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Thread: comprehension

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    Default comprehension

    1) "And like their kind in the past, they will flame and fail and suffer defeat by free men and women," Bush declared.

    In dictionary, I only see "flame" meaning "to become suddenly bright" or "to burn brightly". But what does it mean here?


    2) The speech came as Kerry has stepped up his criticism of Bush's prosecution of both the war in Iraq and the war on terror.

    I assume that "prosecution" has nothing to do with laws here. What does it mean here?


    3) "It will be difficult for America to promote democratic change, given the great failure in Iraq," said Wahid Abdel Maguid, "The model doesn't exist, plus the U.S. doesn't have the moral credibility that it used to have to impose its will on other countries."

    Is the blue part an "attributive clause"? If not, does it suggest that "the US doesn't have the moral credibility because(so that?) it used to have to impose its will on other countries?

    Thank you very much. :wink:

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    Default Re: comprehension

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe
    1) "And like their kind in the past, they will flame and fail and suffer defeat by free men and women," Bush declared.

    In dictionary, I only see "flame" meaning "to become suddenly bright" or "to burn brightly". But what does it mean here?
    In this case, it seems to mean "to flash suddenly" and then burn out.


    2) The speech came as Kerry has stepped up his criticism of Bush's prosecution of both the war in Iraq and the war on terror.

    I assume that "prosecution" has nothing to do with laws here. What does it mean here?
    It means to pursue a process to completion. It is often used with "war".

    3) "It will be difficult for America to promote democratic change, given the great failure in Iraq," said Wahid Abdel Maguid, "The model doesn't exist, plus the U.S. doesn't have the moral credibility that it used to have to impose its will on other countries."

    Is the blue part an "attributive clause"? If not, does it suggest that "the US doesn't have the moral credibility because(so that?) it used to have to impose its will on other countries?

    Thank you very much. :wink:
    That clause modifies "credibility". It can be removed, leaving "credibility to impose its will on other countries".

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    Default Re: comprehension

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork
    That clause modifies "credibility". It can be removed, leaving "credibility to impose its will on other countries".
    Mike, I have two more questions:
    1) Does "used to have" suggest that "the US had the credibility in the past but it has none of that now"?

    2) I think I can understand that sentence if it was "...the US doesn't have the moral credibility that it used to have to bring democracies to these countries". I think "to impose its will on other countries" is a bad thing, at least not as good as "bring democracies to these countries". What do you think? :wink:

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    Default Re: comprehension

    [quote="Joe"]
    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork
    That clause modifies "credibility". It can be removed, leaving "credibility to impose its will on other countries".
    Mike, I have two more questions:
    1) Does "used to have" suggest that "the US had the credibility in the past but it has none of that now"?
    It says that the level is less than it was. It may not be zero.

    2) I think I can understand that sentence if it was "...the US doesn't have the moral credibility that it used to have to bring democracies to these countries". I think "to impose its will on other countries" is a bad thing, at least not as good as "bring democracies to these countries". What do you think? :wink:
    Well, this is the opinion of an individual. He is obviously a critic and is trying to make it as negative as possible. I don't even agree with his premise. :wink:

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    Default Re: comprehension

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork
    Well, this is the opinion of an individual. He is obviously a critic and is trying to make it as negative as possible. I don't even agree with his premise. :wink:
    Mike, allow me to get this straight. The speaker said, "the US doesn't have the credibility that...". He is obviously critical of the US. I think the clause that modities "credibility" should be something good, because he said "the US does not have that credibility". "Imposing its will on other countries" is quite a bad thing to me. Please tell me what I am wrong here.
    :wink:

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    Default Re: comprehension

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe
    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork
    Well, this is the opinion of an individual. He is obviously a critic and is trying to make it as negative as possible. I don't even agree with his premise. :wink:
    Mike, allow me to get this straight. The speaker said, "the US doesn't have the credibility that...". He is obviously critical of the US. I think the clause that modities "credibility" should be something good, because he said "the US does not have that credibility". "Imposing its will on other countries" is quite a bad thing to me. Please tell me what I am wrong here.
    :wink:
    I see your problem. When an entity has a lot of credibility/moral authority, it can get away with some degree of negativity. For example, the Pope set the borders in South America. He was able to impose his will because it was largely a Catholic continent. Today, it is unlikely that he would be able to do that.

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