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Connect the World
Video of Director of the Tokyo Olympics Released Joking About the Holocaust Just Hours Before the Opening Ceremony; U.K. Newspapers Referring to What is Being Called a Ping-Demic; Thousands of Firefighters and Military Personnel are Responding to Widespread Flooding Across Central China. Aired 11a-12p ET
Aired July 22, 2021 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN London, this is Connect the World with Becky Anderson.
BECKY ANDERSON, CNNI ANCHOR: Wherever you are watching in the world you are more than welcomed. This is the second hour of Connect the World, I am
Just hours to go until the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics and the director of that event has been sacked. Well that is after a video of a
comedy sketch from 1998 emerged showed him joking about the Holocaust. The scandal erupting as these jet fighters rehearsed for the event. It's a big
show that only a select number of officials and some dignitaries will be allowed to attend.
COVID also dragging down athlete's Olympic dreams, the latest CNN tally shows at least 20 athletes have now dropped out due to COVID. And while
some members of the public are excited for the games to begin, and you see people here taking photos of the countdown clock, only five of the 42
venues will be allowed to host fans. And amongst the guidelines for those fans; no loud talking or shouting.
Well, Selina Wang's been following all the Olympic anticipation and indeed, sadly, Selina, the scandals too in Tokyo. One VIP guest has arrived to
support the games and her country's team, that's Jill Biden. And she is in Tokyo now but the opening ceremony is slimmed affair and itself mired in
SELINA WANG, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, we know that this Olympic opening ceremony is going to be like none other we've seen before. It's
going to be surreal to see the National Stadium, which is actually just across the street from me, which has seating capacity of 68,000 people, it
is going to be surreal to see that largely empty. Only around 950 VIP special guests will be in the stands including Jill Biden. They will be
socially distanced and wearing masks.
And, as you mentioned, the Director of this opening ceremony is out just a day before it begins. And this is just days after the music composer
resigned after previous interviews surfaced from the 1990's in which he was describing severe abuse towards his former classmates. And that follows,
just months before, the former creative director stepping down after making offensive comments about a Japanese female celebrity.
So, Becky, not a promising sign for an Olympic opening ceremony this is supposed to symbolize hope and unity that is much needed during this
ANDERSON: Hope and unity was what we hoped we would get out of this. But sadly more and more athletes have been testing positive. You and I have
been talking the atmosphere where you are now for some days. So describe, as we approach the official opening, just how people feel. And just how
concerned are officials at this point?
WANG: Well, Becky, for the broader public and for the athletes it's mixed emotions. There is some excited that after a years delay they can finally
watch this on television. But the public here is urged to stay at home, watch these on T.V., they are banned from attending these venues in Tokyo.
And for the athletes, we have been talking about his growing heartbreak. Now more than 20 athlete who can't be in the games because they've tested
positive for COVID-19; dreams over before they have even started. A very heartbreaking from a Dutch Taekwondo player who said, she cannot believe
that after all the works she's done pushing through knee injuries, her career is now over just like that.
In addition, now five Czech players - five Czech members of the international - their Olympic committee have also now tested positive for
coronavirus and including another devastating story from a beach volleyball player on the Czech team who said that, she and her teammate cried and
swore and cried again. They can't believe it happened. Becky.
ANDERSON: Selina Wang on the story. Thank you. Well masks required in the stands, no loud talking. Even athletes are being asked to dine alone. Read
more about the no fun rules in place at this year's Olympics as officials do try to keep people safe from COVID-19, that (ph) at cnn.com.
Well the World Health Organization has been getting its COVID message out in Tokyo saying the global failure to shared vaccines is fueling what it
calls a two-tracked pandemic. It's also been getting an earful from China. Beijing says the organization, the WHO, is playing politics with it's plan
for a second look at what started the pandemic. The proposal includes researching the hypothesis that the virus could have escaped from a lab in
Wuhan and also a request to examine China's raw data about the early days of the virus.
A Chinese official says the investigation is quote, "compromised by political manipulation and a disrespect of scientific fact". CNN's
International Security Editor, Nick Paton Walsh, joins me now. Just how significant is what we are hearing out of Beijing? What does it mean, do
you believe, going forward for our ability ever to find out how this thing began?
