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Episode 1537

Bug in Your Ear

Is there something inherent in English that makes it the linguistic equivalent of the Borg, dominating and consuming other languages in its path? No, not at all. The answer lies with politics and conquest rather than language itself. Plus: a new...

compellance

compellance  n.— «The truth is that most political observers in Pakistan have become knee-jerk and non-cerebral, giving Pakistan’s enemy a handle through what is called “compellance”: get the enemy to do what it wants to do for self...

string of pearls

string of pearls  n.— «The second event has been much quieter but has more ominous implications, Beijing’s steady expansion of its “string of pearls” strategy. A new phrase coined by geo-strategists’ for Chinese efforts to...

spot-fixing

spot-fixing  n.— «Although police have not ruled it out, both Mr Ashraf and the team spokesman, PJ Mir, dismissed speculation that Mr Woolmer’s death was linked to match-fixing and a practice known as “spot-fixing,” or betting...

black-coat

black-coat  n.— «The “black-coats” as the lawyers are being affectionately called these days, have never shown this kind of unity, nor this temerity, before.» —by Masud Alam in Islamabad, Pakistan BBC...