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Hard Focus; Wives of ISIS; Roger Federer Best Shot; Trump's White House; Qatar Versus Its Neighbors; Brexit Talks; Fight Against ISIS; Luxury In Pyongyang; A View Into North Korea; Trump's Approval Rating Hits Record Low; Iran Jails American; Wimbledon 2017; "Game Of Thrones" Returns. Aired 11-12p ET

Aired July 17, 2017 - 11:00   ET


[11:00:00] BECKY ANDERSON, "CONNECT THE WORLD" HOST: A bullish White House tries to refocus attention away from the Russia claims controversies.

President Trump's approval ratings reach record low. We examine his efforts to change the spotlight in America.

Live in Washington for you viewers also, the wives of Raqqa. We hear what life in the ISIS stronghold is really like. We meet foreign women who

flocked to join them.



ROGER FEDERER, SWISS PROFESSIONAL TENNIS PLAYER: To win it all together, it's like a dream scenario that you hope happens.


ANDERSON: All the stuff of dreams, what next then for Roger Federer? CNN sits down with the tennis great after his Wimbledon triumph.

A very warm welcome, just after 7:00 o'clock in the UAE, I'm Becky Anderson with "Connect The World" in Abu Dhabi. At least six months mark in office,

Donald Trump's approval ratings are at a record low and the Russia controversy is threatening to overshadow his entire agenda. So, this week

the White House is working hard to regain control of the headlines, kicking off a Made in America Campaign.

Now, the focus, on messaging, a clear signal it wants to get back on track after stunning revelations about a meeting with a Russian attorney last

year. Mr. Trump lashing out at the media again, railing against what he calls fake news, but the latest uproar isn't based on reports. It follows

emails released by his own son.

Well, Mr. Trump says most people would have taken that meeting, but new polling shows most Americans disagree. CNN's, Joe Johns looks at the tough

challenges the president faces in turning around public opinion.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Congratulations, Mr. President.



JOE JOHNS, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: After nearly six months in office, President Donald Trump now facing the lowest approval rating in

recent history. Just 36% approve of the president's performance in a new ABC News "Washington Post" poll. A 6% drop since the 100-day mark in April.

The president attempting to spin these results claiming that almost 40% is not bad, and asserting that the poll was inaccurate during the election.

The poll also showing that 63% of Americans think that the meeting between Trump, Jr., Paul Manafort, and Jared Kushner and a Russian lawyer to get

dirt on Hillary Clinton was inappropriate.


DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT: Most people would have taken that meeting. It's called opposition research.


JOHNS: The president once again focusing on his former rival in a Sunday morning tweet, while defending his son, amid the latest revelations that at

least 8 people attended the meeting, including a Russian-American lobbyist who served in the Soviet military, this despite Trump, Jr.'s insistence

that all of the details about the meeting have been disclosed.


DONALD TRUMP, JR., U.S. PRESIDENT SON: I don't think there's anything else. We've scoured it thoroughly just to be sure.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He first said no such meeting every happened and then he said the meeting was about adoptions and then he admitted the meeting

was about getting information on Hillary Clinton and then he wasn't forthcoming about who was in the meeting, so we can't accept anything Don,

Jr. says.


JOHNS: One of the president's personal lawyers also coming to Trump Jr.'s defense during a P.R. Blitz on the Sunday shows.


JAY SEKULOW, U.S. PRESDENT TRUMP'S ATTORNERY: Donald Trump, Jr. himself said things should have been done differently. Having said that again, none

of that is violation of the law, that's more processed.


JOHNS: While raising a possible defense of the meeting.


SEKULOW: If this was nefarious, why did the secret service allow these people in?


JOHNS: The secret services pushing back noting in a statement, Donald Trump, Jr. was not a protectee of the USS in June 2016; thus, we would not

have screened anyone he was meeting with at the time.

ANDERSON: Well, Joe Johns joins us now live from the White House, sorry Joe, with more on the effort of damage control. We're also joined, please

stay, by Matthew Chance in Moscow tonight. He is following a new twist in the dispute between the Russia compounds being seized in the U.S.

Joe, let's start with you, surrogates of Donald Trump wheeled out this weekend and a clear attempt, it seems, to try and move the agenda on and

away from these Russian allegations. Is it clear whether that attempt is working?

[11:05:00] JOHNS: It's very difficult to say that it's working simply because surrogates of the president in previous statements often on Sunday

Morning Public Affairs Programs have said different things at different times. The story seems to keep changing. There were repeated denials that

the type of meeting here described ever occurred, so a big problem for this administration.