NICK PATON WALSH, CNN INTERNATIONAL SECURITY EDITOR: It's pretty clear, Becky, it spells the end of the WHO investigation in China where nearly all
scientific research suggested the coronavirus originated. And it made more in a historic perspective meaning that humanity never gets to work out
where really coronavirus originated from. Unless, of course, the Chinese do some transparent work of their own and present those findings or there's a
It's a hugely significant decision, not entirely unexpected from China who for months slow balled the whole arrival of the first WHO investigation
earlier on this year. They're always reluctant, they were never really transparent. But their statement today given by the Deputy Head of their
National Health Commission, heads of laboratories and researchers in Wuhan, where the virus most likely originated was pretty stark and pretty finite,
It said in some respects and I'm quoting Zhang Jin (ph) here, the Deputy Head of National Health Commission, "In some respects the WHO's plan for
the next phase of investigation of the coronavirus origin doesn't respect commonsense and is against science. It's impossible for us to accept such a
Now the WHO, I think responding to a increasing clamor amongst western nations to look into the lab leak theory, it is just a theory. There is no
public evidence to back it up at this point in a conclusive fashion. The clamor though, for more attention to be paid to that, in the WHO initial
report they suggested it was a lesser likely or possibly extremely unlikely way in which the virus had spread. That clamor has increasingly politicized
And so the more sensible requests to look at raw data in the early months of the origins of the virus, in October, November 2019, that most (ph)
likely not be honored and frankly the fog of geopolitics here, as subsumed the urgent the scientific requests. Frankly for you or for anyone watching
to know where this in a lifetime event occurred from and how we can stop it happening again. China never really wanted to find that answer. Today they
made it very clear they're not moving forwards in anything like a cooperative fashion.
ANDERSON: Yes, Nick Paton Walsh on the story for you. Thank you, Nick.
Let me connect (ph) you to the U.K. where there is some consternation about COVID restrictions which have just been relaxed here. Newspapers are
referring to what is being called a ping-demic. It stems from the dramatic rise in the number of people being told to self isolate. Last week the NHS
COVID app pinged more than half a million people across Britain. Many were forced to stay home and not go to work.
And now the result (ph) - we are being told that there are empty store shelves and closures. With all this heaping stress on supply chains already
strained by Brexit, retailers warning this could soon lead to food and fuel shortages. They are calling for fully vaccinated workers to be exempt.
Lord Karan Bilimoria is President of the Confederation of British Industry, the CBI and joins now from London. Right, let's just explain to people what
the ping-demic, that people are referring to is. If you have - if you have the test and trace app on your phone and you've - the NHS app effectively
works out that you've been in contact with somebody who has tested positive you get pinged.
And the numbers are absolutely extraordinary. And what the newspapers are plastered with today are images of shelves being emptied, of people queuing
(ph) for gas at petrol stations.
Just explain to us what it is that you are calling for. What you're so concerned about at this point.
LORD KARAN BILIMORIA, PRESIDENT, CONFEDERATION OF BRITISH INDUSTRY: Yes we have a system here where - in the U.K. where if you go near somebody who is
COVID positive you are contacted through the app. And that app pings you so that's why it's ping-demic. Or you can be contacted directly by National
Health Service Test and Trace by a message on your phone or an email.
So when you're contacted directly by NHA test and trace and they say you've been in contact with somebody who's COVID positive you are legally bound to
then self isolate for the number of days they tell you, which is 10 days after the - from the day you contacted the person. With a - when you're
pinged through the app you're advised to isolate for 10 days. So that is the - that is the direction the government has given.
But what has happened now is the infections have been rising very rapidly over the past few weeks and so the number of people who are self isolating
through the app has gone up 10 times in six weeks to 500,000 people last week. Just recently we've seen figures of over 600,000 people who have
been contacted and asked to self isolate.
And the government has said that they've opened up the economy now on the 19th of July, so restrictions of social distancing are no longer there. The
requirement to wear masks is now advisory in certain circumstances on public transport and certain places required. But basically the live events
have started again now.
On the other hand, the infections are going up. So the government said from the 16h of August they will say people are double jabbed and at the moment
70 percent - almost 70 percent of the U.K. adults are double jabbed, almost 90 percent have had their first inoculation. They're saying if you're
double jabbed from August the 16th, if you're contacted by test and trace of pinged you do not have to self isolate. What you might have to do is
take a PCR test and if that is negative you can carry on with life as normal.
And for people who are not double jabbed, they are saying they will have test and release system where you will have -
BILIMORIA: -- to get a PCR test (inaudible). Then you may have to lateral flow tests for a few days thereafter. If they're negative everyday, you
register it and you can carry on with work. But we're saying bring that forward now because at the moment 20 percent of many businesses are shut,
20 percent of workers in hospitality are off. The National Health Service itself up to 25 percent of people are self isolating.
