View Full Version : Pronunciation of al-Queda
12-17-2002, 07:17 PM
In mainstream US media, I've heard al-Queda pronounced like "al-KAY-duh" and "al-KUY-duh." On the BBC World Service, it's "al-kyu-EEE-duh." I've heard commentators on National Public Radio say "ah-KAHD" and "al-KEE-ahh-duh," but then again these are the folks who gave us "nee-KAH-lah-goo-wah" ten years ago.
So, those who are fluent in Arabic ... how do you pronounce al-Queda?
12-17-2002, 07:34 PM
I thought it was al-Qaeda?
12-17-2002, 07:42 PM
And is it Osama or Usama?
I've seen Osama everywhere.. but Fox news insists on Usama.
12-17-2002, 08:00 PM
Arabic uses different everything, from characters to dipthongs (I have always wanted to use that...). Translating the pronunciation to roman characters is difficult. See here (http://www.al-bab.com/arab/language/roman1.htm) for more info.
Doing a little GooglingTM, I have surmised the following:
1. There are approximately 32 variations of spelling for the leader of Lybia's name. (Qaddafi, etc. (http://www.geocities.com/Athens/8744/spelling.htm))
2. There are many spellings of other common Arabic words/names:
Muhammad, Mohammed, Mohamed, Mahomet
Quran, Koran, Qur'an
Osama bin Laden, Usama bin Laden, Usama bin Ladin, Osama bin Ladin
al-Qaeda, al-Qaida, al-Qa'ida, al-Qa'eda
Mecca, Makkah, Mekkah
3. The pronunciation of al-Qaeda, according to the Voice of America (http://ibb7.ibb.gov/pronunciations/DailyAction.cfm), is al K-EYE-(eh)-duh
4. The FBI is now knocking on my door.
12-17-2002, 08:18 PM
Okay ... so can I ask how you spell it, too? :D
12-17-2002, 08:26 PM
I don't know
If you want to get some really weird looks, try pronouncing the q the Arabic way. Put your tongue at the back of your mouth, and try to make a k sound. You should end up with a deeper, breathy sound.
As for the rest of the word, I couldn't say. All of the pronunciations could be right - there are a lot of regional accents in Arabic.
12-17-2002, 09:22 PM
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