The president continuing the damage control just this morning, echoing what you saw in that sound bite in my piece a few minutes ago, that any

politician, he said in the tweet this morning, would have taken a meeting like that to get essentially background information on an opponent and

suggesting that, of course, is just politics.

Of course, the president ran ostensibly on a campaign of being an outsider, being independent of Washington, while a lot of people have always said the

fact remains that he was an insider and brought many lobbyists, many other politicians, and started his administration very traditionally for

Republican, Becky.

ANDERSON: What, if anything, do these new polls showing his approval ratings add record lows say about the support from his base? Because that's

important, isn't it?


ANDERSON: As long as the administration believes they still have that support in that clear base, for all intents and purposes, they can say, we

don't care.

JOHNS: It's clear he has some support, 36% is the worst this president has seen, apparently just about the worst any president has seen certainly in

the first six months of the administration.

And probably one of the biggest problems for this president is the question of credibility on the issue of the Russia Investigation, concerns expressed

in that ABC News, "Wall Street Journal" poll by voters that the meeting between the president's son and the Russian lawyer was inappropriate.

Most of the voters, vastly most of the voters who responded, said it was inappropriate. And he's also got another problem, that other problem is his

stalled agenda on Capitol Hill. He has not been able to push through that signature issue that he campaigned on, repealing and replacing ObamaCare,

and it's been stalled on Capitol Hill, Becky.

ANDERSON: Matthew, moving on, what is the official response from Russian authorities over whether -- over the spatter overseas assets and whether

that is likely to escalate?

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, they're absolutely furious about it in short. The Russian Foreign Minister, Sergei

Lavrov has called it highway robbery. He is talking about the seizure of two diplomatic compounds by the outgoing Obama Administration in December

last year in response to the allegations of Russian meddling in the U.S. Election.

Of course, the Obama Administration also expelled 35 Russian Diplomats from their various posts inside the United States. At the time, the Kremlin and

Vladimir Putin decided not to respond. I mean, and that spoke volumes about the expectations they held for the incoming Trump Administration. But, you

know, that patience has, in the words of the Kremlin, worn out.

They've started to prepare a response, reciprocal measures, possibly the expulsion of U.S. Diplomats here and possibly the seizure of U.S.

Diplomatic property here much more depend on a meeting that is going to be held later on today in Washington -- between the Deputy Russian Foreign

Minister and the U.S. Undersecretary of State to decide what to do about those diplomatic compounds.

But, again, you know, the Russians are preparing a response if it doesn't go their way. Take a listen to what Maria Zakharova, the Russian Foreign

Ministry Spokeswoman had to say on this issue earlier.


MARIA ZAKHAROVA (through translator): One of the measures could be, aside from the just the symmetrical expulsion of the Americans, would be to

equalize the amount of staff here. Moreover, there are too many CIA and Pentagon agents under the proof of the American Diplomatic mission here.


CHANCE: All right, so the foreign ministry spokeswoman there promising could be large scale expulsions potentially from U.S. Diplomatic missions

and facilities here in Russia if these diplomatic compounds are not restored. The final decision, of course, will rest with the - with the

President of Russia.

ANDERSON: Matthew, how this unfolding controversy and that of the wider Russian Investigation playing out in Russian homes? Are people amused,

bemused, none of the above, very briefly?

[11:10:00] CHANCE: Well, I don't think they're amused. I mean I think people understand that this is an immensely serious situation, and I think

they've been on a roller coaster relationship with what they were told to think about this new incoming Trump Administration.

You know, they thought that Donald Trump was going to sort of be the savior of relationship - of the relationship between Russia and the United States.

He promised to make the relationship better.

He promised to work with Russia on combatting international terrorism, even criticized NATO which was, of course, music to the ears not just to Kremlin

officials but to many Russians who, of course, have a deep-seated suspicion of western institutions.

But the fact is, that he's not been able to deliver any of those things, he's got domestic political pressure obviously because of the Russia

scandals and the allegations of Russia meddling which have meant that he just cannot do the things that he said he was going to do, and that's led

to an enormous sense of disillusionment in Russia about the - about the White House and about Donald Trump personally about what he can actually


ANDERSON: To both of you in Washington and in Moscow, we thank you.

Now, we live in one reality with only ever one set of facts, right? But as we see more and more, two very different realities can grow from them, take

Qatar's Diplomatic Zero Hour. The "Washington Post" quoting, U.S. Intelligence Officials saying that right here, the United Arab Emirates

hacked into its neighbor's news services, slipping in fake quotes from Qatar's Emir laying the groundwork for cutting it off.

