您现在的位置: 纽约时报中英文网 >> 纽约时报中英文版 >> 观点 >> 正文

奥巴马想改变世界,但世界改变了他

更新时间:2017-1-20 11:34:27 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

Obama Hoped to Transform the World. It Transformed Him.
奥巴马想改变世界,但世界改变了他

When Barack Obama entered office, the hopes that he raised in his own country were exceeded only by the hopes he raised abroad. Mr. Obama tapped into those hopes with his inspirational rhetoric about a “transformational” presidency, and his promises were scarcely less dramatic. America would be steered back on track, working with other countries to meet the challenges of what he often called an “interdependent” world, from terrorism and poverty to financial crisis and global warming.

上任之际,贝拉克·奥巴马(Barack Obama)在海外激起的希望比在本国还要高。通过用一种振奋人心的言辞谈论着“带来变革”的总统,他充分利用了这些希望,而他的承诺无疑也是同样动人的。美国将被带回正轨,与其他国家精诚合作,在他常说的一个“相互依存”的世界里,共同应对种种挑战,从恐怖主义,到贫困、金融危机和全球变暖。

Rapturous crowds thrilled to his speech in Berlin in 2008, a few months before he was elected; less than a year into his presidency, the jury in Oslo awarded him a Nobel Prize for his “vision” of a world without nuclear weapons, as if he were a poet rather than a head of state. Expectations ran so high that few spotted the contradictions in Mr. Obama’s project, which sought to usher America into an era of relative decline and yet still somehow achieve transformative results. Being commander in chief prevented Mr. Obama from speaking frankly about the growing constraints on American power. But no one would experience them more sharply — or more frustratingly.

2008年,他于当选总统数月前在柏林发表了演讲,令狂热的人群兴奋难耐;入主白宫不到一年,他便获颁诺贝尔奖,奥斯陆的评审委员会给出理由是,他有着建立无核世界的“愿景”,就好像他是一位诗人而非国家元首似的。世人抱有太高的期待,几乎没注意到奥马巴计划中的矛盾之处:既要带领美国走在一个相对衰落的时代,又要以某种办法取得具有变革意义的成果。最高领导人的身份让奥巴马难以直白地谈及美国的力量正受到越来越多的限制。但没有谁比他更能体会到这种限制有多么激烈——多么令人沮丧。

This was, in part, the legacy handed down to him by George W. Bush’s truly transformational presidency, which envisioned a post-Cold War order of limitless American power. Mr. Bush created a new reality in the Middle East and trapped Mr. Obama in a war he had opposed in Iraq, and one that couldn’t be won in Afghanistan. Though he sought to reduce America’s footprint, Mr. Obama would distinguish himself as an even more zealous hunter of terrorists than Mr. Bush, presenting the assassination of Osama bin Laden as a centerpiece of his re-election campaign, even as he made no secret of seeing terrorism as an exaggerated threat. Extraordinary measures were required to begin undoing the extraordinarily destructive Bush legacy, but Mr. Obama proved mostly incapable of them. He did not transform the world; the world transformed him.

在一定程度上,这是真正变革性的乔治·W·布什(George W. Bush)任期遗留给他的问题,前者设想了一个美国权力无限大的的后冷战秩序。布什在中东创造了一种新现实,令奥巴马在伊拉克陷入一场他反对的战争,在阿富汗陷入一场他不可能取胜的战争。尽管试图收缩美国的触角,但奥巴马表现得比布什更像一个狂热的恐怖分子猎人,将刺杀奥萨马·本·拉登(Osama bin Laden)作为自己连任竞选的核心亮点,恰如他毫不掩饰地将恐怖主义视为被夸大的威胁。要消除布什政府极具破坏性的遗产,需要采取一些非常措施,但事实证明,奥巴马基本不具备这样的能力。他没有改造世界;世界改造了他。

Eight years ago, Mr. Obama suggested a messenger from a dreamy, multicultural future: the son of a Kenyan father and a white American mother; a well-traveled cosmopolitan who had spent much of his childhood in Indonesia, seemingly at home wherever he planted his feet. His vision of international diplomacy stressed the virtues of candid dialogue, mutual respect and bridge building. His famous address to the Islamic world, given at Cairo University in 2009, was a judicious balance sheet of past wrongs and an eloquent plea to turn a new page in history.

