Return to Transcripts main page
CONNECT THE WORLD
British Prime Minister Trying to Get Brexit Deal Approved; British Houses of Parliament Debate Brexit Plan; Trump Paints a Dark Picture of Undocumented Immigrants; Trump Tries to Rally Congressional Support for Border Wall; Confusion Reigns over Trump's Middle East Policy; Pompeo Has to Cairo Ahead of Major Speech; Saudi Woman Now under U.N. Protection; Woman in Vegetative State Gives Birth; Rapper Gets Political with Song Aimed at Foreign Policy. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired January 9, 2019 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[10:00:00] BECKY ANDERSON, CNN HOST: Hello and welcome. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD, I'm Becky Anderson with you live from Abu Dhabi where it
is 7:00 in the evening.
If at first you don't succeed, try, try, try and try and try again. With just -- look, Brexit coming up fast. Right now at this hour, Britain's
Prime Minister taking that advice to heart, trying yet again at threading her Brexit deal past lawmakers who are as we speak jammed in there, having
more jaw, jaw over what's really become Brexit war, war ahead of a vote next week.
The deal though likely to be a bit of a nonstarter again, quite frankly. CNN's top reporters are all over the map connecting all things Brexit for
you tonight. Bianca Nobilo eats, sleeps and breathes this stuff right on Parliament's doorstep. And Phil Black touring the country out and about in
Cornwall. Bianca, let me start with you. Any light in this Brexit black hole?
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, there has been a development today which is significant. In fact, just under an hour ago, Becky, Parliament
voted on an amendment from a member of the Prime Minister's own party, Dominic Green, which means that in the event that Theresa May's deal
doesn't pass next week, instead of having 21 days to come back to the Parliament with a plan B and then Parliament having seven days to vote on
it, it will only have three days, which is putting a lot of pressure on the time scale.
Now the Prime Minister is sticking to her guns and maintaining that her deal is the best deal going forward. She reiterated that in the Prime
Minister's questions today, in a testy exchange with the opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn. Let's take a listen to what she had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: He opposes any deal that the government has negotiated with the European Union. He opposes the deal.
He opposes the deal that the EU say is the only deal, and that leaves him with no deal. The only way to avoid no deal is to vote for the deal.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
NOBILO: Now, the point that the Prime Minister is making there is obviously it is the role of the opposition leader to hold the government of
the day to account and to question the Prime Minister. But they also do represent an alternative government and supposedly an alternative strategy
with the issues facing the country. Well, Jeremy Corbyn has not presented a coherent and supported vision from the Labour side as to what Brexit
would mean, if the government was brought down and if there was a general election and he stewardship of Britain. So we remain in the same place we
were really before Christmas with Theresa May's deal being very unpopular. And the only thing we do know is that there's a majority in Parliament
against no deal.
ANDERSON: Right. Stay with us. Classic line from a presenter. Because I want to get to Phil. There are always plenty of reasons to smile down at
the British seaside even when it rains. Where you are, though, it is raining money. Cornwall raking in almost $2 billion in European cash in 20
years, yet voting to get out, to leave the European Union. How does that add up, Phil?
PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, to many people, it doesn't, Becky. You know, the people from this beautiful Southwest tip of the U.K. are
known for the independently minded. We know the fishing industry here -- which is pretty big -- has long disliked the EU's common fishery policy.
But still Cornwall surprised much of the country in the Brexit referendum by really backing the leave vote by 56 percent. Above the national figure.
And that's because, as you are painting out there, this county has benefitted enormously from EU development money. It is a net beneficiary.
It has got back a lot more that it's put in. Around 60 million pounds every year had gone into building up infrastructure, roads, the broadband
connection, helping to startup businesses, really improve people's lives. And yet despite all of that, they backed Brexit in a big way.
Walking around beautiful Newquay this morning, we've met people who are still true Brexiteers who want it regardless and they want it now. We've
met people who still don't really know the degree to which EU has boosted the local economy. And remember, this part of the world got that money
because under the EU's classification system, it was considered really undeveloped. One of the lowest developed corners of the European Union.
So that's why it got all that money. It has really made a difference here.
[10:05:00] And yet we have met another demographic of people, a swelling number of people who -- and they're really rare I think, rare in a national
sense. I've not met many people like this anywhere. These are people who voted to leave, they're on the winning side of the argument, and now
several years on, having thought about it, they want another go at the question. There is something of a swelling movement here in Cornwall for a
second referendum. The local council has formally backed the idea. There are some local grass roots campaigns. And do you meet people here on the
street saying we voted to leave. But we want to rethink this. We think there is so much substance. We really didn't get to have a conversation
about the detail, the first time around, we would like to do it again. Now whether or not they have any chance of doing that is certainly debatable.
