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CONNECT THE WORLD
Elections in Italy, Austria Could Reshape Europe; Banking Crisis in Italy; Syrian Government Tells Aleppo Residents It's Safe to Go Home. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired December 4, 2016 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:00:43] BECKY ANDERSON, HSOT: Two key votes in Europe this hour. Will voters deliver a ballot box blow to the establishment?
We're watching Italy's referendum and Austria's presidential race this hour. We are live in Milan in just a moment.
And we profile the Austrian politician who wants to be Europe's first far right president in decades.
Also, going home, but to what? Syrians finally get to go back to Aleppo neighborhoods that
were taken over by ISIS rebels and now the Syrian army. We'll have a live report from the city this hour.
Plus, the end of an era. Fidel Castro laid to rest in Cuba. So what is next for the island? A full report for you coming up.
Hello and welcome. You're watching Connect the World. It is just after 7:00 here in Abu Dhabi. I'm Becky Anderson. Well, from Donald Trump's
election in the U.S. to the Brexit vote in the uk, 2016 has been a year of political shock and uncertainty.
Well, now parts of mainland Europe could be on the verge of major political upheaval.
Austria may be about to elect the EU's first far right head of state. Sunday's ballot pits right-winger Norbert Hofer against the leftist
candidate Alexander Van der Bellen.
Well, Hofer narrowly lost the election earlier this year. This is a rerun. It was ordered over concerns about voting irregularities.
And in Italy, the prime minister has promised to resign if voters reject reforms to the constitution that he has spear-headed. That could pave the
way for populist anti-EU candidates to gain power.
Well, more from Italy in a moment.
First, though, to Vienna for you where polls will close in less than an hour. We're then going to get the first results.
Atika Shubert explains why this election is so important when itcomes to Europe's future.
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is actually a rerun of an election earlier this year. Nobert Hofer and Alexander Van der
Bellen faced off at the polls and Van der Bellen won, but by a very thin margin, just 31,000 votes, and that was disputed. There was a recount.
And it was determined that some of the votes had been mishandled, and that's how we end up here today with another election.
Now, polls opened at 7:00 a.m., 6:00 a.m. in some places, and will continue until 5:00 p.m. when the polls close. And that is when we will get our
first exit polls. But the president's office is saying it could take some time before we get the official results. They
want to take have a care this time. They do that want to see another repeat of this. And the critical factor here will be the postal ballot,
people have been sending their ballots beforehand. There are some 700,000 -- more than 700,000 00 that will need to be counted. So that is going to
take some time.
The significance of this election, well if Norbert Hofer does get elected, he will become the
first far right president head of state elected in western Europe since World War II. He has campaigned very heavily against immigration,
particularly what he describes as Islamization, the migration of a number of Muslim immigrants to Austria.
And so this will certainly push the far right agenda, the nationalist agenda here in Austria, but possibly also in the rest of Europe. Remember,
there are elections coming up in The Netherlands, France, and Germany next year. All of them watching this election very closely.
Atika Shubert, CNN, Vienna.
ANDERSON: All right, well that is the story then so let's discuss the other critical vote going on right now as I speak in Italy. CNN Money's
Europe editor Nina Dos Santos joining us from Milan.
And although, NIna, a crucial referendum on the Italian constitution, a vote that dare I say it, wouldn't have garnered much interest beyond the
country itself had it not been for the tide of change across Europe in this post-Brexit era.
Can you explain the minutia of this if you will?
[10:05:19] NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN MONEY CORREPSONDENT: Pretty dry stuff, isn't it, on the face of things. What Matteo Renzi, the 41-year-old prime
minister of this country, Becky, is trying to is basically streamline the government system, change the balance of power between the upper house, the
senate of parliament and the lower house so that bills don't scuttle back and forth with
minor changes and he can actually get reforms through, reforms that when it comes to the economy, this country really needs badly.
What he also wants do is to try and reinforce the position of the party that wins the most votes across this country. Now, this is a country that
has been plagued by successive cycles of weak governments, one of the only people to actually hold a government together for a full term was Silvio
And when we talk about the potential for the rise of the populist movements, rember that this is a country that had Silvio Berlusconi in
power no fewer than three times. And populism really is at the heart of this particular constitutional change referendum. What Matteo Renzi is
asking, whether the people will vote yes, well, if that is the case he's saying he'll stay in power.
