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CONNECT THE WORLD

ISIS Fighting Back in Battle for Mosul; African Start-up: Gastronomie Pizza; Donald Trump Doubles Down on Rigged Election Claims Ahead of Debate; Interview with Isaiah Washington. 11:00a-12:00p ET

Aired October 19, 2016 - 11:00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[11:00:09] ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: And she's saying every day they used to come to us, they would say, do you have guns? Do

you have mobile phones?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNAH VAUGHAN JONES, HOST: A picture of life under ISIS revealing itself as the Iraqi army and Kurdish partners liberate towns around Mosul. We are

live in Iraq where the battling is escalating.

Also...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MANU RAJU, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Ahead of tonight's final debate, Donald Trump throwing a Hail Mary: going after Washington and intensifying his

unfounded claim that the election is rigged.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

JONES: The Faceoff in Las Vegas. We'll set the stage ahead of the third and final debate in the race for the White House.

Plus, internet access cuts: why the government of Ecuador has unplugged WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. That story coming up later this hour.

Hello and welcome to Connect the World. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones I'm here in london.

The sun has set on the third day of A battle for Mosul. Already Iraqi forces say they are sweeping towards the city. One commander tells CNN his

troops are just a few kilometers from it's outskirts. But the fighting is far from over. A Kurdish commander says it'll be two weeks before soldiers

enter the city itself.

And ISIS is doing everything it can to stop them. This video apparently shows an ISIS attack against Peshmerga soldiers. We're hearing the

militants have surrounded some Iraqi troops as well.

Well, for a sense of how fierce the fighting is, take a look at thisbattle footage recorded by a

Peshmerga fighter near Mosul.

Well let's get right now to the battleground. CNN's Clarissa Ward is near Mosul. Clarissa, we can see there that the fighting is, indeed, fierce.

The progress, as well, painfully slow, it seems.

Just give us an idea of the type of resistance the Iraqi forces are coming up against.

CLARISSA WARD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: So, Hannah, we are here with the Kurdish Peshmerga forces at their frontline position that is the

closest front line they have to the city of Mosul. Mosul is about eight eight miles behind me. But today's activities have really focused on a

town that's just behind me down the hill. You can't see it now,because obviously it's getting very dark.

But that town is still under the control of ISIS. And throughout the day, and indeed throughout

last night as well, there has been a steady stream of artillery, of rockets, of air strikes, coming from coalition forces as they prepare to

take back that town behind me.

They call it, Hannah, softening the target, essentially trying to diminish ISIS's resistance inside the town. What we're hearing from one Peshmerga

commander is that there are roughly 40 to 50 ISIS militants hunkered down in that town behind me.

But you will be surprised at how fierce the battle can be, because ISIS is implementing all different sorts of assymetric warfare. They are looking

at using human shields, using civilians. They're using tunnels. They're using suicide bombings, truck bombings. And I think essentially what

you're seeing when you look at the larger picture, essentially this is a microcosm for what is going on with Kurdish forces to the south of the city

of Mosul is the kind of piecemeal, steady slog going village by village and taking the time to soften the target before taking the village and then

moving on, pushing up through the south and also across the east.

And eventually of course you heard that one Peshmerga commander saying, maybe in two weeks time the forces will be in the center of the city of

Mosul. And that is likely to be some of the fiercest they'd be in the city. And that is likely to be some of the fiercest fighting. We have

seen heavy clashes today to the south with Iraqi forces engaging against ISIS militants. But the bulk of ruling of the street to street, house to

house urban warfare will likely come once coalition forces push into that city center. And of course the real concern there is that there are

roughly 1.2 million civilians who are living in that city center and all sides of this -- or I should say all forces within the coalition here want

to try to mitigate the damage, try to mitigate the humanitarian crisis that could be unleashed if all of those people are forced from their homes,

Hannah.

[11:05:04] JONES: Clarissa, we appreciate it. Clarissa Ward is live there very close to Mosul where that offensive is, of course, still going on day

three now.

Well, Turkey is also pressing to get involved in the offensive against ISIS in Mosul. Our Ivan Watson joins me now live from Istanbul.

Ivan, there have been some mixed messages today over exactly how involved Turkey is with the

foreign coalition operation for Mosul. Just clear it up for us, what is Turkey doing?

IVAN WATSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right. Well, on Tuesday, the Turkish prime minister said that Turkish war planes had been

part of air strikes against suspected ISIS targets in Mosul. And immediately the Iraqi prime minister responded, you know,

bristling saying Turkey has no right to -- this is an invasion of Iraqi sovereignty. It doesn't have the right to carry out such attacks.

