Have you noticed that Pres. Obama pronounces Pakistan as one might hear it in a foreign movie? But he pronounces Afghanistan with all three a's as in tin can.
I noticed this during the campaign last year and he continued to do it tonight.
Is he the only one who does these things? Or do the locals there do that? or is there some historical reason, like where the British were and what they were doing?
IIRC, he went with his roommate to Afghanistan, or some place far from here, when he was in college. Could that have had something to do with it?

Posters should say where they live, and for which area they are asking questions. I was born and then lived in Western Pa. 10 years
Indianapolis 7 years
Chicago 6 years
Brooklyn, NY 12 years
Baltimore 26 years
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Have you noticed that Pres. Obama pronounces Pakistan as one might hear it in a foreign movie? But he pronounces ... locals there do that? or is there some historical reason, like where the British were and what they were doing?

He is not the only one who does these things.
There is a strong tendency for people to speak foreign words according to the pronunciation conventions of their native language and dialect.

I have just listened to a few minutes of headline news from this English language TV channel Express News - Pakistan :
http://www.tvchannelsfree.com/watch/4061/Express-News Pakistan.html

The newsreader used a "Broad a", "ah" sound, for each of the "a"s in "Pakistan" and "Afghanistan". There might have been subtle difference between them but there was no "Short a" sound.
A historical point: Pakistan came into existence in 1948 when Britain and India gained mutual independence. The previous India split into three: India, West Pakistan and East Pakistan. East Pakistan layer separated from WP and become Bangladesh.
The name "Pakistan" had been invented in 1933 by students at Cambridhe University in England. As this was part of a move towards independence it seems, to me, most unlikely that British pronunciation styles would have been adopted:
Rahmat Ali
IIRC, he went with his roommate to Afghanistan, or some place far from here, when he was in college. Could that have had something to do with it?

Peter Duncanson, UK
(in alt.english.usage)
The name "Pakistan" had been invented in 1933 by students at Cambridhe University in England. As this was part of a move towards independence it seems, to me, most unlikely that British pronunciation styles would have been adopted: Rahmat Ali

ObAUE Quote: "He was unhappy over a Smaller Pakistan than the one he had conceived in his 1933 pamphlet Now Or Never. Consequently, Rahmat Ali died in 1951, buried in Cambridge City graveyard."

Are we to understand that he died of disappointment, or that the writer meant "Subsequently"?
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The name "Pakistan" had been invented in 1933 by students ... British pronunciation styles would have been adopted: Rahmat Ali

ObAUE Quote: "He was unhappy over a Smaller Pakistan than the one he had conceived in his 1933 pamphlet Now ... buried in Cambridge City graveyard." Are we to understand that he died of disappointment, or that the writer meant "Subsequently"?

I'd have assumed "Subsequently" until I read this biographical note: http://www.salaam.co.uk/knowledge/biography/viewentry.php?id=532

Ali visited Pakistan, in 1948, after the country’s birth in August 1947, his reputation foundered. Back in England, he worked as a lawyer in Cambridge.
"Foundered"?
A mistake for "founded", established, or not a mistake and it means "collapsed", puzzled.

Peter Duncanson, UK
(in alt.english.usage)
There is a strong tendency for people to speak foreign words according to the pronunciation conventions of their native language and dialect.

But mm's point is that Obama consistently does so with "Pakistan" but not with "Afghanistan," even when they're in the same sentence. I've been puzzled by this, too.
¬R
Have you noticed that Pres. Obama pronounces Pakistan as one ... like where the British were and what they were doing?

He is not the only one who does these things. There is a strong tendency for people to speak foreign ... "a"s in "Pakistan" and "Afghanistan". There might have been subtle difference between them but there was no "Short a" sound.

at least in the originals, Pakistan has two long a's ; in Afghanistan the first a is short, the other two long.
A historical point: Pakistan came into existence in 1948 when Britain and India gained mutual independence. The previous India split ... a move towards independence it seems, to me, most unlikely that British pronunciation styles would have been adopted: Rahmat Ali

stood for Indus (which is really redundant, as this is the same as Sindh). when Bengal was incorporated it was argued that in urdu script is really modified arabic .
the question was brought up before in these newsgroups by the following post:
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Newsgroups: alt.fan.jai-
maharaj,sci.lang,alt.usage.english,alt.english.usage,soc.culture.indian Subject: Re: Etymology of the word "-stan" as in "Afghanistan"? Date: 12 Jun 2002 08:23:11 -0700
Organization: /
Lines: 19
Message-ID: (Email Removed) References: (Email Removed) (Email Removed) (Email Removed) (Email Removed)
i don't believe this one bit. it was only in the 1850s that the political entity of india with its present-day borders existed. never in history did india go all the way south to cape comorin.

under aurangzeb, ashoka, ranjit singh, etc., even he didn't rule all of india.
this theory on the origins of the word "hindusthaan" sounds similar to what the pakis claim is the etymology of the word "pakistan". from what i read, they claim that "pakis-" is an abbreviation for "Punjab", "Afghania" (NWFP where the pushtuns live), "Kashmir", "Sindh", and the "-stan" is from "BaluchiSTAN". this is all hogwash in my opinion, and the pakis wash a lot of hogs.
"The country lying between the Himalayan mountain and Bindu Sarovara (Cape Comorin sea) is known as Hindusthan by combination of the first letter 'hi' of `Himalaya' and the last compound letter 'ndu' of the word 'Bindu.'"

=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D=3D
I had responded to that posters claim.
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There is a strong tendency for people to speak foreign words according to the pronunciation conventions of their native language and dialect.

But mm's point is that Obama consistently does so with "Pakistan" but not with "Afghanistan," even when they're in the same sentence. I've been puzzled by this, too.

Local pronunciation conventions are not necessarily consistent.

Peter Duncanson, UK
(in alt.english.usage)
He is not the only one who does these things. ... difference between them but there was no "Short a" sound.

at least in the originals, Pakistan has two long a's ; in Afghanistan the first a is short, the other two long.

I had detected that the first a in Afghanistan is shorter than the others, but I haven't listened to it closely enough to determine whether the sound is a brief "long a", an indistinct vowel (a schwa) or a "short a" as in the BrE cat, bat and sat.

Peter Duncanson, UK
(in alt.english.usage)
Local pronunciation conventions are not necessarily consistent.

Yes, I understand that Pakistan and Afghanistan are different places, and Urdu and Farsi are different languages. But have you ever heard an Afghan use a short "a" in "ghan" or "-stan" in either English or Farsi?
There's no fuzziness in this distinction. Obama says "Pakistan" and "Taliban" with vowels used in languages of that region, but pronounces "Afghanistan" with vowels used only in American English.

¬R
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