八年前,奥巴马看起来像是一个妙不可言的多文化未来的使者:一个肯尼亚父亲和一个美国白人母亲的儿子;游历甚广的世界公民,童年大多数时间住在印度尼西亚,看起来似乎在自己立足的每个地方都能舒适自在。他提出的国际外交的远景强调坦诚对话、互相尊重和搭建桥梁的价值。2009年在开罗大学(Cairo University)对伊斯兰世界所做的著名演讲,是一种审慎的平衡,既有对过去错误的总结,也强有力地表达了掀开历史新一页的请求。

“Real power,” the president told Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic last year, “means you can get what you want without having to exert violence.” Exhibit A, in the Obama years, was the Iran deal, which not only peacefully prevented Tehran from developing a nuclear weapon, but also brought about a thaw in Iran’s relations with the West.

“真正的力量”,总统在去年告诉《大西洋》月刊(The Atlantic)的杰弗里·戈德堡(Jeffrey Goldberg),“意味着你可以得到你想要的,而不必施加暴力”。奥巴马任期内,对这种力量的展示之一就是同伊朗的交易,它不仅和平预防了德黑兰发展核武器,并且令伊朗与西方的关系出现了解冻。

But that deal, along with a climate change agreement and a rapprochement with Cuba, was a rare success. The arc of recent history has not bent toward Mr. Obama’s cosmopolitan vision of an interdependent world. On the contrary, the world — and America itself — is increasingly bedeviled by the tribalism that horrified him on a visit to his relatives in Kenya. In “Dreams From My Father,” he writes of arriving with “simple formulas for Third World solidarity,” only to discover that most Kenyans “worked with older maps of identity, more ancient loyalties,” and that his liberal humanism fell on deaf ears.

但是,这项协议,以及气候变化协议,乃至同古巴的和解,都是罕见的成功。近期历史的走势并不符合奥巴马对世界各国彼此相互依存的展望。相反,整个世界,乃至美国本身,都越来越受到部族意识的困扰,在去肯尼亚探亲时,这种意识曾让他惊骇不已。在《我的父亲的梦想》(Dreams From My Father)中,他写道,自己在到达肯尼亚时心怀着“第三世界团结一心的简单公式”,却只发现大多数肯尼亚人“依据的是旧的身份地图,和更古老的忠诚”,他的自由派人道主义没人要听。

Nowhere was such tribalism more incendiary than in the Middle East, thanks in large part to Mr. Obama’s predecessor. Before the invasion of Iraq, Sunni and Shiite Muslims lived side by side, and often intermarried, under authoritarian states and a regional balance of power that provided stability, if not democracy. Mr. Bush put an end to that fragile balance. Iraq was liberated from Saddam Hussein, but the result was sectarian warfare, fueled by a struggle between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

中东是世界上部族意识最具煽动性的地方,这在很大程度上要归功于奥巴马的前任。在入侵伊拉克之前,逊尼派和什叶派穆斯林共同生活,经常通婚,威权国家的统治以及地区力量平衡提供了稳定,尽管没有民主。布什结束了这一脆弱的平衡。伊拉克从萨达姆·侯赛因(Saddam Hussein)手中解放出来,但结果是宗派战争在伊朗和沙特阿拉伯的争斗助推下愈演愈烈。

The Arab Spring stirred hopes of reversing this bleak trend, and Mr. Obama initially gambled on its success, defying old allies like Saudi Arabia and Israel and expressing support for pro-democracy movements in Egypt and Tunisia. In these revolts, he saw an opportunity not only to improve America’s image in the Middle East but also to end the Muslim world’s isolation. From the ruins of the Arab revolts a new age would emerge, but its key players would be tribally minded strongmen and armed militants. And for aid and inspiration they would look not to the West but to the Persian Gulf states, Iran, Turkey and other regional power brokers.

阿拉伯之春为扭转这种黯淡趋势带来了希望,奥巴马最初把赌注押在它的成功之上,无视沙特阿拉伯和以色列等老盟友,表示支持埃及和突尼斯的民主运动。在这些反抗中,他看到了一个机会,不仅可以提升美国在中东的形象,而且可以结束穆斯林世界的孤立。从阿拉伯反抗运动的废墟之上,一个新的时代将会出现,但这些反抗运动的主要参与者是充满部族意识的铁腕人物和武装好战分子。在寻求援助和激励的时候,他们不会求助于西方,而是那些波斯湾国家:伊朗、土耳其和其他地区权力掮客。

Mr. Obama not only adapted to the shape of Middle Eastern power politics, but he also largely overlooked human rights abuses by Saudi Arabia, Israel, Egypt and other allies. The Bush administration’s patronizing rhetoric of democracy promotion was shelved, but this came at the cost of reducing American concerns in the Middle East to terrorism and national security.

