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朝鲜难题为何让世界束手无策

更新时间:2017-4-18 18:51:31 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

The North Korea Paradox: Why There Are No Good Options on Nuclear Arms
朝鲜难题为何让世界束手无策

North Korea, a small and poor country facing far stronger adversaries and the perpetual threat of its own collapse, would not seem a likely state to defy four consecutive American presidents.

朝鲜又小又穷,面对的是强大得多的敌人和自身崩溃的长期威胁,它看上去似乎不大可能是一个会连续和四任美国总统对抗的国家。

Yet it is precisely that weakness, analysts say, along with the country’s history and internal dynamics, that drives its leaders to pursue nuclear and missile programs at virtually any cost — and that robs the world of almost any option to limit them.

然而,分析人士说,正是这个弱点,连同该国的历史问题以及内部动态,驱使其领导人几乎不惜任何代价来实施导弹和核计划——并且让大家在限制这些计划上几乎没有任何选择。

Those factors, when viewed together, show why Barack Obama warned President Trump that North Korea would be the gravest foreign threat he faced — and why a solution has proved so hard to find.

把这些因素加在一起来看,就能明白为什么奥巴马警告特朗普说,朝鲜将是他面临的最严峻的外国威胁——以及为什么事实已经证明如此难以为它找到解决方案。

Vice President Mike Pence, speaking in South Korea on Monday, cited Mr. Trump’s “strength” and willingness to use force, warning, “North Korea would do well not to test his resolve.”

副总统迈克·彭斯(Mike Pence)周一在韩国发表讲话时,引用了特朗普关于“实力”以及愿意使用武力的说法,警告说:“朝鲜最好不要测试他的决心。”

But Mr. Trump may find that North Korea is driven by dynamics more complex than can be solved with strength or threats alone.

但是,特朗普可能会发现,推动朝鲜行动的是一个更加复杂的机制,仅靠实力或威胁解决不了问题。

When Peace Is Riskier Than Threat of War

如果和平比战争威胁的风险更大

North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs are central to a strategy meant to stave off a threat greater than any foreign adversary: the undermining of the North Korean system.

导弹和核计划是朝鲜一个战略的核心,这个战略旨在摆脱一个比任何外国对手都更大的威胁:朝鲜的体制遭到破坏。

For much of the Cold War, North and South Korea were at roughly comparable levels of economic and political development. Both could claim, at least internally, to be the rightful government of the Korean people who had been temporarily disunited.

在冷战时期的大部分年头,朝鲜和韩国的经济和政治发展水平大致差不多。两国至少都可以对内声称,它们是暂时未统一的朝鲜半岛的合法政府。

But by the 1990s, the South enjoyed a booming economy and a blossoming democracy.

但到了1990年代,韩国经济蓬勃发展,民主制度蓬勃兴旺。

Kim Jong-il, then the leader, responded with the “Songun,” or military-first, policy, which marshaled the nation to prepare for a war said to be just around the corner.

当时的领导人金正日的对应方式就是“先军政治”(songun),意思是军事为先的政策,动员全国为一场所谓近在咫尺的战争做准备。

This policy sought to explain the country’s shortages and rationing as necessary to maintain its immense military, to justify oppression as necessary to root out internal enemies and to rally the nationalism that often comes during wartime.

这一政策旨在把朝鲜的物资短缺和配给制度解释为维护其巨大军事体系的必需,把压迫民众解释为铲除内部敌人的必需,掀起通常会在战争时期出现的民族主义高潮。

B.R. Myers, a North Korea scholar at Dongseo University in South Korea, wrote in a 2010 book on North Korean ideology, “It is the regime’s awareness of a pending legitimacy crisis, not a fear of attack from without, which makes it behave ever more provocatively on the world stage.”

B·R·迈尔斯(B.R. Myers)是韩国东西大学(Dongseo University)的朝鲜问题学者,他在2010年一本关于朝鲜意识形态的书中写道:“朝鲜政权怕的是正在逼近的合法性危机,而不是来自外部的攻击,这使得它在世界舞台上的行为越发具有挑衅性。”

Today, the country and government appear to be stable. But this came at a cost: a permanent state of near-war to stave off the forces of history that would otherwise tear down North Korea. Neither threats nor concessions from outside have proven able to override this calculus.

如今这个国家和政府似乎是稳定的,但它付出代价是:永久处在战争在即的状态,以摆脱历史车轮碾碎朝鲜的命运。事实已经证明,外界的任何威胁和让步都无法超越这一点。

A Perpetual State of Almost-War

永久的战争在即状态

The Korean War, never officially resolved, was long deadlocked between the Cold War superpowers. When Soviet protection fell away, North Korea became suddenly vulnerable against the vastly more powerful United States and its allies.

朝鲜战争从未正式终结,它在冷战的超级大国之间陷入了长期僵局。苏联的保护撤离后,面对美国及其盟国的强大实力,朝鲜顿时显得备加脆弱。

Mr. Kim, unable to seek peace without risking a German-style reunification that would subsume the North under South Korean rule, sought to make any potential war too costly to consider.

金正日无法寻求和平,那样做的风险是让朝鲜处在韩国的统治之下,就像两德那样统一,而寻求任何潜在战争的成本也太高,不在考虑之内。

Missile and nuclear tests, along with what appears to have been a cultivated appearance of irrationality, put the onus on North Korea’s enemies to manage tensions.

通过开展导弹和核试验,树立一种看似不理性的形象,朝鲜就把处理紧张局势的责任放在了敌国身上。

At first, analysts believe, weapons programs were intended to one day be traded away in a grand bargain with the United States.

