Monday, 8 September 2008

Comment : From French to English to Russian, A mess that could have been avoided

Georgia peace deal lost in translation. Peter Allen, The Telegraph
"...Bernard Kouchner told a meeting of EU foreign ministers at the weekend that the ceasefire agreement was written in French before being translated into English and then Russian. Asked what problems surrounded the buffer zones, Mr Kouchner replied: "The translation, as always....
...One reason for the continuation of the conflict now appears to be a passage in the Russian translation of the agreement that speaks of security "for" South Ossetia and Abkhazia. The English version speaks of security "in" the two areas....
...The farce is a huge blow to the French belief that theirs is a lingua franca, spoken and understood the world over. In fact French has long been replaced by English as the language of diplomacy, and is becoming increasingly irrelevant to the international community...."

Finally, the French establishment might be starting to understand what the ALL French people has already integrated in their way of life :
"...Last week French education minister Xavier Darcos admitted that "the secret of success" for French youngsters nowadays was to speak English..."
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