But but if they do decide to vote no, he says that he will resign. And what this could do, Becky, is that that could precipitate another wave of
transitional governments, could usher in an era of technocratic governments that we've already seen in the last five years, at
least ones, and it could precipitate a rise of the populist Five Star Movement that you mentioned before.
Now, why should people be worried about the Five Star Movement? What they want to for
is forget about this referendum, they want to call for another referendum, this time to take this country Italy outside of the Eurozone.
And all the while what people are particularly unhappy about, and this may well cause them to
vote no according to a lot of people I've been speaking to over the last few days, Becky, is that the
economic backdrop in this country has been painful and it's also souring fast. They have also got a big banking crisis to deal with.
So, Matteo Renzi may find himself punished for these very things he may well be trying to change.
ANDERSON: So what you're saying is Italy in this period of instability doesn't need this distraction to a certain extent if we were looking at
this potential further wave of populism. But the prime minister has said he will resign if he doesn't get the support of the people in this
If that were the case, if this vote is for no, effectively rejecting Renzi's ideas, how quickly would he go and how damaging would that be?
DOS SANTOS: At this point, Becky, that is the trillion dollar question. You know, there is even a school of thought that says that actually the
Five Star Movement might to better if it turns out to be a yes vote that triumphs, because it will pile the political pressure on Matteo Renzi,
eventually eroding his power base.
If there is a no vote, the big question is, does he resign. If he doesn't resign, that could foment further anger because he said he would do.
Now, if you speak to main political analysts, they say, well, look he's too ambitious for that. He probably won't resign if it's a no vote, but he
could find that it's going to be more and more difficult to enact the very reforms that he's called this constitutional reform referendum to try and
Either way, though, let's take a look at some of the problems that this country faces. It needs action fast, particularly when it comes to the
banking sector. Now, this time tomorrow, we could well see the markets having a really rough time if a no vote prevails.
If a yes vote prevails, again, there could be uncertainty hanging over the air right across this country.
ANDERSON: Nina, thank you. Breaking down what seems very complicated, but I think as we are seeing in this seaming wave of anti-establishment fervor,
it's clear how it fits in. Much more on those elections ahead on Connect the World. Later this hour we will speak to our international diplomatic
editor Nic Robertson on how these votes in Europe are going down in a continent still reeling from the UK's Brexit decision.
Plus, the man who could become the EU's first ever far right head of state. But what do we really know about Norbert Hofer? That's all coming up.
Moving on for the time being, it is safe to go home now. Well, that is the message from Syria's
government to everybody who packed up and run away from their neighborhoods in northeastern Aleppo. Some at least are listening. CNN's teams on the
ground have seen people going back, but it is not clear how much they will find of what they left behind. Much of the
eastern part of that city is still a frightening battlefield as the army corners rebels into this shriveling patch of land, seizing the area in
light red back just since last weekend.
As ever, civilians caught in the crossfire. Our Fred Pleitgen spoke to some who did mnage to leave. This is what they told him.
FREDERIK PLAITEGEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: As the Syrian government continues to push its offensive in and around the Aleppo area,
we've been hearing about the tens of thousands of people who have already been displaced. And many people wonder where are these people going?
Well, some of them are going right here.
We're inside a former cotton factory that's disused and is now being used as a place for many of these displaced people to go.
Now a lot of these folks here describe harrowing experiences over the past couple of days as they were trapped inside the eastern districts of Aleppo
that of course are under siege by the Syrian military. And many of them say that in the past couple of days they haven't had very much in the way
of food, of water. Of course many of them very traumatized and very weak as well.
BOY (through translator): We were afraid that we would starve to death. We were also scared because heavy bombs were falling.
UNIDENITIFIED MALE (through translator): I wanted to leave with my kids 15 days ago, but
the rebels shot at me and said, hey, you bastard, do you want to join the regime?
PLEITGEN: Now, if you look in here, you can see how some of these people have been living
since they were able to get out of the eastern districts of Aleppo. You can see some of the mattresses there. We always have to stress that over
the past couple of days, of course it's December right now, the weather here has been very, very bad. And so that is something that of
course has additionally made life very difficult for some of the folks here.
And if we look around, we can see just how many children are among those who also have been brought here to the shelter for displaced people.
Again, many much them in very bad conditions, many of them of course very traumatized. But many of them also weak.
One of the things, however, that they are getting here is a warm meal for the very first time in a long time. You can see here some of the groups
here are trying to hand out some bread, also some salad, as well, just to make sure that these people are able to subsist over the next couple of
days as of course they wait and hope that maybe they will be able to return back to
their houses as of course at this point in time that government offensive is still very
much going on.
