ماذا بقي للعرب من تمسكهم

Discussion in 'العربية (Arabic)' started by jack_1313, Apr 18, 2013.

  1. jack_1313 Senior Member

    English - Australian
    Hi guys.

    I have another question originating from the same article that I posted about earlier this week. The article identifies a pattern in American-Arab relations in the context of the Arab/Israeli conflict: every time a new American president takes power, the Arab leaders put all their faith in him, but they always end up disappointed when he fails to lessen America's support for Israel.

    This time, I'd like to look at the last sentence:

    ماذا بقي للعرب من تمسكهم بالبدائل التي مازالت كلها تعتمد على الموقف الأميركي!؟

    Here's the context of the sentence:

    مايلفت النظر بعد هذه النتيجة استمرار رضوخ الدولة الأميركية للضغط الصهيوني من خلال الاستمرار الأميركي في العملية السلمية بالشروط «الاسرائيلية المتعنتة بل المستحيلة لكن ذلك في النهاية هو استمرار طبيعي لسيناريو العلاقات الأميركية- الاسرائيلية إلا أن مايدعو للدهشة والاستغراب بل والاستنكار هو وقوف لجنة المتابعة العربية ورئاسة السلطة الفلسطينية موقف مواصلة العملية بالأسلوب الفاشل والعاجز نفسه أسلوب الاعتماد فقط على احتمال تطور الموقف الأميركي، يبقى السؤال الأكبر: ماذا بقي للعرب من تمسكهم بالبدائل التي مازالت كلها تعتمد على الموقف الأميركي؟!‏
    Source. Rough, preliminary translation:
    After this conclusion, the remarkable thing is the fact that America continues to cave to Zionst pressure through its continuation, in the peace process, with obstinate, or even impossible, Israeli conditions. But, in the end, that is the natural continuation of the scenario [i.e. pattern] of American-Israeli relations. But what invites amazement, puzzlement and disapproval is the position of the [High] Follow-Up Committee for the Arab [Masses in Israel] and the presidency of the Palestinian Authority [in support] of continuing the [peace] process through the same failed, incapable means – the means of relying on the possibility of the development of [i.e. a change in] America’s position. The biggest question remains: what remained for the Arabs from their adherence to alternatives that all still depend on America’s position?

    However, I'm having trouble understanding what the author really means with his final, "biggest question."
    My guess is that he essentially means how much longer can the Arabs cling to alternatives that all depend on America's position? If that's true, then I'm not sure why the author has used بقي in the past tense (i.e. not يبقى).

    Any help is, as always, much appreciated. Thanks :)
     
  2. barkoosh Senior Member

    Beirut
    Arabic
    I think بقي means here 'to benefit', and it's usually used as a result of making sacrifices or giving things away. The writer is asking: What did the Arabs 'gain' from their...

    In our spoken Arabic, we sometimes use بقي when a person gives things away or do things for others but is left (بقي) with nothing in return.

    شو بقي لك من كل هالمنيح اللي عمتلو معهم؟ ضحكوا عليك
    What was left with you from (that is, what did you gain/benefit as a result of) all the good you did to them? They've double-crossed you.
     
  3. Crimson-Sky

    Crimson-Sky Senior Member

    بلاد بابل - Babylonia
    Arabic-العربية
    If the author were to use "يبقى",
    لم يبقى للعرب من "التمسك بالبدائل" شيء or "لم يبقى للعرب شيء من "التمسك بالبدائل .
     
  4. jack_1313 Senior Member

    English - Australian
    Great, thanks for that! That's really interesting. Would you consider this use of بقي acceptable MSA?

    Thanks Crimson-Sky. I think you meant to write لم يبقَ, right?
     
  5. Crimson-Sky

    Crimson-Sky Senior Member

    بلاد بابل - Babylonia
    Arabic-العربية
    Yes لم يَبْقَ. Sorry :).
     
  6. barkoosh Senior Member

    Beirut
    Arabic
    It's greatly influenced by a localized use. I don't know if it's used this way in other dialects.
     
  7. Crimson-Sky

    Crimson-Sky Senior Member

    بلاد بابل - Babylonia
    Arabic-العربية
    !ماذا بقي للعرب من تمسكهم بالبدائل التي مازالت كلها تعتمد على الموقف الأميركي؟! ~حتى متى يتمسك العرب/يظل العرب متمسكين ببدائلَ كلها تعتمد على الموقف الأميركي؟
     
  8. jack_1313 Senior Member

    English - Australian
    That's really interesting. It looks like Crimson-Sky understood the sentence as I did in my original post, which is different from Barakoosh's understanding. This is a Syrian text - i.e. Levantine Arabic. Maybe this difference in understanding answers the question about whether this شو" بقي لك من" construction is widely understood or not?
     
  9. إسكندراني

    إسكندراني Senior Member

    أرض الأنجل
    عربي (مصر)ـ | en (gb)
  10. jack_1313 Senior Member

    English - Australian
    Hi إسكندراني, thanks for the link. It looks like the syntax differs a little bit, but I have a lot of trouble understanding the classical Arabic of the Qur'an.

    Can you give me an indication of how you understand the ماذا بقي للعرب من تمسكهم بالبدائل التي مازالت كلها تعتمد على الموقف الأميركي sentence itself? I.e., whether you agree with Barkoosh or Crimson-Sky's reading?

    On one hand, I know that Barkoosh is from Beirut and is therefore in a good position to comment on texts from the Levant region :) On the other hand, the emphasis on present tense in the second part of the sentence (التي مازالت) would fit better in Crimson-Sky's reading.
     

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