Qatar has always insisted it was hacked by someone and the record shows just that, so that's one version. The other, UAEs for its part saying, hold

up, it just ain't so. Have a listen.


ANWAR GARGASH, UAE MINISTER OF STATE FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS: But I - "The Washington" story post is not true, purely not true. That's what I will say

and I think you will see in the next few days that "The Washington" story will die.


ANDERSON: That's Anwar Gargash, the UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs in London earlier on today. Now, if there's somewhere else where

many wish they could exist in another reality, it may be Britain because there it is time to get down to work.

That was the message, the Brexit negotiator have as he met his EU counterpart for what is the next round of exit negotiations. On the agenda,

future rights of European nationals finance and what will be the tricky issue of the Irish border.

Well, let's get you to London and speak to CNN Money Europe Editor, Nina dos Santos. The second round of talks didn't last very long, any idea why?

NINA DOS SANTOS, CNN MONEY EUROPE EDITOR: It didn't. It only lasted about three hours before the Secretary Of State -- before exiting the EU, David

Davis, on the UK Side, was recalled back to Westminster here.

He had to come back because there was a big internal cabinet rift that was burning over the issue Brexit and presumably Theresa May, the Prime

Minister, needed her big Brexit Official back around the cabinet table rather than in Brussels.

He's probably left his team in Brussels to iron out the nitty-gritty with their EU Counterparts but just look at this particular picture. If we can

show you this in full screen, Becky, you get an idea of how the second meeting probably went that only lasted for a few hours.

On the left-hand side of the table, you can see Michel Barnier, he's got a lot of stacks of notes on the other side of the table. David Davis,

interestingly, you know, has no notes there.

So, whether or not the British side arrived very well prepared, well, we don't know the substance of what was said in that first three hours, but

already this picture has been seized upon by people on the other side of the channel as another indication that basically when it comes to Britain,

Brussels isn't very clear about what exactly the UK wants.

David Davis saying that, while it was all smiles and handshakes when he set up on this second monthly meeting -- meetings that they're going to have

every month up until 2019, by the way, Becky that he wanted to get down to business.

In particular, he prioritized talking about citizens' rights, in particular, the 3 million EU citizens who call the UK their home as a top

priority for today's negotiations but it doesn't seem as though he brought an awful lot of paperwork or homework with him.

ANDERSON: No, and the rights of UK Citizens of course living abroad as well. Is it clear, whether they are making any headway on what are these

incredibly important issues for the UK and, indeed, for what are its European partners going forth?

[11:15:00] DOS SANTOS: It does seem to be a very confused picture at the moment. We have seen some olive branches extended on behalf of Theresa

May's Government, namely in form of giving EU Citizens who, as I was saying, 3 million who call the UK their home, the very vibrant economically

active members of the community here in the UK. They're an important part of the economy for the UK.

Theresa May had suggested a couple of weeks ago that if EU Citizens have called the UK their home for five years before 2019 when the UK was

supposed to cleave itself off of the EU and Brexit is supposed to technically happen, well they would be guaranteed full rights to stay, but

they haven't been given the same reciprocal agreement and assurance from the EU.

Remember, there's more than 1 million Britons who call the EU their home, so these are things that they're going to continue to probably wrangle over

the next weeks and months to come. What we can expect is at least this round of negotiations, this month's one to wrap up on Thursday.

Michel Barnier, the EU Negotiator, is probably going to come out with a press statement explaining what headway has been made. But, as you can see

there, just to repeat as you mentioned in your introduction, Becky, there are four key issues, these are enormous buckets for them to get to grips


Citizen's right is just one of them, but then we've got the issue of separation issues. So, how the UK cleaves itself out of the single market,

how goods and services whole waves (ph) of industry will be affected by the decisions that are made on that front, the financial settlement. The EU is

reportedly after a settlement of up to $100 billion potentially.

Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary of the UK, just a couple days ago probably very unhelpfully said that the UK could, "go whistle if it was

after that kind of money," and then when it comes to an issue closer to home in the UK we have that thorny issue of what to do about the UK's only

potential hard border with the EU, which would of course be Northern Ireland.

These are all the things that are going to keep these two people busy up over the months to come up until 2019, Becky.

ANDERSON: Nina will be -- with these negotiators reporting on every step they take. But as you say, interesting to see that the UK Side not with an

awful lot of information, it seemed at the table at least with them today, one has to have confidence that it was all up there or guess what.

