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Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

London dry thanks to '80s-era marvel

February 12th, 2014
04:19 PM ET

The Thames Barrier is a flood defence system of epic proportions, put in place more than 30 years ago to protect London from mass flood damage.

More than 1 million people live and work in the area it protects, along with nearly $300 billion worth of assets.

The recent wet weather means that it's been working overtime.

Max went to find out how the Barrier and the agency operating it are coping.


Filed under:  Environment • Weather

Publicist: America needed Shirley Temple

February 12th, 2014
03:11 PM ET

World renowned child star and former U.S. Ambassador Shirley Temple Black passed away at age 85 on Tuesday.

Max spoke to the Black family publicist Cheryl Kagan about her memories of Temple.

Kagan, who knew Black personally, said that she had lived a happy, full, and busy life.

"I think what you saw on the screen and on the air was the real Shirley Temple. She was a kind, charismatic, wonderful mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and had been married for 55 years to the late Charles Alden Black. She was an amazing actress, author, and ambassador, and I think her movies are timeless."

Kagan also says that America needed Temple Black at the time she rose to stardom as she was able to "take people's cares away."

Her transition to politics and diplomacy also wasn't as unexpected as it might seem. "She actually co-starred in a movie with Ronald Reagan... She was an amazing woman who could recreate herself and reinvent herself."

Black’s postings as a U.S. Ambassador included stints in Ghana and the former Czechoslovakia. But her experiences as a child star never left her. "She grew up in Hollywood, that was a part of who she was."

Text: Famed former child actress Shirley Temple dies

Text: Appreciation: Shirley Temple, the model child star

Filed under:  American politics • Celebrity • Hollywood

Franco-American Relations

February 12th, 2014
02:08 PM ET

Ten years ago the relationship between the U.S. and France was so strained over the Iraq War that some restaurants in the U.S. began calling French fries "freedom fries".

Now, U.S. president Barack Obama is hosting the French president, Francois Hollande, at the White House for a lavish State Dinner.

In a joint press conference Obama pointed out the changed relationship between the countries.

"This level of partnership, across so many areas, would have been unimaginable even a decade ago. But it's a testament to how our two nations have worked to transform our alliance, and I want to salute President Hollande for carrying this work forward."

Text: Politics with a side of caviar: Obama welcomes Hollande at state dinner

Filed under:  American politics • France • Global Connections • United States

Weather expert: "be prepared for the worst"

February 12th, 2014
01:36 PM ET

Is the recent spate of extreme weather around the globe a result of climate change?

Max spoke to Bob Henson, a meteorologist at the U.S. National Center for Atmospheric Research, to find out what’s behind the major snowstorms in the U.S. and the devastating flooding in the UK.

Agreeing that climate change is playing a role, Henson says in recent years is that "when it's raining or snowing hard, it tends to be raining or snowing a little bit harder."

He attributes the more extreme weather we're seeing now to the change in sea levels. "Sea levels are undoubtedly and absolutely rising, and are expected to continue to do so, at least by a few inches over the coming decades, possibly by as much as a foot by the end of the century."

This impacts the weather on land because "storms move and strike on top of an existing sea level that's getting higher and higher, so that makes the storms even more able to inflict serious damage."

As governments try to figure out how to tackle this issue, Henson offered this piece of advice: "You have to be prepared for the worst you might expect, and that worst might be worse than anything you've ever seen."

Text: Floods hit homes in England as wild weather batters Europe

Text: Whiteout, then blackouts as frigid Northeast digs out of snowstorm

Filed under:  Climate change • Environment • United Kingdom • United States • Weather