In an emotional conversation, in addition to the “last warning”, you can hear the “last Chinese warning”. In fact, these two similar phrases have different meanings. When it comes to China, the idiom does not appeal to the culture or characteristics of this country.
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What does the phrase “last Chinese warning” mean?
This phrase is usually used when expressing useless threats “in words”, while it is known that they will not develop into serious retaliatory actions.
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How did the phrase “last Chinese warning” come about?
This ironic expression appeared in the 1950s and 1960s and is associated with a difficult political issue.
Relations between America and China in those years were not in the best condition. Moreover, the US authorities did not have diplomatic relations with Beijing, considering the regime of Mao Zedong illegitimate. The Americans supported the government of Chiang Kai-shek, who is in exile in Taiwan. The demonstration of strength and firmness of intent consisted in the activity of Americans in the Taiwan Strait with constant facts of violating the borders of the PRC.
Chinese diplomats issued numerous warnings to the Americans through their channels, but the young regime, of course, could not take any action.
Similar cases of “imperialist machinations” were also covered in the Soviet press. In particular, he solemnly spoke about this on Levitan radio. And Soviet listeners learned that the Chinese once again issued a warning to the Americans. By the end of 1964, more than 900 of such warnings had accumulated. And the news of such an event soon ceased to worry Soviet, even politically savvy, citizens. The phrase “the last Chinese warning” has become a household word. Moreover, in the conversation, numerals are added to it – “231st Chinese warning”, “last 850th Chinese warning”, which only emphasizes the absurdity of the situation and the futility of attempts to solve it with words. The phrase lost its connection with politics, but remained in our vocabulary even after the transition of US-Chinese relations to a new stage.