And at this stage, looks pretty unlikely. But it represents a fascinating evolution in the way some of these people have come to approach Brexit, in
what has and long been a very pro-Brexit part of the United Kingdom -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Yes, that's absolutely fascinating. Phil, thank you for that. Bianca, you might call Brexit uncivil war. A new TV show is doing exactly
that. Have a look at this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE, DRAMA SHOW "UNCIVIL WAR": Let's take back control. Let's take back control.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now, the fight for Britain begins.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're feeding a toxic culture.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Of fear and pain.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Don't close the box once it has been open. Because your edge can be found.
There is a new politics in town. One that you can't control.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: A lot of attention then on the British machinations in this process. Bianca, what about what many see as poor play from the European
side, from those negotiating on behalf of the EU at this point?
NOBILO: Well, throughout this entire process, the contrast has been stark between the EU, who have been singing off the same hymn sheet they gave
Michel Barnier a mandate to negotiate Brexit. And more or less every single leader when we try and get their comment, as they're walking into
the European Council and Commission meetings, repeats the same thing. You know, they want a cordial relationship with Britain. They want to be as
constructive as possible, but this was Britain's decision. It's their prerogative. They decided to leave the European Union, and the EU will
help as much as they can, but only to a point.
Bearing in mind that the very notion of Brexit does strike at the heart of the European project, and European identity. So it's not in their interest
to make Brexit look like a success, if you wanted to put it in those terms as far as they're concerned. But still, the divisions that we see in
Parliament today and what we hear on the streets and as Phil was just attesting to, the fact that this debate is raging and remains in the United
Kingdom and the EU, well very much, they have their own position. It does show us that the mess that we continue to be in, and it very much remains
with the U.K. to be able to take this forward, or not. Because the U.K. is leaving the European Union on the 29th of March subject to any other deal
ANDERSON: And the damage that is being done to relationships between Britain and its European counterparts on an individual basis, it is really
important at this point. It's just important that the entire mess is sorted out. To both of you, thank you.
To a huge bombshell in the Russia investigation that was revealed by mistake. It's the clearest public indication yet of coordinated activity
or coordination between Donald Trump's Presidential campaign and Russia. Attorneys for Mr. Trump's former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort,
acknowledged in court filings that he shared campaign polling data with an alleged Kremlin operative.
Now, that information was meant to be concealed but wasn't properly blacked out. The White House has repeatedly said that Manafort's legal troubles
have nothing to do with Mr. Trump's campaign.
Well, the President himself hasn't said anything about that revelation. His big focus of course is what he calls a crisis at the U.S. southern
border. Mr. Trump will head to Capitol Hill soon to rally support for a border wall after his major oval office speech last night. CNN's Joe Johns
has more for you.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: This is a humanitarian crisis. A crisis of the heart. And a crisis of the soul.
JOE JOHNS, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): President Trump appealing to the nation to supp[10:10:00] ort his long-promised
border wall, painting a dark picture of undocumented immigrants and accusing Democrats of leaving the country vulnerable.
TRUMP: How much more American blood must we shed before Congress does its job?
[10:10:00] JOHNS: Democratic leadership firing back, accusing the President of fear mongering and urging him to end the shutdown that has
left 800,000 Americans unsure of when they'll receive their next paycheck.
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D), NEW YORK: This President just used the backdrop of the oval office to manufacture a crisis, stoke fear and divert attention
from the turmoil in his administration.
JOHNS: Both sides appearing no closer to compromise with President Trump falsely claiming Democrats wanted a steel wall.
TRUMP: At the request of Democrats, it will be a steel barrier, rather than a concrete wall.
JOHNS: And insisting that Democrats do not support border security even though the house voted in favor of $1.3 billion for border security and
technology, last week. The President also making this false claim about funding for the wall.
TRUMP: The wall will also be paid for indirectly by the great new trade deal we have made with Mexico.
JOHNS: But the new deal has not been ratified and there's no guarantee it would generate revenue or that Congress would earmark it for the wall.
President Trump backing up his dire warnings with grisly stories of crimes blamed on undocumented immigrants.
TRUMP: Over the years, thousands of Americans have been brutally killed by those who illegally entered our country.