By the end of the day, the Turkish government had backtracked and said well actually there's an agreement, we're part of the coalition, andwe could be

asked to carry out air strikes in the future. And there has been public disagreement between Baghdad and Ankara over the course of the past several

weeks where the Turkish government clearly wants to have a say in the future of Mosul. It wants to have some kind of decision-making and has

expressed concern about the possibility of sectarian fighting between Shiite militias coming in from the south in what is predominantly a Sunni

Muslim city that has long held historical ties with Turkey.

In the meantime, the Turks did say that they carried out, today, overnight air strikes in another part of northern Iraq along the border against

suspected Kurdistan Worker's Party, or PKK targets, just underscoring how complicated, how messy this part of the world is with all of these armed

competing factions battling each other and governments that don't have complete control over their sovereign territory -- Hannah.

JONES: Certainly is a complicated picture. Ivan, we appreciate your reporting on this. Ivan Watson is live for us there in Istanbul. Thank

you.

Well even with the terrorist kicked out of some of those villages in and around Mosul, the people who live there can't shake off the fear after

living under ISIS brutal rule for more than two years. CNN's Arwa Damon takes us to meet some of those villagers.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (on camera): We just came across this group of people. They're from one of the villages nearby.

We were actually on our way towards one of the Iraqi army Ninth Division position.

According to what these gentlemen were saying, and we can go now and talk to some of the women as well, their village was liberated by the forces

about two days ago. All these people were actually living under ISIS.

And then today they heard a rumor that ISIS was returning. So they all actually fled their village and have now ended up here and are waiting for

permission to go back home.

And so what these women are saying is that ISIS actually reemerged from some of the orchards, some fighters did.

And so they ran out. She doesn't even have her shoes on as you see this. They lived under ISIS. They now have to flee. I mean this is one of the

ongoing catastrophes of this war.

They're talking about the fact that the children are hungry. And she's saying every day they would say come to us. They would say do you have

guns? Do you have mobile phones? Give them over. Whoever they found a mobile phone they would kill. They starved us. They killed people that

would smoke.

And they were so happy then when the army came in. And then ISIS reemerged.

They're saying come on, let's go, let's go. And they're going back to their village. Most of the families are returning. And the Iraqi and Kurdish

commanders who we spoke to say that there was no ISIS counterattack.

But you heard what they were saying to us. You saw how scared they were. And this just shows you the psychological and other trauma that they have

been through where just the rumor that ISIS has returned sends them running for their lives.

Arwa Damon, CNN, Kenesh (ph), Iraq.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

JONES: In neighboring Syria, residents of several neighborhoods in eastern Aleppo say there have been no air strikes since dawn on Tuesday. The quiet

follows weeks of blistering air strikes by the Syrian military backed up, of course, by Russia.

Russia's defense ministry says the pause will allow rebels and civilians to flee the city through several corridors. That's before an eight hour

humanitarian pause promised for Thursday.

Well, the French President Francois Hollande says he'll do everything he can to make sure the truce is extended during a meeting with his Russian

and German counterparts later on in the day.

CNN's Max Foster interviewed an official with Syria's White Helmets, the volunteer rescue workers known for their incredible heroism during this

civil war. He says he's skeptical the pause in hostilities will have any lasting impact on the devastating situation in Aleppo.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAX FOSTER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: In terms of what happens after the ceasefire, are you concerned or this truce, are you concerned

that the onslaught is going to be particularly severe and decisive after this? Because perhaps this is seen as an opportunity for the rebels

to leave.

ABDULRAHAM ALMAWWAS, VICE PRESIDENT, WHITE HELMETS: We are afraid and unfortunately, the people know not to trust more about ceasefire. We tried

the three ceasefire before that, and after ceasefire, all those days, there are a lot of attacks on the civilians, on hospitals so we can now or we

cannot evaluate this ceasefire, we are waiting for the results.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

JONES: Now, we are just hours away from what could be the most crucial showdown yet in the long and bitter race for the White House. Hillary

Clinton and Donald Trump will face off in Las Vegas for their final debate. The latest CNN poll shows Trump is facing something of an uphill battle.

He's currently trailing Clinton by nine points nationwide, and he's running out of time to stage a comeback.

Trump, though, says he no longer believes the polls. He also says he doesn't believe the election will be fair, repeatedly firing up his base of

support by claiming that the process is rigged against him.

Still, he's predicting victory.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I have a feeling this is another Brexit. This is going to be interesting.

I'll tell you what, we are going to have one of the greatest victories in political history. I think the media's trying to discourage our people

from getting out and voting. I do.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

JONES: Well since the last debate, multiple women have come forward to accuse Donald Trump of unwanted advances or sexual assault itself. He

strongly denies the accusations and is trying to reset the conversation with a new promise to, quote, drain the swamp in Washington.

CNN's Manu Raju has more.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MANU RAJU, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Ahead of tonight's final debate, Donald Trump throwing a hail Mary. Going after Washington and intensifying

his unfounded claim that the election is rigged.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: They even want to try and rig the election at the polling booths.