So you're opening up on the one hand and you're closing the economy down on the other hand.
ANDERSON: Which businesses have you been speaking to who are impacted most with this so-called ping-demic as it were?
BILIMORIA: We were having a staff shortage coming out of this pandemic anyway. So the British economy was poised to really bounce back very
rapidly because of our vaccination program going so well and because we spent ?400 billion supporting our businesses and the economy over the last
16 months. We're in a very strong position to bounce back, we started to have staff shortages for a variety of reasons. And that staff shortages are
not being exacerbated by this ping-demic by people being asked to self isolate.
An Oxford University statistic, one I saw recently, 15 out of 16 people who are self isolating are negative. So they don't have to self isolate if we
have this testing system. So it is really damaging the economy. You've got supermarkets are closing down branches, you got disruption being caused
right across the economy now which we think there is an immediate solution to (ph) that we can get round (ph) by putting in this test and release
ANDERSON: So that - you're talking about this window of three weeks before the government has said it will - it will no longer - people will no longer
need to self isolate even if they get pinged. What you're saying is, this three week interim period between now and then could have an enormous
impact on businesses in the U.K. Is that what you're saying?
BILIMORIA: Well it already is having a big impact right now as we speak and it's only going to get worse. So as the cases increase and the government
has projected that by opening up cases might go up to 100,000 a day. This is - these are not my words it's what the government has said. And if
that's the case you're going to get more and more people being asked to self isolate.
So it's going to happen and we're trying to say, let's prevent it. In fact what we're suggesting by having this testing system is actually going to
make it safer because you're going to get people who if they're notified will test themselves. And know for sure that you're negative and then you
can carry on with work. And if you're positive, you isolate straight away.
So it's going to help the health situation as well by doing what we're advocating. Because we think there are three things that are getting us out
of this pandemic. One is a vaccination program, that's going brilliantly. Second is the testing, we've got free testing in this country available to
all citizens and all businesses.
BILIMORIA: The third thing is we got a therapeutics task force working at speed to find repurposed drugs that can be applied to COVID that can
hopefully cure you from - prevent you from hospitalization and deaths. That's around the corner as well. So those three things put together and we
should not have to have any lockdowns going forward and we should have an economy that can open up safely. And that's the most important. And people
having confidence, we need confidence with the consumers, confidence of business to go back to work, to work safely and these measures need to be
put in place to achieve that.
ANDERSON: Well a note of optimism long term from the Head of the CBI. I hope the government though is listening to what needs to happen in the very
short term to avoid this ping-demic continuing. Thank you, sir.
From farmland to subway cars, China trying to cope with widespread flooding in one of its poorest provinces. Just ahead the latest on efforts to reach
the disaster area. And the proposed European Green Deal that at least it's authors say it would Europe the first climate neutral continent. I'll talk
to one of the organizers about the strong pushback from some countries.
ANDERSON: Thousands of firefighters and military personnel are responding to widespread flooding across Central China. Entire neighborhoods have been
submerged in one of the country's most densely populated provinces. At least 33 people have died. Anna Coren, with the latest.
ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Becky, the death toll from the catastrophic flooding in the Central Chinese city of Zhengzhou continues to rise as
thousands of rescue workers search for the missing while hundreds of people remain trapped at a highway exit due to the flood waters.
At least 33 people have died in the floods that swept away cars and people, brought on by a rainstorm described by state media as the worst in the
city's history. While it had been raining since late last week, almost a year's worth of rain fell in a single day on Tuesday causing extensive
flooding in the Capital of Henan (ph) Province. One of the hardest hit areas was tunnel between two subway stations, 12 people died when their
subway car became trapped in rising flood waters.
And we're learning more details about what those terrified passengers endured. State media CCTV said the water gushed into the subway cars and
surged to people's shoulders and necks. They were stuck in there for more than three hours struggling to breathe due to the low oxygen levels.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNKNOWN MALE: (Translated) The flood was so strong and many people were carried away by that. The remaining few of us including a kid were so tired
and we nearly gave up. We kept holding on tight to the railing and that's why you can see so many bruises on my arms. These are all bruises, this is
one too, this included too. If you don't hold on tight to that railing it's very easy to be washed away.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Hundreds of other people were rescued from underground tunnels in a massive operation.
Chinese leader, Xi Jinping, issued a statement, calling the situation very severe. Ordering authorities to give top priority to people's safety and
property. Other cities Henan Province were also affected by the floods. More than 160,000 people had to be evacuated from their homes and a total
of three million people have been affected by these floods.
