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Outgoing Chinese President Warns Of Reigning In Party Corruption; Interview with Christiano Ronaldo, Nor'easter Pounds U.S. Northeast With High Winds, Rain, Snow

Aired November 8, 2012 - 16:00   ET


BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: And tonight on Connect the World, a stark warning from China's president on tackling corruption.


HU JINTAO, PRESIDENT OF CHINA (through translator): If we fail to handle this issue well, it could prove fatal to the party and even cause the collapse of the party and the fall of the state.


ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN London, this is Connect the World with Becky Anderson.

ANDERSON: Well, it's out with the old and in with the new as China's Communist Party meets to discuss its future and a monumental change in its leadership. Tonight, what that shake-up means for the rest of the world.

Also this hour, Europe's engine of growth is stalling. The bad economic news just keeps coming for Germany.

And, get ready for some canine couture as fashion's biggest names turn their attention to the dog walk.

Right, it's early morning in China. And in a few hours, the country's leaders will gather for the second day of the Communist Party congress. By this time next week we should officially know who will be taking over China's leadership.

Well, in a moment I'll be talking to Christopher Hill, the former U.S. assistant secretary of state for east Asia. First, though, Stan Grant reports on China's once in a decade leadership change.

STAN GRANT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Becky, in the lead-up to this congress, there's been a lot of speculation about the future of the Communist Party, the legitimacy of the Communist Party. We know that there are more expectations now from the public. The economy is starting to slow. The gap between rich and poor is getting wider. We've seen much more social unrest.


GRANT: President Hu Jintao has warned the party they must heed the people.

China leaders past, present and future. President Hu Jintao led the Communist Party onto the stage. Behind him, his predecessor Jiang Zemin. Joining them, the annointed successor Xi Jinping.

But Hu has a stern warning, the days of power and privilege could be under threat.

"Combating corruption and promoting political integrity is a major political issue," he says. "If we fail to handle it, it could prove fatal to the party, cause the collapse of the party, and the fall of the state."

Listening on, the more than 2,200 delegates to the party congress. Every five years they meet, mapping out a new direction for a country that is now the world's second biggest economy, challenges arising, economic growth slowing, the gap between rich and poor growing wider, and the Chinese people anxious and angry.

President Hu Jintao says there is much unfinished business, the party must listen to the people.

JINTAO (through translator): We should attach greater importance to improving the system of democracy and diversifying the form of democracy to ensure that people conduct democratic elections.

GRANT: And this man must meet these challenges. Xi Jinping is the annointed next party leader, expected to be appointed at the end of the congress. Barely known outside the Communist Party, Xi is about to become one of the most powerful men on the planet.

MIKE CHINOY, CHINA ANALYST: Xi Jinping is in many ways an unknown commodity. He's risen to the top of the Chinese system by being very, very careful not to disclose what he really thinks.

GRANT: Xi's journey begins in the tumultuous era of Mao Zedong, his father a revolutionary hero, Xi one of the so-called party princelings. China watchers inside the country say his priority will be the survival of the Communist Party.


The new leadership takes over now with that message from Hu Jintao loud and clear. But it's not just about words, it's about what the party does. This is a new generation of leadership that only happens once every 10 years. The question is, are they going to be able to deliver, or will they see the party's demise. The people here are much more impatient and have much higher expectations - Becky.

ANDERSON: Stan Grant for you on the change in leadership.

Chian's not just looking at a political transition within, the new leadership will have plenty to deal with, including China's relationship of course with the west and the future of the country's economy.

Joining me now from Denver, Colorado is a regular guest on this show, Ambassador Christopher Hill who is well versed in China's global significance. As former U.S. assistant secretary state for East Asia you've probably forgotten more about China than we will ever know. But if you pick apart, for example Chris, firstly, Hu Jintao's speech earlier, what stood out for you?

CHRISTOPHER HILL, FRM. U.S. ASSISANT SECRETARY OF STATE FOR EAST ASIA: First of all, although it's not the first time, this real emphasis on corruption and what it could do to the eventual status of the party in China, he stated that in very strong terms. And I might add that the party is being challenged certainly by people beneath as your set up piece suggests, but also you know the Chinese military is kind of feeling their oats these days. And so I think Hu Jintao gave a very vigorous defense of what the party is doing and what it needs to do in the coming years.

ANDERSON: All right.

