Pe@rson
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Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 2:03 am

Aside from Arabic, which is the official language of almost all the Middle East, which of the following would you say is the second most important (excluding English): Turkish; Hebrew or Farsi? I realise that Turkish and Farsi are spoken relatively widely (besides merely in Turkey and Iran) whereas I suspect Hebrew is the most limited of them all.
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CHRISBA777ER
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 2:05 am

Second Most Important Language In M. East?

American.
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airxliban
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 2:18 am

I'd say that Farsi could be useful as that is used in Afghanistan as well.

If you include the Caucasus then Turkish would be quite useful as well, since you could use it in some of the Central Asian nations.

If you're considering learning another language, I should think that Arabic will keep you plenty busy, though for seamless travel from Marrakech to Kabul you'd likely need Farsi as well.
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usnseallt82
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 2:22 am

I would say that aside from Arabic, these days English would be the most important language.
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Sabena332
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 2:27 am

Quoting Usnseallt82 (Reply 3):
I would say that aside from Arabic, these days English would be the most important language.

Definitely, everyone I met in Turkey, the UAE, Oman, Iran, etc. could speak English.

Patrick
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brokenrecord
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 3:33 am

English for sure.

Every road sign in Qatar has Arabic and English (transliterated from Arabic).
 
ME AVN FAN
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 3:35 am

In total it is :
Arabic
English
Turkish
French
Farsi
Berber (IF the Maghreb is included in the "Middle East")
-
 
JeffSFO
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 5:17 am

How about Hebrew?  Big grin
 
CO7e7
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 7:51 am

I went to High School in Jersalem.. and all through 2nd grade we had to learn the following languages:

Arabic (mother lang)
English (2nd Lang)
French
Hebrew

So i'll say English followed by French.
 
N1120A
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 10:56 am

I would say that Turkish and Arabic run closely, as 27% of Iranians and 100% of Turks and Azerbaijanis speak very similar Turkic languages. English, like anywhere else, is also important. I definately think Farsi is more important than French as it is the official language of Iran, which is tied with Turkey for largest country in the Middle East.
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airxliban
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 11:02 am

I really don't think French is important in the middle east. First of all, not that many A-rabs even speak it. Secondly, the ones that do are likely to speak English and Arabic as well. My vote is still for Farsi, with Turkish a close second.
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usnseallt82
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 11:05 am

Quoting AirxLiban (Reply 10):
I really don't think French is important in the middle east.

The argument could be made that it isn't important anywhere, but I guess that's another topic altogether.  Big grin
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CO7e7
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 6:47 pm

Quoting AirxLiban (Reply 10):
I really don't think French is important in the middle east

Isn't it like the second language in Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco and Lebanon ?
 
Pe@rson
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 7:27 pm

Cheers!

Quoting CO7e7 (Reply 12):
Isn't it like the second language in Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco and Lebanon ?

Yep, particularly in Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria.

In Africa, Arabic is the first language in Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Egypt and Sudan. It is also spoken widely in, for example, Dijibouti.

Wider afield, French is the most widely-spoken language in North Africa, what with all those Francophone countries...
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airxliban
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Fri Jan 13, 2006 7:40 pm

My point is that French is not going to enable you to communicate with anyone that you otherwise wouldn't be able to communicate with in Arabic. Hence Farsi or Turkish.

Quoting Usnseallt82 (Reply 11):
The argument could be made that it isn't important anywhere, but I guess that's another topic altogether.

LOL...I think the frogs might disagree with you on that one  Wink
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ME AVN FAN
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Sat Jan 14, 2006 11:07 am

Quoting JeffSFO (Reply 7):
How about Hebrew? Big grin

only in Israel and the USA

Quoting N1120A (Reply 9):
I definately think Farsi is more important than French as it is the official language of Iran, which is tied with Turkey for largest country in the Middle East

Farsi is neither spoken nor understood anywhere outside Iran, which means that it is a "purely" national language, outside Iran only understood in Tajikistan.

Quoting AirxLiban (Reply 10):
First of all, not that many A-rabs even speak it. Secondly, the ones that do are likely to speak English and Arabic as well.


Most Mashreekis have problems to understand the dialects of Algeria and Morocco, and Maghrabis have problems with High Arabic and English. So that French is THE language.

Quoting CO7e7 (Reply 12):
Isn't it like the second language in Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco and Lebanon ?

Yes, and while most Lebanese quite nicely master English, it is a bit different in the Maghreb
 
BA
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Sat Jan 14, 2006 11:26 am

Quoting AirxLiban (Reply 10):
I really don't think French is important in the middle east. First of all, not that many A-rabs even speak it.

While it is true that French is getting less important in Lebanon at quite a rapid rate (and has disappeared in its entirety in Syria due to Baathism), the situation in North Africa is extremely extremely different. Every North African Arab who has grown up in a city knows French extremely well and uses it extensively.

Of course, by North Africa, I'm not talking about Egypt or Libya. However, many of the rich in Egypt speak French and it is considered the "cool thing to do." In Lebanon, speaking French is also considered the "cool thing to do" nowadays...

In the case of Libya, despite being under Italian colonial rule, very few speak Italian, largely because of policies put into place by Muammar Qadhafi to rid the country of any Italian influence. Instead, he worked to promote both French and English as foreign languages for Libyans to learn, French so they can interact with the rest of North Africa.

Quoting AirxLiban (Reply 10):
Secondly, the ones that do are likely to speak English and Arabic as well.

Except in the North African countries (again, excluding Egypt and to an extent Libya), many many do not English or know it only very poorly. They are only fluent in Arabic and French.

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 15):
Farsi is neither spoken nor understood anywhere outside Iran, which means that it is a "purely" national language, outside Iran only understood in Tajikistan.

It's also widely spoken in Azerbaijan.

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 15):
Most Mashreekis have problems to understand the dialects of Algeria and Morocco, and Maghrabis have problems with High Arabic and English. So that French is THE language.

Very very true...

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 15):

Yes, and while most Lebanese quite nicely master English, it is a bit different in the Maghreb

A BIT different? That's all?  Smile
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ME AVN FAN
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RE: Second Most Important Language In M. East?

Sun Jan 15, 2006 1:52 am

Quoting BA (Reply 16):
French is getting less important in Lebanon

I was in Lebanon in 1974 and then again in 2004 and 2005, and had the feeling that French even had regained importance, which to me with some lousy Arabic and English being my stronger side if compared to my French ("afrikaaaanish" for a colleague here ! ) clearly is a DISadvantage !

Quoting BA (Reply 16):
in Egypt speak French

French in Egypt has remained THE cultural language for the upper class

Quoting BA (Reply 16):
very few speak Italian, largely because of policies put into place by Muammar Qadhafi to rid the country of any Italian influence

THIS already was policy of King Idris es-Senoussi who was the one who fought against the Italians for decades. Khaddafi quite showmanlike took over from his aging predecessor !

Quoting BA (Reply 16):
also widely spoken in Azerbaijan.

of course, sorry, but it is often forgotten that there are TWO Azerbaijans, the independent one and the one which is part of Iran

Quoting BA (Reply 16):
A BIT different? That's all? Smile

well, a very very very heavy BIT indeed !

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