JOHNS: But border patrol statistics show that illegal southern border arrests are near the lowest point in almost 20 years. And multiple studies
have found that as immigration has gone up, crime has gone down. One Texas study found that undocumented immigrants are less likely to commit crimes
than U.S. citizens.
The President also pointing to the opioid epidemic as part of his pitch.
TRUMP: Every week, 300 of our citizens are killed by heroin alone. 90 percent of which floods across from our southern border.
JOHNS: While these statistics are true, the majority of heroin that comes across the border is smuggled through legal points of entry. Meaning that
a border wall would likely do little to help. Democrats quick to pounce on the administration's credibility issues.
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: Sadly, much of what we heard from President Trump throughout this senseless shutdown has been full of
misinformation and even malice. The President has chosen fear.
JOHNS: The President's speech comes amid signs that patience for the shutdown among GOP senators is wearing thin, with multiple Republican
lawmakers now signaling that they favor reopening the government as border negotiates continue.
SEN. LISA MURKOWSKI (R), ALASKA: These are people who work hard, and they deserve to know that they're going to be paid.
ANDERSON: Well, they deserve to be paid, a frequently-heard sentiment, Joe Johns joining us now from Washington, good to have you with us. To be
frank, nothing much new from the either U.S. President or the Democratic leaders. Which leaves the U.S. and its unpaid furloughed workers nowhere.
What happens next?
JOHNS: Anybody's guess. I can tell you that today, the President is going to head up to Capitol Hill, to powwow just a bit with Republicans in their
policy luncheon. This is something that this luncheon at least occurs every week. Seldom does the President ever go. He'll be joined by the
Homeland Security Secretary, and some others all of whom are expected to give Senate Republicans an update on the efforts to reopen the government
as well as get what the President wants in terms of border security.
We also know the bipartisan leadership of the Congress, both Democrats and Republicans, are expected to come here, this afternoon, to sit down with
the President, and have yet another meeting. The question of course, is how is this all going to end? Which you pretty much asked there, Becky.
One possibility is the Press Secretary, Sarah Sanders, out here on the driveway, just a little while ago, said the possibility of the President
declaring a national emergency over this issue is still on the table. And that of course leads to the question of whether there will be a court
challenge, perhaps from Congressional Democrats. Some believe the President might not be successful, because there's so much debate as to
whether there is an emergency. Nonetheless, politically, it might be able to help the President in that he can show his Republican supporters how
much he cared about the issue, how hard he tried, and go from there -- Becky.
ANDERSON: Yes, all right, well, Joe Johns in the house for you. Fourteen minutes past 10:00 in Washington. A long and busy day there once again
there. Thank you, sir.
Still to come, this hour, here on CONNECT THE WORLD, with me, Becky Anderson, out of the UAE. In a process that seemed many accused to be the
pride or prejudice, the British Prime Minister is calling for sense and sensibility. As she tries to sell her Brexit plan to lawmakers.
[10:15:02] But will Theresa May's power of persuasion be enough? Stay with us as the plot thickens in Westminster.
ANDERSON: Right now, an institution with hundreds of years of authority is debating a future of singular uncertainty. I'm talking about Britain's
Houses of Parliament, both tears of which are currently locked in fierce debate. They know Brexit is coming but they need to work out how. Because
if it's not by the Prime Minister's deal, then as far as she's concerned there will be no deal at all. A prospect steering lawmakers right in the
face. So, once again we -- the rest of us are left asking, the Prime Minister's deal or as she calls it, my deal, or no deal. Simple words with
huge ramifications. Let's look at both sides of this important discussion.
Peter Bone is a Conservative pro-Brexit MP, and Matthew Doyle, a former political director for Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair. I've got a slew
of questions for you chaps, so keep the answer to this first one very tight, if you will. Peter, let me start with you. Top line. Deal or no
PETER BONE, BRITISH CONSERVATIVE MP: Well, I think she's going to lose the vote next week. And then I think we will probably move towards what you
will call a no deal. I would call a clean global Brexit. Trading on World Trade Organization's rules rather like we do with the USA.
ANDERSON: Matthew, your position I know is that the Prime Minister's deal is no good because there is ultimately no deal that is as good as remaining
a member of the EU. But that isn't up for debate or even an option at this point, sir.
