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  1. #1
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    Default Dear sir,I get confused

    I came across in Times today:"in the best tradition of our foreign policy,politics will continue to stop at the water's edge." What does the "stop at the water's edge"mean? stop from doing more wrongs or get away from some kind of threat?
    and here's another:"the probe into the financial dealings of the president and his wife last until Election Day 1996--water-drip torture for the President." Here the "water-drip torture" means a long time suffering? Thanks for your time.

  2. #2
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
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    Default Re: Dear sir,I get confused

    "Stop at the water's edge" - can/will go no further

    "drip-water torture" - an ongoing unavoidable situation which is painful (emotionally, financially, physically, psychologically - all or any of these)

  3. #3
    MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    Default Re: Dear sir,I get confused

    Quote Originally Posted by babyno1 View Post
    I came across in Times today:"in the best tradition of our foreign policy,politics will continue to stop at the water's edge." What does the "stop at the water's edge"mean? stop from doing more wrongs or get away from some kind of threat?
    and here's another:"the probe into the financial dealings of the president and his wife last until Election Day 1996--water-drip torture for the President." Here the "water-drip torture" means a long time suffering? Thanks for your time.
    Based on the context of your first sentence, it means that politicians will not not attack the administration's foreign policy when they are overseas.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Dear sir,I get confused

    I'm not sure about the context (could you link to the article), but assuming that this the Times of London and not, say, the New York Times, then it's talking about British foreign policy. Britain is an island (well, one-and-a-bit islands, but that's a minor quibble to everyone except the Irish), and so the water's edge could be the shores of the island itself. In other words, the Times might be saying that those people responsible for Britain's foreign policy are only concerned with Britain; and they will continue to be concerned only with Britain. The Times could be using irony to criticize the government's narrow-minded policies.

    "Water-drip torture" refers to what we traditionally call "Chinese water torture", although I hasten to add that there is no evidence it was ever used by the Chinese. It involved slowly dripping water on the victim's forehead; apparently, after a long time, this can drive a person mad. Metaphorically, it means any kind of situation that creates tension and continues for a long time without ever being resolved.

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