Let's talk about what the country faces going forward. Domestically first, China faces what it - a slowing economy, we know that, increasing popular protests, which is to a certain extent quite unusual, and a growing credibility gap, let me put it that way, with the Chinese middle class.

As far as sort of internal politics are concerned, what do you see happening next?

HILL: Well, first of all I agree with all those three points, but there's a fourth one I would make which is they also are facing some increasing nationalism. And a lot of this kind of deterioration of the relations with their neighbors is really coming from below in China where people are saying what's the matter government, why aren't you safeguarding our interests? Why aren't you taking care of raw materials in the South China Sea, things like that? So the government is really kind of under the gun.

So I think Xi Jinping kind of has his work cut out for him. But the thing that's really hurting them, really hurting the reputation of the government throughout the population is this corruption issue. So he has to get on top of that without creating all kinds of instabilities and really shaking the system. So it's a delicate act that he's got to perform.

ANDERSON: I wonder - OK - let's just stick with that before we talk about foreign policy. How does he get on top of corruption, which to many people watching this show tonight is something that is endemic within the country and its political elite as it were?

HILL: Well, I would agree with you it's endemic, it's all over the place. But often what they've done in the past is you make some example of some hapless person. Bo Xilai may have been an example of that. But actually bo Xilai was under the gun for other reasons. He was kind of going out and kind of appealing to the people below which kind of breaks the rules of the game.

So I think Xi Jinping will try to keep things from getting out of hand. But I would not be surprised if they made a couple of big examples of this. And if he just kept making the point that people need to clean up their act - and by the way, it is across the board this corruption problem. So it's not going to go away overnight.

ANDERSON: All right. For those of us watching the change in leadership from the outside, foreign policy and international relations of course are a primary focus.

Also, this increasingly expansionist economic policy - Owen Stulz (ph) in the Weekly Standard writing recently that through currency manipulation and expanding overseas investment he said China has pursued, and I quote, "war by other means." He said, "the Communist regime sees trade policy as merely one strategic weapon in a war aimed at overtaking the U.S. as the world's preeminent economic and military power."


HILL: I agree that some Chinese feel that way, but I would disagree that the notion that most Chinese look at things in such terms.

With regard to the issue of currency manipulator, and I guess they will not be branded a currency manipulator on January 20, I think China's actually moved the Renminbi some 11 percent against the dollar. That'll probably continue.

I think a lot of things look pretty dour if you look at the concept that China's economy is slowing down. And it is slowing down, but my understanding is that some of the third quarter numbers, that is the October numbers that are due to be released soon, will show that we might not want to count out their economy quite yet.

ANDERSON: Chris, just through the prism of foreign policy, as it were, do you expect a new leadership to be more or less inclusive? And when I say inclusive, to a certain extent I guess I mean in western terms. And I'm talking about Iran, Syria, North Korea for example.

HILL: Well, I think if you look at China's report card in recent months and years in foreign policy it hasn't gone well. They've caused all kinds of problems with their neighbors, especially in Southeast Asia where they don't need those kinds of problems. They've gotten into this confrontation with Japan over a bunch of rocks. And it really hasn't made much sense. Moreover, their inability to kind of take decisions on North Korea to move the process forward has caused increasing tensions with the U.S. So I think the new leadership will try to calm this down.

I mean, viewed from the perspective of any Chinese leadership is the desire to kind of keep things - keep the lid on things. So I suspect you will see some effort, at least in terms of atmospherics, to try to improve things with the U.S. and hope the U.S. is prepared to reciprocate.

I think the real wild card here is not only a kind of restive public that's very restive about corruption, but also a public that's becoming more nationalistic. I think the real wild card here is the Chinese military. And there is where the party, military relations are very crucial. And that was allowed to deteriorate under Hu Jintao. So let's see if Xi Jinping can do a little better job on that front.

ANDERSON: Three words stick out tonight, corruption, nationalism, and the country's military, all worth watching going forward. Chris, always a pleasure.

Ambassador Chris Hill your expert on the subject tonight.

You're watching Connect the World live from London right here on CNN. I'm Becky Anderson. Still to come, Syria's president leaves no doubt about whether he intends to flee into exile.

Will weather misery for America's east coast as the nor'easter storm moves in - I'm going to get you a full weather update after this short break.

And he's got four gold medals and a yellow jersey, but that wasn't enough to keep one of the world's best cyclists safe on the road. All that and much more after this short break. This is Connect the World.


