pursue investigations down to their logical conclusion

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Wookie, Mar 30, 2009.

  1. Wookie

    Wookie Senior Member

    Korea, Korean
    “Attribution is difficult because there is no agreed upon international legal framework for being able to pursue investigations down to their logical conclusion, which is highly local.”

    This is from an article in the New York Times and the article is about a vast spy stem looting computeres in 103 countries.

    I'd like to know what the underlined part means.
    Is "pursue something down to something" an idiomatic expression?
  2. jpt0509 New Member

    English - USA
    Normally it's "to pursue something to its logical conclusion." To pursue an investigation to its logical conclusion = to continue to work on the investigation until all questions are answered, until the investigators know everything, the case is entirely solved, etc.

    I believe the author substituted "down" for "to" because he or she wanted to emphasize the narrowing of the scope of the investigations from a broad, international level down to a narrow, local level.

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