In the Middle East, ISIS has spent years building its empire in expanding its reach of power. But, now that empire is crumbling and the women who

joined the terror group are faced with an uncertain future. Getting the rare chance to hear from some of those women, CNN's, Nick Peyton Walsh

brings us some of their stories.

It's important to point out these women haven't been charged with anything in what is essentially a lawless area. Still, they have been rounded up as

ISIS sympathizers, held at a refugee camp until officials decide their fate.


NICK PAYTON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Don't kid yourself, they saw the videos, girls, mothers, some who married into ISIS who knew

what they were about but still came. Now, jailed in a refugee camp, stuck in limbo as ISIS collapses, trying to go home and want your pity and that

you believe them when they say it was all, all of it, a huge mistake.

They use women for sex?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. It's very disgusting.

WALSH: Three Indonesian sisters say they paid thousands of dollars to get here, lured by the false promise of free healthcare and schools, but ended

up living off selling their jewelry and paying thousands to get smuggled out. It just wasn't as pure caliphate as they expected.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They said they want to jihad for the sake of Allah, but what they are saying was -- what they want is only about women and sex,

it's disgusting.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I heard that if they marry, they will get thousands of dollars.

WALSH: Single women arrivals like them kept in a commune while they look for husbands.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The manner of woman inside the dorm, it's very different, it's very far from Islam, harsh manner, gossiping, shout each

other, backbiting and fighting between the women. I was very surprised when I see that.

WALSH: Sidah (ph) explains the dorm is a bit like tinder.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): When the woman arrives in this dormitory, she makes a sort of CV, has done her age, name, how her

personality is like, what she looks for in a man. And men also post their CVs. Yes, it's dating. So, you meet, you talk for 15, 20 minutes, and then

it's a yes or no. If they both agree, then they get married. It's very quick.

WALSH: She says she came for charity work but her husband was killed the second time they tried to flee. She's appalled by the Paris terror attacks

as she was by the coalition falling of Raqqa and just wants to go back to France.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): I love life. I love to work. I love my jeans. I love my makeup. I love my parents. The only thing I want

is to go back. I'm not far from the beach. I used to go to the beach every weekend in a bikini.

WALSH: In a bikini?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): Yes, in a bikini.

[11:20:00] WALSH: She's a Syrian English teacher whose husband was killed by a sniper in homes and says she was traveling to Turkey when she was

waylaid in Raqqa where she met and married a Moroccan beloved.

Were you looking for a man when you went to Raqqa?


WALSH: So, how come you found one just like you moved into a house and, oh, my god, who's this guy next door?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think God sent him to me.

WALSH: She says ISIS spokesman, Abu Muhammad Al-Adnani knew beloved and allowed him not to fight. He is now in jail. She is disapproving of less

pure love stories.

Did you hear other stories of women here who came looking for a husband?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They look to the European men that they are here in ISIS. They are strong man, you know, with guns and they can protect them.

It's an idea that -- just like movies. Many of them was very shocked because when they get married from a man, you know, three, four days, one

month and they divorced.

I know a woman, she was married six times. And after three days she go to court and ask the judge to divorce her for him. And when the judge asked

her why you want a divorce, and that man say that she prevents him from making any, you know, sexual, you know.

WALSH: I see.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And, she say, I can't accept him. I am all the time thinking of my dying husband. And the judge asked her, so why you married

from him if you don't want him? And he say, I will send you to the prison as well, you know, cast you. And she was crying, oh, no. It's the last

time, I promise.

WALSH: Her husband was once arrested for smoking by the religious police and because they won't talk to women, she had to literally enter a man's

world to get him out of jail.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And you know what I do, it was a crazy idea. I just put my husband's clothes, his shoes and his, you know, how feels, and I

covered my eyes put that black glasses and I lent a gun from my neighbor. I take it and I take my boy and let's go.

WALSH: Can you give me a man voice now?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, yes, of course.

WALSH: That's how men sound to you?


WALSH: These stories decide their fate here, whether they stay in limbo or go home.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think they don't believe me. You know, eyes speaks a language more than mouth.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Don't you feel that there's a truth in my eyes?

WALSH: Yes. Your husband, what if you never see him again?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want someone to kill me because I can't kill myself. It's suicide and I can't commit suicide, so just kill me.

WALSH: Nick Peyton Walsh, CNN, Inalisa (ph), Northern Syria.


ANDERSON: Still to come tonight, high street shopping in a very unlikely place. Next, a look at the luxury goods offered in North Korea and who can

actually afford to buy them.