We have also been hearing a lot of fighting in and around the Aleppo area.
ANDERSON: And, Fred, is with us now on the phone from inside Aleppo. And part of the city that is under government control.
I know that you saw a convoy of aid from Russia. Are they trying to win hearts and minds after spending it seemed so much time pummeling that city,
PLEITGEN: Well, it certainly appears as though that's what they're trying to do, Becky. We did today see a convoy of Russian military vehicles that
were go and distribute aid. They also seem to have some medical relief on board, as well. But really it's interesting to see not only the way that
they are trying to do all the aid deliveries here, but also how they seamlessly
they actually work with the Syrian military. I did see some interaction between the Russians and the Syrians. They seem to be very much on the
Actually, a lot of the Syrian officers so interesting to see that the cooperation between these two
sides is a lot closer than many people might have thought as of course the offensive is still going on, but now the Russians do appear to be moving
more toward the direction where in some of these areas that have been taken back by the rebels, they are trying to move aid in where as you said, that
after these fierce battles were going on, they now appear to be trying to win those hearts and minds, Becky.
ANDERSON: If it's correct to assume that most in eastern Aleppo were supportive of the opposition to the Syrian government, and I guess that is
an assumption that we tend to make, how defeated does that population feel? And what is next as far as they are concerned if this is the
PLEITGEN: Well, it's very difficult to say whether all of them were or are supporters of the opposition. Certainly the ones that we have been speaking
to, many of them say it that they weren't. Now, they might just be saying that because obviously now they are in the hands of government
forces. They obviously will want to be very careful as to what they actually say. But it seems that many of the people in the eastern part of
a Aleppo really didn't have any affiliation whatsoever, many of them said they just wanted to go and live their lives. Obviously, for many of them
now their houses have been destroyed. Much of what they own has been destroyed as well.
So it is a very difficult situation that they get into. And we were in one district that was actually taken back by the Syrian military, we were there
earlier today -- the Hanano Distict (ph), which is one of the biggest in eastern Aleppo that was held by the rebels. And there were actually some
people who were sort of trying to return to their houses, many of them, of course, finding them to be absolutely destroyed by the fighting that was
going on there.
And so it's very difficult for them to make any sort of political statement or to say who they are affiliated with and who they are not. But certainly
for many of them right now all they face right now is devastation. And the only thing that they're getting is the very little aid that is being
distributed by the Syrian Arab Red Crescent, and then of course what the Russians are giving them as well.
[10:15:31] ANDERSON: Excuse me. Fred is on the ground in the country for you with the very latest report and pictures. Fred, thank you.
Right, some of the other stories on our radar today for you. And the humanitarian aid has
finally arrived in the areas around the Iraqi city of Mosul, which was recaptured from ISIS. One official says about 650,000 people have no
access to water after a pipeline was hit during fighting.
More than 20,000 people are stranded at an airport in China. State media is reporting thick clouds of smog and heavy fog are preventing planes from
taking off at an airport in Chengdu. Officials are calling it the worst fog for hit the city in years.
And a rare public appearance by North Korea's first lady. State run media published these
pictures of leader Kim Jong-un and his wife at an air combat training competition. South Korea's Yonhap News reports this is her first
appearance in nine months.
Well in, Cuba, in a private ceremony marks the end of a very public life and end of an era in
politics. Fidel Castro's ashes arrived at a cemetery in Santiago de Cuba earlier today. That is where family and government officials gathered for
a private funeral.
On the eve of Castro's burial, the mood was very different. Cubans packed the city's revolutionary square. They waved the flag and chanted "Yo soy
Fidel," or "I am Fidel."
Our Patrick Oppmann joining us now from Santiago de Cuba.
And just describe the atmosphere, ifyou will.
PATRICK OPPMANN, CNN INTERNATIOAL CORRESPONDENT: Oh, this morning when those ashes were transported, the final leg of this final journey, Fidel
Castro remember they were brought all the way here from Havana, hundreds of miles. And people throughout that route had gathered by the side of the
road, sometimes with tears in their eyes, real genuine emotion we haven't seen here this years, Becky.
And this morning when they were taken to the cemetery, very quickly people gathered by the side of the road, Cubans some of them are quite elderly, to
bid a final farewell. Of course as you mentioned, the actual ceremony at the cemetery was off-limits to the international press. We know that the
Cuban government does have some images.