ANDERSON: Well the European Union aims to better deal with intense weather events like floods and wildfires through its ambitious European Green Deal.
But in tackling climate change and lowering greenhouse gas emissions the burden is much more difficult for developing countries. Vivian Loonela, who
is helping coordinate the deal say wealthy carbon emitting nations must lead the way in the - not only the technology but the money to get the job
VIVIAN LOONELA, COORDINATING SPOKESWOMAN, THE EUROPEAN GREEN DEAL: The work has to be done globally but I think when we look at it we come back again
to the thing, is it affordable? Because I think every country realizes that we need to act; we see the floods, we see the storms, we see the extreme
heat. There is a need to act on that.
But by showing in Europe, also, of clever ways how this can be done, how we define the policies we believe this is also how we can encourage other
countries to work with us and follow our lead on that.
ANDERSON: Well there is - there is enormous argument already over what is a huge price tag that will accompany what is this world climate agenda;
environment, climate and energy ministers from the G20 nations are meeting now in Italy for a two day summit. But there is not much common ground as
My next guest, Frans Timmermans is the Executive Vice President for The European Green Deal. He joins me now from Naples with more on those
discussions. Before we get to these G20 talks just underway and how you feel they are going, where you see the issues. Do just give us a quick
blueprint, if you will, of this European Green Deal. This is sort of, you know, the great hope for Europe as it moves out of the COVID period.
There is great hope, it's ambitious. I also just want you to just talked about where you really think the reality is here?
FRANS TIMMERMANS, EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT, THE EUROPEAN GREEN DEAL: Well I think European nations have committed in law (ph) to be climate neutral by
2050 and to reduce their emissions with at least 55 percent by 2030 as compared to 1990. And what we are doing is just giving them the answers to
that challenge (ph). And of course there's going to be pushback, there's going to be challenges to some of our proposals.
But my point is very clear, if you don't like our proposals give us an alternative. We believe we've created a balanced package. We believe this
is something we can do. I think the science supports us. Our analysis supports us. It's something we can do also in a fair way because if we
don't do it in a fair way it's not going to happen. We have to show that we leave no one behind. It's a tall order but we can do it.
And by the way, of course there's costs involved but just calculate the cost of non-action of the climate crisis getting completely out of hand.
That costs - that costs dwarfs the cost of transition.
ANDERSON: The Green Deal wants to see the back of fossil fuels, that will cost jobs. There is a struggle among those wealthy G20 nations not so much
about the goals of fighting climate change but of who will pay for it. I mean do you feel optimistic that as we move towards the (inaudible) meeting
in Glasgow that there will be significant progress and that we will see, as the European Green Deal lays out, proper roadmaps rather than discussions?
Figures against now this will actually work, an agreement ultimately?
TIMMERMANS: We'll certainly keep pushing for that. The fact of the matter is that nations now understand that nobody is safe in this climate crisis.
We're all in this together. And you see that nations are coming to terms with that and they need to come up with a plan. We need to be able to say
at the end of our summit, in Glasgow in November, we're still on-track to stay well below two degrees temperature rise. We're still on-track for our
target of 1.5 degrees. And for that you need concrete plans because you're only - the only credibility you have is on the basis on what you're doing
at home. If you're just talking about where you want to go without proving that you can get there it's not going to be very impressive.
ANDERSON: How significant is this most recent sequence of intense weather events that we are seeing in Siberia, on the West Coast of the States, in
There must be environment ministers who are there gathered at the G20 meeting from Germany, from Belgium, from Netherlands who have seen some
shocking, shocking images of their own people. Just how significant are these events at this point?
TIMMERMANS: Well I think they are significant because they demonstrate to the general public, to our citizens what the actual challenge is. I'm not
going to be here arguing scientifically whether it's directly linked climate change or not. But the fact that erratic weather patterns are going
to be the new normal means that we need to adapt to that and we need to prevent things getting worse.
And if we don't do something urgently and urgently I mean now, then the climate crisis is going to get complete out of control and our citizens do
understand that we need to act now. So I believe the wake-up call is clear to everyone not just the politicians -
ANDERSON: Right, OK.
TIMMERMANS: -- but to (ph) citizens everywhere.
ANDERSON: The climate crisis has some parallels course to the COVID pandemic not least that poorer countries are getting absolutely walloped
with no resources to help improve things. How might, for example, the Green Deal - the European Green Deal help developing countries out?