RAJU: Even calling on his supporters to monitor polling places.

TRUMP: People are going to be watching on November 8th.

RAJU: And doubling down on his media conspiracy theories.

TRUMP: There's a voter fraud also with the media because they so poison the minds of people by writing false stories.

RAJU: The GOP nominee pledging to shake up Washington.

TRUMP: It is time to drain the damn swamp.

RAJU: Now promising if elected he will push for term limits for members of Congress, a populous proposal that has yet to succeed.

TRUMP: Decades of political failure and special interest collusion must and will finally come to an end.

RAJU: Trump opting not to respond to President Obama, who ridiculed the billionaire's voter fraud accusations.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You start whining before the game's even over? If whenever things are going badly for you and you lose

you start blaming somebody else? Then you don't have what it takes to be in this job.

RAJU: Instead announcing that he's bringing Obama's Kenyan-born half- brother, Malik, a Trump supporter, to tonight's debate.

Trump and Hillary Clinton head into tonight's final debate with looming controversies. Undercover videos released Tuesday produced by discredited

conservative activists James O' Keefe suggest it was Democratic operatives working for the Clinton campaign instigating violence at some Trump

rallies.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mean, honestly, it is not hard to get some of these assholes to pop off.

RAJU: Both the DNC and the Clinton campaign deny any involvement. And those on the tape deny any of the proposed schemes ever took place.

Meanwhile, Trump is facing accusations from at least nine women who say he made unwanted advances without their consent.

[11:15:02] SEN. HARRY REID (D), NEVADA: These are people who are trapped. Put his hands under somebody's skirt in an airplane.

RAJU: Trump rejects those claims but Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid blasting Trump's behavior.

REID: It is kind of a sickness.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

JONES: And that was CNN's Manu Raju reporting there from Las Vegas ahead of the presidential debate tonight.

Still to come on Connect the World, Hillary Clinton facing her own troubles. You can bet she'll face a fierce attack from Trump on a scandal

that's plagued her for months now. Much more coverage of the presidential debate just ahead.

And she could be the next first lady of the United States. A closer look at Donald Trump's wife Melania Trump when we return.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

JONES: You're watching CNN. And this is Connect the World. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones. Welcome back to you.

So, she's in the lead in the final stretch and wants to make sure it stays that way. Hillary Clinton has spent days, though, off the campaign trail

to prepare for the presidential debate tonight. She's no doubt bracing for a fierce attack from Donald Trump on a scanned that will he calls worse

than Watergate.

Clinton has been under fire for months now over her use of a private email server while she

was serving as secretary of state. And the constant drip, drip of hacked campaign emails released

by WikiLeaks also has her on the defensive.

But, she is now getting support from perhaps an unlikely source: Senator Marco Rubio. The former Republican presidential hopeful says his party

should not make an issue of the WikiLeaks revelations, noting that U.S. intelligence agencies blame Russia for those leaks.

He says, quote, these leaks are an effort by a foreign government to interfere with our electoral process and I will not indulge it. He goes on

to say further, I want to warn my fellow Republicans who may want to capitalize politically on these leaks, today it is the Democrats, tomorrow

it could be us.

Now, let's bring in Aaron Blake, a political reporter for The Washington Post. Aaron, great to have you on the program. Let's start off with

Clinton, she's going to be facing questions no doubt about this ongoing email scandal and the WikiLeaks leaks as well.

And also this video scandal, which is sort of suggesting that perhaps Democrats are inciting

violence amongst Republicans and Trump supporters. How is she going to tackle all of this at tonight's debate?

AARON BLAKE, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I would guess that she's going to be on the defensive more than she has been at the previous

debates. At these other debates, she was kind of able to take some of the attacks especially on her email server and turn them back on Donald Trump

for various reasons.

There has been a lot of, kind of uncharted territory, a lot of, you know, material to work with

as far as Clinton goes over the last week plus here that hasn't really been sorted through as the number one news story in the country.

And I think it's going to be a real opportunity for Donald Trump to raise those issues, really press that case and make been a lot of, kind of

uncharted territory, a lot of, you know, material to work with as far as Clinton goes over the last week plus here that hasn't really been sorted

through as the number one news story in the country.

And I think it's going to be a real opportunity for Donald Trump to raise those issues really press that case and make Hillary Clinton explain them.

The problem for Trump is, he hasn't exactly shown a very good ability to press attacks, especially in a debate setting. Get his details right and

really put her on the defensive.

JONES: Yeah, he is no doubt going to carry one with his line at the moment that the election is somehow rigged against him. Even his campaign

manager, Kellyanne Conway, has come out today saying doesn't believe that the electoral process is compromised in any way. How is he going to take

this forward in a debate setting on a national stage?