[11:25:00] ANDERSON: It is 25 past 7:00 in the UAE. You're watching CNN, this is "Connect The World" with me, Becky Anderson. If you are just

joining us, well you are very welcome.

Just about anything your heart desires jewelry, perfume, fancy new TV, well these luxury goods are all for sale in what is a very unlikely place, one

of the world's poorest countries, North Korea.

CNN's, David McKenzie takes us on a budget-busting shopping trip in Pyongyang and he is following the money as it were just where the profits

end up.

DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Premium liquor stores stacked five rows high, imported shoes, expensive perfumes, rare images of a luxury

department store inside North Korea, part of a year-long investigation by website, NKPRO, a specialist North Korea watcher.


MCKENZIE: Who is the target market of these luxury items in Pyongyang?

KIM KWANG-JIN, NORTH KOREAN DEFECTOR: Foreigners and rich guys of Pyongyang.


MCKENZIE: How rich? Here you can buy a $4,000 watch, and it's cash only. Rich North Koreans paying in $100 notes, a diplomat says who used to shop

there. North Korean Defector, Kim Kwang-jin, helped get illicit goods into the country.

He says the store's final cash into Office 39, a secretive organization that the U.S. treasury says works as a slash fund for Kim Jong-un. North

Koreans working abroad hotels in Pyongyang, tourists dollars, all of it a sprawling mafia style cash earner for the supreme leader.


KWANG-JIN: The most profitable businesses, the best companies are all belong to Office Number 39 and it is Kim family business. It does not

belong to the cabinet. It does not belong to the state control.


MCKENZIE: He says the luxury stores keep rich party members loyal to Kim Jong-un. And that the hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue help fund

Kim's nuclear ambitions.


KWANG-JIN: They earn a lot of dollars in foreign cash from these luxurious department stores by selling all of these goods, and you know, they

reallocate these dollars into their priorities, like you know, nuclear and missile profit.

MCKENZIE: So, a luxury purchase could help build a missile?

KWANG-JIN: Sure, yes.


MCKENZIE: U.N. Sanctions bar many luxury goods from getting into North Korea but Office 39 works in complex ways using multiple fronts. The Trump

Administration wants to cut off the money flow. Just how worried are the North Koreans? Well, they're building a brand new golden mall in the heart

of Pyongyang. David McKenzie, CNN, Seoul.

ANDERSON: Amazing, isn't it? Those aren't the only luxury items in North Korea. You can check out some of the other seriously big ticket items

linked to the government on our website, a $35 million ski resort along with multi-million dollar cars and yachts. Check out what is these - it's

described as eye-popping price tags at, CNN digital, of course.

The latest world news headlines just ahead.

Plus, no one knows intrigue and drama like us here at "Connect The World" knew. We are not talking about the latest from the White House, the "Game

of Thrones," stay tuned to find out the latest about the show that millions are tuning in to watch.


[11:30:00] ANDERSON: Welcome back. You're watching "Connect The World." I'm Becky Anderson for you.

The top stories here on CNN, White House kicking off a Made in America theme week to reset a conversation as President Trump's approval ratings

surf the six-month mark fall to what is an historic low, just 36% of Americans approve of his job performance according to "The Washington

Post", ABC News poll, at least.

British and EU negotiators back in Brussels for another round of exit talks. UKs press secretary said it was, "time to get down to work for the

issue of future rights of European nationals". Top of the agenda, Britain will leave the brook (ph) in less than two years' time.

The opposition in Venezuela is claiming victory in an unofficial referendum on President Nicolas Maduro. It says more than 7 million people voted to

reject his plans to rewrite the constitution. The country continues to be paralyzed by social unrest as protesters calls for government reforms.

An explosive article from "The Washington Post" is pouring fuel on the fire of Qatar's diplomatic crisis. The piece citing American Intelligence

Officials says that the United Arab Emirates hacked into Qatar's News services to plant fake news. The eau says it is all wrong.

Now, Russia, as you know, is a good friend of Iran's. These days the country seems to be nothing but a headache, for Donald Trump's White House.

It is now looking to change the conversations, pushing three more themed weeks to put the spotlight on domestic issues.

Today kicks off Made in America Week with a focus on manufacturing. The White House tried the themed week idea last month as well. It's no surprise

if you don't remember. The messages were largely overshadowed by other news like Russia. Let's bring in CNN Political Commentator, Peter Beinart who is

set from New York.

He is an Associate Professor of Journalism and Political Science at the City University of New York. Is there, at this point, any realistic

possibility of distracting from this Russia controversy for the White House? And how likely is it that high profile heads will at some point roll

over these Russian claims. His son-in-law, Jared Kushner, for example, how vulnerable is he?

