Are 'instigate' and 'incite' interchangeable in here? "The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, regarded in the West as the most authoritative election monitor, canceled plans to send observers. 'Putin claimed the pullout was instigated by the United States to discredit the elections.' But the OSCE said Russia delayed granting visas for so long that the organization would have been unable to meaningfully assess election preparations." Can I interchange 'was instigated by' with 'was incited by' in the fourth line, without difference in meaning?
Sep 29, 2012 7:47 AM
Answers · 2
While both instigate and incite both are generally about somebody encouraging the "doing" of something, they won't be interchangeable here. Instigate has more of a neutral purpose, while incite definitely has a nefarious or violent element in the final result. You wouldn't use it here, unless of course the writer wanted to imply that what the US did, resulted in something violent or illegal. One example of inciting, more commonly used, is "inciting riots"
September 29, 2012
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