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British Lawmakers Debate Taking Action in Syria; Join CNN's Flight to Freedom Campaign; The Female Kurdish Fighters Taking Fight to ISIS; Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton Frontrunners For Their Party's Nomination. Aired 11:00a-12:00p ET

Aired December 2, 2015 - 11:00   ET



[11:00:24] DAVID CAMERON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Inaction is a choice. I believe it's the wrong choice.


BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: The British prime minister lays out his case for airstrikes against ISIS in Syria during what's set to be a marathon

ten-hour debate.

Well, we've heard dissenting voices and firm support for David Cameron so far. We are live in Westminster in just a moment for more and we'll

take a look at where allies here in the Middle East are and what they are doing in the fight against the militants.

Also ahead, Russia takes the row with Turkey even further, accusing President Erdogan and his family of links with the ISIS oil trade.

Plus, a new poll shows U.S. presidential hopeful Donald Trump leading the

Republican race. We're going to look at how the war on ISIS has spread into that campaign so far.

ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World with Becky Anderson.

ANDERSON: A very good evening from the UAE. It's just after 8:00 here.

As we speak, British lawmakers are debating whether the UK should join the many other nations that are bombing ISIS in Syria, trying to weaken a

group that is arguably only increasing in ambition and reach.

There is a consensus that ISIS is very much a global problem. But the reality is world powers are extremely divided over how best to tackle them.

This hour, we will take a look at what's being said and what is actually happening on the ground.

And of course the big question being raised if parliament and by people around the world is, are current efforts working at all?

Let's take you to Westminster then. Debate there began about four- and-a-half hours ago and is expected to go on for several more. After that comes the


British Prime Minister David Cameron was defiant when he opened discussions saying the UK faces a fundamental threat to its security.

Well, the issue puts the British prime minister at odds with the left leaning opposition, whose leader Jeremy Corbyn says he won't support

strikes on Syria.

And there have been strong words from both side of the political divide.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why do not the Iranians, the Saudis the Turks, why do they not fight these people? Why does it always have got to be us to

fight them?

CAMERON: The Turks are taking part in this action and urging us to do the same. The Saudis are taking part in this action and urging us to do

the same. The Jordanians have taken part in this action and urge us to do the same. I have here, quote after quote from leader after leader in the

Gulf world begging and pleading with Britain to take part so we can take the fight to this death cult that

threatens us all so much.

JEREMY CORBYN, LABOUR PARTY LEADER: The prime minister understands that public opinion is moving increasingly against what I believe to be an

ill thought out rush to war. And he wants to hold this vote before the opinion grows even

further against it.

Whether it's a lack of strategy worth the name, the absence of credible ground troops, the missing diplomatic plan for a Syrian

settlement, the failure to address the impact of the terrorist threat or the refugee crisis and

civilian casualties, it's becoming increasingly clear that the prime minister's

proposal for military action simply do not tack up.


ANDERSON: Well, Max Foster is in Westminster with the very latest.

And Max, later this hour we are going to debate the action or lack of action by Arab members of the anti-ISIS coalition. But we have just been

hearing from British lawmakers -- thoughts.

MAX FOSTER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's interesting, because David Cameron is pretty confident he's going to this vote through,

otherwise he wouldn't have taken it parliament at all. He always said he was going to come here only when he thought he could get it through. So he

has been speaking to all the members of parliament, or his team has. He's done the maths and he can get it through.

But there is still this ongoing debate, and he does want parliament to go

with him. And it's Jeremy Corbyn that's really articulating the concerns around this, so David Cameron when he spoke, he said, this is about self-

defense. So we need to attack ISIS because they're planning attacks on us here. They're radicalizing our children.

But when Jeremy Corbyn steps up, he said, actually if you attack them, it is going to make us more of a target for ISIS and they are going to want

to radicalize our children even more.

So, there is a fundamental difference there. And Jeremy Corbyn, as you know, has always been anti-war. He has got a decades long record on

that and career in that. So, he's going to be very difficult to win over, but his fundamental belief is that bombing ISIS in Syria isn't necessarily

the way the solution.

There are political and economic solutions, which he thinks are better.

ANDERSON: Max, the vote will be in about six hours. If he gets a yes, if lawmakers vote to get jets, British jets, over Syria bombing ISIS,

when would that happen?

