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Making Two Decades Since Start Of Iraq Invasion; Xi Jinping And Vladimir Putin Meeting In Moscow; Credit Suisse Shares Plunge After UBS Takeover. Aired 10-11a ET
Aired March 20, 2023 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BECKY ANDERSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: I'm Becky Anderson live from Abu Dhabi. This is CONNECT THE WORLD. Coming up this hour. We marked 20 years
since the U.S. invasion of Iraq.
China's leader visits his counterpart in Moscow.
UBS buys beleaguered Credit Suisse.
And later this hour, Mikaela Shiffrin caps her season with a record victory.
Well, it's been 20 years since the U.S. and its allies launch one of the largest and most consequential military operations in modern history. The
2003 invasion of Iraq.
Well, this is how it began with a barrage of airstrikes pummeling military targets on March the 20th. In the weeks that followed, U.S.-led ground
forces would sweep through the country with the goal of toppling its ruler. But the wall would rage on for years, leaving tens of thousands dead,
millions in chaos. Throughout the next two hours, we will be reflecting on the repercussions of the conflict still felt to this day with a number of
journalists who lived through this story.
Our own Ben Wedeman. The editor of The National, Mina Al-Oraibi and former CNN journalist, Princess Rym al-Ali.
Well, this anniversary happening on the same day as what could be a high stakes meeting of world leaders in Moscow where they might decide where the
conflict in Ukraine goes next.
Chinese President Xi Jinping is speaking with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Both country's official news agency saying there is talk of
promoting peace. But hope for progress is being met with widespread skepticism by Ukraine and its Western allies.
Matthew Chance is in Moscow. Matthew, Beijing painting this visit as a journey of peace. And what are the expectations here?
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The expectations are pretty low I think in terms of the possibility of the Beijing peace
plan making any progress. It was put out there about, you know, a few weeks ago last month and it's got 12 points on it, one of which is for the
parties to start negotiations to end the conflicts in Ukraine. But it stopped short of calling on Russia to withdraw from the territory in the
Concorde -- its Concorde.
And so, it's met this very lukewarm, warm response in Ukraine and amongst Ukraine's Western backers as well. Nevertheless, the Kremlin says and the
two leaders there sitting in Moscow face to face for the -- for the first time this visit, saying that that's one of the issues they're going to be
discussing the -- for the possibility of a diplomatic process to bring the crisis as they call it in Ukraine to a close.
It's interesting, though, because this is -- there's been more than 40 occasions in the past decade since Xi Jinping has met Vladimir Putin face
to face. That's according to a count being carried by the Russian official media. But he hasn't had a single conversation so far with Volodymyr
Zelenskyy of Ukraine. And so, there's an obvious imbalance there as well. There's a possibility, of course, that could -- that could change. And so,
that's been watched very closely.
The other issue that's being watched closely is whether or not China, even though -- it says it's trying to promote peace, will take the step of
providing Russia with much needed military assistance. It's short of ammunition on the battlefield, technology for the military sphere and
things like that. So far, it stopped short of giving Russia that kind of assistance. But there's a lot of speculation that that's what Russia wants
out of this state visit.
This kind of firm sort of military backing, not just political backing from Beijing for its conflict in Ukraine, Becky.
ANDERSON: Matthew Chance in Moscow. Thanks, Matt.
Over two weekends in a row we've seen big banks rescued in a major scramble to stem a crisis of confidence in the global financial system. Big
question. Is it working? Well, stocks in Europe right now rebounding from earlier losses, bank shares are still trading lower. Here's what Wall
Street is up to. It's up just over one percent as we speak. This comes after an emergency rescue of beleaguered mega bank, Credit Suisse by Swiss
Take a listen to the Swiss president.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ALAIN BERSET, PRESIDENT OF THE SWISS CONFEDERATION: On Friday, the liquidity outflows and market volatility showed that it was no longer
possible to restore the necessary confidence, and that the swift and stabilizing solution was absolutely necessary.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Let's bring in CNN Anna Stewart live from London. Is he right?
