Hillary Clinton and her Russian ‘Reset’ Translation Gaffe (March, 2009)
On Friday March 6th, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with her Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Geneva to help mend ties between the two nations. She gave Mr. Lavrov a mock‘reset’ button to symbolise the diplomatic attempt – however, the button in Russian actually read ‘overloaded’ or‘overcharged’ – not ‘reset’ as intended. An embarrassing moment for the new Secretary of State, though both played it off, and in any case pushed the button together. The gift referenced a comment from Vice President Joe Biden on resetting ties withRussia following years of friction.
Behind the news:
This is yet another case of translation gone wrong! Despite the alleged ‘hard work’ of Clinton’s team, it still didn’t turn out right.