ANDERSON: Well, Syria's president is dashing any hopes that he may slip into exile to allow for a democratic transition. Today, Bashar al- Assad told a Russian TV network that he will, and I quote, "live and die in Syria."

Mohammed Jamjoom following the story for us tonight from Beirut.

Pretty unequivocal stuff that.

What's the fallout?

MOHAMMED JAMJOOM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, Becky this is interesting this is coming just a day after British Prime Minister David Cameron actually suggested that safe passage could be arranged for Bashar al- Assad. And other countries have also offered safe passage in exchange for Bashar al-Assad halting the brutal civil war going on in Syria.

Here's more of what Bashar al-Assad had to say in that interview with Russia today.


BASHAR AL-ASSAD, PRESIDENT OF SYRIA: I love (inaudible) made by the west to go to the west or to any other country. I'm Syrian. I'm made - I'm made in Syria. And I will live in Syria and die in Syria.


JAMJOOM: In the portion of the interview that aired today - the rest of it is supposed to air tomorrow, Becky - the portion of the interview that aired today, Bashar al-Assad also issued a warning, an ominous warning against any type of foreign intervention in Syria saying that that would have catastrophic - catastrophic consequences not just for the region, but for the entire world.

Now meanwhile in Syria today, the violence continued unabated. At last count, opposition activists say that at least 92 people killed as a result of violence there, particularly in Damascus. There's been intense clashes in and around Damascus these last few days, only getting worse there. We've heard dozens killed there alone today in and around the capital of Syria, this all happening when the SNC, which is the main umbrella organization for the opposition in Syria, they've been meeting in Doha, Qatar trying to bring in more opposition groups into that fold so that there can be more unity amongst the opposition groups in Syria. We're waiting to hear more about what they've been talking about today and if they've actually succeeded.

But in another sign of just how dire the situation is in Syria, today the International Committee for the Red Cross announced that it is so dire in Syria, that the humanitarian situation is getting so much worse day by day, that they can no longer fully cope with the situation, that the aid workers on the ground because of the factors on the ground there are no longer able to deliver the type of aid that they need to to the people suffering in Syria - Becky.

ANDERSON: Mohammed, thank you for that. Mohammed Jamjoom covering the story for you out of Beirut this evening.

Moving on - and one New Jersey mayor calls it Mother Nature's one-two punch. Just a week after superstorm Sandy, another storm spreading misery across the northeastern United States.

Ms. Jenny Harrison is tracking what's known as the nor'easter from CNN's international weather center.

And Jen, we talked about this last night, it's like just as you thought things were going to get better for people on the eastern seaboard, this happens. What are the details at this point?

JENNY HARRISON, CNN WEATHER CORRESPONDENT: I know - well, you know, the good news really Becky is that it has continued to move away from New York. It is still impacting the northeast generally, certainly Boston. You can see here again the last few hours a lot of rain, still some sleet and some snow. The winds are coming down as the system moves further away. But you know, one of the latest things, Becky, is just like last week after superstorm Sandy, Mayor Bloomberg in New York has now once again and gone back to rationing petrol, gasoline - depending on where you're from. And what they're saying this time is that it depends on your license plate number. So odd numbers, even numbers, they can only go and fill up on different days, because literally there's such a problem.

And apparently even in New York now in the city itself only a quarter of the city's petrol stations are actually open for business.

So things are really, you know, taking awhile. And it will still take awhile to actually get back to anything like normality.

But look at the winds that came through. These are some of the peak wind gusts at the time. The storm, as I say, continuing to weaken, but a wind gust here 122 kilometers an hour, 105 kilometers an hour. So these are really strong, damaging winds.

And then look at some of the snow totals. Literally, this is Wednesday through into Thursday. So Connecticut, Clintonville, 34 centimeters, that's over a foot of snow. There is some more snow in the forecast in and around New York. And by the way, some of those totals are more than November and December combined what they normally see.

But the good news, the lighter end of all this tunnel really Becky is I think the temperatures - look at New York for the next few days. By Sunday, 18 degrees Celsius, so actually above average. We'll see some good sunshine. And the overnight temperatures are also actually once again up to the average, actually a little bit above.

So after all this that has continued, and it is improving, the weather will certainly improve Becky and that warmer weather has surely got to be a good thing for all those people in New York across the whole area without any power, any form of heating.