[11:05:40] FOSTER: It would happen pretty much immediately. I spoke to the British foreign secretary just before the debate. And he said

actually all the resources are pretty much in place all we do is send the message out to start arming the aircraft, basically turn on the bombs

attached to the aircraft.

So that could happen straight away. When this debate finishes, we were late into the night, but pretty much certainly we'll give you the day

on Tuesday, UK time. You'll see the strikes beginning if it carries on as is.

David Cameron did get himself in a bit of a pickle overnight, because what he has been trying to do all the way through is build consensus. And

he started talking about people opposing this vote being terrorist sympathizers. So, at the moment he's trying to undo the damage done by


But I think even with that, he loses some votes, he is still going get it through.

ANDERSON: Max Foster is in Westminster for you this evening.

And as I say, we are going to do more on what looks like a coordinated push for more action against ISIS in Syria later in this hour.

To another dispute, though, over ISIS now, this time on a presidential scale.

Russia accuses Turkey's president of personally benefiting from ISIS oil money. Moscow's defense ministry says it has proof that Turkey is the

main consumer of oil from ISIS and released this video to support the claims.

Well, Jill Dougherty is live for us in Moscow tonight. And Erdogan asked for proof and Russia says it has it and points its finger squarely at

the Turkish president and his family.

What are these allegations?

JILL DOUGHERTY, INTERNATIONAL CENTER FOR DEFENSE AND SECURITY: Well, it was really an extraordinary news conference over at the defense ministry

today. They brought aerial photographs taken both from space and from planes showing what they say are, let's say, transports of oil from ISIS-

controlled areas both in Syria and in Iraq, going north into Turkey.

They say that Turkey, in fact, is the main consumer of oil coming from ISIS areas and that it is reselling it. They also claim that President

Erdogan and his family are complicit in all of this.

As you pointed out, President Erdogan is denying that.

But it's a very, very strong attack and, in fact, here are some of the quotes to give you the flavor from the deputy defense minister Anotoly Ivan

Antonov. He said, "maybe I'm being too blunt, but one can only entrust control over this thieving business to one's closest associates. In the

west, no one has asked questions about the fact that the Turkish president's son heads one of the biggest energy companies, or that his son-

in-law has been appointed energy minister. What a marvelous family business."

That was the flavor of this. And what they're saying essentially is it's the money that's feeding ISIS that's the problem. And as one official

said a terrorist without money is like an animal without fangs.

And they say there is more information, more data and more proof on its way.

ANDERSON: Turkey's president, Jill, has slammed these Russian claims. Once again today, he's said nobody has the right to slander Turkey by

saying Turkey is buying Daesh oil.

Now Daesh and Arabic acronym for ISIS.

And he reiterated that say -- he stand down if the Russian claims were proved true.

You say there is more to come.

What chance Russia will back off at this point? Because I have to say in Qatar today the Turkish president has also reiterated that he does want

to reescalate this row with Russia?

DOUGHERTY: I don't think Russia is going to back down. I mean this is a full court press. You can see it at that news conference. You can

see it in their warning that they've got more to come.

And they say that this really is evidence. In fact, interestingly, they invited a lot of the media to come here in Moscow and they said

essentially you should go into Turkey and you ought to go to those areas that we're talking about, and I presume in Syria as well. Check it out and

you will see what we're talking about.

So, they've raised the stakes here, Becky. We just have to see whether somebody takes them up on it and whether it can be proven.

ANDERSON: Yeah, interesting. All right, Jill, thank you for that.

Still to come tonight, the fight against ISIS ramping up in the west, but what do countries here in the Middle East doing about it? That is up


And Donald Trump strengthens his lead in the push for the Republican nomination. We'll bring you some new poll numbers and look at the

candidate's positions on what is going on in Syria and ISIS? That is a little later in the


Stay with us. Short break. Coming back.


[11:14:59] ANDERSON: At this hour, lawmakers in the UK are debating whether or not to begin airstrikes against ISIS in Syria. This is live

picture coming to you from London. Prime Minister David Cameron made his case to the strikes earlier, a vote still hours away.

Well, the UK does approve airstrikes in Syria, it would become the tenth coalition country to do so. Here are the others already carrying out

bombing raids. They include Australia, Turkey and France. Although, Canada has said it will stop its airstrikes.