MATTHEW DOYLE, FORMER POLITICAL DIRECTOR FOR BRITISH PRIME MINISTER TONY BLAIR: Well, I don't agree. I think what Peter and I agree on is this is
a bad deal and that's essentially what Parliament agrees on. Which is why it is going to get voted down next week. Where obviously Peter and I
disagree is then what happens next. In the reason why we are not going to see a no deal Brexit, I would argue, is because the votes both last night
and today, when we've seen two defeats for the government in a 24-hour period, demonstrate that there just isn't the support within the House of
Commons for a no deal Brexit.
[10:20:00] And so therefore, there is going to have to be another way found to break that deadlock. Now my argument is that the only way that will
come about is essentially putting the decision back to the public.
ANDERSON: I want to remind people exactly what no deal means, and I'll remind you both, I'm sure you don't need reminding, but I will remind you
both that we've got viewers from around the world, because they will be hearing that term a lot this week. It means that the U.K. would leave the
EU with no agreement on their future relationship at all. And it means that Britain would fall back on the rules of the World Trade Organization,
resulting, many say, in more tariffs and barriers to trade. Now, we've had warning after warning about the economic impact of this, so why, Peter, is
there so much opposition to the Prime Minister's plan, when nobody is coming up with a better one?
BONE: Well, the truth of the matter, the British people decided to leave the European Union when they voted on the referendum in 2016. They didn't
vote for a deal or a no deal. They voted to leave. And now, the biggest trading partner, the biggest single country we trade with is the USA. And
we have no trade agreement with them. So there's no problem in trading terms. One of the great advantages of the British people of coming out on
the 29th of March about this so-called deal, is you wouldn't pay the European Union 39 billion pounds. 39 billion pounds to spend on public
services in the United Kingdom, would improve our country immensely.
ANDERSON: Leave means leave. Is what many of these posters that you see images of are on our screens at present. So Matthew, the argument that a
no deal is not what the 52 percent of the British public signed up for is nonsense, quite frankly. Those who voted out voted to get out of Europe,
take back their borders, stop what they perceived as out of control immigration, give the U.K. the opportunity to cut global trade deals with
whoever they want. You might not like it, you might say it wasn't clear, what voting to leave really meant in terms of economic impact back in 2016,
but the fact is, it was an in, out vote, and Britain voted to leave.
DOYLE: Absolutely, it did vote to leave. But it also voted on the basis of there being absolutely no agreement as to what leaving the European
Union really meant. And what we're now seeing is that trying to leave in a way that matches all of the promises that were made during the referendum
campaign is simply impossible. Peter can assert as much as he likes that leaving on World Trade Organization terms is going to be fine for this
country. The fact of the matter is, is that if you speak to any expert, they will say that that is completely fanciful.
And so therefore, my argument is a very simple one. Absolutely the public voted to leave in June 2016, but what is the harm in going back to the
public and saying, OK, you voted on the principle, now vote on the specific. Here are the terms of what leaving the European Union would look
like. Can we just check that this is something you want to go ahead with? I really don't see what is so wrong with doing that.
ANDERSON: And then people say, then you'll go back and you'll check again and check again until you get the right result. Hang on a moment. Look,
I'm listening to what you're saying, you're making good point, not everybody is convinced though, that no deal is such a big deal. It is not
just Peter here. This is what hotel tycoon, for example, Sir Rocco Forte wrote in the "Sun" paper.
What we are not being told by the harbingers of doom is that inward investment into the U.K. in the first half of 2018 was the second highest
in the world after China, but ahead of the U.S. and Germany. We are not told that 94 percent of businesses in this country are not trading with
Guys, that coming from one of the titans of British industry. You tell me, is the risk, Matthew, of a no deal, been overblown somewhat?
DOYLE: I don't think it has been overblown, in terms of the call proposition that there is. You can look at any number of sectors that
there are within the U.K. economy. Let's just take the car example as one. There are all sorts of agreements that are currently in place that mean
that kind of just in time process that is there needs the current arrangements that we have. Now, I just don't believe that any British
Prime Minister will be reckless enough to allow a no deal Brexit to happen with all of the consequences that that would entail. So therefore, I would
be willing to make a prediction that there will not be what Peter wants to see, which is a genuine no deal Brexit on the 29th of March.
ANDERSON: All right. Well, what I think we can safely say is this is a country that is polarized and appears to be getting even more so. And it
is getting uglier. I just want to bring up some images of outside of Parliament, yesterday, I believe.
[10:25:00] One MP on her way in, really getting harried with some pretty disgusting language. Peter, how concerned are you of the damage to the
sort of inherent sort of fabric of British society and I have to say, from where I am talking to you tonight, you know, here in the UAE, where the
reputation around this part of the world, of Britain, has been so strong for so long, it's getting really, really damaged. Your thoughts?