TIMMERMANS: Well first of all I think all industrialized nations have a responsibility to put the money on the table that was promised in the
developing world which is the 100 billion a year. We need to work on that that we make good on our promise. The European Union does and I hope we can
convince the others, first and foremost the Americans, to do the same.
Secondly, much will depend on how we can mobilize private investment (ph) in developing countries and there we have to help with technology
transfers, with making this investment a more feasibly, more easily done with all the big development banks chipping in. That's what we need to do.
It's not just public money that's going to do the trick. It's especially investment in new technologies and new energy resourcing. Just imagine what
you could do if you could bring solar power and offshore wind power to Africa and the Pacific. You could change their economic paradigm in a way
that they desperately need.
ANDERSON: We're going to leave it there, sir. Thank you for joining us. Come back, you and I have spoken before, it couldn't be a more important
issue. Thank you.
TIMMERMANS: With pleasure.
ANDERSON: Coming up later in the show. Iran suffers its worst drought in half a century, sending antigovernment protestors into the streets. I'm
going to be talking to a top Middle East expert and friend of this show about that, the future of the nuclear talks and Iran's new President. All
of that just ahead.
ANDERSON: While the world has been battling COVID a different threat has been spreading across the globe. Some are calling it a cyber pandemic. This
week the E.U. and the U.S. calling out China for a rash of cyber attacks including Microsoft saying China is using hackers to profit from
destabilizing activities. Well Russia's been repeatedly criticized for using cyber networks to sow discontent and influence and elections. And
just days ago we got the story of the Pegasus software that governments all over the globe are allegedly using to hack into the phones of journalists
and activists and others.
Well my next guest says that global cyber attacks have become the new way of waging war. (Inaudible) the global investment forum Dubai, he recently
said almost every government in the world is trying to infiltrate its enemy using cyber tools which do no risk human lives but can have a devastating
Well joining me now is Gil Schwed, the co-found and CEO of Check Point Software. NSO group facing international criticism after reporters obtained
a list of alleged potential targets for its spyware including activists, politicians and journalists not least those - some of those at CNN. The
maker of that powerful spy software is suggesting it's not them, blame their customers, the governments who are buying this software
Is that - do you think that's a genuinely understandable position?
GIL SHWED, CO-FOUNDER AND CEO, CHECK POINT SOFTWARE: I'm trying not to comment too much about that. I chose my career earlier on, 28-years ago, to
be on the defensive side, the civilian side and not on the offensive side. Now, again, we have to remember; governments all over the world spy about
criminals, citizens all over, may be goo, may be bad. For me I know that I made my career choice to be on a completely different end of the spectrum
and to protect organization rather than try to help people attack them.
ANDERSON: Let's talk about the governments that make the headlines on a regular basis; Russia and China, for example. Both have been called out
recently not least by Washington, Russia the result that Washington imposed sanctions, not as of yet has Washington imposed any sanctions on China.
Cyber warfare is part of every government strategy. That's what you're say it is? So when the U.S. call out Russia and China - there's more to this
than just that?
SHWED: First I mean yes. Every government in the world today is trying to develop tools for espionage, for by the way than that. Tools for attack,
tool that at certain times can shut down infrastructure and actually in the last year we've seen many cases like that all over the world from, you
know, the U.S. to the Middle East when critical infrastructure was shut down due to a cyber attack. And again pretty much all governments around
the world are trying to have these powers.
ANDERSON: How bad are things? How dangerous are these cyber attacks?
SHWED: How big is the often (ph) cyber attack, that's a good question. I think first there's the civilian side - not civilian side, there's
commercial companies (inaudible) criminals in governments (ph). The big risk is that in cyber unlike conventional warfare the weapons change hand
very quickly. I mean once something is known, something let's say the NSA and the U.S. developed for the good and is using it very responsibly.
Within a few weeks it can turn out and can be something (ph) with every terrorist or every kid in the world can use against the infrastructure.
Again, we seen it last year in attacks on the Baltimore Hospital that were using tools that the (ph) NSA was just - a few months from there is
developed a few years earlier (ph). So the real risk is that tools in cyber are can be same tools that goes from hand to hand.
ANDERSON:I want to just focus on the - you've been talking about the kind of big operations that we have - that we've reported on here in - on CNN. I
just want to concentrate on that Pegasus story of late. And this is Israeli spyware and I've seen a headline that wonders whether anyone can ever tell
whether this spyware has actually infiltrated your phone.
ANDERSON: What can we all do as individuals to be more aware of whether we might individually have been attacked?