奥巴马不仅去迎合中东强权政治的形态,而且也大大忽视了沙特阿拉伯、以色列、埃及和其他盟国对人权的侵犯。布什政府居高临下的民主宣传辞令被搁置,但这是以减少美国在中东对恐怖主义和国家安全的关切为代价的。

In a speech to the Turkish Parliament in 2009, Mr. Obama promised that “America’s relationship with the Muslim community, the Muslim world cannot, and will not, just be based on opposition to terrorism.” Yet that is precisely what happened, even if the “war on terror” was decorously renamed the “fight to counter violent extremism.” The war was based on Special Operations and drone strikes rather than torture and ground invasions, but it, too, was subject to few restraints, and eventually it came to cover a much greater land mass. Styling himself as an anti-terrorist commander, Mr. Obama buried the legalistic multilateralism that he had taught at Harvard. While the drone program began under Mr. Bush, Mr. Obama substantially expanded it. Armed with a “kill list” and the Predator joystick, he could eliminate America’s enemies, while avoiding land wars — or public scrutiny.

在2009年对土耳其议会的讲话中,奥巴马承诺“美国与穆斯林社区和穆斯林世界的关系不能、也不会仅仅基于反对恐怖主义”。然而这恰恰是发生的事实,虽然“反恐战争”被郑重地重新命名为“打击暴力极端主义”。战争是基于特种作战部队和无人机打击,而不是酷刑和地面入侵,但它也同样较少受到限制,最终扩展到了更广大的领域。奥巴马将自己定位为反恐怖主义指挥官,埋葬了他曾在哈佛教授过的法律多边主义。无人机计划是由布什开始的,而奥巴马大大扩展了它。有了一个“杀戮名单”和“捕食者”(Predator)无人机的操纵杆,他可以消灭美国的敌人,同时避免地面作战——也能避免公众的监督。

Mr. Bush’s occupations provoked liberal outrage; Mr. Obama’s drone war emitted a kind of white noise that most Americans ignored. But the killing of people by drones or Special Operations was not unnoticed in Yemen, Somalia and Pakistan or other countries, and did little to win local hearts and minds. In fact, his determination to avoid American casualties, even as he expanded the battlefield, reinforced the impression that for all his talk of cooperation and partnership, he was a pitiless realist.

布什的占领行动引起了自由主义者的愤怒;奥巴马的无人机战争则发出了一种白噪声,被大多数美国人忽视。但是无人机或特种作战部队在也门、索马里和巴基斯坦或其他国家杀害的人民并不是无人关注,也无助于赢得当地的民心。事实上,尽管扩大了战场,他还是一心要避免美国人的伤亡,因此不管他如何大谈合作与伙伴关系,这一切还是令他显得更像一个无情的现实主义者。

That realism was at its most glacial in the case of Syria’s civil war. Chastened by the results of NATO’s intervention in Libya, where a dictator was replaced by militia rule and jihadist violence, and always a reluctant humanitarian, Mr. Obama understood that the Syrian war was as much a sequel to the bloody sectarian struggle inside Iraq as it was the latest installment of the Arab Spring. He drew a cold but defensible conclusion: The growth of the Islamic State was a direct threat to American interests that merited a military response, but President Bashar al-Assad was not. Intervention against Mr. Assad would lead to clashes with Russia, for whom Syria was a core interest.

在叙利亚内战中,这种现实主义达到了最冷酷的地步。北约对利比亚的干预导致当地的独裁者被民兵统治和圣战主义暴力所取代,奥巴马对此感到愧疚,而且他一直都是个勉强的人道主义者,他了解叙利亚战争是伊拉克境内血腥的教派斗争的后遗症,也是阿拉伯之春的最新动向。于是他做出了一个冷酷却有一定道理的结论:伊斯兰国的发展是对美国利益的直接威胁,值得作出军事反应,但巴沙尔·阿萨德(Bashar al-Assad)总统不是。对阿萨德的干预将导致与俄罗斯的冲突,因为俄罗斯将叙利亚视为自己的核心利益。

At first glance, the twists and turns of Mr. Obama’s Syria policy made the president seem indecisive, if not incoherent: calling for Mr. Assad to step down without taking direct action against him, even after the regime’s use of chemical weapons in defiance of Mr. Obama’s “red line”; attacking the jihadists of the Islamic State while allies like Turkey and Qatar supported other extremist groups; opposing Russian designs and then coordinating airstrikes with Moscow. But the aim of keeping American troops out of Syria was consistent. At his final news conference as president, Mr. Obama expressed anguish over the fall of Aleppo, but insisted that his Syria policy had been guided by his sense of “what’s the right thing to do for America.”