ANDERSON: I was going to say, especially if they've got to walk home any petrol.

Jen, thank you for that.

The climate change naysayers really have got no argument at the moment, have they? This is ridiculous. Nearly 20 degrees by the weekend, though, at the moment in New York.

Britain's prime minister has warned of the dangers of creating a witch hunt against gay people after being shown a list live on British daytime TV of suspected pedophiles. Dan Rivers with more on that for you.


DAN RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: In recent weeks, Britain has been shocked at numerous allegations that TV personality Jimmy Saville was allegedly a predatory child abuser in the 1970s. Now the allegations have prompted other, separate claims of historic child abuse concerning former and current politicians. Some have been named on internet gossip sites.

There's no suggestion of a link with Saville, but it appears amid the widespread coverage of Saville, victims of other crimes are willing to come forward, perhaps feeling their stories are now more likely to be believed.

That's the context for an awkward moment on Thursday when British prime minister David Cameron was confronted with the names of former politicians alleged to be pedophiles during ITV's This Morning talk show.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have those names there. Those are the names on a piece of paper. You know the names on that piece of paper. Will you be speaking to those people?

DAVID CAMERON, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: I think, Philip, this is really important, right, because there is a danger if we're not careful that this could turn into a sort of witch hunt, particularly against people who are gay. And I'm worried about the sort of thing you're doing right now giving me a list of names that you've taken off the internet.

RIVERS: Unknown to the host, the names of the former politicians on the piece of paper were visible to viewers at home. The host has subsequently apologized for the lapse.

A gay rights activists has criticized the prime minister to linking pedophiles and gay people.

The police are already looking into various historic child abuse allegations in Britain from decades ago. The problem is that in this age of Twitter and social media rumors, speculation and downright slander about possible perpetrators are rife on the internet with no possible way of knowing if any of it is true or it's a malicious witch hunt against politicians who are entirely innocent.

Downing Street has condemned the TV chat show ambush warning about trial by Twitter.

Dan Rivers, CNN, London.


ANDERSON: Moving on.

And it's been a shocking 24 hours for British professional cycling, I'm afraid. Late Wednesday, Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins was hit by a car as he rode past a petrol station in northwest England. The four time Olympic gold medalist was thrown from his bike and taken to hospital with broken ribs. Wiggins has since been released. Just hours after that accident, Shane Sutton who is the head coach of the UK cycling team was also hit by a car in northwest England. He suffered bruising and bleeding on the brain and could be in hospital for several days.

We're going to take a very short break for you. When we come back, Christiano Ronaldo speaks exclusively with my colleague Pedro Pinto. Hear why the Portuguese football star thinks he should be world footballer of the year. That coming up.


ANDERSON: Splish, splash, posh (ph) he's played in European Championships and World Cups, won England's Premier League, the Champion's League and La Liga, but does that mean Pedro Pinto - sorry, does that mean Christiano Ronaldo is satisfied he sat down with our Pedro Pinto in and exclusive interview. Woudln't you like to have played in all of those competitions and all those things? I know you were quite good.

PEDRO PINTO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Well, not that great. I think most kids growing up dream of being some kind of professional sports person and I wasn't any different.

ANDERSON: But Christiano Ronaldo is.

PINTO: Yeah. He is. And...

ANDERSON: about you. Let's talk about Christiano Ronaldo, go on.

PINTO: Let's talk about Christiano. I was in Madrid last week, had the pleasure of sitting down and doing an exclusive interview with him. And of course quite a major individual award is coming up soon, the Ballon d'Or. And I asked him about that and about his image as well.


PINTO: We're approaching the end of the year and that means the Ballon d'Or is around the corner. Be honest with me, how much do you want to win it?

CHRISTIANO RONALDO, FOOTBALLER: A lot. This is mean a lot for me.

PINTO: I spoke with some - with some journalists who voted for the last award where I was presenting in Monaco, the European footballer of the year, and some of them may have voted for Messi because they like Messi more than they like you, not the football but the image. Do you think sometimes you're a victim of that?

RONALDO: I don't want to cry about that, but sometimes I think, yes.


RONALDO: Why? It's a question that I never give 100 percent the right answer, because sometimes I really don't know. Maybe sometimes I agree maybe I have bad image in the pitch, because I'm too serious, I take serious, but if you really know me, if you are my friend, if you live inside my house, if you share the day with me you will know that I hate to lose.