SHWED: So first it's a very good question. I think what we should do is definitely keep updating our software on the phone. We can use some tools
that provide better security for the phones. I can you that on the enterprise world and (ph) the organization aside this is very, very, you
know, frustrating. But only 3 percent of enterprises actually protect their mobile phones. And, again, this is the weakest link in our infrastructure.
This device, the mobile phone, you know, spies on us 24/7. It's always on, it's always listens to us, it always knows what we are doing.
And yet the majority of the world is not doing anything but we should use the same precaution; keep updating your software all the time. Usually it's
not that difficult on mobile phones. Don't click on links that you don't believe in and/or that you don't know or trust. And be very, very careful
on what you click.
And if you can use software that will protect your phone, I think increases or reduces the chances that you'll get infected by a big way.
ANDERSON: With that, we'll leave it there. We thank you very much indeed for joining us.
Well despite a successful vaccination campaign, Israel is facing its own spike in coronavirus cases. Health officials says it's mainly due to the
spread of the Delta variant. The government urging unvaccinated Israelis to make sure they get their shots as they crack down on those who aren't
following mandated COVID-19 restrictions.
Hadas Gold, is live for us in Jerusalem. What are the details here?
HADAS GOLD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Becky, it's been a bit of a whiplash for Israelis because up until a few weeks ago Israelis felt like they had
beaten COVID. Most of the restrictions were off and life had seemingly returned back to normal. Now we're in seemingly the beginning of another
wave. There have been now three days in a row of more than 1,300 positive cases. And the Israeli government is trying to strike a delicate balance of
keeping that sense of normalcy while trying to keep this fourth wave at bay.
Twenty-six thousands fans flooded into Bloomfield Stadium in Tel Aviv this week to see legends from Real Madrid and Barcelona on the field. The
excitement and revelry overshadowing an underlying possibility that such a crowded event could lead to a spike in coronavirus cases.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ELI ZEMAH, BARCELONA FAN: It's (inaudible) and Figo (ph) and everyone, you can't stay at-home. But here we are protected now.
ELIA BEN SHABO, REAL MADRID FAN: I'm kind of nervous but I'm trying to live my life as much as possible before it really hits. It is worth the risk I
think. But, yes, the government should not let people do this but I think it is worth the risk.
IDO, REAL MADRID FAN: We want to see (inaudible) Madrid. Great players. I a little bit nervous but the game is more important.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GOLD: Thanks to an aggressive vaccination campaign, the Israeli government had lifted almost all of its COVID restrictions. But after nearly three
months of fewer of than 200 positive cases a day, the Delta variant now causing a new spike in cases including some of the vaccinated. For the
first time in months the daily average nearing 1,000 cases a day. But with about 65 percent of the population either vaccinated or having recovered
from the disease, Professor Eran Segal of the Weizmann Institute says there is good news.
ERAN SEGAL, PROFESSOR, WEIZMANN INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE: The primary difference is that we are seeing a much lower conversion rate from cases to
severely ill. We are also seeing that those who become severely ill are less in a critical condition as compared to the third wave. All of that
means that it will require a much larger number of cases to happen here in order of us to again fill up the hospitals. And I think that makes it for a
very realistic possibility that this wave will be stopped through another increase of more people that we can get vaccinated.
Potentially a third booster and some very small measures like the green badge.
GOLD: A key to stopping this fourth wave Segal says is vaccinating the 13 percent of the Israeli population that is eligible but still hasn't
received a shot. But even that alone won't be enough according to Prime Minister Naftai Bennet.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NAFTAI BENNETT, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: (Translated) The main line is that we expect the citizens of Israel to go get vaccinated because the vaccines
work. Are they perfect? No. Against the Delta mutation they alone are not enough. This is the problem. However vaccines together with masks alongside
responsible behavior that works.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GOLD: The government says it is now clamping down on restrictions. Police issuing fines for those who fail to wear masks indoors and criminally
charging people who test positive but flout quarantine rules. All as part of an effort to keep the worst of this new wave at bay so that stadiums
like this won't once again stand empty for months.
And, Becky, just in the last couple of hours, the coronavirus cabinet has approved a few more restrictions. These have yet to be approved by the full
government. But amongst them the U.K., Georgia, Cyprus, and Turkey are now on a list of red countries, meaning Israelis are not permitted to travel to
those countries unless they get special exceptions. The green badge is back out of retirement. This was the badge that shows you've been vaccinated or
recovered allowing you into places like restaurants and gyms and other public places. And interestingly now, Becky, anybody who has been eligible
and able to get the vaccine but has refused to do so will now have to pay for their own coronavirus test out-of-pocket.