We are expected to see those released and edited most likely, not to show the Castro family who are considered off-limits. Still a state secret that
Fidel Castro even had a family after all these years. But right now after a week and nine days of national mourning, I think it's just a sense of an
exhaustion, people are going home. They are thinking about the future.
One thing you're thinking about the future. One thing we should not expect, though, Becky is that last night Raul Castro said there would be no
memorials, no streets. No monuments, nothing named or dedicated to Fidel Castro, nothing built in his honor. He said that was one of Fidel Castro's
last wishes that he wanted to avoid, quote, a cult of personality.
But having covered so many of these rallies over the last week, Becky, I can tell you that there is very much a cult of personality here. We've not
seen this kind of worship directed at Fidel Castro in many, many years, Becky.
ANDERSON: Thank you, Patrick. Out of Santiago de Cuba for you in Cuba tonight.
Well, still to come on this show, authorities fear dozens may be dead after a fire consumes a warehouse. Go to California for you for the latest on
the search there.
And Donald Trump answered the phone and it was a controversy calling. Why China is upset over one the incoming U.S. president's diplomatic chat.
[10:21:30] ANDERSON: Right. You're with CNN. This is Connect the World with me Becky Anderson. If you are just joining us at 21 minutes past 7:00
in the UAE. You are very welcome.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is heaping praise upon the U.S. president- elect. In a TV interview earlier on Sunday, Mr. Putin called Donald Trump a smart person who is, quote, capable of coming to grips fast with another
level of responsibility, end quote.
Well, critics have long said Trump's relationship with Russia was a little too chummy during the
campaign, Trump said he's looking forward to relations with Russia.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT-ELECT: But they say Putin likes Trump. And he said nice things about me. He called me a genius. He said we're going
to win. That's good. That's not bad, that's good. You know some of my opponents said we want you to disavow that statement. Why would I disavow,
But if we could get alone with Russia, wouldn't that be a good thing instead of a bad thing?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, another example of Trump differentiating himself on the world stage is Taiwan. In fact a single 10 minute phone call with Taiwan's
president set off a diplomatic firestorm. Here's why. The U.S. has long acknowledged that Taiwan is part of China and Trump talking with its
president is seen by China as a breach of that policy.
As you can imagine, China made clear its displeasure. Alexandra Field has the story.
ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's a phone call that breached nearly 40 years of protocol and took a lot of the world by surprise, but new signs
that it probably didn't take President-elect Donald Trump or his transition team by surprise. A
spokesperson for Taiwan's president now says that the call between the two leaders was prearranged, both parties had agreed to it. In the aftermath
of the call which unleashed a torrent of controversy, Trump got on twitter to defend
He said that he accepted the call from Taiwan's president and that she had called to offer her
congratulations much like other world leaders.
But the phone call itself has raised eyebrows. Some have said it's a signal that Mr. Trump and his transition team don't fully understand the
U.S.'s longstanding foreign policies, specifically toward Taiwan, others have said that it could be a signal that the Trump administration plans to
change in some way the longstanding relationship between the U.S. and China.
That relationship is governed through the One China policy, by which Washington, D.C. and
Beijing maintain official diplomatic ties, Beijing recognizes Taiwan as a renegade province, the U.S. acknowledges that and maintains only an
unofficial relationship with Taiwan. That is the reason there was so much controversy when the president-elect decided to take a call from Taiwan's
While the president-elect has defended his actions, Beijing has been quick response is not surprising. They have sent a message directly to
Washington. They have warned about the importance of the One China policy and state-run news agencies here in China have also had sharp words for
President-elect Donald Trump affirming the importance of the One China policy and saying it's important for Mr. Trump to respect China's core
interests in Taiwan.
In Beijing, Alexandra Field, CNN.
ANDERSON: Right, we'll, we have got more details about the diplomatic implications of Trump's the website. CNN.com. We take a look at the five
things about Trump's call with Tsai Ing-wen that could have real consequences. And we examine the background of the One China policy and
why it's at the heart of U.S./China relations.
Saturday Night Live always making fun of Donald Trump and it certainly is not sitting very
well with the man himself. In the latest skit, Saturday Night, actor Alec Baldwin impersonated the president-elect and his addiction to Twitter.
Have a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[10:25:22] ALEC BALDWIN, ACTOR: Kellyanne, I just retweeted the best tweet. I mean wow, what a great smart tweet.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Trump, we're in a security briefing.
BALDWIN: I know, but this could not wait. It was from a young man named Seth. He's 16. He's in high school and I really did retweet him.