PINTO: So when they say you're arrogant, for example, what does that make you feel?

RONALDO: The people who call me arrogant, most of them are like one day to seat with them and have a, you know, a chat with them to see which way they see that I am arrogant, because I think they have to sit with me to speak with me to know the - who is the real Christiano.

PINTO: so who is the real Christiano?

RONALDO: Well, I will describe myself like I am a friend of who is my friend - I hate to lose. I'm honest. I'm direct person.

PINTO: Do you think you pay the price for being too honest then?

RONALDO: Sometimes, yes. Definitely, yes. But this is part of my education.

PINTO: Christiano's education as a player is a responsibility Real Madrid Jose Mourinho has right now. I wanted to get Ronaldo's thoughts on his fellow countryman.

RONALDO: Well, my relationship with him is perfect. I'm sure 100 percent - 200 percent that is the best coach. Of course he deserve - he show every country which he is the best because he wins all the leagues. So, for me, the best coach is they have to show in many places. And he showed.


ANDERSON: It's a fantastic interview, listen.

To honest, or as many people would say too arrogant?

PINTO: Look, I've known him for a long time, and I know a lot of people think, oh, Pedro's Portuguese, Christiano's Portuguese, obviously he's not going to say anything bad about him.

It's not about that. It's honestly, he has paid the price for his distant, serious, and sometimes petulant --


PINTO: -- attitude on the field, but off it, he's always been great.


PINTO: And time after time, I've had a chance to interview him, he's always humble, and he hasn't changed with the fame. At least from a personal perspective.

ANDERSON: And let's remind ourselves and our viewers how good he is on the field.

PINTO: Yes, he's amazing. Right? I mean, he's got more -- yes, he's got more than goals than games since he moved to Real Madrid, and this year is no exception.

ANDERSON: Will he win the Ballon D'Or?

PINTO: You really want to put me on the spot?

ANDERSON: Seriously.

PINTO: I think he's not the favorite.


PINTO: Because Messi still had more goals than Christiano did last year. And if you look at titles, than Ronaldo would deserve it. So, from a statistics point of view, as far as titles, it's Ronaldo. But again, with the image, Messi's got a better image. So, a lot of people go on that, as well.

ANDERSON: How do you say his name in the Portuguese accent?

PINTO: Christiano Ronaldo.

ANDERSON: Thank you.

PINTO: Can you try that?

ANDERSON: No. I'm going to do much more --

PINTO: Right.


ANDERSON: -- on CNN with Pedro -- no, Pedro's going to do much more of that interview with that guy whose name I don't pronounce properly, so I'm not going to do it at all. It debuts a week from Friday, 4:30 in the afternoon here in London only on CNN. Do not miss that. "Christiano Ronaldo" -- in an English accent -- "All Access."

You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD live from London. Still to come, from Spain to Greece, the eurozone crisis has spread misery across the continent. Up next, Europe's largest economy is starting to feel the strain.

And a dog show not to be sniffed at, especially as it boasts some top fashion names. That coming up with your headlines after this.


ANDERSON: A very warm welcome back to our viewers across Europe and around the world. I'm Becky Anderson, this is CNN. These are the latest world news headlines for you.

China's outgoing president says if corruption isn't eliminated, it could lead to the collapse of the Communist Party. Hu Jintao spoke at the Communist Party Congress in Beijing. Senior party members are endorsing a new leadership team. Vice President Xi Jinping is expected to become head of the party.

Bashar al-Assad says that he will, quote, "live and die" in Syria. The country's president told a Russian TV network that he's not a puppet of the West and won't accept any offers for safe passage into exile.

New York City is going to start rationing fuel to motorists after a storm blasted through the northeastern US, inflicting more misery on people already struggling with damage from Super Storm Sandy. The nor'easter, as it's called, knocked out power to tens of thousands of homes and businesses.

And US mass shooter Jared Loughner has been sentenced to life in prison without parole for an attack in Arizona in January 2011. He killed six people, also wounded 13, including Gabrielle Giffords, then a member of the US House of Representatives.

After the Dow suffered its worst day of the year on Wednesday, markets on both sides of the Atlantic, well, they ended the day down once again. Let's take a look at the numbers and see how the market closed out.

