Wednesday, April 01, 2015


«Если изучить последствия действий Москвы, томожно придти к выводу о том, что Россия на самом деле кажется относительно слабым и сдержанным государством, пытающимся установить «гегемонию» на постсоветском пространстве»
"If you examine the implications for action Moscow, tomožno to come to the conclusion that Russia actually seems relatively weak and kept by the State, is attempting to" hegemony "in the post-Soviet space."
In this case, we have the English original:
When we consider the outcomes of past episodes of Russian aggression, however, a very different conclusion appears warranted: the Russian state actually appears to be both a relatively weak and restrained power that struggles to assert hegemony in post-Soviet space.
Now, there are some differences in the Russian translation and that original - the Russian doesn't have "a very different conclusion", just a "conclusion"; "both" is missing; it's not "past episodes of Russian aggression" being studied, just "Moscow's actions"; and (of course) "hegemony" isn't in scare quotes.

But even so, I think you can see where Bing goes badly wrong. First, it translates последствия as "implications" rather than "outcomes" (or "consequences"). It doesn't know what to do with томожно - which fair enough is slangy - but still just то можно (it's possible). It goes with "seems" for кажется, a verb that very often means, as here, "is". It makes "hegemony" into a verb, completely ignoring the verb установить. And it fails totally with слабым и сдержанным государством, choosing to interpret this not as two attributive adjectives modifying "power" but rather as a predicate adjective ("seems relatively weak" and a participial phrase ("kept by the State") - and mistranslated сдержанный to boot; it's not "kept" but "kept in check, restrained, curbed, held back".

ps: my translation of the Russian would be
If you study the consequences of Moscow's actions, then it's possible to come to the conclusion that Russia is in fact a relatively weak and restrained government that is attempting to establish a "hegemony" in the post-Soviet space.

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