ANNA STEWART, CNN REPORTER: Well, there were very few options on the table, you know, a takeover better than a complete state bailout. And clearly
Credit Suisse couldn't just muddle on through on the basis of its very long-awaited restructuring plan. So, this felt like one of the last options
really. And it's been interesting seeing how this is impacting all the various players in the market.
The ramifications of this deal and emergency rescue really in terms of UBS taking over its biggest rival. There are lots of losers, particularly of
course, Credit Suisse shareholders because this value is Credit Suisse at a 60 percent discount of the price it closed on Friday. You're actually
looking at Credit Suisse shares though trading at about that level today. Also, Becky, and this is actually having far broader ramifications, I
think, is what happened to certain bondholders of Credit Suisse.
The 81 bonds. These are convertible bonds that on the riskier end of the bond scale in terms of banks. They usually convert to equity in this sort
of situation. But in this case, they were just wiped out. So, $17 billion worth of bonds wiped out. And that's going to do something for investor
confidence when it comes to banking bonds more generally. Looking at UBS, though, I'd like to show you the share price there.
It opened sharply lower. I think as investors sort of absorb this deal on what it was going to mean for UBS. They are higher right now. I am looking
at UBS share price about five percent higher, six percent higher, we're showing you there. There are some sort of positives here. This will be
great for UBS wealth management business. It will probably be good for its domestic banking business, although you do question what sort of
competition they'll be in Switzerland at this stage. It's a big deal.
They are looking to create savings of $8 billion a year by 2027. And so, the bad news in all of this, of course is jobs. And as the days and the
weeks go on, and as takeovers actually completed. We'll find out I'm sure a lot more about those cost savings. Becky?
ANDERSON: Absolutely. Thank you, Anna. Well, Israel's right-wing government making its first concession in what has been this controversial plan to
weaken the courts. The government would have less power to pick new judges. A key part of the plan but it could still overturn Supreme Court decisions.
Well, huge crowds have been protesting these plans and in a pool with Israel's Prime Minister.
U.S. President Joe Biden stressed the importance of checks and balances. The two leaders also discussed a shooting in the West Bank that wounded a
man with Israeli and U.S. citizenship. CNN's Hadas Gold tracking both these stories for us from Jerusalem. Hadas?
HADAS GOLD, CNN JERUSALEM CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Becky. The phone call between President Biden and the Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu -- actually the
first phone call the two have had in months. And what was interesting in the phone call is what we didn't see from the readout. And that was any
sort of invitation for Benjamin Netanyahu to come to Washington for an official visit to the White House.
In the early months of Benjamin Netanyahu's latest administration, there were several reports in Israeli media that he'd be heading to Washington
rather quickly. And now, we see that no invitation is on the table. You would think that's rather unusual for Benjamin Netanyahu who calls, of
course, the United States, the greatest ally, talks about how -- what a good friendship he has with Joe Biden and how Joe Biden has been a
supporter of such a staunch supporter of Israel for so many decades.
But I think that's a reflection of not only the internal situation of what's happening in Israel with the -- with the chaos over these judicial
reforms, but also the security situation. Perhaps we'll see an invitation later on. But for now, we don't see any sort of invitation. It was
interesting to see from President Biden. We've already heard on the record about these judicial reforms, once again, pushing for a consensus, for a
And today, we got the first ever sort of very slight softening of these reforms of some kind. This one is focusing on how judges are selected in
Israel. And actually, when you talk to members of the coalition government, these are senior people I've been speaking to in the Israeli government.
They actually say that that the selection of the judges, for them, that's one of the most important -- if not the most important issue.
And so, in this very slight softening what they're saying is, well, now in the committee that will select the judges, the government will be able to
pick the vast majority of this committee, they will only have a slight majority say six to five majority instead of a seven to five majority. So,
it's a very small concession. And they also have announced they're going to pause the rest of the legislation that they want to push through.
That's also the override clause you mentioned where the Parliament can overturn Supreme Court decisions until the next parliament session which
starts at the end of April. But for the opposition and for the protest leaders, they say that these are not actual softening concessions. They say
these are just nice words. And they still say that the Israeli government has one of the protest -- protest leader says is declaring a war on the
Israeli people. Becky?