ANDERSON: Hadas Gold is in Jerusalem for you. Thanks, Hadas. Coming up on Connect the World, big city, big mammals; sightings of whales are on the
rise in the Big Apple. How scientists are using what they are learning to protect them.
ANDERSON: It is time for Call to Earth, CNN's imitative to promote a more sustainable future for our planet. Well that includes protection of
wildlife where you would least expect it. Have a look at this.
ANDERSON: New York's waterways may be best known for skyline views and crowed shipping lanes. Yet these busy waters also harbor a rich community
of marine mammals.
Local whale species include the iconic humpback, fin (ph) whales and the endangered North Atlanta Right whale. These photographs captured thanks to
a multiyear aerial survey conducted by Tetra Tech and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
HOWARD ROSENBAUM, SCIENTIST, WILDLIFE CONSERVATION SOCIETY: Right off of our shores, you know, in less than the average distance that a New Yorker
or someone from the Tri-State area would commute these great whales are here.
ANDERSON: Wildlife Conservation Society Scientist, Howard Rosenbaum, studies the whale population here in the New York Bight, the area between
Long Island and the New Jersey Coast. His mission to use the latest research methods to protect the whales.
ROSENBAUM: This is one of the busiest urban waterways on the planet. And they face threats such as impacts from shipping which can include ship
strikes or ocean noise, incidental entanglement in fishing gear. These areas in the New York Bight along the East Coast, you now, under this
administration are slated for extensive renewable energy development which the planet needs. We just want to make sure that it's done -
ROSENBAUM: -- with the best environmental and management practice as possible so that wildlife and renewable energy can co-exist.
ANDERSON: In partnership with Norwegian company, Equinor, which has a major offshore wind project in New York and the Woodhall Oceanographic Institute,
the WCS has deployed two acoustic buoys to detect whale calls in real-time.
ROSENBAUM: If you can imagine when a whale vocalizes in the New York Bight, like, for example, a North Atlantic Right Whale we can actually detect
those animals. I can get an alert on my cell phone. And when that happens at a certain level right now the National Oceanic Atmospheric
Administration is requesting ships to slow down.
ANDERSON: In the future, Rosenbaum says this alert system could be used to mandate boat slowdowns or to directly alert developers and shippers to the
presence of whale so that they can pause noisy or potentially harmful activities.
ROSENBAUM: It's a great tool and a great use of the technology that we can begin to use and harness the power of that to help better protect whales.
ANDERSON: Rosenbaum's team also takes and analyzes genetic samples from the whales in order to understand more about this population connects to others
like how they feed and breed.
ROSENBAUM: We're also trying some new work which is called environment DNA or eDNA. And with that we're actually able to detect whale presence and
what they're eating just by collecting a water sample.
ANDERSON: By combining information from genetic and acoustic research the scientists aim to understand a lot more about the whales and their behavior
to find practical solutions to the challenges facing these New York ocean giants.
ANDERSON: We'll continue showcasing inspiration environmental stories like this as part of our initiative on CNN. So do let us know what you are doing
to answer the call with the #calltoearth.
ANDERSON: Well a severe drought, deadly protests and an incoming President described as quote "The Butcher". The world has been and continues to watch
Iran. This week's state media reporting that demonstrations there have led to the death of one policeman and one protestor. This social media video,
by "New York Times" journalist, Farnaz Fassihi is of people chanting "death to the Islamic Republic" at a metro station in Tevran (ph).
CNN has not been able to independently verify the video. But to add to this Iran's suffering through its worst drought in 50 years. Well its new
President will have a lot on his plate when he takes office early next month.
We've talked about who Ebrahim Raisi is. My next guest says quote "H's been very loyal to the Supreme Leader and he essentially was elevated by the
Supreme Leader to his current position. And the difference with his predecessor is that his predecessor belong to the first generation of the
revolution. He was a statesman -
ANDERSON: -- with considerable more experience in foreign policy which Mr. Raisi does not have at the moment.
Vali Nasr, joining us now, he's a professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies as well as a policy advisor and the author
of "The Dispensable Nation" and a good friend of this show. You and I have talked at length about just who is Ebrahim Raisi. I want to now just
discuss what happens next under his stewardship because what we are seeing here is the following. Days of demonstrations, protesting water shortages
in Khuzestan (ph), the latest example, if you will, of how economic mismanagement effects everyday life for Iranians.
Who are now living through further COVID, lockdowns as numbers spike and then we see these spontaneous protest in the metro stations denouncing the
regime. What do you make of what we are seeing?
