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CONNECT THE WORLD
U.S. President Reassures Americans After San Bernadino Terrorist Attack; Israel Patrols Land and Sea to Prevent ISIS From Exploiting Sinai; The Traveling Soup Kitchen Following Refugees in Europe; France's Far Right Front Nationale Party Winning Big In Local Elections. Aired 11:00a-12:00p ET
Aired December 7, 2015 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[11:00:22] BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: Another vow to crush ISIS, but views on how exactly to do that are as divided as ever. This hour, we're going
to hear how America's Arab allies want to go about it and what they are actually doing.
Also ahead, as asylum seekers on Europe's borders beg to be let in, the crisis already being felt at the ballot box boosting France's far
right. The details are ahead tonight.
Plus, on patrol, CNN gets a close-up look at how Israel is securing its Sinai
border amid its own terror fears.
ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN Abu Dhabi, this is Connect the World with Becky
8:00 here in the UAE. We begin with the global fight against ISIS.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We will destroy ISIL and any
other organization that tries to harm us.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: U.S. President Barack Obama vowing to defeat the terror group.
But how does the rhetoric become reality? Well, Mr. Obama says the coalition is setting up airstrikes against is that enough? I'm going to
cross to Turkey, where that country's president has pushed for a safe haven in northern Syria and no-fly zone.
Plus, as Europe, the U.S. and Russia intensify (inaudible) the Arab Gulf countries playing in the drive to route out the terrorists?
We are going to dive into these complex politics and competing agendas for you this hour. And we are on the ground in Kobani where Syrians are
trying to start over. Life there is far from normal. But hope remains.
That is all ahead in the next 60 minutes. Do stay with us for this. We are going to start off with CNN's Sar Sidner who is live in Istanbul.
And the speech by President Obama last night was clearly intended to reassure a nervous U.S. public in the wake of San Bernardino slaughter.
But the president says the take on the evolving threat regionally, not least in Turkey, disagreements between the U.S. and Arab allies, Sara, on
how to defeat the group, explain.
SARA SIDNER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, that's true, Becky. There are disagreements.
If you look at Turkey and what it wants, you mentioned the safe zones, which really implies that they want to see a no flight zone by the U.S.-led
coalition. That has not happened.
The Turks also believe that having boots on the ground -- they have their own troops in Iraq trying to, they say, help fight ISIS, they would
like to perhaps see more countries, including the United States do that. That is something
that we have not heard from the president. That doesn't seem to have changed in this speech. You said there was no overhaul to his policy.
However, we do know that the United States has sent in special forces, a small contingent of special forces. Now Iraq, when you start talking
about what they want, they have been very clear. They do not want foreign combat boots on the ground.
However, they will take assistance. They have agreed to letting in some of those special exploratory forces on the ground and they have asked
for more equipment, more training, rebuilding. They are OK with those things to try to take out ISIS, but they do not want foreign involvement
with combat troops on the ground there in Iraq. When it comes to this country, however, they'd like to see some
of that involvement in Syria -- Becky.
ANDERSON: A row between Turkey and Iraq over Ankara's troops in that country at present, then, why?
SIDNER: Because of what I just mentioned, that Turkey has some troops in Iraq. They deployed, they said, a new round of troops, just a troop
Iraq said, no, we did not approve you coming into this country with troops and, therefore, you have violated our sovereignty and they have
asked the ambassador to Iraq to come in and speak to the Iraqis. And so, you know, they're telling Turkey, listen, this is not on. We want you to
get out. Turkey has reversed the course a bit and said, okay, we will not be sending poor troops into Iraq right now. They have stopped that for the
We have to kind of wait and see, though, Becky, whether they take all their troops out or how that is going to work going forward.
But the Turks have said, hey, look, we had permission, we though, from the Iraqi central government. The Iraqis say, no, that is not true. We
need you to please remove your troops and do it as soon as possible. That has not yet happened, Becky.
[11:05:20] ANDERSON: Sara Sidner is in Istanbul for you this evening.