PETER BEINART, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: It's hard to tell. Under normal circumstances, under normal presidency, he would be very vulnerable

because he was at that meeting and he did not acknowledge it in his -- in the form that he was supposed to fill out. He has a security clearance,

unlike Donald Trump Jr.

And I think under the normal standards, an adviser like that would probably be under tremendous pressure to resign. But this is not a normal White

House and he's not just an adviser. He's also Donald Trump's son in law, so not someone that Donald Trump can kind of easily cast aside.

So, my guess would be probably Trump will - to Jared Kushner is probably safe unless we have really even more damning information that comes out.

[11:35:00] ANDERSON: Over the weekend, President Trump posted this tweet. He again called the Russia story a hoax and tried to redirect attention to

the Dow's record close on Friday and a jobs report. President Trump seems to be working hard here to get back to message, and his supporters will

certainly argue that he has a point. What big wins does Trump need at this point to turn things around, and are we likely to see any of them in the

next six months?

BEINART: Look, Trump, like any president, will benefit from a strengthened U.S. Economy and the U.S. Economy is strengthening somewhat, it has been

for a while it was in the last years of Barack Obama. So, it helps Donald Trump a little bit.

The problem is that he doesn't really have a popular legislative agenda that what, you know, at the top of the legislative right now - agenda,

right now, is a healthcare bill that the Republican leadership and the senate is pushing that is extraordinarily unpopular among Americans.

So, Donald Trump, kind of if it passes, you could say he loses because it's unpopular legislation. If it fails, he also loses, so he doesn't really

have a really popular legislative agenda.

And, whether he likes it or not, the investigation that Robert Mueller is doing, the special counsel that the congressional investigators are doing,

that a lot of reporters are working on is going to continue and will dog him for at least the next year. There's nothing he can do about that.

ANDERSON: But despite record low approval ratings, let's be quite frank here, his base hasn't abandoned him, have they?

BEINART: No. His base hasn't, so he's extremely unpopular as you might imagine with Democrats, quite unpopular with independents, but still quite

popular, approval ratings of over 80% with Republican, and that's why Republican members of Congress won't abandon him, because even though Trump

is unpopular overall, they know that he is quite popular among their base Republican supporters.

And it's not clear whether anything will shake that. I mean, one might have thought that the recent revelations that Donald Trump, Jr. welcomed Russian

Government involvement, dirt against Hillary Clinton would have -- might have affected that but it really hasn't.

I mean, this is part of the results of the fact that I think Conservative or Republicans are living in a kind of a parallel universe when it comes to

the media, getting their media from sources that simply dismiss all of this as kind of fake, and they're kind of somewhat walled off from it.

Besides, if he stuck with Donald -- let's be honest, if you stuck with Donald Trump through all of this, right? He did so many extraordinary,

outrageous, horrific things during the campaign, that if you stuck with him throughout all of that, it does beg the question, what on Earth could the

man do that would lead you to abandon him now.

ANDERSON: Right. OK. Well, themed week then to reclaim the message and a new survey up on the Republican National Committee's Website called

Listening to America. Several of the questions do seem rather leading. They refer to excessive government regulations and the potential spread of

Sharia Law, which does beg the question, to your mind, what is hoped to be accomplished with this survey?

BEINART: I think it's a way of -- another way of disseminating Donald Trump's message which is essentially, I will keep you safe from Muslims and

Mexicans, and that's really the message here.

I mean, the notion that the Republican Party is basically asking Americans whether they're concerned about the spread of Sharia Law, I mean, you only

really understand -- you can only I think really understand the kind of rank bigotry of it if you were to replace Sharia Law with Halakha, with

Jewish Law, which is someone I try to abide by, right?

If a presidential or candidate of a party said, are you concerned about the spread of Jewish Law in the United States, which many American Jews abide

by in family and personal relationships, we would have no trouble seeing how extraordinarily bigoted that was.

But because the Republican Party has managed to create a discourse around Muslims and Sharia Law, somehow it sounds like this is OK. It's simply kind

of anti - some kind of anti-terrorist measure. It's basically saying are you concerned about Muslims practicing their faith in the United States?

And sadly, many Trump supporters actually are.

[11:40:00] ANDERSON: For that, we'll leave it there. We, thank you very much, indeed for your analysis out of New York mid-morning for you viewers.