We've got 121-odd points off, that's nearly 1 percent for the Dow Industrials, not nearly as bad a session as we had yesterday, but still not good. The NASDAQ off 1.5 percent. Two markets in Europe pretty much reflecting the way we saw the trading day, here. The FTSE off about a fifth of one percent or a quarter of one percent. The Xetra DAX down nearly four tenths of one percent.

The bad news, I'm afraid, just keeps coming. The European Central Bank's president today warning that economic activity will remain weak in the eurozone both this year and next. There was no immediate relief, with both the ECB and the Bank of England keeping interest rates on hold. Some talk that rates might be lowered to help things out. That didn't happen.

Up until now, Germany has been seen as the rock of stability, of course, in this European economic crisis, calling the shots while others pretty much struggle to survive. Frederik Pleitgen is in Berlin this evening.

And Fred, even Europe's largest economy, now, it seems beginning to struggle to weather this storm. Certainly that's what we're seeing from the latest numbers.

FRED PLEITGEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It certainly is what we're seeing, Becky, and those numbers are not promising at all. And if you remember, Mario Draghi in his speech on Wednesday also said that so far the German economy has been, quote, "insulated" from the worst of the eurozone crisis.

But he says that now it does seem to really be taking effect here in this country, and certainly the latest numbers do indicate that, or more than indicate that, they show that. Remember, this is an export-driven economy.

Well, exports in September in Germany were down by 2.5 percent. That's a huge number, and that's also starting to hit small and medium- sized businesses, which are the backbone of the economy here in this country. I visited one of them today. Here's what I saw.


PLEITGEN, (voice-over): You'd be surprised how many parts in your car are taped in place these days. The Gustav Schamau company molds special industrial adhesives, and much of its production goes to the automobile industry.

But that industry is in trouble do to the euro crisis, and this firm near Berlin is feeling the pinch, the director tells me.

"The crisis is affecting us," he says. "We don't have cancellations yet, but companies are ordering smaller quantities. Of course, that is a problem."

The euro crisis has reached the continent's biggest and so far most resilient economy. Industrial giant Siemens just announced a 6 billion euro cost-cutting plan, saying layoffs could also be part of measures to make the company leaner.

Mercedes-Benz wants to save about 2 billion euros by the end of 2014, with demand in Europe in a slump.

And GM subsidiary Opel says it will have to slash thousands of jobs and possibly close plants. But those are just a few examples. Across the board, German exports saw a steep decline in September as has industrial production.

A prolonged economic downturn would also be a threat to Germany's role as a leader combating the eurozone's economic troubles. Chancellor Angela Merkel's rescue course for the euro has never been popular, especially among politicians in her own governing coalition. And experts say a weak German economy will make it even tough to lead, though in the end, the Germans might have little choice.

JAN U. HAGEN, ECONOMIST, ESMT-BERLIN: It might be a little bit tougher getting things through Parliament, but since we have this consensus that Germany is integrated into Europe, I think the political side will definitely not shy away from these rescue measures.

PLEITGEN (on camera): It's inevitable that the euro crisis will also hit companies like this one. The only way for mid-sized firms to thrive and to survive in the crisis is to keep innovating and find new markets for their products.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): Something the Gustav Schamau company managed to do in the past. The firm is almost 100 years old and used to produce string for packaging. Then one day, management decided tape would be the future, a decision that paid off. Soon, management might need to make further bold moves to remain profitable.


PLEITGEN: And Becky, the big thing that we're going to be watching the next couple of months, the next couple of weeks is the development of the labor market here in Germany. Jobs are really the big benchmark for political success or failure here in this country.

Angela Merkel facing a big election next year on whether or not she's going to remain chancellor. And of course, if Germany gets weaker, if the job market gets weaker, it's going to be a whole lot harder to push through further eurozone rescue packages, Becky.

ANDERSON: Yes. Listen, I've got a horrible feeling that this is a very critical time for Europe and could be a watershed moment. Stay with me. I want our viewers just to take a look, for example, at the latest Greek unemployment numbers.

The unemployment rate in Greece today, we are told, has climbed sharply since the economic crisis began in 2008. In January of that year, it was just 7.8 percent. Since then, just have a look at this. It has tripled since then. The latest figures show Greece's unemployment rate at a record high of 25.4 percent in August.

We know Greece is in a mess, Fred. But hearing and seeing that the European engine of growth is also beginning to slow down, that being Germany, is critical for countries like Greece, Spain, Portugal, as we move forward.

