Sweden to join Nato: BBC News Review

73,859 views ・ 2024-02-28

BBC Learning English


Please double-click on the English subtitles below to play the video.

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Sweden, traditionally neutral, joins Nato.
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This is News Review from BBC
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Learning English where we help you understand news headlines in English.
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I'm Neil. and I'm Phil.
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Make sure you watch to the end to learn the vocabulary
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that you need to talk about this story.
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Don't forget to subscribe to our channel
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so you can learn more English from news headlines. Now, the story.
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Sweden is to join NATO
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after two hundred years of neutrality.
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The nation applied to join the defence alliance
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after Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022.
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All Nato members are expected to help an ally
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if attacked. Hungary was the final Nato member to approve the invitation.
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You've been looking at the headlines
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Phil. What's the vocabulary
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people need to understand this news story in English?
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We have clears path, final hurdle and farewell.
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This is News Review from BBC Learning English.
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Let's have a look at our first headline.
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This is from the BBC. Hungary's parliament
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clears path for Sweden's Nato membership.
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So, Hungary was the last member of Nato to approve
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Sweden's membership.
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It clears a path for Sweden.
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That's the expression that we're looking at. It contains that word path. Now
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a path is another word for a route a way from one place to another,
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often in a park or in the countryside.
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Yes, it is. And clear - it's often an adjective, but in this case,
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it's a verb and it means to physically remove the obstacles
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that are stopping you from walking on the path.
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OK. Now let's use our imaginations, Phil.
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Here we have Sweden and here we have NATO and there is a path between the two.
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But imagine that path is covered with trees and bushes. Hungary
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comes along and clears the path is a useful way of thinking about it. It's
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a very literal way of looking at it. Here
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the obstacles are political.
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They are to do with votes and decisions
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and Hungary's decision has cleared the path for Sweden to join Nato. Now,
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I think there's another way we could use this to talk about the world
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of work, isn't there, Neil?
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Yes so imagine at work,
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you want to get a promotion.
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There's an opportunity for a promotion.
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But there is somebody else who has more experience and qualifications than you.
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However, that person decides to leave the organisation and that act
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clears the path for you to get the promotion.
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Let's look at that again.
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Let's have a look at our next headline.
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This is from the Financial Times.
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Sweden overcomes final hurdle to join Nato in historic shift.
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OK, so it says that Sweden overcomes something.
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It means they have solved a problem. And in this case,
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it's a hurdle. But what's a hurdle?
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We need to know what a hurdle is to understand this headline.
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Yes, well, a hurdle is one of those frames that athletes jump over
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  when they are in a hurdle race
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and actually, I can already see a link between this headline
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and the last one because that was all about removing obstacles. And a hurdle
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is an obstacle, yes.
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So, Sweden's final hurdle or final obstacle
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to joining NATO was Hungary's vote to approve them and they overcame it.
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Can you give us another example?
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Well, the reason that we make News Review
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is to help you overcome any hurdles in understanding the news in English.
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The words and phrases that we teach you
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will help you overcome those hurdles.
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Let's look at that again.
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Let's have our next headline.
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This is from the Guardian.
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Sweden will complete its long farewell to neutrality
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with Nato accession. So here in this headline neutrality
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means that Sweden hasn't taken sides in any war or conflict
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for two hundred years. But now,
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they are abandoning that neutrality.
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The word, though, that we're looking at is farewell.
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What can you tell us about farewell Phil?
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OK, well this is quite an old formal English word.
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Historically, it meant go well or travel well.
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But, really, it's just another way of saying goodbye,
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but Phil is it the same as saying goodbye?
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I've never heard you say at the end of a working day
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"farewell!" Well, you can say farewell
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at the end of the working day, but it would sound a bit strange.
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We tend to use farewell for something
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that's kind of an emotional goodbye an important
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goodbye, or something that's very final. Yeah.
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So if I was going to move to a different country,
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I might have a farewell party and I might make a farewell speech
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at that party, but I wouldn't do those things
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If I was just going home.
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No. It has this kind of poetic and romantic sense.
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So we could talk about a fond farewell, an emotional farewell.
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And if you want a really old fashioned formal English way of saying goodbye,
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you could say I bid you farewell.
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Now it's nearly time
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for us to say goodbye.
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Not farewell because we will be back next week. Let's look at that again.
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We've had clears path
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makes something easier to achieve. Final hurdle
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The last thing stopping you from doing something
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and farewell
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another way of saying goodbye.
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Now, if you like things about making important decisions,
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why not check out our leadership playlist?
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Don't forget to click here to subscribe to our. channel,
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so you never miss another video.
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Thank you for joining us and goodbye!
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Goodbye!
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