...(is\has) no guarantee of success...

qizi

Senior Member
Chinese
And though Mr Obama’s visit to Denmark is no guarantee of success, his absence from the conference would have ensured a wary and grouchy mood from other countries. ——The Economist
Could I replace "is" with "has" here? Would you please tell me what the difference is between the two? Thank you.:)
 
  • Driven

    Senior Member
    USA/English
    For me, there is a subtle difference between is and has. If you say, for example, "The plan is no gaurantee of success," then to me it means that there is no gaurantee that the plan will cause something to happen successfully. If you say, "The plan has no guarantee of success," then to me it means that there is no guarantee that the plan itself will be successful. I think "is" sounds better in the sentence you wrote. If you replace it with "has" then to me it sounds like his visit may not be successful (he won't actually make the visit for some reason). This is just how it sounds to me, but others may have a different opinion.
     

    entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    Obama's visit is no guarantee of success = Even Obama (by visiting) can't guarantee that the conference will succeed.

    Obama's visit has no guarantee of success = No-one else can guarantee that Obama's visit will be successful.
     
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