BLAKE: Well, this has been something that he's been saying for weeks now. And even as people around him like his campaign manager, like his vice

presidential pick, Mike Pence, who said on TV over the weekend that they will respect the results of this election, you know, despite all of those

people around him and many other Republicans saying that this is not something Donald Trump should be talking about, it's clear this is part of

his message right now.

It's pretty clear this is something he's going to say in the debate tonight and he's going to saying

in the closing days of the election, maybe even afterwards if he doesn't concede which seems entirely possible at this point. And so there's really

a Pandora's box of results that could come from this, which are up to including a real loss of faith in the results of the election and the

democratic process in the United States more broadly.

JONES: And finally, your thoughts on Marco Rubio and his warning to fellow Republicans not that make hay if you like over the fact that the Democrats

are being targeted over the WikiLeaks revelations at the moment. What do you think about a possible October surprise for Hillary Clinton and her

campaign team, well rather for the Republicans on the other side saying, actually that we've got

some emails on you as well?

BLAKE: Well so far most of the material that we've seen in all the acknowledgments of hacks

that have occurred have been generally targeting Democratic groups, the Democrats have made the case that Russia, for instance, is, you know,

favoring the Republicans in this election. They like the idea of Trump being president rather than Hillary Clinton.

I thought rubio's comments here were really interesting. He is certainly among the more hawkish Republicans in the Senate, so the idea that, you

know, we're letting Russia have essential what it wants is certainly something that he doesn't like. But it also is as you said, you know, this

is a basically an espionage attempt by them which is being successful and having an impact on our elections and Marco Rubio knows that in the future,

that could come back to bite no matter whose in charge whether it's Republicans or Democrats.

So, I don't think this is going to prevent Republicans and Donald Trump from talking about

these WikiLeaks emails. There's too much for them to work with there. And it's really the best strategy that they have at this point in the

presidential race.

But it is a slippery slope to go down for them and the next time it comes out if the emails reflect poorly on Republicans, they don't really have a

leg to stand on when it comes to saying that they should be ignored.

JONES: Fascinating to talk to you and also to see, of course, how the two candidates take this on at tonight's debate. Aaron Blake, we appreciate

it, thanks very much indeed.

BLAKE: Thank you.

JONES: Now Donald Trump's wife, Melania, has kept a relatively low profile throughout much of the campaign. She, of course, made that speech at the

Republican convention that came under fire over accusations of plagiarism.

In recent days, she has publicly defended her husband against accusations of sexual misconduct.

Phil Black traveled to her hometown in Slovenia and offered some local insights into the background of a woman who could be the next first lady.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PHIL BLACK, CNN INTERNAITONAL CORRESPONDENT: Sevnica lies in a beautiful green valley next to the River Sava. There's industry here, a century's

old castle on top of a hill and buildings from it's more recent communist past. Among these concrete blocks, once lived a young girl who would grow up to be an

international model, marry a billionaire, and just maybe, become the first lady of the United States.

MELANIA TRUMP, DONALD TRUMP'S WIFE: I was born in Slovenia, a small, beautiful, and then communist country in central Europe.

BLACK: You lived in that block, and Melania lived where? Melania lived over here?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. Yes.

BLACK: Iliana Ilancic (ph) and Melania Trump, or Melania Knavs, as she was then, were neighbors, childhood friends who used to exchange notes across a

line of walls strung between their homes.

Iliana (ph) is now the principal of their old school. She tells me she remembers Melania as sophisticated, mature, well-spoken, a peace-maker

between fighting children and from an early age, someone who dreamed of leaving Slovenia to pursue a career designing

fashion.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At first I saw her silhouette.

[11:25:03] BLACK: Stani Yorko (ph) showed her another way. The photographer says he approached teenaged Melania on the streets of the

capital Ljubljana and asked her to model for him.

She was a little bit shy on that first day.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A little, but she learned very quick,learned quickly.

BLACK: She learned quickly.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And she was very good. Second time she was very good. Like a model. The first time, and the second time.

BLACK: Peter Butom (ph) says he knew Melania as her modeling career was taking off. He says they cruised Ljubljana on his blue Vespa, fashionable

transport in what was then communist Yugoslavia.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Still original car, original -- also original leather seat. Yes, and she was here.

BLACK: He's now trying to sell it to raise money for charity.

So, you hope the Melania connection will get you how much for this?

UNIDENITIFIED MALE: Our target price is more than 25,000.

BLACK: He is a little ambitiously talking about dollars.

Peter and many in Slovenia speak with pride about the possibility of Melania being first lady, but they know her husband's campaign isn't going

well. They've heard that what Donald Trump calls locker room talk, and allegations of sexual assault.

TRUMP: These events never, ever happened.

PETRA SEDEJ, MELANIA TRUMP HIGH SCHOOL FRIEND: For every woman, those are not some easy words to hear from her husband.