ANDERSON: And what have -- what has been happening in the West Bank?
GOLD: Yes. So, yesterday, in Israeli dual -- Israeli-U.S. American dual man -- dual citizen man and his wife were driving through Huwara which has
become, of course this flashpoint. They were shot at by an attacker and actually, the man managed to shoot back at the attacker who the Israeli
military says was wounded and later apprehended. The man is actually in stable condition. But of course, as we know, Huwara has been a flashpoint
for some time.
The Israeli military announcing it is now once again a closed military zone. That means that shops are closed and all of this was happening on the
same day as that major summit in Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt where Israeli, Palestinian, Egyptians, Jordanians, Americans are once again meeting for
the second time to help -- to help calm tensions ahead of Ramadan that starting later this week where a lot of the attention will be here in
Jerusalem where tensions are expected to be incredibly high, especially around the holy sites in Jerusalem.
People I've been speaking to, Becky, I have to say they are rather pessimistic about what the end of this week will look like.
ANDERSON: Let's hope they're not right. Hadas, thank you.
Well, it's been 20 years since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq.
The country may be free as today but at a huge cost. We will look at how things have changed and the challenges Iraq is still facing.
Plus, one journalist who has covered Iraq extensively says the war's legacy is 20 years of broken hopes and dreams. And she is calling on the
government to do better. The editor in chief of The National joins me just the head.
ANDERSON: This month marks 20 years since one of the defining moments of the 21st century. The U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. This is what it looked
like on March the 20th, 2003 when America and its allies began pummeling military targets inside Iraq with blinding explosions of shock and awe.
In the weeks that followed, chaos reigned in southern Iraq as coalition forces moved through on their offensive to remove Saddam Hussein from
power. And on April the 9th, they took the capital and a statue of the Iraqi dictator was symbolically toppled. Just weeks later, the U.S.
president declared an end to major combat, but the war would go on for years.
Well, to this day, the impacts of that conflict are still being felt in both Iraq and around the world. CNN's Ben Wedeman explains how the conflict
has shaped both Iraq and specifically the U.S. over the past two decades.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTENATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): It began with shock and awe. 20 years ago, the United States and its allies embarked
on a war in Iraq. Within weeks, Saddam Hussein's regime fell.
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. In the battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies
WEDEMAN (voice-over): They prevailed in the brief battle of Iraq, but the war in Iraq that followed was long and hard. The American road paved with
good intentions soon led to hell.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Son of a (BLEEP) well, welcome to frigging Iraq, huh? Get back in the vehicle.
WEDEMAN (voice-over): The U.S. never found Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction, the original rationale for the war. And blunder after blunder
poured fuel on a fire of resentment. Every U.S. operation like this one I covered in the summer of 2003 left behind a trail of bitterness.
By midweek, U.S. troops had detained nearly 400 men. None from their most wanted list. They also managed, however, to arouse a fair amount of
The Americans are occupiers, says this man. They have no manners or ethics. One of them grabbed a Quran and threw it to the ground.
The U.S. cobbled together a political order based on sectarian divisions. Disbanded the Iraqi army and the once ruling Ba'ath Party throwing hundreds
of thousands out of the job. And was mired in Abu Ghraib prison scandal where Iraqis were tortured, humiliated and photographed. Eleven U.S.
soldiers were convicted of crimes.
Less than a year after the invasion, large parts of Iraq were in chaos. Saddam Hussein was captured, tried and executed but the insurgency went on.
The Abu Musab al Zarqawi, a Jordanian born leader of al Qaeda in Iraq was killed but the insurgency went on.
Two years after the invasion, sectarian tensions between the Shia majority and the once dominant Sunni, Arab minority, erupted into civil war and the
killing intensified. The violence only subsided after the U.S. surged more troops into Iraq in 2007.
In August, 2010, the last U.S. combat troops left Iraq leaving behind a brittle, corrupt, deeply flawed democratic regime riven by sectarian
tensions, which provided fertile ground for the rampage of the Islamic State, or ISIS, spilling over from the war in Syria into Iraq. ISIS seized
control of the northern city of Mosul and then captured city after city, reaching the outskirts of Baghdad.