Now, as we talked about earlier, Qatar's crises shows how one set of facts can become two very different yet parallel realities. Well, here's another

case in point for you, Xiyu Wang, a 37-year-old American student originally from China just in Iran to study his University Princeton Claims, but Iran

sees a spy.

So, it's throwing him in jail for 10 years. In one world, Washington says Iran is making up reasons to snatch Americans. In the other, Iran sees a

vast network of infiltration. Remember, all this bitterness goes back a very long way. The people now running Iran are only in power after taking

it from this man, is brutally extravagant and an American-backed Shah.

Let's break this down for you is Ramin Mostaghim, it's means the man on the ground in the Iranian Capitol for "The Los Angeles Times" with us tonight

on "Connect The World." Ramin, what's Iran's basis here?

RAMIN MOSTAGHIM, TEHRAN CORRESPONDENT, LOS ANGELES TIMES: The Iranian authorities don't elaborate too much about it, but as far as, we know

because was -- Mr. Wang was a scientist fluent in Farsi, well-experienced. He has been in Kabul in the last four years and he knows too much from an

Iranian point of view.

So, potentially, he's a highly qualified spy, they supposed, because he knows too much about the country and has a good connection and tried to

have access to many documents or libraries and archives. So potentially this person, highly qualified, fluent in Farsi, means potentially can be a

spy. We have this sort of arrest many times in the past 38 years.

ANDERSON: Ramin, it's almost as if it was some bloody continuum (ph) in the same announcement as that arrest came, the arrest of the Iranian

President's brother for, "financial irregularities". What's going on there and what's been the reaction?

MOSTAGHIM: The second term of any president in the past 30 years has always been controversial. I mean, the brother of the president has been

accused of corruption for several years, and the second term was a good opportunity to the rivals, for the principals or hard liners to take

revenge because corruption is something that is not proven very easily in Iran.

So, we can say it's a part of the power struggle. We've seen the ruling establishment, and the second term of President Rouhani, as the president

elect for the second term, provided opportunity for the rival groups to take revenge and it is also we have many cases before, it was Rafsanjani

with his friends like mister - I don't remember, but we have two or three friends and cronies of Rafsanjani jailed in the second term, so it happens.

In the second term of President Rouhani, there are also some people - some authorities or cronies of the authorities put in jail.

ANDERSON: For that, we'll leave it there, analysis out of Tehran, Iran for you this evening.

You're watching "Connect The World" live from Abu Dhabi. Coming up, the man of the hour is making history with his very best shot. CNNs interview with

Roger Federer up next.


[11:45:00] ANDERSON: The world dominant, imperious, flawless, you can insert the adjective here when it comes to Roger Federer who became the

greatest Wimbledon's Men's Champion of All Time by beating Croatian, Marin Cilic in Sunday's Final.

And get this, the 35-year-old, never dropped a single set in the whole tournament. CNNs, Ravi Ubha sit down with the man himself a day after what

was his incredible victory. Have a listen to this.

RAVI UBHA, CNN TENNIS CONTRIBUTOR: Becky, Wimbledon's Center Court really has been Roger Federer's second home. It was on the hollowed grasp behind

me and one of the most iconic sporting stadiums in the world where Federer won 8th Wimbledon Title and 19th Grand Slam overall Sunday by beating Marin

Cilic in straight sets.

Whereas, he said, winning the Australian Opening in January was a surprise because he missed the last six months of last year with a knee injury. He

told me earlier today that heading into this Wimbledon, he was much more confident.


ROGER FEDERER, WIMBLEDON TENNIS CHAMPION: I figured there was a chance, you know, maybe this year because I was healthy. I had the most amazing

start with, you know, the beginning of the year winning Australia and winning in Miami.

So, I was hoping that things were going to play out nicely, that I was going to be in contention in the second week at Wimbledon. To win it all

together, it's like the dream scenario that you hope happens, but you're so cautious that, you know, yes, maybe you see yourself with the trophy but

you never really want to go there mentally.

UBHA: Yesterday was the first time the twin boys saw you win a grand slam title. They were courtside. When you saw them for the first time after the

match, what did they say to you?

FEDERER: It was right over here and they told me to come upstairs, there are lot of people, that I have to come and say hello to everybody. Well

because I -- unfortunately, I couldn't carry the trophy all the way there so I actually never got to see the trophy.

They took it away from me, and then bring it back, and then it goes again and it comes back, so if I would have the trophy, it would been all about

the trophy, but other than that, I think they were just happy to see me and I was just happy to see them again because I actually hadn't seen them all

day because they left the house so I could prepare in peace, I guess for the finals.