BLACK: Petra Sedej and Melania went to high school together, that's Melania on the right.

What do you think of the man she chose to be her husband?

SEDEJ: It's her choice.

BLACK: Nopinion.

SEDEJ; No, no opinion, but it's her choice.

BLACK: Melania's old friends won't publicly criticize her husband, but many are willing to give remarkably similar adviceas Mariana Ilancic (ph)

says...

Donald Trump should listen to his wife more.

In Melania's hometown, there's talk of a special exhibit if Donald Trump wins, not to honor the new president, but to celebrate the unlikely origins

of an American first lady.

Phil Black, CNN, Slovenia.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

JONES: And all eyes will be on her husband and his opponent later on this evening. The final presidential debate is just hours away. CNN is live in

Las Segas to bring you full coverage. It starts at 11:00 p.m. Wednesday. That's London time. And that's 2:00 a.m. on Thursday over in Abu Dhabi.

All of that right here on CNN.

Now, the latest world news headlines are just ahead, plus moving towards Mosul. Tens of thousands of Iraqi and Kurdish forces have started a long

awaited battle, analysis on the road that lies ahead coming up next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(HEADLINES)

[11:31:31] JONES: Iraqi and Kurdish forces are facing resistance from ISIS in some places as they advance on the Iraqi city of Mosul. At least 13

villages have been recaptured so far from the terror group, but as CNN's Arwa Damon reports, the battle for Mosul has barely begun.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DAMON: According to the commander here, the target of this particular strike was a location where ISIS was firing mortars on to the Iraqi army

forces as they are advancing. We have been seeing, according to Iraqi Peshmerga and American commanders, the forces advancing much faster than

anyone had anticipated, progress so far going quite well, but what they're having to do is coordinate all of these various different fronts, because

some are moving quicker than others and they want to make sure that they squeeze ISIS almost simultaneously.

Moral is fairly good at this stage, it must have been said, but we are still very, very much in the first phase of what promises to be a very long

and difficult battle, especially once when forces reach the city of Mosul itself where this type of armor will not be able to easily move through the

streets where those kinds of strikes are much more likely to cause collateral damage, kill civilians within that city that has upwards of one

million people still living in it.

Arwa Damon, CNN, southeast of Mosul, Iraq.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

JONES: Well, CNN's military analyst Mark Hertling is a retired Lieutenant General of the U.S. army. He joins me now on Skype from Florida. General,

thanks very much for joining us on the program today.

You know Mosul. You have firsthand experience of the city itself. The progress we're hearing

is painstakingly slow, some two weeks before they expect to even get into the city's center and months before the city is taken back.

Are you concerned about the progress being made so far?

MARK HERTLING, CNN MILITARY ANALYST: I am not. It seems to be a very good operation so far, especially considering not only the complexity of the

fight in an urban environment, but also the complexity of the force that is conducting it. You have a combination of Peshmerga, Iraqi security forces,

their army, PMU forces, reinforcing police, the counterterrorism units, and the

tribal forces. all of these are coming together and as Arwa just say, it's going to be very challenging to

squeeze the city in the right way.

What you've seen as Arwa and others like Nick Paton Walsh are covering, it has been a relatively tough fight on the east side of town as they come in

from Irbil. It's going to get even tougher as they get into the city, because in my view, I think ISIS will fight hard in the east, but as they

go over the five bridges over the Tigris, which separate east from west, the major fight is going to be in western Mosul, because that's where most

of the urban sprawl and the difficult terrain is.

JONES: What is the biggest challenge overall for the Iraqi forces? Is it that knowing their enemy, not knowing what ISIS might come back at them

with or is it trying to make sure that a humanitarian crisis doesn't unfold if it hasn't already unfolded in Mosul?

HERTLING: That's the question. It is all of those things. And they have to be considered simultaneously. ISIS is a tough enemy. They will fight

to the death as we've seen many pictures of fighters pumping off a few rounds and then blowing themselves up. That's a psychological factor for

the individuals who are conducting the offensive operations, the Peshmerga. When they see someone that they're about to capture blow themselves up,

it's difficult other than to kill the person.

So the fight itself, the intelligence that goes into it, the artillery that coordination of the air

strikes, all of the kinetic actions, if you were, are very difficult.

But then there is that humanitarian effort. And that's not going to be a few weeks or a few months, that's going to be years. Getting the central

government in Baghdad to support the Mosulowi's (ph), getting the government reestablished in Nineveh Province and in Mosul itself are all

going to be challenging. That was truthfully when I conducted operations with forces in Mosul both Iraqi and U.S.

forces, that was the toughest thing. Fighting the enemy was relatively easy compared to getting government support for the civilians, the 1.2

million civilians that live in that city.