Seriously. This is real.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He really did do this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, sir, you're the president-elect, so I guess you can do whatever you want, but we'd really like to fill in you on Syria.
BALDWIN: Seth seems so cool.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, Trump must have been watching because he responded immediately on Twitter. Just tried watching Saturday Night Live,
"unwatchable! Totally biased, not funny and the Baldwin impersonation just can't get any worse. Sad." He said.
Well, Baldwin fired back jokingly that he would stop impersonating Trump if Trump released his tax returns.
That wasn't all Trump was doing Saturday night, though, he attended a costume party at the
home of one of his wealthiest donors. The theme was, get this, villains and heroes. Here is a picture of Trump with his senior adviser Kellyanne
Conway. She is dressed as Super Girl.
It was held at the Long Island estate of hedge fund manager Robert Mercer.
Trump said, well, he went as himself.
The latest world news headlines are just ahead. Plus...
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NORBERT HOFER, AUSTRIAN POLITICIAN: I have after work and then everybody will see that I'm really okay. I'm not a dangerous person.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: From the far right to potentially the mainstream just who is Norbert Hofer? The far right leader vying for Austria's top job.
And Brazil paying tribute to the football team lost to tragedy. The final farewell to the
country's fallen heroes.
[08:30:58] ANDERSON: At least nine people are dead and dozens are missing after a fire raged through a warehouse in Oakland in California on
Saturday. The building housed artists' studios and a crowd had gathered for a party.
Now authorities say they need to shore up crumbling walls before they can search again. Dan Simon joins us from Oakland, California.
Dan, what more do we know at this point?
DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, hi, Becky. Crews have been working around
the clock to recover bodies. It is going to be another very difficult day here at the fire scene. We know that authorities have brought in very
large machinery, including excavators and cranes to get into some of the tricky spots of the warehouse. All this as family members anxiously await
any word about their loved ones.
SIMON (voice-over): Authorities worked through the night vowing to search as long as it takes to recover all the victims of Friday night's massive
warehouse fire in Oakland.
SGT. RAY KELLY, ALAMEDA COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE: We have recovered nine victims at this point. We are rushing their fingerprints to identify them
and then notify family members as we get those identifications.
SIMON: Bob Mule was inside an artist studio in the warehouse when the fire broke out. He warned others to run, but before he could leave, he heard a
friend, man he calls Pete, crying out for help.
BOB MULE, FIRE SURVIVOR: He's like, "I broke my ankle. I need you to pull me out. I need you to pull me out."
SIMON: The flames burned Mule as he tried to rescue his friend. Soon the fire forced him to flee.
MULE: The fire was just getting too hot and the smoke was just getting too bad and I had to -- I had to -- I had to leave him there and I wasn't able
to get him out. I really -- I really don't think Pete made it.
SIMON: Even when the fire was out, the building was too unsafe for emergency responders to enter. The roof collapsed and debris littered the
area in what was called a live/work art space. This morning, the community of Oakland is remembering the victims.
The Golden State Warriors held a moment of silence for the victims before the start of their NBA game, while several dozen people who are feared to
be victims of the fire were found safe by authorities, more than two dozen more are still missing and police expect the death toll to rise.
KELLY: We know there are bodies that are in there that we can't get to that have been seen but not recovered.
MULE: I'm just happy to be alive.
SIMON: Officials are asking for patience as they investigate the many questions that remain, including the cause and why so many people were
unable to get out, Becky.
ANDERSON: Dan Simon reporting. Dan, thank you.
More now on our top story, how Europe's tide of populism is being tested by votes in both
Austria and Italy this hour. In the latter, the prime minister says he will quit if voters say no to the constitutional reforms that he has
spearheaded. And that could throw Italy into uncertainty both politically and economically.
And as Nina dos Santos reports, uncertainty is the very last thing that country needs right now.
DOS SANTOS: This is Santo Stefano. They make prosecco here. But these days there is little cause for celebration. The reason? A banking crisis
that has left the town swimming in debt and wiped out its people's savings.
Paolo De Bortoli's grandfather was among the first shareholders of Veneto Banca, a
memory that is now bittersweet.
PAOLO DE BORTOLI (through translator): It was at a source of prestige to own shares just as in this region he we have faith in god, we had faith in
DOS SANTOS: Over the years he and others plowed all they had into the company's stock and
they were given credit, lots of it. In 2014, Veneto Banka got into trouble. Paolo's shares were frozen and he lost everything.
[10:35:07] DE BORTOLI (through translator): Look, I lost 1.308 million euros.