BONE: Well, the threats to members of Parliament have been going on for months. I've been threatened and assaulted and my family threatened with
death threats, social image media, my son being executed, all sorts of things that are absolutely outrageous. Now thankfully, it is a small
extreme group of people doing that. But they're right on the outside of Parliament. And at the moment, there is little protection for MP's. I'm
here in the studio with you, but quite often I'm on the green opposite the House of Commons and we're liable to physical and verbal abuse and that's
not acceptable. And something has to be done about that.
ANDERSON: What, Matthew? You must be equally as horrified by what you are seeing, aren't you?
DOYLE: I am. And I certainly don't mean to diminish it, because I think what we saw this week was something slightly different. In previous weeks,
as Peter and I have gone backwards and forwards to do interviews, there have been the supporters for remain and the supporters for leave, and they
have been getting on with each other by and large whilst protesting. There was a new element, a far-right element that came in to the protests this
Monday, and I think that has got to be a serious cause for concern, in terms of the way in which you saw, as you mentioned, the Conservative MP,
Anna Soubry and other people, sort of being hassled by them on Monday. And there has got to be zero tolerance for that sort of behavior, whether it
comes from the far right or the far left.
ANDERSON: You are absolutely right. And with that, we leave it there. But both of you, thank you. Peter Bone, and Matthew Doyle, both in London.
It's been a pleasure having you on. And thank you for laying out what you believe Britain is and where it may be going, and what it faces going
forward. Thank you.
Well, as Theresa May battles on, the U.S. Secretary of State facing a battle of his own. Mike Pompeo continues his weeklong visit to the Middle
East. Part reassurance or part anti-Iran campaign? We discuss the state of play up next.
[10:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANDERSON: Half past 7:00 in Abu Dhabi. Welcome back. You're watching CNN. This is CONNECT THE WORLD, with me Becky Anderson. If you're just
joining us, you are more than welcome.
America's top diplomat is on his way to Cairo at this hour. The next stop on what is his week-long tour of this region in the Middle East. It comes
after a surprise visit to Baghdad. Earlier today, Mike Pompeo met with the Iraqi President there. They are said to have discussed U.S. support for
Iraqi forces in the fight against ISIS.
Now, the tour is being interpreted as a bit of a damage control mission following Trump's announcement to pull the U.S. troops from Syria. But
also to drum up regional pressure against Iran. Well we've been discussing the state of play of American foreign policy in the Middle East all week
here on CONNECT THE WORLD.
My next guest knows this region better than most. Roula Khalaf is deputy editor of the "Financial Times". Writes extensively on the Middle East.
She joins me now, from London. Thank you for joining us. Let's start with Pompeo and this recent leg of his tour. It was an unannounced one. Is
this visit enough to ensure, reassure Iraqi leaders that the U.S. is actually committed to the fight against ISIS?
ROULA KHALAF, DEPUTY EDITOR OF THE FINANCIAL TIMES: I don't think there is a question about U.S. commitment to the fight against ISIS. But I think
there's an issue where the way that the U.S. perceives this fight, the state at which this fight is now. In Syria, for example, President Trump
declared that the fight against ISIS is over. But it wasn't over. So I think it is the trajectory of U.S. policy in general that worries leaders
in the region, rather than specifically only the commitment towards the fight against ISIS.
ANDERSON: Let's talk about that, Roula, because in a speech in Cairo tomorrow, Mike Pompeo, we understand, is set to lay out the Trump
administration's vision for America's role in the Middle East. And this, as you rightly point out, comes at a time when there was an enormous amount
of confusion over what that position is. What do you think we can expect from this speech?
KHALAF: I'm not sure that whatever Mr. Pompeo says tomorrow is going to matter all that much. I think what leaders in the region, or the people in
the region now look at mostly, is what the President says. Because as you mentioned, at the beginning of the show, there is always an attempt at
damage control by U.S. officials. Take Syria, for example. The President decided to leave Syria. Now, the timing, one could discuss, exactly how
he's going to be about it, that maybe can be discussed, but he has decided to disengage from Syria. Disengagement and an attempt at creating
relationships that are a lot more transactional than they are strategic is what U.S. policy is about today. And that's not something that can change.
Whatever Pompeo says tomorrow.