Russia conducting separate strikes targeting ISIS and other militant groups in September, they say.

Well, several of the countries in that coalition bombing ISIS are here in the

Middle East. The likes of Bahrain, Jordan, Saudi and the country, they're here,

the United Arab Emirates.

Being so close to Syria, they're more of a risk of spillover of terrorism. But what exactly are Middle Eastern nations doing in this fight

against ISIS?


ANDERSON: Russia's Metrojet flight 9268 brought down by a bomb over Egypt's

Sinai peninsula: 224 dead.

Twin suicide bombings in the Lebanese capital Beirut: more than 40 dead, hundreds injured.

The next day, Paris, mass shootings and suicide bombings left 130 people dead and scores more injured, back-to-back terrorist attacks around

the world, all claimed by ISIS.

Now, a coordinated push to step up the military campaign against the militant group at its self-proclaimed caliphate in Iraq and Syria, spurred

by the events in Paris, French President Francois Hollande shuttled between Washington and Moscow to secure some sort of unified approach against ISIS.

And called on European allies, like Germany and the UK to play a bigger role.

But amidst this latest push for greater military action, the question is, what are the Arab members of the anti-ISIS coalition doing?

When the air campaign against ISIS began more than a year ago, Arab countries like Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Jordan were quick to take part

going so far as to say this is an Arab war and should be fought by Arabs.

MOHAMMED AL-MOMANI, JORDANIAN GOVERNMENT SPOKESMAN: This is our war. And we need to stand and fight terrorism, because it's done in our region.

ANDERSON: But Arab participation has waned in recent months. According to the New York Times, the Saudi air force hasn't carried out

strikes against ISIS targets since September, the UAE since March. And even Jordan, he lost

pilots Murth al-Kasasbeh (ph) in ISIS's barbaric cruelty, last carried out a strike in August.

One major reason for the slowdown: Yemen. The Arab countries are focused on

the civil war there where a Saudi-led Arab coalition is fighting Iranian- backed Houthi rebels who ousted the government and took the capital Sanaa.

But the only war in Yemen, many in the Arab world don't want to get stuck deeper into a conflict without a clear strategy in Syria. Saudi

Arabia and its Gulf allies want to see the end of Bashar al-Assad and want to see a limit on Iranian influence in the region.

ABDULKHALEQ ABDULLAH, ARAB COUNCIL ON SOCIAL SCIENCE: As long as Assad is there, expect ISIS to be there and expect more atrocities to come.

Don't just leave it and throw it at our lap, it is everybody's responsibility and we have to join in together.

ANDERSON: Calls for Gulf countries to play a greater role against ISIS, unlikely to go unheaded until President Assad is no longer a player

in the wider geopolitical game.


ANDERSON: Joining me now to discuss the issue is Ali Khedri. He's the chairman and CEO of the Dragoman Partners and has worked for the U.S.

State and Defense Departments, including as a special assistant to five U.S. ambassadors in Iraq.

Criticism of the Gulf states and other Arab allies that they aren't doing enough to support this anti-ISIS coalition.

You don't buy that do you. Why?

ALI KHEDERY, CHAIRMAN AND CEO, GRAGOMAN PARTNERS: I don't. And the reason why is because President Obama and the United States, which are the

leaders of the coalition, have not articulated a clear and coherent strategy to defeat the radical group.

So without decisive leadership by the president in the White House, how do you expect allies to join in?

ANDERSON: Jordan's King Abdullah wrote a piece in the UK newspaper The Telegraph today. This was clearly ahead of the debate and the vote in

parliament. I want to have a look at what he is proposing and I quote, "we need to work with Syrian opposition forces who are on the ground in Syria

to defeat the Khawarej (outlaws of Islam), while working with equal determination on advancing the political process. The Syrian opposition,

especially in the south, is both capable and willing to fight and they deserve our support," more support for Syrian rebels.

Gulf countries and the likes of Jordan have been doing that for a while now without clear cut results. Time for Arab countries to send in

boots, ground troops?

KHEDERY: Perhaps. We have to be careful, though, because if regional countries start sending in ground troops, then others will escalate,

perhaps the Iranians who already have allegedly Revolutionary Guard elements on the ground, Hezbollah, so on and so forth. So we have to be

careful from transitioning from a regional proxy war in Syria and Iraq to a full on regional ground war. That's why we need to be careful of.