When those countries, of course, aren't buying from Germany, we see a slowdown in what is an export-led economy. How do you think Germany's economic problems will affect or impact Angela Merkel's ability to deal with this eurozone crisis given, as you say, she faces an election in March?

PLEITGEN: Yes. It's going to have potentially a huge effect, and all that is going to depend on how the labor market here in Germany is going to be affected. If you look back to the year 2005 to the Gerhard Schroder government, that government was basically voted out of office because unemployment was so high.

Now, imagine trying to push through very unpopular measures to save or to bail out other countries when unemployment here is high, when people here are suffering themselves. That's going to be very difficult.

And we have to keep in mind that most of the people who were very critical of Angela Merkel's course of putting money into countries like Greece, into countries like Spain, into countries like Ireland, come from Angela Merkel's own governing coalition.

From the Christian Democratic Union, from the liberal party, they did not want to do this. Politicians from those parties earlier in this year were saying we should let Greece go bankrupt, for instance.

If the economic situation here in this country gets worse, you're going to hear a lot more of that, and it's going to become very, very difficult for Germany to lead in the eurozone crisis. And quite frankly, who's going to lead if Germany doesn't?

France is in a difficult situation. Italy is obviously still in a difficult situation. If German -- if the German economy really does worse, it's going to be very, very difficult to push through any further measures to save the euro, Becky.

ANDERSON: Yes, interesting times. Fred, always a pleasure, thank you very much, indeed. Fred Pleitgen for you out of Berlin this evening. We're going to take a very short break. Back after this.


ANDERSON: Well, China is a country undergoing massive transformation, not only politically, but also culturally. In this week's edition of our Human to Hero series, we're going to speak to sculptor Xiang Jing about the changes she's lived through and how they have inspired her work. Have a look at this.


XIANG JING, SCULPTOR (through translator): My sculpture is just a channel. Sculpting is ideal for creating something in a space, be it a person or an object. It's something real. It captures something of the world we live in.

I'm interested in people. I'm interested in presenting people's emotions.

I lived through the Cultural Revolution, then the Reform, and the Opening Up period, then the recent years of rapid economic growth. These have been the decades of most dramatic changes in China.

Meanwhile, contemporary Chinese art was born and developed within the last 30 years. I spend most of the time thinking. I would draw a sketch, some kind of drawing, with the measurements, which I give to my assistants to work on.

They then make as steel structure. I use clay to give it form. It's a very traditional way of sculpting.

I eat very little, sleep very little, and become very thin. But that is only physical exhaustion. The most torturing time for me is when I'm thinking through the whole structure. The actual work takes a year and a half to complete.

This horse was exhibited last year. It's part of my latest series.

When I was working on these two, I felt that they both have their eyes closed, they might never be able to communicate with each other. However, they are getting closer and closer together. These two faces give you the impression that the nostrils are breathing, as if they're smelling something. Their mouths look as if they are about to open. It is a feeling.

I often revisit my previous works. These works were not really well done. The more I've done, the more mature I've become and the more thought I've put in. When I look at them, I get very touched all of a sudden.

I want my art to awaken the senses of each onlooker.



ANDERSON: Cutting through the ancient city of Istanbul, the Bosphorus is where East meets West. But more than just a dividing line, this narrow stretch of water is one of the world's most significant trading routes.

In this month's Gateway series, we focus on this vital trading artery and start by looking at just how difficult it is to navigate one of the world's busiest waterways.


ANDERSON (voice-over): Istanbul, a city divided by water. Trade flows continuously through its strait, the Bosphorus, one of the world's busiest waterways. Narrow and difficult to navigate, large vessels often require a helping hand from the locals.

ALI COMERT, PILOT, TURKISH MARITIME PILOTS' ASSOCIATION: We are approaching the rest of the vessels now. You can see the boat just ahead of us.

ANDERSON: On the Marmara Sea south of Istanbul, Ali Comert has assist the crew of a 155-meter container vessel heading for the Black Sea.

COMERT: Hello, Captain, how are you? You are carrying containers up to (inaudible)?

OK? So, our speed, four knots, right now.

We are insight Istanbul Strait. About 50 million people living here, so it's not surprising to meet many, many boats and ships here.

ANDERSON: With seven years of experience under his belt, his knowledge will be crucial to the successful passage through these waters.

ANDERSON (on camera): This Maersk container vessel is one of 50,000 that will make its way up the straits every year. It takes about an hour and a half to do this 20-mile journey safely.