ANDERSON: While you were just making some incredibly important points, we were just looking at images of Mike Pompeo just in to CNN [10:35:00] in
Erbil, just moments ago. And I want to read a line from an editorial in a pro-government paper in Turkey published following U.S. National Security
Adviser's demands for Ankara not to strike Kurdish forces in Syria.
Quote, it is time for Washington to accept that it isn't negotiating with Turkey from a position of power. End quote.
Roula, do you believe there has been a significant shift in the balance of power here in the Middle East?
[10:35:03] KHALAF: Well, there have been many shift of the balance of power in the Middle East. But I think what there has been, there's a lack
of credibility today. The U.S. has a lack of credibility. And that is a very big problem. It's the problem for the U.S., and what it will try to
do in the region, for instance, towards Iran policy. And it creates a lot of confusion for leaders in the region, when they are trying to figure out
what their position is.
Take Syria, for example. If there is one thing that one can say about U.S. policy, if there is one thing that is consistent about U.S. policy, it is
that the Trump administration wants to put as much pressure as possible on Iran. But what happens if the U.S. disengages from Syria? If the troops
leave Syria? Iran wins. Bashar al-Assad wins. That is in contradiction to the only consistent line that we have seen from the Trump
administration. And that is pressure on Iran.
ANDERSON: Yes, no, you're absolutely right. And I'm glad you pointed that out. I mean there is an intrinsic connection between pulling out of Syria
and more influence from Iran, particularly in that part of Syria that we have been talking about, that the American troops have been fighting ISIS
with the YPG.
To that point, I just want to ask you, how you believe, in 2019, what a very damaged reputation of the Saudi government will emerge into? I put
that in a really terrible way. Is a damaged Saudi government going to rehabilitate itself in the eyes of this region and the world in 2019? And
how important is that relationship? And a continuing relationship with Washington, given the anti-Iran, Iran in the cross-hairs position, from
these hawkish aides to President Trump?
KHALAF: I think that the initial crisis, post-Khashoggi crisis, has been overcome by Saudi Arabia. But that is in government to government
relations. I think reputationally, the damage will continue, and I think we will see is in different forms, in various people, a lot of people not
willing to engage with Saudi Arabia. But I think on a government level, whether it is within the region, or outside, I think that the Crown Prince
has overcome that crisis. It is definitely one of the places that we will be watching in 2019. And more specifically, I think the war in Yemen and
the course of the war in Yemen is something that I think the American government and other governments will be putting pressure for a conclusion
of that war.
ANDERSON: And even though we are not seeing, you know, the advances so far as finding a political solution or concern that we might have hoped for
post-Sweden, we are certainly seeing some movement on the ground.
Roula, finally, I want to ask you about Brexit. You're from Lebanon and you're working in London. You recently wrote that you wondered whether the
U.K. had been, quote, infected by Middle Eastern virus, and you write -- and I quote -- Brexit has imported the poison of divided loyalties,
exposing the long festering secret that the interest of one-party trumps that of the nation.
You've witnessed firsthand the destructiveness of identity politics in the Middle East. Do you really believe that that is the direction that the
U.K. blighty is going at this point?
KHALAF: I think that there are a lot of issues that the Middle East has dealt with for a long time, not the least identity politics. And we have
seen throughout Europe and indeed even the U.S. the rise of identity politics, and of populism. And I think I have seen personally the damage
that that inflicts, and that is the point that I was trying to make, that I have seen this before. And I think, obviously, one cannot really compare
the U.K. to Lebanon. However, I think there are elements of the evolution of politics that is extremely worrying right now, in the U.K.
ANDERSON: With, that we are going to leave it there. It is always a pleasure having you on, Roula.
[10:40:00] Thank you so much. Roula Khalaf is the deputy editor of the "Financial Times".
Well the fate of a Saudi teenager seeking asylum could be determined within two days. Rahaf al-Qunun is now under U.N. protection in Thailand with
Australia considering whether to offer her refugee status. Well the young woman says she is fleeing her abusive family and says she fears for her
life after renouncing her religion which is punishable by death under Saudi Sharia law. Well after appealing for help on Twitter after the passport
was seized and barricaded herself in an airport hotel room to avoid being deported. Well the Saudi Charge D'affaires in Bangkok had this to say as
Rahaf's social media posts went viral.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ABDEL-LLAH AL-SHUAIBI, SAUDI CHARGE D'AFFAIRES IN BANGKOK (through translator): I wish they would have confiscated her phone instead of her
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, for now, Rahaf remains safe and she says on Twitter, she is happy.
