Intelligence Arabic

AWEJ for Translation & Literary Studies, Volume 2, Number 3. August   2018         Pp. 132 -133



Book Review

Intelligence Arabic



Authors: Julie C Manning and Elizabeth Kendall
Book: Intelligence Arabic
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press.
Year of Publication: 2017
Place of Publication: Edinburgh, Unideted Kinkdom
Reviewer:  Samar Zahrawi


Intelligence Arabic

Intelligence Arabic provides a communication tool which is much needed while Western nations join  efforts with Middle Eastern  and North African countries to address issues of domestic and transnational terrorism, insurgency and civil unrest.   It provides common understanding of key terminology used in English speaking intelligence communities. This book offers concise definition of each intelligence term in both English and Arabic. It offers precise meaning and nuanced variations of terms that can be often be conflated in general use, such as ‘hypothesis’ and ‘assumption’. Such precision facilitates communication and minimizes misunderstanding among intelligence communities of both languages.

Pedagogically, this is not a language textbook to teach Arabic for a specific purpose. However, it offers tips for the use of audio files on the accompanying website (https://edinbughuniversitypress.com/page/emev/elearning). In such audio files each Arabic term is preceded with the English equivalent and  recorded with authentic native pronunciation at normal speed. The learner is prompted to engage actively in listening and repeating. The learner is also encouraged and to have the audio files transferred to an MP3 device to enable him/her to study on the move. No further pedagogy to leverage learning or memorization of the material are anywhere provided in the book.

The present book, however, functions more adeptly as a glossary of the terminology used in Intelligence work. It includes phraseology and acronyms that may not be found in an average English-Arabic dictionary.  It provides the translation and definition of essential English intelligence vocabulary, some 1654 terms. Entries are listed in English alphabetical order, thus the book is made to help English speakers look up the meaning of English words in Arabic. The user of this book is required to have prior knowledge of Arabic as a second language, at least up to the novice high level of ACTFL standards.  It would be very useful for Arabic speaking intelligence personnel to have Arabic entry version of this book.

Intelligence Arabic is easy to use. It categorizes the terms into thematic groups featuring the chapters of the book: General, Analysis, Human Intelligence, Operations, Counterintelligence, Signals Intelligence, and Acronyms. While this logical thematic categorization helps give direct access to the translation of phrases, some terms can belong to several categories. This issue is solved by the presence of a comprehensive index that points to location of all terms and concepts.

Reviewer: Samar Zahrawi, Ph.D. Middle Eastern Studies, Department of Foreign Languages, Sam Houston State University, Texas,  U.S.A