ANDERSON (voice-over): The strait's sharp turns and treacherous currents can be a challenge for the most experienced of captains.

ANDILINO BATANGAN, CAPTAIN, MAERSK ANTWERP: I've been a captain commanding a vessel for nine years, now. I think I've seen most of the ports in the world except this place. It's a good training ground for new captains. But for me as an experienced captain, what I see is that its additional knowledge for me, additional experience.

ANDERSON: Eight radar towers dotted along the coast will monitor the vessel's progress. Every approach to the boat is to be signaled, ever turn anticipated.

COMERT: There are many sharp turns, almost about 12 course alterations are in Istanbul Strait. Most of them, more than 30, 40 degrees. We have the sharpest turn of Istanbul Strait, it was 90 degrees here, and there is a sheep overtaking us.

East two-five, port five.

So, you have to feel how much it is turning. If you delay, you are on the other side of the Istanbul Strait. If you turn early, you can go too close to the port side, to shallow water.

ANDERSON: With the sharpest turn behind him and the Black Sea in sight, Ali's job is done.

COMERT: All right, thank you very much. Have a nice day.

All Turkish pilots, we are proud of our job and we do it with pleasure. Even if we pass 500 times a career the same strait, it is never boring for us, because this is one of the most beautiful parts of the world.


ANDERSON: First in this month's Gateway series.

In tonight's Parting Shots, one of the most glamorous events on London's canine fashion calendar. Earlier, I went behind the scenes to meet some of the models. Have a look at this.



ANDERSON: Hello, Diesel. Hi! Well! This is going to be one of our models.


ANDERSON: We hope.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We have a look at Diesel. She's a little mongrel.

ANDERSON (voice-over): Pedigree may be missing, but Diesel is about to join's London's A-listers on the red carpet. She's among the homeless hounds being bathed and brushed. And then sized up --


ANDERSON: -- for a high-end fashion show at the annual Collars and Coats gala ball, a charity to raise funds for the Battersea Dogs and Cats Home, some models proving higher-maintenance than others.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Come here. Come on.

ANDERSON: And they'll need to be on their best behavior, they say, to make the cut. Selected to don exclusive doggie wear designed by some of the biggest names in fashion.

ANDERSON (on camera): Nineteen by thirty-three. Do you think that's one going to --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think he will, yes.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He's quite the nice wear, and he's quite broad at the front.

ANDERSON (voice-over): Perfect for this Trevor Pickett design.

CLAIRE HORTON, CEO, BATTERSEA DOGS AND CATS HOME: This is a bit of a two-way thing, because it comes -- yes, well, it comes. So it comes --


ANDERSON (on camera): To the owner, of course.

HORTON: Well, only half of it for the owner.


HORTON: That might be for the owner.


HORTON: This would be something to keep out the winter chill.



HORTON: That is water for the dog. Actually, you can probably swap them around.

ANDERSON: You can?

HORTON: And then, this side, you have everything you need for walking the dog. Poo bags.

ANDERSON: Oh, gorgeous!

HORTON: Clean up those little accidents.


HORTON: And then on here, you have for the water, a little water bowl. Look at that!

ANDERSON (voice-over): Jeremey Hackett, Jenny Packham, Matthew Williamson, just some of the fashionistas donating designs for the ball's charity auction. But it's abandoned racing dog Connor who's been selected to wear the piece tipped to fetch the highest price.

ANDERSON (on camera): So you have designed a Faberge collar for Connor.

KATHARINA FLOHR, DESIGNER, FABERGE: Well, look, Connor, here it is. Absolutely.

ANDERSON: You're going to enjoy this, I hope you will. What was the inspiration.

FLOHR: Well, the inspiration was a stone-carved sculpture by Faberge that was made for Edward VII, actually, to commemorate his favorite beloved dog, and it had an enamel collar on it with the inscription, "I belong to the king."

Oh, this is looking very nice, indeed.

ANDERSON (voice-over): The Cinderellas of the dog world given their makeover and now ready to go to the ball.

ANDERSON: Let's just see what you look like.

HORTON: Come here!

ANDERSON: Oh, look!


ANDERSON: The -- mid weight.


ANDRSON: Oh! That's Wilma! And the ball on as we speak. I'm Becky Anderson, that was CONNECT THE WORLD. Good evening.