Another case that has caused international outcry when it comes to women in Saudi Arabia. The fate of driving rights activists and one of my
colleagues, Tamara Qiblawi looks at the fate of one woman in particular. That is on CNN.com.
You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson, live from Abu Dhabi. Coming up, a horrific story. A woman in a coma for years gives
birth. Now the search is on for the person who impregnated her, and whether other vulnerable women have also been assaulted. A live report on
that, after this.
ANDERSON: You're watching CNN and I want to get to you what is a disturbing story of tragedy made even worse. Police in the U.S. state of
Arizona are trying to figure out how a woman who has been in a vegetative state for years became pregnant. Now the families of other people at the
medical facility that she was at are asking if their loved ones are also in danger of something similar happening to them. Sara Sidner has been
following what is an awful story. She is in Phoenix, Arizona for you -- Sara.
SARA SIDNER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Becky, yes, this is an absolutely horrifying situation. And that's coming from Hacienda
HealthCare, where this happened. What we do not know yet are so many details, and that is what has other families who have patients inside this
facility so worried.
SIDNER (voice-over): A stunning revelation at a health care facility in Phoenix. The San Carlos Apache Tribe said one of its members, a 29-year-
old woman, living in a vegetative state for more than a decade was impregnated and had a baby while in the care of Hacienda HealthCare. Legal
analysts and attorney Brian Claypool says, there is only one explanation for what happened.
[10:45:02] BRIAN CLAYPOOL, ATTORNEY: If the woman in Phoenix was in a vegetative state, and she gave birth to a child, then she was raped,
because she could not have consented to a sexual relation.
SIDNER: Karina Cesena, whose 22-year-old daughter who is also a patient living at the facility says she and another mother panicked when they heard
about the case.
KARINA CESENA, MOTHER OF PATIENT: We were just so scared because who knows what would happen, if it was a staff member, if it was a family member, if
it was a stranger, we have no idea.
SIDNER: Cesena's daughter is unable to walk and barely able to talk after suffering brain damage, leaving her extremely vulnerable.
(on camera): What did you decide to do personally to make sure your daughter who's inside is safe?
CESENA: I stay here 24/7 now, to make sure that she's in a safe environment as well and just move forward because trust has been severely
SIDNER (voice-over): As for the company's CEO Bill Timmons he resigned earlier this week and Hacienda's HealthCare's board sent out a statement
calling what happened an absolutely horrifying situation, and an unprecedented case. Without giving specifics of the case.
CNN witnessed several police cruisers stationed at the facility during the day. And Phoenix police say they are investigating. But have offered no
additional details about the case.
Then, on Tuesday, Hacienda HealthCare sent this statement, saying police served a search warrant to obtain DNA from male staffers. The company said
it welcomed the development in the investigation. But Cesena says the health care company didn't even inform the families of other patients at
the facility about the incident until about five days after the birth, and only after local news reports exposed the situation.
CESENA: I think that there's an underlying blanket somewhere, that they're trying to hide under, you know, instead of being transparent. They're not
being very transparent at all.
SIDNER: Now the family's lawyer has said the family is traumatized. They are in shock. And they are calling this abuse and neglect of their
daughter. But they have said this. That a baby boy was brought into this world, and that child will be loved and cared for in this loving family --
ANDERSON: Remarkable. Sara, thank you.
You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. Still ahead, on this show --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
I-NZ, RAPPER: Look how I'm throwin' up Prime Minister on the up This is Iraq
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: A rapper gets political by taking on some of Iraq's darkest chapters. He hit American somewhat inspired his latest project. Up next.
[10:50:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
ANDERSON: A Lebanese film about a Syrian refugee child has landed an BAFTA award nomination for best foreign language film.
[10:50:03] Capernaum was shot with nonprofessional actors who mostly ad- libbed all of their scenes. Historical drama, the favorite, it scored 12 nominations just days after it was surprisingly shut out at the Golden
Globes. Now the fact is, of course, as seen as a good indicator of films that will do well at the Oscars. And two CNN-backed film, "RBG", and
"Three Identical Strangers", were nominated for best documentary.
Well, you're watching CNN. This is CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Becky Anderson. Welcome back.
This week, we have been looking at the impact of U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East as we kick off what is this new year of 2019, and where that
policy could be headed this year. One country has of course been marked more than most, the country lived through an American invasion, and ensuing
sectarian war that left more than a million dead. Iraq's people are still dealing with the aftermath. But one young rapper found his own way to
process the past and to look to the future. Have a look at this.