All this hour, we are going to be looking, viewers, at what the world is
doing to tackle terrorism and ISIS, in particular. You'll know that Russia and the
United States have taken the lead against the group, each bombing it countless times.
But for many the question is, why aren't countries in this region where I am taking on bigger, higher profile role in battling ISIS?
Well, to answer that, you have to dig into the difficult knot of political factors that complicate Arab intervention. Have a look at this.
ANDERSON: The gruesome killing of Jordanian pilot Lieutenant Colonel Muath Kasasbeh seen by many as a turning point in the Arab world's fight
against the barbarity of ISIS. Regional countries, led by Jordan, talked about owning the
war against the group.
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: Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain and the UAE carried out strikes in Syria, and Egyptian went after ISIS in Libya after militants
there beheaded 21 Egyptian Christians.
But nearly one year on, it's not clear how active Arab states are in the fight against ISIS, either in the air or in support.
According to a New York Times article from last month, the Saudi air force hasn't flown a mission against ISIS targets in Syria or Iraq since
September. The UAE stopped in March and Jordan in August.
CNN has reached out to all of these countries to get their side of it, but we haven't yet gotten a response.
Now, many observers say the apparent absence of key Arab nations is baffling. ISIS's so-called caliphate is much closer to countries in this
region than the west and extremists have done much harm to the image of Islam and Muslims.
But to understand the reasons, you got to look at the conflicting interests of regional countries, specifically a bloody competition for
power and influence between Iran and Saudi Arabia.
Take Yemen, analysts say the war there is currently the most pressing concern for Arab countries led by Saudi Arabia. Their aim is to defeat
Iranian-backed Houthi rebels who ousted the government and took the capital Sanaa last year.
Saudi Arabia and its Gulf Arab allies are also less inclined to carry out strikes against ISIS targets if doing so helps the Iran-backed
governments in Baghdad or Damascus, according to regional experts.
ABDULKHALEQ ABDULLAH, ARAB COUNCIL FOR SOCIAL SCIENCE: Maybe there is a need for these two countries, Iran, Saudi Arabia, to agree on their end
game. And I don't think that is coming any time soon, by the way. So, what are we in? We're left with nothing. We're left with no direction in
the regional level, no direction on the international level. And then you come and you ask the Arabs to join in? Do what?
ANDERSON: So, if regional powers like Iran and Saudi Arabia are distracted by an all-consuming rivalry, many in the west who wish to see
ISIS eliminated, may continue to ask where are the Arabs?
ANDERSON: To help us answer that question, where are the Arabs, Tony Cordesman of the Center for Strategic and International Studies joining me
tonight out of Washington.
Sir, back in September of last year 2014 the Gulf Corporation Council, along with several other countries, including the U.S., published a
communique pledging to contain ISIS, saying, and I quote, they shared a commitment to stand
united against a threat posed by all terrorism, including the so-called Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, as it was known then, ISIS now, to
the region and to the world.
Why didn't that pledge turn into concerted consistent action?
ANTHONY CORDESMAN, BURKE CHAIR IN STRATEGY, CSIS: I think you need to remember that ISIS is only one of the threats that the Arab states face.
You've mentioned Yemen, the Houthi are a critical issue there, but so is al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.
You are looking at Iran as a serious threat across the Gulf in expanding presence inside of influence in Iraq, it's certainly playing a
critical role in Syria, it continues to arm forces in Lebanon.
All of these factors are a part of the problem that these States have. And you need to remember, that these are not states with large ground
forces and basically what people often ignore is what are they going to do put ground forces into Iraq with its divisions between Sunni and Shiite, or
into Syria? If so, how? Because unless they somehow come in through Turkey or Jordan and find themselves immediately caught up in the problems
of the various rival -- Arab rival -- Arab rebel groups, they have no ability to deploy and operate there.
ANDERSON: With a world consensus, though, sir, that military action from the air won't be enough to stop ISIS, and outright refusal by the U.S.
to put boots on the ground, underscored in Obama's speech last night -- I hear what you've just said, but if Arab armies don't take the fight to ISIS
on the ground, then who will?
