While we have all been paying attention to the presidential debates this week, the UN has been very busy indeed. Between the Middle East Melt Down, Syria and Turkey, Iran and North Korea the Evil West’s ears should be burning.
So… with limited time before my sobriety subsides…
Today’s Modern Language lesson will be in North Korean.
(I’m not sure how many of you speak North Korean, but if you do, feel free to skip ahead where comfortable.)
North Korean is a unique language, beautiful in its flow and tonal value. When you are subject to it, becoming completely lost is not uncommon. So let’s explore this treasure of the Pacific.
North Korean representative Pak Kil Yon addressed the United nations with an important message.
“Today, due to the continued U.S. hostile policy towards the DPRK…[and] the vicious cycle of confrontation and aggravation of tension is an ongoing phenomenon on the Korean peninsula, which has become the world’s most dangerous hotspot where a spark of fire could set off a thermonuclear war.”
(I realize most of you will have trouble with the pronunciations and subtle nuances of foreign languages, but don’t get discouraged, I can help with the translation and you guys can work on the intonation at home in your free time.)
Translation of the above quote: “Send Food!”
I know what you’re thinking… but just like the Germans, the North Koreans seems to use far too much verbage to make a simple statement. It’s part of the charm.
Here is another quote we can work on;
“The only way to prevent war and ensure lasting piece on the Korean peninsula is to put an end to the U.S. hostile policy towards the DPRK.”
I’ll give you folks a few minutes to work on this one by yourselves……….
OK. Got it? Right! Very Good!
“Send Food or We’ll Kill You!”
See? North Korean really isn’t that difficult.
If any of you are interested in trying to translate the entire speech, you can find it on the internet. But we’ve completed the heavy lifting with the above translations. It’s fascinating to note the apparent attitude of ‘enable us to continue oppressing our people or we’ll start a war” feeling you get from these quotes. While it’s possible to misinterpret tone when performing these types of translations, we have a long history working with North Korean to know this is exactly the tone they wish to convey. It’s such a lovely culture. I hope you appreciate it as much as I do.
Next week: Iranian