...busting up my brains for the words

Thursday, November 25, 2004

The Ukraine

Sitting around with elements of my immediate family after Thanksgiving dinner, I had time to escape from the yammering by reading Lileks' The Backfence in today's paper.
Lileks writes;

Well, I won't point out that he referred to The Ukraine on the show today, because I know that's his way of speaking. We were right to invade The Iraq, he said to me the other day, even though The France objected. It's just his way. Why do you think it's The Hugh Hewitt Show? Because his friends call him The Hugh Hewitt.

This was as much news to me as it must have been for The Hugh. For as long as I can remember I have referred to Ukraine with the article "The" preceding it. I had always presumed that Ukraine required a "The" before it in the same way that United States and Hague require it. So, this revelation hits me like a shot from Moon.

Being a skeptical fellow, I was not perfectly willing to take Lileks' word for it on its face (although James is a very learned man and I am open to learning as much as possible). So I scrounged around on the Internet and I can now come forward with confidence that the pinkmonkeybird is thankful to have learned something new today.

UPDATE: Here's a phrase from the Instapundit today;

A SECOND STATEMENT FROM VACLAV HAVEL to protesters in the Ukraine: "'All respected domestic and international organisations agree that your demands are justified. Therefore I wish you strength, endurance, courage and fortunate decisions,' Havel said in a statement from Taipei where he was travelling."

Apparently there is widespread belief in the need of the word "The" preceding Ukraine.


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