Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.
Earlier this week, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni signed a bill into law, introducing life imprisonment for those who engage in "aggravated homosexuality." Just one day later, a tabloid newspaper in Uganda published a list of the country's "top 200 homosexuals." Surveys show that 96% of the Ugandan public says society should not be accepting of homosexuality.
But where has this anti-gay sentiment in Uganda come from? One source may be that of American evangelical Christians, who have assumed a growing influence in the country and advocated against gay lifestyles.
One of the most well known is American pastor and lawyer Scott Lively. Becky spoke with him about his missionary work on Connect the World. She began by asking Lively for his reaction to the new law in Uganda.
"I have mixed feelings about that," Lively said. "I support parts of it, the parts that have increased penalties for homosexual abuse of children and intentionally spreading AIDS through sodomy. But the parts dealing with simple homosexuality I don't agree with. They're far too harsh."
Lively said that Ugandan culture and history itself was the main source of the anti-gay sentiment seen there. "No American evangelicals taught the Ugandans how to be against homosexuality," he said.
When asked whether he was an extremist, Lively replied that "an extremist is in the eye of the beholder."
While the world waits to see how the political uncertainty in Ukraine will play out, Becky spoke with Ian Bremmer about the possible outcomes. Bremmer is the President of Eurasia Group, a political risk consultancy.
Becky asked Bremmer about the ongoing influence of Russia in determining Ukraine's future. He said it remains strong, despite the recent ouster of Kremlin-friendly leader Viktor Yanukovych.
"You and I are talking about Ukraine today," Bremmer said. "In six months, we won't be, but the Russians will still be there and their ability to close this place down to everybody but Russia is pretty significant."
With unrest festering in eastern regions of Ukraine, Becky and Bremmer also discussed the possibility of separation within the country. He said it's not very plausible in the near term, but could be a concern in the medium term – especially as international actors are likely to grow weary of Ukraine's new leadership.
"There's a reason why the Europeans and the Americans didn't bother to give these guys any money until after a hundred Ukrainians were dead," Bremmer said. "And it's because they were saying 'we don't want to work with these folks, they're not going to reform, they're not going to engage.' That doesn't change miraculously just because they've been in the news for a week."