[11:10:59] CORDESMAN: Well, I think we need to remember what the Arab armies that we are focusing on are. One is defined some way to deal with
the various Arab rebel groups that will get them to address ISIS and not simply Assad.
And here you do see the Gulf states providing significant amounts of money and arms. And you've seen us step up in the flow of U.S. arms.
Now the exact size and character of the U.S. advisory effort and arms transfer effort there is classified, but to the extent you have an
operational Arab force in Syria, it's the Arab rebels, not some outside Arab state. And inside Iraq, you are building up the Iraqi army. It's a
very slow process. There are serious problems with Iran. There are political struggles in Iraq, where frankly the Abady government seems to be
weak and where there are at least some elements on the Shiite side that want to build up the Shiite militias, but not have a national army that
isn't Shiite. And after more than a year, efforts to pass a law that will create a legal Sunni force has still never been passed by the Iraq
ANDERSON: Saudi Arabia has repeatedly called for Syria's President Bashar al-Assad to go. And it says his ouster would help crush ISIS.
According to Reuters, the Saudi foreign minister Abdel al-Jubeir said this about Assad back in October. He's the magnet, quote, that attracted
foreign fighters from all over the world to fight on the side of ISIS against Assad's regime.
But Mr. Assad's army is one of the few organized forces on the ground actually, it says at least, striking out to contain ISIS, and his ouster
certainly won't stop ISIS in Iraq, Libya and elsewhere.
So why western states, including the U.S., give you any credence to this idea from firstly the Saudis and but others? And if not, what
pressure, if any, can the U.S. and others put on their Arab allies to change this calculation on
Assad? Would it help?
CORDESMAN: I think we need to remember several things. First, the Assad
forces haven't been fighting ISIS in any serious way, when it comes to pressure basically what they have done is retreat. They focused on other
rebel forces, because those are the forces fighting Assad.
At present you have a peculiar relationship where Assad basically in many ways is tolerating the ISIS forces, because they don't threaten him
and the other Arab rebels do, so you can't point to Assad as any source of strength.
Moreover, many of the key elements of the forces are actually fighting for him are Iranian now and have nothing to do with the Arab side.
You also have to face a problem.
ANDERSON: Let me put this to you, sir. Sorry. And I'd butt in there.
But let me just put this to you very, very briefly, is this a fight, this fight against ISIS that is already lost?
CORDESMAN: No, it isn't lost. It's a very weak movement. And I think people often forget when you talk about 30,000 fighters, or 50,000,
it is not a strong force. If you put together any kind of serious Iraqi or Arab rebel force, you can certainly defeat it.
But I think it's equally important to remember Arab perceptions in the region. Out of the 250,000 or more dead in Syria, almost all of them are
the product of fighting with Assad. When you talk about a million injured, you are talking about Assad forces, not really ISIS. When you talk about
something on the order of more than 4 million refugees, and 7 million people without their homes and
businesses, this is the Arab Sunni forces fighting Assad. And to keep this in perspective is absolutely critical.
ANDERSON: Sir, with that, we're going to leave it there. We thank you very much, indeed, for your analysis this evening.
Still to come tonight...
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's kind of like a roving soup kitchen. It moves wherever the refugees are moving, wherever
they're trying to get across the boarder.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: It is a fresh take on a traditional idea. How volunteers have turned an abandoned space into a new way to feed hungry migrants on
Also ahead, rising from the ruins a Syrian town is slowly returning to life after a month-long siege by ISIS.
Taking a very short break. Back after this.
ANDERSON: Well, right, you're with Connect the World with me Becky Anderson on CNN, 19 minutes past 8:00 in the UAE.
We learning more today about the ISIS sympathizers who carried out the massacre in California. CNN has obtained a new photo of Tashfeen Malik and
Syed Rizwan Farook, it shows them the United States at Chicago's O'Hare airport last year.