[11:36:05] JONES: And that's the main problem, isn't it? It's this idea of a power vacuum

that might be left once this battle for the city is actually finished. There are so many disparate sectarian groups fighting on the Iraqi forces

side. They're all going want some kind of territory and power base as a result.

I mean, is that even possible when you have so many different factions involved?

HERTLING: I think it is when you see the kind of threats that ISIS is posing. I got a tweet yesterday from one of my Iraqi friends who's on the

ground. He said in the past, all of these forces acted as fingers. He said for the first time he's seeing all of these fingers come together in a

fist because they see the terror which ISIS is, and they want to get rid of that terror in the city of Mosul.

So I think the fact that you had this determination, a common determination by many forces

against this very dasteredly enemy will bring the force together, but again it gets back to will the

government come in afterwards and support the people so we don't have the reemergence of either ISIS or another organization like ISIS that's

countering good government?

JONES: And finally, general, in your view, given the fact that you know Mosul as well as you do, once Mosul is reclaimed from ISIS, is that the end

of ISIS?

HERTLING: No. And I don't think anyone who is saying that has a good feel for what this is all about. This will continue to be a generational fight

against ideologies, extreme ideologies. And yes, Mosul, retaking Mosul, will be a huge, strategic win for the Iraqi government because their people

have wanted them to do that. And it will give increasing support to the al-Abadi government which is certainly nationalistic and patriotic.

But ISIS is not done, the ideology is still out there. It will exist in other places. So the fight will continue even though there will be a good

victory in Mosul.

JONES: Lieutenant General Mark Hertling, we appreciate your expertise and analysis on this subject. Thank you very much for joining us on the

program.

HERTLING: It's a pleasure, thank you.

JONES: Now Ecuador says it cut off internet access for the WikiLeaks founder, Julian

Assange at it's embassy in the UK. A government statement mentions how documents published by WikiLeaks have impacted the U.S. presidential

election, especially the campaign of Hillary Clinton.

Well Ecuador says it doesn't interfere in foreign elections or favor specific candidates. Erin McLaughlin joins me now live with more details,

excuse me, on this.

Erin, just remind us of why an internet connection might be a particular use to a man such as

Julian Assange?

ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, I would presume it's incredibly useful to Julian Assange. Keep in mind, this is how he communicates over

the internet via web uplink. Also keep in mind that WikiLeaks is in the midst of dumping thousands of Clinton-related documents on to the internet.

Now according to WikiLeaks, the internet connection inside the Ecuadoran embassy for Julian Assange was severed on Saturday shortly after WikiLeaks

had published Clinton speeches to Goldman Sachs.

On Tuesday, Ecuador assumed responsibility and said it was the one that severed that internet connection, publishing a rather lengthy statement.

Let me read you part of it. Saying, quote, "the government of Ecuador respects the principle of non-intervention in the internal affairs of other

states. It does not interfere in an external electoral processes, nor does it favor any particular candidate. Accordingly, Ecuador has exercised it's

sovereign right to temporarily restrict access to some of it's private communications network within its embassy in the United Kingdom.

Now clearly, in that statement, Ecuador is trying to distance itself from WikiLeaks operations. Worth noting that yesterday when asked, a State

Department spokesperson from the U.S. saying that the United States had no involvement in Julian Assange's current internet situation and in that

statement released by Ecuador, they said that they do not resopnd to pressure from

outside states.

[11:40:15] JONES: What does this mean then as far as Julian Assange's stay in the embassy here in London is concerned? What is Ecuador saying about

this long-term tenant that it's had?

MCLAUGHLIN: Well, in its statement, Ecuador says that it will continue to offer Julian Assange asylum, though it does highlight the nature of the

relationship that Ecuador here is the host, Julian Assange is a guest and guests presumably are subject to the rules of the host.

Now it is worth mentioning that WikiLeaks on it's Twitter feed said that it had a contingency

plan in place for this kind of eventuality. So at the moment it is unclear how, if and how what that

a contingency plan entails and if Julian Assange is still being able to use some other means to communicate.

JONES: Erin, we appreciate it, Erin McLaughlin live for us there in London. Thank you.

Now the American actor Isaiah Washington is perhaps most famous for his former role

on the popular U.S. TV drama, Grey's Anatomy. But he's become known for his activist work in recent years especially around fighting police

violence.

He spoke to CNN's Becky Anderson to explain his idea of using a boycott by African-Americans to combat bias and brutality.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ISAIAH WASHINGTON, ACTOR: Initially, what I wanted to do, Becky, was to really take an

assessment of the will of the people to respond to a boycott. Obviously protesting and rioting has been very beneficial, obviously, but it has not

helped the people itself, it's caused a lot of injuries on both sides of the fence and has also created scenarios with the very thing that you're

protesting. You're being arrested and you have the post bail paying in to the very system that you feel is disrespecting you and not giving you

justice.