UBHA: Obviously, a very busy day, because after that you have to go to the Champion's Dinner. How did that go and what was on the menu?

FEDERER: It was fish. I wonder what fish it was and I don't remember now, maybe cod I think and then there was a nice chocolate cake afterwards which

was great.

UBHA: Swiss chocolate?

[11:50:00] FEDERER: I hope it was, tasted good, a lot of calories. It was good because I hadn't eaten all day. So, -- no, it was nice, spending time

with Garbine Muguruza who I was very happy for.

It's a special moment in someone's career and even though this is my 8th time at the champions' dinner, I still enjoy it myself. I was just a bit

disappointed I arrived as late as I did because I had to do almost two and a half hours of press after the match at one stage.

UBHA: And, we thank you for that, 19 overall as, of course, you know, U.S. Open coming up, how about getting number 20 this year in New York?

FEDERER: Yes. I mean that would be a joke if I won three slams this year out of nowhere really, after not playing two out of four last year and

before that not winning for four years any slams, that's -- I don't think that far ahead honestly.

I know if I stay in shape, there are chances for me to do well at the U.S. Open, but to win it at some stages I almost feel like I have to be

realistic that I am not 25 anymore. I'm not sure if I can win three slams in one year, but winning two is already pretty crazy and plenty good enough

for me.

But, I'll definitely try to get myself organized and prepared and ready, so I will have the best chance to do well at the U.S. Open.


UBHA: And, Becky, if he does win the U.S. Open, he would end an 8-year drought in the big apple, hasn't won there since 2008. We know he is the

form player that is for sure. But for now, he's going to saver yet another Wimbledon trophy. Back to you.

ANDERSON: Absolutely remarkable, isn't it?

Now, sex, slaughter, sedition and millions of people absolutely loving it, what is it? Well, here's a hint. It's not a game, except it is. We'll

explain up next.


[11:55:00] ANDERSON: Well, good morning. This is "Connect The Connect". I'm Becky Anderson. It's just about 8 minutes to wait here in the UAE.

In the middle of the summer, winter has finally arrived, at least for "Game Of Thrones" fans, at least. Season 7 of the hit HBO series premiered Sunday

night. HBO, a property of Time Warner, Parent Company of course of CNN, although the cast is seemingly shrinking, the episodes are only getting


For more on that and the cameo which we might be thinking out loud about, we turn to CNN's, Frank Pallotta with more. Frank, did the long-awaited

debut, do you think live up to expectations to your mind?

FRANK PALLOTTA, CNN MONEY MEDIA REPORTER: I've been thinking about it and I really think that it did. It had a great opening sequence. I won't spoil

anything. It was one of the best they've ever did.

It set up a lot of different chess pieces, a lot of exposition that didn't feel like exposition, and it had a really surprising cameo from none other

than pop star, Ed Sheeran who played one of the banner men of the king's landing guard.

He was there with Arya Stark. A lot of people were kind of against it because I get that as well because it kind of takes you out of the magic.

You have this pop star who's obviously Ed Sheeran singing and all this other stuff, but all in all, it was a really strong opening episode.

ANDERSON: For those who aren't fans, just give us a sense of how big, how huge this series is and why it is drawing to a close. This has, of course,

of all been a hugely successful commercial operation, isn't it?

PALLOTTA: It really is. There's nothing that you can compare it to on television, other than live sports. It's very much like watching a football

game or a basketball game. You have fans who wear house colors, they know team mottos. They go to sports bar.

I watched at a sports bar last night where people were cheering and drinking and it's an event. It's like nothing on television. They're

putting it to a close because the story is coming to an end. They only have about -- after last night's episode, they only have about 12 episodes left

and they have a lot of loose ends they have to tie up.

But, people love the show because at the end of the day it's a communal event during a time when a lot of television and popular culture is

fragmented and delayed and very singular. You watch things on your phone. You watch things at home. This is something that everyone kind of watches,

everyone talks about, and it's all year-round, even when it's not on air.

ANDERSON: And, they say ain't over until it's over, right? So, is this definitely the end?

PALLOTTA: It is for this story line. HBO has talked about and even kind of confirmed spinoffs from the show itself where it might go to other

characters, different times. But as far as it's concerned with Jon Snow, Daenerys Targaryen, the characters we have grown to love over these last

seven seasons, this looks to be the beginning, middle, and end.

[12:00:00] ANDERSON: With that, we'll leave it there.

This is the end of our show tonight. That was "Connect The World." Thank you for watching. I'm Becky Anderson. It's a very good evening. Do not go

away. "Quest Express" after this next break.