It took more than three years of bitter combat and foreign military assistance to defeat the group. That enemy vanquished, old discontents
resurfaced. In 2019 Baghdad was gripped by massive protests against corruption, sectarianism and poor living conditions. But like protest
movements across the region, it, too, was crushed.
As the U.S. invasion and occupation fade into history, neighboring Iran plays an ever greater role in the country's affairs. Old problems,
corruption, dysfunctional infrastructure and unemployment remain unresolved. Yet, despite it all, today Baghdad is more peaceful than it has
been in years.
ANDERSON: Ben Wedeman Joining me now. You cover the war extensively reporting on the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003. And the difficulties
coalition forces faced imposing order after the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime. You say Baghdad is more peaceful than it has been in years.
What is it like as a country for the people of Iraq, as far as you can tell? And what about the rest of Iraq outside of Baghdad?
WEDEMAN: As far as the rest of the Iraq goes, Becky, it's also relatively peaceful. ISIS still has a presence in some remote areas in the northern
and western part of the country. But by and large, it does seem to be calm at the moment. But in Iraq, there's always a calm before the storm. And if
you look at the fundamental problems left behind from the war and the occupation, basically, the civil war among the Iraqis is that the country's
economy is still in shambles.
Iraq is floating on a sea of oil. But for instance, you have youth unemployment that's running at about 25 percent. Now for all the sins of
Saddam Hussein's regime, for instance, he invested huge amounts of money and things like education. The educational system in Iraq at the moment is
barely functioning. In 1982, UNESCO actually awarded Iraq a prize for eradicating illiteracy.
At the moment, nothing really seems to function in Iraq, whether it's the power system, water, electric -- education, you name it. It is a
dysfunctional country. And what we've seen is that, despite the wealth that does exist in Iraq, for instance, a month ago, a ship -- shipwrecked off of
the coast of Italy. And there were Iraqis onboard. Iraqis coming from a country which in theory should be wealthy.
But people are so desperate that they're willing to risk their lives to leave make this dangerous journey to Europe just to find a future that in
Iraq, they just at the moment cannot find, Becky.
ANDERSON: Ben Wedeman out of Rome for you today. Well, my next guest has written extensively on U.S. and European policies in the Middle East. She's
editor-in-chief of The National and host of a special podcast series, Iraq 20 Years On, which features personal reflections and experiences of Iraqis
on the crises that have beset their country since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.
Mina Al-Oraibi joins me now. It's good to have you on. The podcast is excellent. You describe it as examining the era that shaped a generation.
MINA AL-ORAIBI, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, THE NATIONAL: You know, Becky, it's hard to believe 20 years have passed because in some ways we used to think no
matter how difficult 2003 was, it will take a year to five and we'll be in a better shape. And yet a generation then that was coming of age was faced
with complete chaos. And I think we have to be careful not to make it sound like pre-2003 it was all rosy, absolutely not.
Terrible states in the country between dictatorship sanctions and so forth. Still, there was a state, there was general security. And suddenly that was
all thrown up in the air. And in some ways, there were so many hopes for -- again, people coming of age at that era. And now they they've passed that
time. And now 20 years on, there's a whole new generation that never knew what life was before 2003.
But also, is facing a country where the state itself was dismantled and it's trying to pull itself back in together. And the same time, you know,
we think about all the losses that people went through personal losses. And that's what I was really showing the podcast, but their individual stories,
you know, the Lancet in 2006 set 660,000 people were estimated to have been killed because of the war.
Now not t just through direct killing but also, you know, the failure of infrastructure and so forth. That's just in the first three years. So,
imagining people's lives have been destroyed. Then we look at things like climate change when Iraq today is one of the most challenged countries in
the world when it comes to climate change. No serious policies to combat climate and so forth. And so, when I talk about an entire generation, it
was that generation that came of age in 2003, and today, the generation that inherits this country.
ANDERSON: I thought you pointed out that so often as journalists and we hear from politicians and other experts that, you know, the numbers paint
the picture. But those numbers are lives lost, terribly important lives destroyed, extremely important. Number of troops lost, of course, important
and the -- and the costs of physical cost to the damage, for the damage in the infrastructure.