So, what I wanted to do was really test the will of the people and see if they would be interested in boycotting on themselves by staying home. And

they did.

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Tell me about Missing 24, the organization, and how it's different from, say, the Black Lives Matter

movement?

WASHINGTON: It's completely different from the Black Lives Matter movement. No affiliation, although we support and have supported what they

have been able to achieve thus far. I don't believe in movements. I think movements are stark and they're

stopped. They're always coopted and they're always confused.

What I'm trying to infuse on the world stage at this point with #missing24 is that it is an evolution, which means it's here to stay.

Boycott has to become the new normal in the United States of American and probably globally when there is any injustice anywhere found. That if you

challenge the capital for people who making money or not making money, then that gets the world's attention and that is certainly what's gotten

the world's attention to date.

And Madeline "Blue" McCullough, Tony Jeter (ph), and Allison Shields (ph), these are the three founders of #missing24. They asked me to come on board

and support them. I did that. They usually have very successful boycotts on the 24th of every month at a very local regional level, but I thought

that this conversation needs to be had at the global level. And that's where I've come in to actually introduce them and #missing24 to the global

stage, because the impact is real, the impact is necessary, and the impact is wanted not just African Americans are distraught when the human rights

crisis is going on here.

We're supported by the United Nations Human Rights Council. There is a problem here. But there are solutions, which missing24 has and that's what

we're continuing to talk about. We have solutions for it to end the brutality, police brutality. Seven-point solution that we want to reveal

in our phase three once we get a congressional hearing after the presidential elections.

ANDERSON: Well let's talk about the election then and what happens after that, because that is clearly important to what you are doing. The

Republican presidential nominee, Donald Trump, claims that African-Americans are worse off under President Obama. What do you

personally make of that comment?

WASHINGTON: Becky, that's a wonderful question, but I don't really to want waste this valuable time or the people's time or your audience's times

commenting on Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. I think it's been made very clear that I'm a huge supporter of the Green Party. I'm a part of the

Green Party. I'm a huge supporter of Archibald Baraka running for vice president as well as Jill Stein running for president.

The other candidates, other than Jill Stein that have been running, they're very close to corporations, and that's exactly what #missing24 is going

after. We're going after their money to have a seat at the table to start talking about them changing the laws, putting the proper laws on the books

at the legislative level so we can get the proper policies implemented to protect the people of the United States of America, that's all people in

these marginalized communities.

So one of those two candidates end up becoming the president, I'm sure based on their history in

corporate America and global corporations, they will respond once they start losing money.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

[11:45:15] JONES: Becky Anderson there with Isaiah Washington.

Live from London, this is Connect the World. And still to come on the show today. Muslim Americans speak out about the political climate in America

in the year of Donald Trump. Find out why many say it's tougher or it a Muslim American today than it was immediately after 9/11. Our report in a

few minutes's time.

Plus, what would you do for a date with the Russian president? Well how about 365 of them. We'll be looking through Vladimir Putin's annual

calendar.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Favorite Pete's is pork and chicken mixed together because I created it myself. It only takes me five

minutes to prepare a pizza at most.

UNIDENITIFIED FEMALE: Sheikh Mbadina (ph) is the owner and head chef of Madagascar's leading fast food chain: Gastronomie Pizza (ph).

UNIDENITIFIED MALE (through translator): My love for food started a long time ago when I was still in high school. I worked as a dishwasher in an

American-owned restaurant. It was my weekend job, but it's here that I developed my passion for cooking and food.

UNIDENITIFIED FEMALE: Through watching YouTuve food channels, he taught himself

how to cook and before long he moved up the ranks to assistant chef.

UNIDENITIFIED MALE (through translator): When I worked as an assistant chef, I realized

pizza is easier to make than other food. Secondly, Pizza is always in demand and there's a market for it in Madagascar.

UNIDENITIFIED FEMALE: Despite an of appetite for fast food, Madagascar has no international fast food chains. Chef Mbadina (ph) saw an opportunity

and opened the country's first pizza joint.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): When I first started it was a small family business, my wife and kids helped me out. Back then, we only

had six types of pizzas on the menu.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Today, Grastronomie Pizza (ph) is the largest fast food outlet in Madagascar and has over 700 employees.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We now have 27 outlets in Madagascar. We are also planning on expanding into Africa soon.

UNIDENITIFIED FEMALE: The menu has also grown.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): Today we have ten categories of food including

pizza and other traditional fast food as well as Malagasic (ph) cuisine and even ice cream.

Pizza and ice cream are the favorites. These items settle most on a daily basis.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Gastronomie Pizza is one of the most recognized brands in

Madagascar and receives approximately 30,000 people across their 27 outlets on any given weekend.

But, the local competion is on the rise.

UNIDENITIFIED MALE (through translator): In essence, all food sellers in Madagascar compete with us. But when it comes to pizza, we only have a few

real competitors and we can confidently say that we still own the largest share of the market.