DOS SANTOS: To prevent the crisis from spreading, the government bought Veneto Banka and another cooperative bank and another cooperative lender
nearby through a special fund, bringing in new management, but little hope of recovering the lost investments.
Among those out of pocket, the mayor of a nearby town (inaudible), who says that he was prevented from selling his $50,000 of stock and instead talked
into borrowing more cash.
When I asked how many of his people have been affected, he he says many, too many to count. They have lost more than $72 million euros, or $76
Fabio (ph), a lawyer, says that he had to buy shares in the bank just to open a current account. He never received the dividends promised and lost
more than $4,000.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): To not be a shareholder or an account holder inthe bank, if you are a professional around here, was to be
missing something. They told me the shares were like cash.
DOS SANTOS: Veneto Banca declined to comment when contacted by CNN.
Things may appear calm and tranquil across this valley, but don't be fooled. The economic scars left on this landscape run deep. The failure
of the two largest local mutual banks across this part of northeastern Italy has cost 100,000 retail investors more than $5
billion, losses that serve as a cautionary tale to other parts of Europe's most fragile financial systems.
Ninas Dos Santos, CNN, Santo Stefano, Italy.
Well, meanwhile in Austria, this man could soon make history as western Europe's first far right
ahead of state since World War II. He heads Austria's nationalist Freedom Party and whatever the outcome of today's election, well he's already
proven to be controversial.
Hannah Vaughn Jones has more.
HANNAH VAUGHN JONES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A soft-spoken aeronautical engineer turned politician who carries a Glock.
Norbert Hofer hopes to become the EU's first far right head of state, riding the tide of a populist tsunami that could transform Europe's
45-year-old hofer walks with a cane, the result of a serious hang gliding accident. And he carries a 9mm Glock pistol on the campaign trail
signaling his strong advocacy for gun rights.
Hofer's foray into politics began when he joined the Freedom Party of Austria. It's a party with a checkered past, tracing its routes to just
after World War II. It was first led by a Nazi officer.
Ten years ago, the party was battling for even 6 percent of the vote, but the last decade has seen a political shift in Austria and in Europe, partly
fueled by one growing concern.
HOFER: The world finds itself facing the worst refugee crisis since the Second World War.
JONES: Amid growing unemployment, staunchly nationalist anti-immigrant campaigns like Hofers have increasingly won the applause.
Hofer promises Austria first, a slogan that sounds similar to one heard recently overseas.
TRUMP: America first, remember that, America first.
DOS SANTOS: Donald Trump's victory in the U.S. seems to be signaling right wing candidates like Hofer that they're on the right track.
HOFER (through translator): Whenever the elites distance themselves from voters, those elites will be voted out of office. It is not even a
question of political right or left, but rather how close the contact is and whether one is ready to implement things to actually alleviate existing
DOS SANTOS: Norbert Hofer's harshest critics accuse him of promoting fascism and his
opponent is pushing that image. The Green Party's Alexander Van der Bellen recently posted
this video, which has been viewed online millions of times. An 89-year-old holocaust survivor begging
Austrians not to elect the far right candidate.
But Hofer says there is nothing to fear.
HOFER: So, you see you have to take a look at me when I'm in one or two years. I have to work and then everybody will see that I'm really OK. I'm
not a dangerous person.
DOS SANTOS: The question is whether Hofer's populist momentum will carry him to victory and what that would mean for nationalist parties across the
continent hoping they, too, can emerge from the fringes.
Hannah Vaughn Jones, CNN.
ANDERSON: So two different countries, two very different votes, but one concern shared by both: The growing wave of populism.
Let's get some perspective from our international diplomatic editor Nic Robertson. He's joining us now from London.
And, Nic, lest we think that this fervor has come out of nowhere, for our viewers' sake let's just recall the following: the UK Independence Party
winning more than 12 percent of the vote back in 2015. This is before Brexit of course, this past year. In The Netherlands, the party for
freedom more than 10 percent of the vote in 2012, Italy's Five Star Movement took 17 percent in 2013.
In Germany, right wing AFD party won less than 5 percent that same year. And in France, the National Front won 15 percent of votes in regional
elections last year.
So this isn't new, but we're definitely seeing this sort of quickening wave, as it were, of what we're calling anti-establishment fervor or
populism, and perhaps we can discuss whether that is the right word here. Is this all about economic worries, do you think?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Some of it is economic worries, some of it has to do with people feeling the pinch, because their
countries haven't fully recovered or been really badly impacted by the 2008 economic crash.