Now, the husband and wife killed 14 people at a holiday party last week in San Bernardino in California. They were shot dead by police.
Farook's father tells an Italian newspaper his that son supported the ISIS goal of establishing a caliphate and was, quote, fixated on Israel.
Meantime, the university that Malik attended in Pakistan tells CNN that she was an ordinary student saying nothing made her stand out.
Coming back to this region, last year one Syrian town became the symbol of a ground fight against ISIS.
Kobani was under siege by ISIS for months, but Kurdish forces fought back, eventually retaking the town of the help of coalition airstrikes. It
was left in ruins. And much of it remains a wasteland, but as my colleague Ben Wedeman reports, residents are determined to rebuild.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: 17-year-old Hamouda (ph) sends his pigeons flying over his hometown of Kobani, flying over it,
town of ruins, in rubble, but where lives on.
"What makes me happy now is that I'm home, despite all the destruction around us," says.
For five months from September 2014 to January of this year, an intense battle raged between ISIS and Kurdish fighters accompanied by heavy
airstrikes by the U.S.-led coalition.
ISIS is gone and many of the town's residents, like Moustafa Kowaz (ph) have returned, to find homes damaged, almost beyond recognition.
"Daesh fighters were upstairs on the second floor," he tells me. "And the Kurdish came in from below. There was a battle here."
He lived here with his wife, married sons and families, 19 people in all. Now he's hoping just to make one room livable.
Moustafa Ismail (ph) watches as a bulldozer clears the remains of this three-story home.
"I worked 30 years to build this home. And it was destroyed in a matter of
seconds," he says, "but what can we do? We have to rebuild."
Zakia Mohajara (ph) lives with her husband and five children in one cold room of what's left of their home. For now, that's the best they can
"We don't have any money," she says. "We were only able to repair this one room with help from our friends."
But there is life among the ruins. Kobani took a beating, but shops are opened. Some areas are a waste land, or to the children a very rocky
playground where they reenact with stones the battles of just a few months ago.
More than 70 percent of the buildings in Kobani were either damaged or destroyed. Despite that, there is a will to rebuild this town. The
challenge is finding a way to do it.
Abd Haman Hammel (ph) is the general coordinator for Kobani reconstruction.
"We're building this new neighborhood for people who have lost their homes," he says, "but as you can see, we've stopped because we can't import
any cement from Turkey."
Wary of Kurdish ambitions to build a state on the ruins of Northern Syria, Turkey has closed the nearby border crossing. As a result,
desperately needed building materials are if short supply.
Rebuilding this town could take a very long time, but like a Phoenix rising from the ashes, it will rise again.
Ben Wedeman, CNN, Kobani, Syria.
ANDERSON: Right, you're with Connect the World out of Abu Dhabi. Lost more ahead, including Israel on alert. We're going to see how it is
patrolling both sea and land to protect itself from a potential attack by ISIS, first up,
though, One Square Meter, this week takes us to Tehran to a townhouse that twists like a Rubik's Cube transforming to fit the weather. That's up
[11:27:43] JOHN DEFTERIOS, EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Tree-lined streets with expensive villas are quite a common site in the high-end
districts of Iran's capital city Tehran. But tucked away in this neighborhood called Daruz (ph) is a unique feat of architecture.
Like a Rubik's Cube, the rooms in this townhouse twist and turn on command, designed by the Tehran-based Next Office Studio, the lead
architect Alariza Tarvone (ph) says the rotation can transform the home's look and feel.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Like a person in winter likes to be this way.
DEFTERIOS: Likes to be cozy.
Three rotating blocks turn 90 degrees, outwards to face the sun to create three room terraces, or inwards to darken the house and keep it warm
during Tehran's freezing winters.
This functionality seems to also reflect society.
In my limited time in Iran, you can you see some very discreet society. Was that a part of the inspiration to have it opened sometimes
architecturally and closed if you want that option?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The question is how much freedom, how much openness with others? How much we can connect to the city?