At the same time, the only way we will permanently defeat ISIL is through moderate Sunni Arabs in the region, likely during the surge in Iraq

with the tribal awakening movement. But that's why an air only military campaign is absolutely doomed to failure without the political layers on

top of it.

ANDERSON: And the surge -- I know you were in sort of background negotiations about that. That surge happened and worked for a bit, but

clearly Iraq a mess at the moment.

Let me move on. Experts pointing out today that the absence of Arab air forces in this coalition is a symbolic waste, one expert calls it, in

the fight against a group that wages war in the name of Islam.

Is it the determination that Assad and Moscow misguided in the short- term now, given the threat that ISIS poses?

[11:20:24] KHEDERY: Well, again, the problem that we've had for the last several years under President Obama's leadership has been -- there's a

lack of coherence coming out of Washington.

There are multiple threats, as you know, in the region. There are the Iranians and their hegemonic regional interests. There are nonstate actors

like al Qaeda and Islamic State and there are also genocidal maniacs like Bashar


So, all of these groups pose a threat to regional stability and security and then are exporting transnational jihad, both Sunni and Shia

around the world.

ANDERSON: You also talked about this being the beginning of what would be long-term Russian strategic presence in the Middle East. I wonder

if that's really that bad a thing. You talk of the ill effects of Russian involvement in this


They say they have terrorists on the run in Syria at present. Why is Russian involvement do you think such a bad thing? I mean, the Gulf states

are great mates to a certain extent with Russia.

Turkey, of course, isn't and nor is the U.S. at this point. Is that why it's a bad thing?

KHEDERY: Well, it concerns me.

I'm not concerned about American-Russian zero sum politics like some in Moscow and Washington are.

What I'm concerned about is that currently Russia is backing President Assad who again has committed war crimes and genocide against the Syrian

people. They are backing Hezbollah and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, and helping -- they're not bombing ISIL, they're bombing Syrian rebel


So they're only feeding into the regional sectarian narrative. And that's only actually strengthening ISIL, it's not defeating them in anyway.

ANDERSON: How concerned are Gulf Arab nations and others at this point?

KHEDERY: I think they are very much alarmed, that's why you have seen record weapons purchases from all the Gulf countries, because they are

gearing up toward a major military confrontation with state and non-state actors alike.

ANDERSON: Fascinating. Ali, always a pleasure, a pleasure very much indeed.

Taking a short break at this point. Live from Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World as lawmakers in London then debate whether to join

airstrikes in Syria. We are going to take you to an RAF base in Cyprus on standby for a decision. Stay with us for that.


[11:32:15] ANDRESON: All right. You are back with us on CNN. As it says, this is Connect the World with Becky Anderson.

Our top story for you this hour, British lawmakers debate whether to expand the UK's role in the coalition fighting ISIS.

This is the scene as we speak inside the British parliament. Lawmakers are in the middle of what is their debate on whether or not to

start striking ISIS targets in Syria alongside the U.S., France and others.

Meanwhile, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is praising Russia's airstrikes in his country. He says in working with him, Russia is turning

the tide against ISIS and other groups he calls terrorists. But he criticized coalition efforts.

Well, the vote in the UK is still hours away, monitoring developments from just outside the House of Common, CNN's Max Foster -- Max.

FOSTER: Well, David Cameron, very much looking for the sport of parliamentarians, lawmakers here in the UK for his case to take airstrikes

to Syria, to expand them beyond Iraq.

Now, a lot of the analysis around this has been on the foreign affairs select committee, which is chaired with by Chrisian Blunt, who is with me

right now.

And although, David Cameron is pretty confident of getting the yes vote on this, he is still having to address all of the concerns and he

wants parliament to be happy, doesn't he? Is he managing to swing all the votes towards him away from

those skeptics?

CHRISTIAN BLUNT, BRITISH PARLIAMENT MEMBER: Well, at the end of October, we wrote a report, which laid made out seven points that we felt

needed answering before he could bring this motion forward.

Anyway, he took it upon himself personally for the first time ever to respond to a select committee report as the prime minister.

And he gave pretty comprehensive answer last Thursday that supported a document, which was his formal response to the committee, which is 36 pages

of analysis in it.