But a lot has to do particularly in Europe and particularly in northern Europe has a lot do
with migrants. We've seen several million over the past several years arriving in Europe from all the way from anywhere in Africa, from as far
away as Afghanistan, a lot of people coming from Syria.
So to the nationalists, this is just fodder for their campaigns and their traditional values their Christian countries of being overrun by Muslim
values, Muslim people who don't integrate. And that when you sort of harness that to we're suffering hard economic times, as well, has been a
winning message for a lot of these populist nationalists, particularly the nationalist parties. And this is something that we're seeing in northern
Europe, it has different flavors if you will in the south of Europe, but certainly from Norbert Hofer. He's absolutely targeted the fact that the
country has seen an increase in the number of Muslim migrants coming into the country, and that, he says, detracts from the country's core values.
ANDERSON: So we're going to get a result, or certainly an exit poll out of Austria in the next half hour or so. The polls closing in about sort of
six hours in Italy. And we'll get a sense from there what the result is after.
That, a warning bell about the rise of populism, Nic, was sounded some five years ago why one think tank at least.
And a report, Chatham House author, Matthew Goodwin said PEPs, or populist extremist parties, who spent much of the past two decades exchanging
strategies and ideas. This has enabled them to respond more innovatively and effectively than the mainstream parties, and until the mainstream
parties begin to exchange lessons and address the actual anxieties of PEP voters, populist extremists will continue to rally support.
The point is, there is a difference between these parties or movements rallying support and actually getting in and running countries.
I wonder what you think the result would be of what many people do see as a protest vote, this sort of protest or momentum for change. What will the
result be if actually we see leadership who buy this populist ideology actually running countries across Europe?
ROBERTSON: Well, in the case of Norbert Hofer, he's said that he doesn't want to pull out of
the European Union per se. I mean, Austria is a relatively small country and in relative terms has been relatively wealthy over the years.
However, he does say that he wants to change some of the ways that the European Union works. He doesn't want to have the open borders. And this
is an issue of course that caused the British population to vote actually to leave the European Union.
So, although he says today trust me, you'll trust me more when you see me in a couple years, there may be a growing momentum in Austria to do
something more fundamental than just question the way the European Union is working, which is seek to change it, and if you can't change it, then it
becomes obvious therefore you might have to consider pulling out.
In Italy, we've seen matteo Renzi trying to win the referendum by telling people that he will throw the EU's budget back at the EU, he'll reject it,
because he wants more money because they have so many migrants and that clearly is an effort to sort of battle down the EU, the European Union
skeptics that he has in Italy.
So, what is the overall effect? I think that's what you're saying here. Well, look, this certainly gives momentum to the populists when they see
Brexit, a populist vote, succeed, when they see a populist message in the United States with President-elect Donald Trump succeed, that fuels and
energizes those political leaders like Marine Le Pen, for example, in France. She said it energizes her.
So in a way, these campaigns fuel each other not only as Chatham House pointed out that they have exchanged ideas over the past decades what way
to respond, but it's giving other leaders that added energy and added ideas about how to communicate their populations.
The problem is, is that the stayed politicians of the system have been quite lead-footed, if you
will, to find a way to respond, again Chatham House points that out.
But they don't have that populist connection, they're not connecting with the core issues that concern of globalization is one, economic uncertainty
is another one that drives a populist movement. And that again this sort of national identity issue being under threat is another one for the
This is clearly something that governments and mainstream politicians will have to find a
way to address in their narrative.
You know, the capitalism itself, globalism, essentially demands more workers, and as the more successful it is if you don't have enough workers,
you need to import them. So this issue of immigration across Europe is a capitalism, globalization issue which is fine for the business markets. But
have the politicians sold it? Clearly not.
The United States is a much different case for that, of course being a melting pot of different communities, different countries from around the
[10:47:01] ANDERSON: Are we seeing the end of liberal capitalist democracy as we know it? Well, I guess we'll watch the space.
Nic, thank you for the time being. This is not a story that is going away. And as I say, less than half an hour's time, you are going to will get at
least the exit polls out of Austria and we'll have a sense of exactly where that country is headed going forward.
All right, live from Abu Dhabi, you're watching Connect the World. I'm Becky Anderson. Coming up, Brazil comes together to mourn the lives lost
in a tragic plane crash.
ANDERSON: Grief and tears in Brazil on Saturday as fans and family paid tribute to the member of the Chapecoense Football Club. Thousands decked
out in the team's green and white pack their home stadium to say their final farewell. The team among the passengers of a plane that crashed in
Colombia on Monday killing most aboard.