DEFTERIOS: The white glossy interior and clean lines demonstrate the very
This is an ancient culture, ancient history. But you see a building like this and you say wow its really the modern cutting edge of Tehran.
UNIDENIFIED MALE: The urge and desire to be much modern, I think is it.
DEFTERIOS: But tradition also played a part.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have some central yard in famous houses in Iran, central courtyard. And it's the concept is from there.
DEFTERIOS: The central void floods light throughout this $9 million seven-story mansion that boasts a swimming pool and gym among its luxury.
But the ability to turn itself inside out remains the home's most striking feature. While the mechanical bases used to rotate the rooms
already existed in theaters, in car showroom platforms, there were other technical challenges.
That's interesting, you can have the glass pulled down?
[11:30:04] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, yes, yes, yes. It was hard.
DEFTERIOS: That was a hard thing to do?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That was hard. That and the -- this gap was very hard. For (inaudible) the transformation transcends the physical space.
DEFTERIOS: The Tago Boni (ph), the transformation transcends the physical space.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You see the light? You see the light? That was (inaudible).
DEFTERIOS: That's changed?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Changed.
DEFTERIOS: As well as winning awards in Iran and Dubai, the design got the firm to the finals at the World Architecture Festival.
did you think it would ever be picked internationally to be a finalist?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In all of our projects, we want to do something radical, you know, something that has a great and powerful concept.
DEFTERIOS: With all the attention and accolades, that's his mission accomplished.
John Defterios, One Square Meter, Tehran.
[11:35:37] ANDERSON: Returning to our top story this hour, U.S. President Barack Obama's promise to, quote, destroy ISIS in a relentless
war, it didn't take long for Republican presidential candidates to slam his speech.
Let's bring in Sara Murrayin Washington for the details. What have you heard, Sara?
SARA MURRAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, the interesting thing about President Obama's speech was not just what he said he would do, but also
what he said he won't do, at a time for the first time in our CNN/ORC poll a majority of Americans favor using ground troops against ISIS, President
Obama made it clear that he has no appetite for a ground war.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We should not be drawn once
more into a long and costly ground war in Iraq or Syria. That's what groups like ISIL want. They know they can't defeat us on the battlefield.
ISIL fighters were part of the insurgency that we faced in Iraq. But they also know that if we occupy
foreign lands, they can maintain insurgencies for years.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MURRAY: Now, Becky, despite the view of the American public, we're not even hearing a lot of Republican presidential candidates calling for a
significant ground presence to fight ISIS.
That, of course, did not stop them from panning President Obama's speech, many of them took issue more with the tone than with the substance
saying we need a more cohesive approach, a stronger approach. Some Republicans said if you were an American who is fearful about terrorist
attacks on U.S. soil right now you did not watch that address and feel better afterwards.
ANDERSON: Thank you, Sara.
Our extensive coverage of the ongoing campaign against ISIS is available on the website, as you would expect, including this article
featuring a brand new CNN/ORC poll showing that the majority of Americans want their troops deployed on the ground to fight the militant group. It
also shows what Americans think of President Barack Obama as well as refugees.
For that and more, do head online, CNN.com.
Well, in the wake of the attacks in Paris recently, and as Europe struggles to deal with its worst ever migration crisis, it seems voters in
France are leaning to the right.
Marine Le Pen's Front Nationale Party is leading after the first round of votes in the country's regional elections with former President Nicolas
Sarkozy's party second and President Francois Hollande's party a lowly third.
The second round of voting takes place on Sunday.
Jim Bittermann is in Paris. He's got more for you.
Just how significant are these results, Jim? What are the likely consequences?
JIM BITTERMANN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, significant as a
bellwether sort of French public opinion in terms of international significance, not so much, because these are regional elections, 13 regions
in France, they have no legislative power really. They do have considerable financial power and control the spending in the regions, but
the fact is that they are probably not going to have any effect on national policy.