CHILDISH GAMBINO, RAPPER, THIS IS AMERICA: This is America Don't catch you slippin' up Don't catch you slippin' up
ANDERSON (voice-over): It is one of the most talked about music videos of 2018. Helping Childish Gambino score more than 400 million YouTube view,
going viral, not just in the U.S. but around the world exploring the challenges of being black in America. Which caught the attention of Dubai-
based rapper, I-NZ.
I-NZ: All of the inspiration that came from my video was solely from that. Just so powerful.
ANDERSON: The New Zealand raised musician who was born in Scotland to Iraqi parents decided to make his own version of the song.
I-NZ: Look how I'm throwin' up Prime Minister on the up This is Iraq
ANDERSON: Delving into some of Iraq's darkest chapters since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003. A country he's never visited.
ANDERSON (on camera): What is the message that you want this song to convey?
I-NZ: I think for the most part, awareness. It's a bit of a forgotten war. The reasons behind it were exaggerated, if not fabricated. The
United Nations called it an illegal war.
GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: American and coalition forces are in the early stages of military operations to disarm Iraq, to free its
people, and to defend the world from grave danger.
I-NZ: There is a lot of reasons for the countries that were involved to try to forget about it. And I don't think we should. A lot of lives were
lost. There hasn't been justice for those families who have lost loved ones.
ANDERSON (voice-over): The music video, which was released in early July, opens with an Iraqi man playing the Oud.
I-NZ: We just want the freedom Keep asking in vein.
ANDERSON: Things quickly turned very dark.
I-NZ: Then it's lights out Keep sniffin' the tar Wi lif el dolma ya hmar
The old man represents the old and beautiful Iraq that everyone speaks of so fondly. Or our parent do at least. And you see the country sort of
brought to its knees by an occupying force and then subsequent events that happened afterwards. I'm not always doing political music, but when I do,
it is about Iraq. But you find out quickly that people generally don't want to hear about politics and music. Just the fact that the original
song gained that kind of traction and that kind of momentum, being a political song is, testament to the song itself. And this is the platform
that we could use to sort of get a message about Iraq across to a wider audience, and there's actually over 20 versions now. If you go through
YouTube, you'll find so many of them.
FALZ, NIGERIAN RAPPER: This is Nigeria.
I-NZ: And I think it is good that, you know, everyone is shedding a light on the social and political issues that are represented in their countries.
ANDERSON (on camera): How challenging was it to make this video? You are, for example, not prepared to even tell the viewer where it is that you made
this video. Why?
I-NZ: Due to political sensitivities in the region, everything can be misinterpreted these days. Just saying where you had filmed the video can
land you in hot water, sometimes. And we just wanted to avoid all of these kind of problems.
I-NZ: This is Iraq Look at us blowin' up Nobody showin' up
ANDERSON: There have been comments, let's say, you know, you have no right to talk about Iraq, you've spent so little time, if any time, in the
country. To which you say what?
I-NZ: To say that I don't have any right to speak about Iraq, I think is a bit ignorant. I represent quite a large portion of Iraqis who are in my
situation, who live abroad, and haven't been able to visit or have visited very little, due to what's going on.
ANDERSON: Do you want to live in Iraq at some point?
I-NZ: I've always maintained that I would like to one day go back and see the places that my parents grew up in. You know, the stories that they
tell us all. I just don't think now is the right time. It is not exactly stable. You know, the country seems to be going backwards, as opposed to
[10:55:02] I-NZ: Delivered a mission accomplished (bush)
ANDERSON: Your parting shots this evening. We're taking you to an unlikely winter wonderland, thanks to what is a rare blanket of snow in
Greece. Beaches in and around Athens, well they took on the dream-like quality actually. What's a dream to some, a nightmare for others. There
were at least three reported deaths due to the freezing conditions. Driving a mess and the trains disrupted.
Elsewhere in Europe, a snowy mountain side in the French alps became the scene of a daring rescue. Look at how close this helicopter had to get to
the mountain as it swooped in to save an injured skier. The aircraft's nose actually wedged into the snow as I understand it. That is how a
mountain rescue is carried out. The crew were able to land and hoisted the man up to safety and he is said to be OK. Cheers to those guys tonight.
Good for them.
I'm Becky Anderson. That was CONNECT THE WORLD, with the team working with me here in Abu Dhabi and for those working with us around the world, it's a
very good evening. Thank you for watching. Same time tomorrow.