But seeing this -- seeing this impact through the lens of Iraqis and you are Iraqi yourself, is so impactful because it really tells a story behind
those statistics. And we always have to remind ourselves that these stories are bigger than the sheer statistics that we so often report. And what
struck you most in taking a look at this last 20 years through the lens of Iraqis themselves?
AL-ORAIBI: You know, what gave me hope was that Iraqi National Identity is so strong. And you know, you're right. And one of it was Iraq was looked at
through statistics. And -- but also what was worrying is that Iraq was suddenly being broken down to, you know, sectarian or ethnic divisions. But
actually, every single Iraqi I spoke to was talking about Iraq, was talking about their experience as an Iraqi, was talking about, you know, it
mattered, of course, what city they were living in because of the political experiences of that city.
But it didn't matter what their different ethnic or sectarian affiliations were. It mattered that they were Iraqis. And so, in some way, but also the
fact that sense of loss and trials and tribulations that all Iraqis went through in different ways. And that really struck me and I made a real
point that everybody I interviewed, I didn't ask what any of those affiliations were. And I made sure our producer defense and so forth.
And the stories were as strong if not stronger, and we have to battle for years to tell people this is not a sectarian issue. This is not an ethnic
issue. It's about who wants to see in Iraq that strong and unite as country and who had a vested interest to pick it apart.
ANDERSON: Would you want to see an Iraq that is strong? You as many others around this region, everybody around this region has a vested interest in a
successful Iraq. So, how does that happen? To your mind what does the government need to do next, at this point?
AL-ORAIBI: It's a long list, a laundry list of things that needs to happen. But the number one thing is corruption. Corruption has become endemic
throughout all walks of life, be it through state organizations, even the private sector. Life in general is bent on workarounds for a system that is
so dysfunctional. And so, without rooting out corruption, it's impossible to see the state really reviving and taking care of ordinary people.
And through that you get better basic services. Who can believe 20 years after the war, Iraq does not have day to day electricity? People rely on
private companies and generators. And if you can't afford it, you're sitting in the dark, you're sitting in the heat of Iraq, which reaches 50
degrees Celsius in the summer months and more without air conditioning, a country that produces 4.3 million barrels of oil a day, one of the top
producers globally, one of the richest countries of the world and basic things like electricity are still a problem 20 years on.
ANDERSON: You travel in and out of Iraq on a regular basis. So -- and you speak to those who are running the country. Do you genuinely believe they
are capable of the sorts of changes that you know, needs to be met? Not least challenging this really endemic issue of corruption? And what do you
believe the lasting legacy of the last 20 years is for the country, the region and the wider world?
AL-ORAIBI: The political system is set up in a way where it's devolution of power so that everybody tries to take a bit of power for themselves rather
than thinking what's the greater good. So, we need reforms to the Constitution to the political system. Are the people themselves capable?
It's a mixed bag, but I think if the political will was there, it's totally doable.
In terms of legacy, the legacy is a broken political system that needs reform. Everybody agrees on it but nobody will actually do it because there
are too many vested interests. Lasting legacy is really of missed opportunities. Country, you know, even the removal of Saddam Hussein didn't
have to bring us where we are now. It's the lost opportunity of a country that's as rich and its people, its natural resources, agriculture, that
could have been in a completely different place 20 years on. And, you know, it really is time to stop missing those opportunities.
ANDERSON: Forward facing. Let's hope those opportunities are afforded the people of Europe because you know what, they deserve it. Thank you very
much. Indeed. Mina Al-Oraibi, good friend of the show. Important stuff. We're going to get you a lot more analysis ahead on CONNECT THE WORLD.
Next hour, I'll speak to Jordan's Princess Rym Al-Ali. Former CNN correspondent who reported live from Baghdad on the buildup of tensions
between Saddam Hussein's government and the West. We'll talk to her about some of the key moments in the conflict and how it has impacted the region.