乍看起来,奥巴马在叙利亚政策上的种种转折就算不是毫无条理,至少也令他显得优柔寡断:甚至在阿萨德政权使用化学武器,触犯了奥巴马的“红线”之后,他还是没有对阿萨德采取任何直接行动,而是要求他辞职;他攻击伊斯兰国的圣战主义者,与此同时土耳其和卡塔尔等盟国却支持其他极端主义团体;他反对俄罗斯的方案,但又与莫斯科合作发起空袭。美国军队不进入叙利亚的方针倒是一如既往。在作为总统举行的最后一次新闻发布会上,奥巴马对阿勒颇的失陷表示了痛苦,但坚持认为,他的叙利亚政策的原则是做“对美国来说正确的事”。

It may well have been; American lives were spared. But noninterference created a vacuum that autocrats like President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia and Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey were happy to fill. What’s more, Mr. Obama’s understanding of American interests in Syria was more restrictively drawn than one might have expected from a man so worldly, someone who had always stressed the interdependence of the global community and the moral burdens of “what it means to share this world in the 21st century.” Who governs Syria may not be a core American interest, but the country’s apocalyptic splintering is another matter. The effect of Mr. Obama’s caution, as much as Moscow’s belligerent resolve, was to help prolong the war.

可能的确如此;美国人没有献出生命。但是不干涉政策创造了一个真空,俄罗斯总统弗拉基米尔·V·普京(Vladimir V. Putin)和土耳其总统雷杰普·塔伊普·埃尔多安(Recep Tayyip Erdogan)很乐意去填补。更重要的是,奥巴马是一个世故的人,一个总是强调全球社会的相互依赖,以及“在21世纪分享世界的意义”这种道德负担的人,然而对于美国在叙利亚的利益,奥巴马的理解比人们期待的还要消极。由谁来掌管叙利亚可能不是美国的核心利益,但这个国家的末日般的分裂又是另一件事。奥巴马的谨慎与莫斯科好战的决心同样延长了这场战争。

The consequences of Syria’s disintegration have spread far beyond its borders. Not only has the crisis placed dangerous strains on neighboring states, but it has emboldened the far right in Europe, which has played on fears about Islam and terrorism in its campaign against immigration and the European Union. Nor has the United States been unscathed by what Mr. Obama recently called the “tug of tribalism”: Donald J. Trump owes his election to it. Mr. Trump is an open admirer of tribal politicians like Mr. Putin, Mr. Erdogan and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, not least because they remind him of himself with their love of the mob, contempt for liberal elites and penchant for conspiracy theory.

叙利亚解体的后果远远超出了它的边界。危机不仅给邻国造成了危险的压力,而且给欧洲的极右翼壮了胆,这些极右翼在竞选中利用人们对伊斯兰和恐怖主义的恐惧反对移民与欧盟。奥巴马最近将这种趋势称之为“部族意识的巨大力量”,美国也不能免受它的影响:唐纳德·J·特朗普(Donald J. Trump)的当选正是因为这股力量。特朗普公开崇拜那些有部族意识的政治家,诸如普京、埃尔多安先生和以色列总理本雅明·内塔尼亚胡(Benjamin Netanyahu),尤其是因为他们对乌合之众的热爱,对自由派精英的蔑视,以及对阴谋论的喜好,让他心有戚戚。

In his 2009 speech in Cairo, Mr. Obama imagined Muslim and Western democrats working together in partnership, overcoming borders imposed by war, prejudice and mistrust for the sake of a common future. Instead, the very prospect of a common future, of global interdependence, has been jeopardized by the emergence of an illiberal world of tribes without flags. Despite the best of intentions, and for all his fine words, Mr. Obama became one of the midwives of this dangerous and angry new world, where his enlightened cosmopolitanism increasingly looks like an anachronism.

在2009年的开罗演讲中,奥巴马曾想象穆斯林和西方民主人士结成伙伴关系,携手努力,克服战争、偏见与不信任带来的边界,为共同的未来而努力。相反,一个狭隘僵化的世界出现了,里面充满没有旗帜的部族,危及了共同未来与全球相互依存的前景。尽管他有着最好的意图,说了种种美好的话语,奥巴马成了一个充满危险和愤怒的新世界的助产士之一,他那开明的世界主义看起来愈发不合时宜。

“全文请访问纽约时报中文网,本文发表于纽约时报中文网(http://cn.nytimes.com),版权归纽约时报公司所有。任何单位及个人未经许可,不得擅自转载或翻译。订阅纽约时报中文网新闻电邮:http://nytcn.me/subscription/”

相关文章列表