're very grateful to the efforts that they are doing
and the danger that they're putting themselves in, trying to save what they can of their culture.
HOLMES: Yes, the world is grateful for what they're doing, too. As you say, very brave people. We'll leave it there. Susan, good to see you.
Susan Wolfinbarger there, one of the directors of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. We appreciate all the work you're doing as
well. Hopefully sanity will prevail at some point.
All right. Let's go back, now, to our top story. Another development coming into us here at CNN. We've been telling you about the Sergeant-at-
Arms, Kevin Vickers, who's been hailed as a hero. He was one of those who opened fire on the gunman in Canada's parliament.
We've got video there of him now, holding a weapon. He does have a handgun in his hand there as he walks through the parliament building after
taking part -- a very direct role in stopping Michael Zehaf-Bibeau. Other officers, of course, in the halls as well, and many of them opening fire as
Parliament went back into session, what was that, a couple of hours ago now? Lawmakers -- a really moving standing ovation for Mr. Vickers
before they got back to business.
Again, video just received that shows the Sergeant-at-Arms with a weapon in his right hand, there -- you can just make it out when he comes
into the light -- after he helped to stop the shooter. He is responsible for security, obviously, at the parliament.
Up next on CONNECT THE WORLD, we're going to be talking to the director of "From A to B," one of the movies premiering at the Abu Dhabi
Film Festival. We'll be right back.
HOLMES: Welcome back to CNN, this is CONNECT THE WORLD, not with Becky Anderson, but me. Welcome back.
All right. The Abu Dhabi Film Festival opens today, and "From A to B" is going to be making its debut. I'm sure you've been anxiously awaiting
this. The movie follows three childhood companions on a road trip in memory of a lost friend. The real anchor of this program, Becky Anderson,
got a chance to sit down with the film's director.
BECKY ANDERSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: "From A to B." This is your second feature film, debuting at the Abu Dhabi --
ALI MOSTAFA, DIRECTOR, "FROM A TO B": It is, yes.
ANDERSON: -- Film Festival.
MOSTAFA: Four years after my first.
ANDERSON: And this is opening the festival.
MOSTAFA: It is, yes.
ANDERSON: Do you feel the weight of expectation on your Emirati shoulders?
MOSTAFA: I -- what I feel, truly, is pride. The fact is that we are opening -- an Emirati film for the first time is opening the Abu Dhabi Film
Festival in my capital city. It's an enormous pride. But at the same time, it shows it's a testament to the industry and how it's growing.
ANDERSON: Tell me about the film.
MOSTAFA: I had the idea quite a few years ago. The backstory of the film is that it starts off in 2006 with a group of childhood Arabs who grew
up in Abu Dhabi and went to an American school. And one of them wanted to go on a road trip, tried to convince them to go on a road trip to Beirut.
It did not end up happening, and he decided, I'm going to go on my own. He went on his own and reached Beirut, and he got killed during the
"A to B" picks up five years later, in 2011, December 2011, Abu Dhabi, where one of them tries to convince them to go on a road trip, and
eventually does. But the reason to go on this road trip is obviously in honor of their friend, but at the same time, to try and bring them closer
ANDERSON: Jay, Rami, and Omar, the three characters, two of whom in real life are comedians --
ANDERSON: -- and one of whom is a civil engineer, or certainly was. How do they pull this off? This is their first feature film, right?
MOSTAFA: We were truly blessed with our cast. And the fact is that both of them had comedic backgrounds. They also had -- gave us a lot of
input when we were on set, when we were -- there was a lot of times we were doing rewrites on the spot, seconds before rolling camera. And so, it was
great to have that experience.
One of them, the civil engineer, obviously who has never acted before, we literally were trying to cast that character for months. We found him
three days before shooting.
NATALIE DORMER AS OLGA, "CITY OF LIFE": I just never though the was your type.
ANDERSON: Your first film, "City of Life," was nothing if not controversial. Fantastic film.
MOSTAFA: Thank you. "City of Life" was my first feature film, and I wanted to make a film that -- with a storyline that I completely understood
and had obviously experiences of. And that was obviously Dubai.
But yes, the films are quite different. One's an ensemble piece, a drama, and the other one is a comedic-dramatic road trip.
ANDERSON: Which did you enjoy more?
MOSTAFA: Oh, that's --
ANDERSON: Making, perhaps, rather than watching. I don't think you ever enjoy watching anything you've made. Go on.
MOSTAFA: It's a hard question, because I just enjoy being on set, regardless, whether I'm on a TV commercial or I'm making a film.
ANDERSON: What happens next?
MOSTAFA: What happens next? Hopefully, it doesn't take me another four years to make another film.
MOSTAFA: Well, I'm looking to try and hopefully produce a film, maybe next year, and maybe start directing another one, hopefully by the end of
ANDERSON: What don't we know about Ali Mostafa?
MOSTAFA: He doesn't like being in front of the camera.
ANDERSON: That's a lie, because you told me you did earlier.
ANDERSON: Well, you're very good at it. Thank you.
MOSTAFA: Thank you.
HOLMES: Becky Anderson, there. Now, live from CNN Center, this is CONNECT THE WORLD. We're not done with you yet. Coming up, today's
Parting Shots. We're going to have a look at the Israeli-Palestinian divide the way a photographer sees it. That's coming up on CONNECT THE
HOLMES: Welcome back, you're watching CNN. This is CONNECT THE WORLD, I'm Michael Holmes, appreciate your company.
Well, today's Parting Shots takes a look at the complexity of Israeli and Palestinian lives through the lenses of 12 acclaimed photographers.
It's an exhibit that attempts to reflect the diversity and the fragmented nature of the region after all these decades of conflict. And it is now
open at the Center for Contemporary Art in Prague. Have a look.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "This Place" is a monumental cultural project that explores Israel and the West Bank as both plays a metaphor through the eyes
of 12 internationally-acclaimed photographers.
An attempt to look at Israel as a place where the maps of the sacred overlap, compete, and ultimately exclude each other.
The idea was to ask not photojournalists, not photo reporters, but artists who have developed their own grammar and their own syntax, to
explore the many fault lines of this very highly-contested place.
Look beyond the dual perspectives, for-against, victim-perpetrator. The entire idea was to look beyond the political map. And it's an
invitation to embrace complexity and dissonance.
"This Place" doesn't present a single, monolithic vision, but rather, a fragmented portrait, alive to all the rifts and paradoxes of this
important and highly-contested place.
HOLMES: All right, I'm Michael Holmes, that was CONNECT THE WORLD. "The International Desk" with the lovely Lynda Kinkade coming up next.
Don't miss that. We're going to bring you all the latest news from around the world, including Ottawa. Thanks for being with us today. I'll see you
again at 2:30 in a couple of hours, three hours.