ANDERSON: Welcome back. I'm Becky Anderson in Abu Dhabi where the time is just after 6:30 In the evening. You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. And
these are your headlines. The war in Ukraine is expected to be a key talking point during meetings between the Chinese and Russian leaders in
Moscow. Vladimir Putin hosting Xi Jinping and what Beijing calls a journey of peace. Ukraine says any Chinese peace plan must start with a Russian
Well, central banks have been scrambling to calm investors submit the largest bank shakeups since 2008 financial Crisis. Shares of Swiss giant
Credit Suisse have plunged after UBS agreed to buy its rival for just over $3 billion. That's about 60 percent less than what Credit Suisse was worth
when markets closed on Friday.
Well, opponents of Israel's proposed judicial overhaul say that the government's first big concession does not go far enough. The change would
give the Knesset less power to pick new judges. The key part of the plan, the proposal prompting months of huge protests.
Well, after big weekend protests across France, the government there facing two no confidence votes in the next hour. This comes after President
Emmanuel Macron's decision to push through unpopular pension reforms without a vote in Parliament. The move has sparked anger amongst opposition
groups and fury from the public as those protests and strikes continue across the country.
CNN's Melissa Bell is live with us from Paris. How concerned should Emmanuel Macron be at this point, Melissa?
MELISSA BELL, CNN PARIS CORRESPONDENT: Well, the parliamentary arithmetic, Becky, is such that it is unlikely at this stage that the no-confidence
vote will win and that therefore the government (INAUDIBLE) will fall. But what is likely to happen if the government wins the day is that that
controversial pension reform will be one step closer to becoming law. Now the problem that they then have is the popular discontent more widely
beyond the walls of the parliamentary building, Becky.
And what you've -- we've seen, as you've said, not just these last few days, those spontaneous protests erupting on the streets of Paris and
elsewhere. But there's long, much more planned movement that we've seen since the start of the year organized by the trade unions united as they
are against this reform. And that is set to continue. In fact, on Thursday, we expect the ninth day of nationwide protests and strikes that the country
has seen since Emmanuel Macron announced the new year, the 2023 would be the year of pension reform.
And I think one of the things has been so interesting is to see how despite these many weeks of protests and disruption, the movement against the
reform has grown. In fact, it has decreased in popularity with time, which is I think, a measure of how unhappy people are about it. Now, one of the
reasons, first of all, pension reform is always controversial in France for historical reasons but it comes at a time when people were pretty angry
about a bunch of other things, Becky.
The cost of living, fuel prices. There is a lot out there that has made people upset. There's all the discontent that build during the yellow vests
against Emmanuel Macron himself.
And that is also part of this movement against his government and against his policies, Becky.
ANDERSON: Melissa, thank you. Let's get you up to speed and some of the other stories that are on our radar right now. And law enforcement agencies
in New York are preparing for various security scenarios after former U.S. President Donald Trump claimed he'd be arrested on Tuesday and he calls
protests. He's facing a possible indictment in the years long investigation into the Stormy Daniels hush money case.
But former Australian soldier has been charged with a war crime in Afghanistan allegedly committed more than a decade ago. 41-year-old is
accused of murdering an unarmed civilian in southern Afghanistan in 2012. He is the first Australian to be charged in a long-running probe.
Police in Nairobi, Kenya use tear gas Monday to disperse a large crowd protesting against President William Ruto. Opposition Leader Raila Odinga
was also hit by tear gas as he attempted to get to a news conference. Odinga's supporters are angry about the high cost of living and alleged
cheating in last year's election.
Well, thousands of people marching in the streets of South African cities today demanding the resignation of Cyril Ramaphosa. They say Mr. Ramaphosa
has done little to deal with the country's crippling energy crisis. Protests organizers say their followers are peaceful. But many businesses
across South Africa shut down on Monday out of fear of looting.
CNN's Larry Madowo tracking this story. And this energy crisis in South Africa, nothing new. But these protests now gathering steam. What's the
latest from there?
LARRY MADOWO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It does appear that there have been people showing up in different parts of South Africa to join this protest by the
Economic Freedom Fighters. That is the South African radical opposition party led by Julius Malema that call for this national shutdown that they
were calling it. While people have shown up often in thousands of some places, it's not quite the national shutdown that the EFF promised the
people of South Africa.