[11:50:07] UNIDENITIFIED FEMALE: What's their recipe for staying ahead of the game?

UNIDENITIFIED MALE (through translator): In my experience, what sets Gastronomie Pizza apart, I do a lot of research on the local population and

strive to meet the needs of the customer. Also, we're the only restaurant that follows international standards of cooking, that's why we can say that

we always have the best results from our efforts.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Gastronomie Pizza is on track to be the first Malagasi (ph) fast food brand to go beyond borders. And the proof will be

in the pizza.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (through translator): The pizza is the heart of this business which is why we're constantly working towards making it better.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

JONES: Hello again, welcome back. You're watching CNN. And this is Connect the World. I'm Hannah Vaughan Jones in London for you.

They make up a small percentage of the population in the United States, but Muslims have been a big topic for a lot of the 2016 election campaign. CNN

talked with Muslims in three different communities and as MJ Lee found out, many say being a Muslim in America is worse in 2016 than it was during

9/11.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MJ LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Do you think it's harder now to be a Muslim American or was it harder right after 9/11?

REP. KEITH ELLISON, (R) MINNESOTA: Well, I think it's probably harder now.

UNIDENITIFIED MALE: We were attacked twice. The actual attack of 9/11, and then the reaction to it.

LEE: So, do you think it's worse now than it's ever been?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I believe so. I believe so. Yes.

UNIDENITIFIED MALE: The effect is in the legal arena, in the social arena, in the business arena.

ELLISON: I tell you one thing right after 9/11, we had a president of the United States, George W. Bush, and I disagreed with him on almost

everything, but he went to a mosque, and he stood with Muslims, and he said that Islam is not the problem, that is the kind of leadership that our

country needed at the time.

When I was a brand new elected member of congress, he extended his on that me and said, Ellison, I'm glad there's a Muslim in the congress. You know,

he's from Texas, right?

LEE: We wanted to travel to places like Northern Virginia, Minneapolis, and Staten Island with sizable Muslim American populations and get their

perspectives on the effects of the 2016 election has had on their communities.

UNIDENITIFIED FEMALE: I think a lot of the Muslims are in fear of what may come if Donald Trump wins. He says he is so opposed to Muslims and all the

people do support him for that, that's absolutely terrifying to know that a lot of people are against us.

LEE: They say now with Donald Trump as a Republican presidential nominee, the discrimination against Muslim Americans has become more mainstream.

EL-MELLGY: There is a clear uptick in the anti-Muslim, not only sentiments, but attacks.

LEE: What kind of things have you heard from Muslim Americans in your community about Donald Trump and his campaign?

DAVID RAMADAN, FRM. MEMBER, VIRGINIA HOUSE OF DELEGATES: Fear and disgust. Those are the major two. And a disappointment that they are misunderstood.

IHANOMAR, MINNESOTA HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES CANDIDATE: You can't get past the fact that we, you know, a triple minority, right. We're immigrants,

we're Muslim, we're black.

RAMADAN: Donald Trump has offended every minority in this country. It's absolutely not what conservative principals that I have worked with and

worked on and fought for for 27 years are about.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Some parents have raised concern about their children saying, oh, well, you know, do we have to leave this country? Or what's

going to happen to us? And I tell them, no, you're not going anywhere, you know, we're not living in that time.

HASAN OZALP, STATEN ISLAND RESIDENT: My son came to me one day. He's eight years old. He said to me that, daddy, if Trump elected, is he going

to kick us out? I said, no, I need to talk to you now because, you know, his rhetoric is affecting my family now.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

JONES: Now it's that time of the show when we give you your Parting Shots. And goodness me, what parting shots they are. Russian President Vladimir

Putin like you haven't seen him before. Yes, it's the 2017 calendar featuring the leader in a series of carefully crafted photos that's just

gone on sale across Moscow.

Some show Mr. Putin's softer side, like seen there, cuddling a kitten.

And perhaps even relaxing in a tree on one month.

Others feature the Russian president in action, the action man riding a horse, possibly wearing a wet suit, and even one of Mr. Putin flying a

fighter jet.

Putin himself is also looking ahead to 2018, saying, quote, Russia is a peace-loving country, but if there is a threat, we are ready to use our

weapons to ensure our safety.

By the way, we should warn you or tell you at least that the calendar sells for less than a dollar. And so while some of us do love Russians that

we've talked to here at CNN tell us they love it and they love their president any given month of the year.

Just a reminder, you can always follow the stories, the team is working on throughout the day by going to our Facebook page. That's

Facebook.com/cnnconnect. And also get in touch on Twitter. You can tweet me @HVaughanJones.

I am Hannah Vaughan Jones. Thank you so much for watching. That was Connect the World. Talk to you soon.

END