And within there were enough answers to satisfy me as chairman of the foreign affairs committee that he had -- there is enough of a strategy for

us to support the prime minister.

And the key issue here is about how Britain can best influence the whole coalition, if there is the prospect of a transition in Syria, which

there now is.

FOSTER: So now we are looking ahead to Britain being involved in airstrikes, downgrading ISIS positions, but what happens without a ground

force? He is arguing that there are 70,000 rebel fighters on the ground who effectively can fulfill that role. But there is a great deal of

concern in that this won't work without a proper ground operation.

BLUNT: Well, he referred to those numbers in his oral statement last week, but actually contained within his longer response to the committee

and then he referenced further, is a discussion about how the Syrian army, itself, can become engaged in this grand battle against ISIL in the future.

It requires a transition, actually the Syrian civil war. So, it's going to require a ceasefire. It's going to be an establishment of a new

transitional Syrian authority that's capable of commanding both the Syrian army currently under the command of President Assad and also the Syrian

Free Army, who is currently fighting each other.

If we get that transition, it is at least possible to see the founding story of the new Syrian republic bring those armies in alliance then

retaking control of the territory currently held by ISIL in Syria.

And I think that is realistic enough and the proper objective now of the whole policy of the international community.

FOSTER: Which means it's a part of Russia and the acceptance of President Putin that President Assad isn't necessarily a part of the future


BLUNT: Yes. And within the Vienna agreement on the 14th of November, if you

look at the detail there, there is an agreement about the future nature of the Syrian state, but also the elections that are an objective of 18 months

to have those elections, who the electors will be and how those will be overseen on the basis of what everyone has agreed there.

I would think it's inconceivable Bashar al-Assad, if he was a candidate in those elections, would win because the electorate is going to

will contain all of the people who have displaced out of Syria as a consequence of the civil war.

Now -- but that at least meets the Russian point that it is looking for the people of Syria to choose their president, not the international

committees to decide.

And so within those two points, you can see I think I think a way through


FOSTER: OK. Christian Blunt, thank you very much, indeed.

Becky, we are monitoring the vote. We're monitoring the debate, and obviously we will bring that to people as it comes through. But it's

expected to go through. It's depending on what margin we're looking at right now.

ANDERSON: Yeah, interesting. All right, and it's 25 to 9:00 here, Max. 25 to 5:00 your time. And that vote, of course, coming at 10:00

local time.

Max will be with us here on CNN throughout the evening. Thank you.

Well, if lawmakers decide to go ahead with airstrikes, RAF jets based in Cyprus could be used.

ITN correspondent Emma Murphy is at the airbase there and joins me now live.

How are British personnel, Emma, preparing there, and is there a sense they will be airborne over Syria overnight?

EMMA MURPHY, ITN CORRESPONDENT: Well, if you speak to any of the officials here, they will tell you it is absolutely normal. They are not

preempting this vote. They are getting on with the work that they do here every day and

have done over the last year and that is sending out Tornado (inaudible) in order to carry out reconnaissance and strike missions on ISIL positions

over in Iraq.

They have been doing that with what they say is a degree of success. Over 1,500 sorties and more than 300 strikes.

So, they are quite clear that they are continuing with that work. And they will not be in anyway preempting the decision of parliament.

That said, everybody here is well aware of what is going to happen in part tonight that potentially their mandate could change. And that finally

after a number of months of flying alongside the Syrian border and looking over it, they will be able potentially be cross.

They say that they are ready to do that. It will be a seamless transition. And when I was here in October speaking with senior commanders

on this base, they were clear the work that they've been doing in Iraq has been extremely good preparation and they are absolutely ready to take the

fight to ISIL in Syria.

ANDERSON: Emma Murphy is in Cyprus for you. Emma, thank you.

NOw while there are some boots on the ground fighting ISIS face-to- face. Kurdish troops have been battling the group. And among them are many female soldiers.

CNN's Ben Wedeman went to the front lines in Syria's east near Hasakah and not far from ISIS's stronghold of Raqqato meet some who have taken up



BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): 20- year-old Eflan (ph) loads rounds into her heavy machine gun. She's part of

an all female Kurdish unit on the grounds here in the war on ISIS here in northeastern Syria. We met her and her comrade at a forward position.