World Sports Don Riddell has more on what is the emotional tribute held there in Brazil.
DON RIDDELL, CNN WORLD SPORT: They left as heroes, they returned in coffins. A guard of honor for the Chapecoense Football Players. But the
last few yards were the hardest.
Reflecting the emotion of the day, dozens and dozens of caskets returned in a torrential downpour as the visceral sight of so many bodies finally made
the nightmare real. This is a small town club which had punched well above its weight, capturing the hearts of a nation.
The supporters had an intimate relationship with the team, sticking by them through the good times and the bad, but nobody could have ever imagined it
would end like this.
There isn't nip in Chapeco who hasn't been touched by the tragedy, but its been hardest for the families. Their grief was uncontrollable.
But many found solace with the supporters, connecting with them possibly for the last time at this stadium. For Asma Machado (ph), the grief is
crippling. He's told us that he wanted to commit suicide after learning of his son's death, defender Felipe died on his father's birthday.
The widow of the beloved Goalkeeper Denilo (ph), emotionally took his picture and placed it
in the goal net where he stood for every game.
The club must now draw on the strength of its supporters to rebuild the team, and their rich history will no doubt live on in the future, part of
that tradition was evident today.
The awful weather conditions couldn't have been more appropriate. Eeveryone knows that Chapecoense play their best football in the rain.
Don Riddell,CNN, Chapeco, Brazil.
ANDERSON: Live from Abu Dhabi, you're watching Connect the World. I'm Becky Anderson. We will be right back.
ANDERSON: Right. Well, this is the view from right outside the window here at the CNN bureau. The whole United Arab Emirates is burst into
colorful light, even more so than usual, over this last week to celebrate turning 45 years old just this this weekend.
And like with any good birthday bash, some old friends turning up. King Salman of Saudi Arabia is in town here in Abu Dhabi. The visit cementing
what's already an extremely close relationship.
Although the UAE is still quite a young country at the age of 45, it can still be quite difficult for the young here to reconnect with their past,
with many photographs torn or burned up as part of what seems to have been a cultural habit.
So in tonight's Parting Shots, we take a look you at a project called lest we forget. This is a fantastic project, put together to preserve Emirati
heritage for generations to come.
[10:55:13] UNIDENITIFIED FEMALE: I never used a typewriter growing up, but for some reason the sound it makes is quite nostalgic somehow stirring in
me memories of a bygone era.
You see, for a lot of us young Emiratis, reconnecting with our heritage isn't so easy, especially with the records (inaudible) our country is
headed towards and for the future.
But a new exhibition called lest we forget is helping us do just that.
My mother is not originally Emirati, and so I grew up thinking I was different because I didn't look like my fellow Emirati classmates. But
speaking to Michele Bambling, the creative director of lest we forget, I came to realize our collective experiences are very similar.
DR. MICHELE BAMBLIN, CREATIVE DIRECTOR, LEST WE FORGET: I proposed the idea to my students, because I thought that it would be an interesting way
for students to study their own past. And when they were doing that, they began to discover their own country. They saw that their parents had a
similar event, they saw that they had the same kinds of pillows in their homes. They began to look at their country through the pictures that other
people had taken.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: As I walked around, I watched a short film about how a father
tore up his family photos. And I remember asking my grandmother what my grandfather looked like. Well, she simply said I burnt the photo album.
I saw a pattern which was destroying pictures rather than sharing them. But why?
BAMGLING: Initially the students were hesitant to bring their private photographs to class. They didn't know each other very well and it was the
first time that they were sharing these images.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Later on I met Sophia (ph), one of the many young people working at the exhibition. I asked if she had donated a family
photo and how she felt in doing so.
SAFIYA AL MASKARI, RESEARCH ASSISTANT, LEST WE FORGET: I actually contributed one of my photographs that was given to me by my uncle, and
it's of my brother and my uncle.
At the beginning I was a bit hesitant in sharing my photographs, but when I saw other people contributing their pictures, it kind of encouraged me to
give my photo, as well.
What we're doing at lest we forget is we are collecting memories and archiving photographs that later on in the future will be of great value.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So now I have a much better sense of how my personal story fits within the overall story of my country. It doesn't matter if
we all have mixed backgrounds.
In the end, we share very similar past experiences and a common future.
ANDERSON: I'm Becky Anderson. That was Connect the World. Thank you for watching.