What's in a word?

Frank Abate abatefr at EARTHLINK.NET
Sat Apr 21 14:43:25 UTC 2001

Someone with close knowledge of preferences among Chinese diplomatic
translators for their Eng-Chi dict might know, but I suspect that "regret"
did not translate into what the Chinese were looking for, but "sorry" did,
no matter the context and how it may have been reported in China.  To the US
side, the statements were essentially the same, expressing regret/sorrow
over the death of the Chinese pilot.

It would be interesting to know if the US side realized that "sorry" was the
key word to use.  Of course in English, the qualified use of "sorry" in the
statement was still not an apology for the _incident_.

Frank Abate

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