When I asked Eflan (ph) if ISIS ever gets near their position, she responds with a laugh.



"If they do," she says, "we won't leave one of them alive."

At the hands of what in the past was called the gentler sex, ISIS may have met its match.

"They think they're fighting in the name of Islam," says this 20-year- old, "and they believe if someone is killed by a girl, a Kurdish girl, they

won't go to heaven. So they're afraid of girls."

She uses the word "girl," but these are tough women. Her name, by the way, means revenge.

(on camera): At the moment, this position on the front line is quiet, but the commanders say it's just a matter of weeks before they intend to

push forward against ISIS.

(voice-over): A few years ago, the commander traded in construction material and now he leads the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces, a

coalition of Kurdish, Arab and Syrian fighters.

The U.S. Defense Department announced Tuesday it's deploying additional forces, boosting the less than 50 President Obama authorized in


That should be welcome news to Rajava (ph), who feels the assistance, until now, has been modest.

"The help we received," he says, "has been ammunition for Kalashnikovs, heavy machine gun is, for mortars, but we haven't received

any weapons."

His forces, including these women fighters, recently drove ISIS out of the nearby town of el Hul (ph). For more than a year, ISIS held sway here.

Signs of its rule remain in the police station. And arrow points to the room where complaints could be filed. In the small prison, pieces of foam

were the only comfort for the unlucky inmates.

In front of a wall dabbed with the words "Islamic State," still stands the platform where ISIS publicly whipped transgressors.

The town's Arab inhabitants have yet to return. Some fled with ISIS. Others wanted nothing to do with ISIS and ran away and they're eager to

move back.

Rasan Shepherd (ph) lives under ISIS rule for over a year. His family fled, but he stayed with his flock.

"You couldn't do anything," he tells me. "The smoking was forbidden. Women had to be completely covered. You couldn't go anywhere without


He can smoke again in hopes to soon be reunited with his family.

Bed Wedeman, CNN, in eastern Syria.


[11:41:07] ANDERSON: Well, Syria's president didn't hold back. In the interview that I mentioned earlier in the show, he says the downing of

a Russian jet by Turkey last week showed the, quote, real intention of the Turkish president and accused him of losing his nerve.

It's just the latest volley over Syria's civil war quagmire that continues to suck in so many countries.

And you can find more, much more of our extensive coverage by heading to the

website that is

Live from the UAE, still ahead, Marco Rubio, moves into 2nd place in a new poll of Republican presidential hopefuls. We'll have the latest on the

U.S. campaign. up next.


[11:45:05] ANDERSON: Some live pictures from the British parliament, lawmakers debating whether to expand airstrikes against ISIS to Syria.

That's ongoing as we speak. So far the UK has limited its strikes again Sunni extremist group to Iraq. The debate is expected to last several more


You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson

45 minutes past 8:00 in the UAE. The UK already part of the U.S. coalition battling ISIS in Iraq. And Washington's strategy has been the

subject of intense debate in during the race for the White House.

Republican front runner Donald Trump says he is putting -- well, he is open to putting boots on the ground, quote, if feed be.


DONALD TRUMP, 2016 REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If need be, yeah, we have got to get rid of ISIS quickly, quickly. Not for a long


Let me tell you what I really want to do, I want to get other people to put troops on the ground and we'll back them up 100 percent and we'll

bomb the hell out of them.


ANDERSON: Democrat Hillary Clinton told Charlie Rose at CBS that she strongly opposes sending troops to Syria.


HILLARY CLINTON, FRM. U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: I agree with the president's

point that we're not putting American combat troops back into Syria or Iraq. We are not going to do that.

CHARLIE ROSE: Under no circumstances would you not do that?

CLINTON: Well, at this point I cannot conceive of any circumstances where I would agree to do that. We don't know yet how many special forces

might be needed, how many trainers and surveillance and enablers might be needed, but in terms of thousands of combat troops like some on the

Republican side are recommending, I think that should be a non-starter. (END VIDEO CLIP)

ANDERSON: Well, MJ Lee joins me now live from CNN in New YOrk. You've got some new poll numbers to share with us in this presidential

campaign. What are they?