VALI NASR, PROFESSOR, JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY: I think you're correct. These serious challenges, to some extent he can blame is on mismanagement
of his predecessor but it falls on him to solve it. And before there were water shortages in this oil providence of Khuzestan (ph) there was serous
electricity shortages in Iran. Now these water shortages have not only created protests in metros in Tehran but there are serious riots and
protests on the streets of Khuzestan (ph), this is a sensitive province because it's the oil and gas province of Iran.
But also because it has a very large Arab minority and there have been separatists movements and the government's very sensitive to that. And then
we have a very serious outbreak of a fifth wave of COVID (inaudible) Delta variant in Iran. And then the general economic situation in Iran is still
pretty bad. So Mr. Raisi is coming to office facing almost a convergence of multiple crises and he will have a very short period of time to show the
population that he can make a difference, he can manage things, he can solve things. So he's facing a very tall order.
ANDERSON: (Inaudible), as one commentator put it today, could prove some timely respite for Iran's new leadership. A leadership, of course, who
blame the U.S. for sanctions imposed by the Trump administration which have resulted, they say, in these economic woes. Look, we know that there has
been years of economic mismanagement, of corruption. I mean this nuclear deal wouldn't be the ultimate (inaudible). But certainly it might help.
So where are we with that, Vali Nasr? What do you understand to be the latest?
NASR: Well there is no doubt that having some infusion of economic benefits into Iran into its society is helpful to Mr. Raisi. I mean it's very clear
that the Iranian public is under a lot of pressure. It's angry, it's, you know, the pressure has got to the bottom of what they can tolerate and
therefore they're very quick to react in terms of riots, et cetera.
So he needs to alleviate that pressure. That does incentivize them to try to get to a deal with the United States. But there are some big political
questions that he has to resolve before he gets to a deal. And his predecessor decided that there was no point to getting a deal before Mr.
Raisi came in because Mr. Raisi would get all the benefit and then would blame Rouhani for whatever shortcomings a deal with the United States might
So I think Mr. Raisi understand that the fastest way in which to relieve pressure on this regime is to be able to start exporting oil, start brining
money into the economy, start giving some hope to the population. So I think that we will see whether he's willing to tackle the hard issues when
they show up back in Vienna in the middle of August after he has been inaugurated.
ANDERSON: By all accounts, some weeks ago and before this election of Ebrahim Raisi, most people who had a sense of what was going on behind the
scenes in Vienna said that these parties were close to a deal. Now let's just be clear, Iran and U.S. not in direct talks there. But there was P5+1
and the others certainly suggesting that a solution was close. How far apart do you think parties are at this point? And how willing or not will
Washington be to deal with this new quote "hardline" government?
NASR: Well I think that Washington had expected Mr. Raisi's victory from sometime back and understood that they will to be dealing with him. If not
to sign the deal -
NASR: -- at least to implement the deal.
NASR: I think on the Iranian side the issue is not the details of sanctions but the larger issue is that ultimately if there is a deal in Vienna it's a
less for more deal. In other words Iran will get less than what it got in 2015 but will have to give more to the U.S. than it gave 2015. And at the
same time it's not going to get any guarantees from the United States that what President Trump did will not happen again in two years.
And that basically is a very big political risk that this regime has to take. So the issue for Iran is not so much details of sanctions. I think
there is an agreement on all of that. It's rather the bigger political questions of signing a deal, going back to the people in Iran and saying
that after everything that happened we now have accepted a less for more deal, that we're going to give more, we're going to take less. And then we
don't even have a guarantee that in two years time this won't happen.
Which means that a lot of foreign companies will not come to Iran even if there is a deal because there is a risk that whatever money they put in
Iran they would have to leave behind if another Republican comes in and tear up the deal.
So if the question is Mr. Raisi and the Supreme Leader willing to take that big risk? And I think the riots in Khuzestan (ph) perhaps gives --
increases their risk tolerance in other words if you're facing real popular (ph) anger in Iran to the point that our people are chanting for the
downfall of the Islamic Republic you're more likely to accept that risk and sign a deal.
ANDERSON: With that we're going to leave it there. We thank you very much indeed for joining us. An important - an important issue. Vali, it's always
good to have you, come back. We will continue to keep an eye on exactly what is going on. Thank you, wherever you are for watching folks. This has
been Connect the World. Same place tomorrow, please join us then.
Up next One World Tonight with (inaudible) coming to you live from Dubai. From the team working with me here in London knows back of base Abu Dhabi
it is a very good evening.