However, it has set the teeth on edge among the chattering classes here, because in fact, this is the best the Front Nationale, the National
Front Party, the extreme right party, has ever done. They had almost 28 percent of the
vote in the first round of the elections. They could possibly win two of the 13 regions, and are leading in four others. So they could eventually
could get maybe six regions out of the 13 regions in continental France.
So it is significant from that standpoint, but as an international significance, probably not so much so -- Becky.
LU STOUT: Jim Bittermann is in Paris for you this evening. As I say, the second round of that election coming up at the weekend.
As we have heard one factor influencing the Front Nationale's gains has been the response to the refugee crisis. The party had a strong
showing in Calais, for example, where criticism has been growing over a migrant camp known as The
Well, the crisis is nowhere near over. Thousands of people continued to arrive on Europe's shores, but many are finding their paths are blocked
at the Greek Macedonian border.
Well, volunteers now trying to help those left stranded. And they are doing so in what is a fairly innovative way. CNN's Atika Shubert on that
story for you.
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Once a cargo train abandoned on the tracks between Greece and Macedonia, today a kitchen and a camp. For the
volunteers of no borders, it's the perfect place to cook, 2,000 meals a day for refugees waiting to cross the border.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I am from a very privileged country, England, from a very privileged background so I feel like I can't turn my back on a
humanitarian crisis. It has Germans, Australians, French, Iranians, Pakistanis, and Moroccans.
SHUBERT: For long stretches there is nothing but the sound of chopping and the buzz of the generator outside. Many of those cooking are asylum
seekers themselves. We're inside the no borders kitchen, and it's really quite an operation. There are about 20 or so volunteers here cooking up the
evening meal and it's kind of like a roving soup kitchen. It moves wherever the refugees are moving, wherever they're trying to get across the border,
wherever warm meals are needed. It started in Hungary in response to the crackdown on refugees there. The kitchen moved to Slovenia, then Greece.
There's no management, no one person in charge, just a crew of volunteers organized by Facebook and mobile phone texts.
Anyone can pitch up and join in. Here they delivered to the Syrians, Iraqis and Afghans that are being allowed into Macedonia and the others
left behind on the border side of the fence, a mixture of people.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To me, I feel like we should open the borders because the people deserve the right that they're born with. They deserve
to be able to move freely, to be able to go find a better life and whether an economic migrant or an asylum seeker from war.
SHUBERT: As we talk, the generator dies, a common occurrence, but the cooking never stops. By 6:30 p.m., there's a long cue from dinner. The
steaming soup is a welcome break from the cold. It goes on until the soup runs out and it's time to unroll the sleeping bags. Much needed rest for
another day of kitchen duty on the front lines of Europe's refugee crisis.
Atika Shubert, CNN, Idomeni (ph) on the Greece-Macedonia border.
ANDERSON: And you are watching CNN out of Abu Dhabi at 42 minutes past 8:00. Coming up...
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We know it's out there. And that's what it is, we have to guard against it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Israel on guard against threats along its southern border. We are going to take you land and sea patrols up next here on CNN. Do stay
Plus, inside an art lover's paradise. We are going to take you to Art Basel
in Miami. That's going to come up a little later.
Taking a short break, back after this.
[11:47:01] ANDERSON: Egypt's Sinai peninsula has become fertile ground for ISIS, I'm afraid, a problem that concerns not just authorities
in Cairo, but in Israel as well.
Israel shares a long border with the Sinai as well as a critical waterway, the Gulf of Aqbar that also borders Jordan and Saudi Arabia.
Well, my colleague Oren Liebermann shows us now how Israel is patrolling both land and sea to guard against, they say, against potential
OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The siren blares overhead.
LIEBERMANN: The patrol boat swings around. The target on this training exercise in sight.
LIEBERMANN (on camera): We're here intercepting a fast moving boat. Our target, behind us and to our right, also moving fast on the water.
That's the threats they're training to deal with here.
(voice-over): In the narrow waters, the Israeli navy gives itself less than one minute to find --
LIEBERMANN: ...and stop an incoming threat. Nearby, the "USS San Antonio," a reminder of the global strategic importance of the Red Sea.