MJ LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Becky. Yet, another poll showing Donald Trump in the lead at 27 percent. Now, Marco Rubio, who has

been on the surge recently, his number picked up to 17 percent. And Ben Carson and Ted Cruz are tied at 16 percent and Jeb Bush, who has really been making a push

to rejuvenate his campaign, he is still stuck at 5 percent.

So Trump no matter what controversy he finds himself in, no matter what he says, that people consider to be perhaps inflammatory or offensive.

He's really holding on to his lead.

Now, if we can take a look at the Democratic numbers, no big surprises here. Hillary Clinton opening up her lead over Bernie Sanders. She is at

60 percent. Bernie Sanders is at 30 percent. Now Martin O'Malley, the former Maryland Governor, he is stuck at 2 percent.

So, Hillary Clinton clearly the Democratic front runner right now.

I would point out Republicans or Democrats, rather, are going to want to see Trump nominated on the Republican side over someone like Marco

Rubio. If we're putting someone like Trump next to Hillary Clinton in the general election, Trump doesn't do so well. It's 47 to 41 percent in a

hypothetical matchup.

Now put Rubio against Clinton and we have 45 to 44 percent.

So Democrats are probably hoping that their chances, they know that their chances are better against someone like Donald Trump and that would

be the better scenario for Democrats looking ahead to 2016.


Well, we've heard from Trump and from Clinton, RE: Syria, and ISIS.

How has the ISIS threat been playing out in this presidential campaign?

LEE: Well, look, national security has clearly become the new hot button issue in the 2016 campaign. And conventional wisdom was that

following the Paris terrorist attacks, that people would be less inclined to support someone like Donald Trump, an outsider who has no political

experience, has no military experience, but I have been to a number of Trump campaign rallies and asked his

supporters, does this change your mind, the renewed focus on national security?

And so many of them have told me no, we are confident that Trump is the

right person to lead this country. They actually really like his rhetoric on ISIS on fighting terrorism and it doesn't bother them that he doesn't

have previous experience.

It does seem, however, that with someone like Ben Carson, who has actually struggled to answer some of these foreign policy questions

recently, clearly the terrorist attacks that happened in Paris, they seem to have hurt him a little bit. His numbers have gone down in the polls as

we saw earlier.

ANDERSON: MJ, out of New York for you this evening. Thank you.

Live from Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World. Coming up, before we go, Facebook founder, philanthropist, and now a dad: find out the

extraordinary way that Mark Zuckerberg and his wife marked the birth of their daughter.


[11:53:26] ANDERSON: Well, good wishes are pouring if from around the world

for one special baby. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, are now the proud parents of a little girl named Max. And

they are celebrating by pledging to give away 99 percent of their Facebook shares over the course of their lifetimes.

Now, those shares are currently valued at $45 billion.

Zuckerberg says the money will go to projects and charities that advance human potential.

Well, your Parting Shots tonight just before we go near in Abu Dhabi. We are giving the last word to you as we should. CNN running a major

campaign as part of our fight against modern day slavery. If you are a regular viewer of this show, you will know about that. We are calling it a

Flight to Freedom Campaign. What we need to do is just make a paper airplane and pledge, write a pledge on it, then tag your friends on social

media, nominating them to do the same.

And use the hashtag #flytofreedom or #runtogether. Go to for more on that.

And there is still time -- a lot of time to take part, though many of you I know who already have done. But have a look at this.


KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi there, I'm Kristie Lu Stout. And I'm joining CNN's campaign to end modern day

slavery. Now I pledge...



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ...and I pledge...

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I pledge to look for and follow leads about slavery in my stories.


[11:55:05] UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): I pledge to continue to raise awareness about sex slavery and Boko Haram.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And I am happy to partner with CNN's Fly to Freedom campaign in an effort to adopt the freedom sale and to end forced




representative what are they doing to end slavery?


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Share your videos and photos using the hashtag #flytofreedom and be part of ending modern-day slavery.

Let's show the world that it's time for slavery to stop.


ANDERSON: I want to know what you are doing to fight modern day slavery. Do send us your pledges as well. You can get if touch with us on

our Facebook page. That's You can always tweet me, as you know @Beckycnn. That is @BeckyCNN.

I'm Becky Anderson and that was Connect the World. From the team here, it's a very good evening. Thank you for watching.

Robyn Curnow up after this short break with iDesk. Stay with us.