But it's a strong enough statement in either way to tell the government of the day, Cyril Ramaphosa and the ANC that the people have had enough, the
crisis at Eskom, the national power utility has been going on for a long time. And South Africans are now used to what is called loadshedding. This
is regular blackouts, they have stages of it sometimes up to stage six load shedding which means for many hours of the day, they don't have power.
That's the trigger for what EFF has called for. But there's lots of other economic challenges that South Africans are facing that have found kind of
credence in this call by the opposition party to march to have this big -- a show of disapproval in the government of President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Whether or not it will be effective it's hard to tell at this point because the ANC's social media handles have been kind of criticizing this as a
flop, that it wasn't as big as the opposition party of the prime minister, Becky.
ANDERSON: There is a, you know, a much wider story, isn't there? I mean, these power outages, the cost-of-living crisis, rampant corruption, the
call for Cyril Ramaphosa to go. This is a leader who sort of took on this file that I've just described. These challenges that I just described, what
chance that he will be unseated? And where does South Africa go next at this point?
MADOWO: It's unlikely that he will be unseated by these protests. Because President Ramaphosa still has strong support from the ANC. That is the
backing of the ruling party in South Africa. But there's an election coming up in 2024. And he is slated to run again. But the EFF is getting some
momentum, some kind of mass appeal with the -- these kinds of movements and show the support from the general population.
Even though interestingly, if the ANC does lose that massive support, the EFF is a potential coalition partner in the next government in 2024. But I
think President Cyril Ramaphosa can't ignore the cost-of-living crisis that's facing the country. Their wide corruption, like you mentioned, the
disaffection with how the ANC has ruled this country. And especially he was supposed to be a break from the chaotic government of Jacob Zuma.
He's much more of an accomplished businessman, much better put together as a person. But in some ways, there are people who wish that maybe they were
better off under President Jacob Zuma which is a stinging indictment of his rule and his leadership of South Africa. But whether or not this specific
process will not unseat him, but weakened his position as the leader of South Africa, Becky.
ANDERSON: Larry, on assignments in Lagos in Nigeria for you, thank you.
Well, ahead in sports. History making races for American skier Mikaela Shiffrin. What she did over the weekend that has never been done before.
ANDERSON: The climate time bomb is ticking and the world is running out of time to avoid a catastrophe. The U.N. says the world needs to take
immediate action before international climate goals slipped out of reach. This out of a new major U.N. report on climate showing the planet is
approaching catastrophic levels of heating. The science isn't new. But the experts say this is the most dire and troubling assessment yet on the
impact of climate change.
Get a closer look at the data from the U.N. report. Do go to CNN.com to see what it says remain the biggest threats to climate change action and how
the U.S. and China's latest plans to expand oil drilling and coal production will affect the situation.
Well, making history. American skier Mikaela Shiffrin is standing atop her own mountain after a record-breaking weekend in Andorra. Amanda Davies is
here where they look, Amanda, at Shiffrin's unrivaled accomplishment.
AMANDA DAVIES, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: Yes. A record-breaking final weekend to top off what has been a record-breaking season. You can see the emotion
there having become the most successful World Cup skier in history with that 86 victory. She's gone from there to 87. And yesterday the final race
of the season was victory number 88 in the giant slalom in Andorra. She overtakes Lindsey Vonn with the most podiums in history. It saw her claim
the overall Crystal Globe for another World Cup season victory.
That's her fifth in all. And how do you stop Mikaela Shiffrin? Well, you stop the season. That's ultimately what we've come down to for the rest.
But the bad news for her rivals, she's already said she intends to be back and even better next year but she's going to go and enjoy some days on the
beach first. And you have to say very, very well-deserved.
ANDERSON: Absolutely. I feel like this script was written. I'm so pleased that she's actually come good on this. It's what a remarkable season and
what an athlete. Fantastic. More than that I'm sure coming up with World Sport. That is after the break. We are back for you after that with the
second hour of CONNECT THE WORLD. Please stay with us.