(on camera): Part of the reason the area is so sensitive is because there are four countries within just a few miles of each other. There's
Israel, Jordan and Saudi Arabia essentially behind me to my right. Here behind me, to my left, Egypt.
(voice-over): In one exercise, two jet skis reach the shore, police ready to make the arrest, coordinating the stop, the double threat of
smuggling and terrorism.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Today, it's ISIS, our biggest threat. So we're doing drills like that once a week, sometimes twice, sometimes in a day,
sometimes in night to make all soldiers be ready.
LIEBERMANN: The threat of ISIS stretching from a lot where boats patrol the port of Akuba (ph) to the Sinai border more than 125 miles
(on camera): This road here, gives a good sense of it here, gives you an idea of the terrain of Sinai and of the Negev Desert, hills and valleys
among these rocks and sand here.
(voice-over): Regular army patrols run along the barbed wire fence, Egypt's border road and their security stations less than a mile away. The
area sparsely populated on both sides.
We drive up to a lookout peering over the barren desert across Egypt and Israel.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What we see in front of us over there is that new fence.
LIEBERMANN: The border fence at first built to keep out migrants is now meant to hold back smugglers and a terrorist threat, most recently ISIS
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We know what's out there and we have to guard against it.
LIEBERMANN: Egypt has been struggling to suppress the ISIS-led insurgency in Sinai. But they've succeed in destroying nearly all the
smuggling terminals between Sinai and Gaza, forcing the smugglers to look further south. Sinai has become more lucrative and more dangerous.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We've seen an increase in these very violent attempts to cross into the Israeli border.
LIEBERMANN: As the threat evolves along the Sinai border, so does Israel's military, keeping watch against an enemy that remains, for the
most part, unseen.
In the Negev Desert, Oren Liebermann, CNN, southern Israel.
[11:50:22] ANDERSON: And this is Connect the World live from Abu Dhabi.
Still ahead, our Parting Shots tonight takes you to Miami and to an art lover's Mecca. A look at Art Basel is up next.
Taking a short break, though, stay with us.
ANDERSON: Well, your Parting Shots this evening. We are headed to Miami, where art lovers from around the world gathered for their delight
and delectation and to lightly spend a little hard earned cash along the way. Have a look at this.
NIMET KIRAC: This is an art lover's Mecca, the reason why Art calls Miami home for a week each year. Art Basel Miami Beach one of the world's
premier arts shows stages it's contemporary and modern artwork from 267 leading international galleries from 32 countries.
The exhibition is open to the public just for four days at the Miami Beach Convention Center drawing tens of thousands of visitors from around
the world all for the love of art.
This was the 14th Art Basel in Miami. As its name suggests, the show originated in Basel in Switzerland in 1970.
But Miami remains the big ticket, a perfect combination of art and sun in December.
Next stop, Art Basel Hong Kong, a chance for galleries to pitch up and please the up and coming art enthusiasts' taste buds with a custom unique
I'm Nimet Kirac at Art Basel Miami Beach, and these are my parting shots.
[11:55:08] ANDERSON: Well, if you're a creator or a collector let us know. You can send your thoughts and ideas on this and any of the stories
that we are covering -- we love a bit of arts and culture on this show -- use the Facebook page, Facebook.com/CNNconnect. And you can tweet me if
you are a regular viewer @BeckyCNN. That's @BeckyCNN.
And before we leave you, a reminder of our top story this hour: U.S. President Barack Obama has denounced ISIS and vowed to destroy the group.
He spoke Sunday night in a prime time address from the Oval Office and said the U.S. will
prevail by being smart, resilient and relentless against the terror organization. These comments seized upon by Republican presidential
candidates who slammed his speech, critical in particular, of his refusal to agree to ground troops.
I'm Becky Anderson, that was Connect the World from the team here. It is a very good evening. CNN continues in just a moment with Robyn Curnow
on the iDesk. From us, thank you for watching.