首先,分析人士认为,朝鲜导弹和核武器计划的目的是,有一天把它们当作筹码来和美国做一笔大交易。

But each round of provocation, in deliberately raising the risk of war, made the missile and nuclear programs not just symbolically useful but also strategically necessary.

但是为了故意增加战争风险而做的每一轮挑衅,也让导弹和核计划不仅仅具有象征性的用处,而且在战略上也成为必要。

After imposing such threats on its neighbors, North Korea could hardly drop these programs without understandably fearing an attack. Disarmament, in this view, would invite annihilation.

在向邻国施加这种威胁之后,朝鲜就不可能在不担心遭遇袭击的情况下放弃这些项目了,这也是可以理解的。按照这个观点,放弃这些项目将会导致朝鲜遭到覆灭。

A Desire for Extreme Risk

对极端风险的渴望

North Korea’s calculus, analysts believe, drives it toward a specific goal: a program powerful enough to survive all-out war with the United States.

分析人士认为,朝鲜的盘算推动着它向具体目标进发:一个强大到足以与美国开展全面战争而不倒的计划。

Far more powerful states, like Russia or China, dedicate billions in spending and decades of research to similar goals. Small, impoverished North Korea, unable to match their abilities, has compensated with a willingness to accept extreme levels of risk.

像俄罗斯或中国这样更强大的国家,可以把数以十亿计的资金和数十年的研发时间用在类似目标上。而又小又穷的朝鲜没有这种资源,就要靠愿意接受极大风险的决心来填补。

Its plan, analysts believe, is to halt any American invasion by launching nuclear strikes at the ports and airfields in the south where troops would enter the peninsula. It would then threaten to launch nuclear-armed intercontinental missiles (an ability it does not yet possess but is developing) at major American cities, forcing the United States to stand down.

分析人士认为,朝鲜的计划是阻止美国的任何入侵,方式是对美国部队进入半岛所需的韩国港口和机场进行核打击。然后朝鲜就会威胁要向美国的主要城市发射携带核武器的洲际导弹(朝鲜目前尚未拥有这种能力,但正在开发中),迫使美国退出。

By edging up to the line of such a war, North Korea can also coerce its adversaries in peacetime.

通过向这样一场战争慢慢靠拢,朝鲜在和平时期也可以对敌国产生逼迫效果。

Denny Roy, a political scientist who studies Asian security issues, told me last fall that North Korea “intentionally employs a posture of seemingly hyper-risk acceptance and willingness to go to war as a means of trying to intimidate its adversaries.”

研究亚洲安全问题的政治学家饶义(Denny Roy)去年秋天告诉我,朝鲜“有意采取一种似乎接受并乐于开战的风险极高的姿态,将它作为一种威慑敌人的手段”。

This puts the world in a quandary: How could any outside threat possibly exceed the risk that North Korea already takes on itself? How could any concession remove the North Korean weakness that drives its behavior?

这就让大家陷入了困境:来自外界的任何威胁怎么可能超过朝鲜自己已经承担的风险呢?外界所做的任何让步,又怎么可能消除驱使朝鲜做出此种行为的弱点呢?

A Hair Trigger to Nuclear Escalation

核升级一触即发

The United States’ relative strength is also, paradoxically, a weakness. North Korea knows that it would quickly succumb to a full American attack, making its only option to escalate to nuclear strikes almost immediately at the start of a conflict.

自相矛盾的是,美国的相对优势也是一个劣势。朝鲜知道,如果美国发起全面攻击,自己很快就会失败。这导致朝鲜只能选择几乎在冲突一开始就升级到核打击。

North Korea also fears that the United States might seek to depose its government in rapid strikes against the leadership, a threat it seeks to deter with repeated warnings of a nuclear response.

朝鲜还担心美国可能会寻求通过迅速攻击其领导人来让它的政府解体。为了防止这一威胁上演,朝鲜多次警告称自己会使用核武器进行回应。

In this way, North Korean weakness constrains any American options. Punitive strikes, which might otherwise be used to chasten the country, or strikes meant to degrade the missile or nuclear programs, would risk stirring North Korea’s fear of an all-out attack, leading to nuclear conflict.

朝鲜的脆弱就这样制约着美国的一切选择。本可以用来惩戒该国的惩罚性打击或意在破坏其导弹或核计划的打击,都可能激起朝鲜对全面攻击的恐惧,引发核冲突

The Nixon administration faced this problem in 1969, when North Korea shot down a United States Navy plane, killing 31. Though the president was willing to bomb Cambodia and Laos and proposed using nuclear weapons in Vietnam, he concluded that even a symbolic retaliation against North Korea would be too risky.

1969年朝鲜击落美国海军的一架飞机,造成31人死亡时,尼克松政府就面临这个问题。尽管尼克松愿意轰炸柬埔寨和老挝,并建议在越南使用核武器,但他断定,即便是对朝鲜进行象征性的报复,风险也很大。

A Unique Tolerance for Pain

对痛苦的非凡忍耐

Iran was persuaded to surrender most of its nuclear program by sanctions, which put the government under domestic pressure from citizens who hated their isolation and poverty and from elites who foresaw huge gains from sanctions relief.

伊朗被制裁说服,放弃了其核计划的大部分内容,因为制裁导致政府在国内面临压力。这种压力既来自对被隔离和贫穷不满的普通民众,也来自预见到取消制裁会带来巨大好处的精英。

But North Korea has proved itself capable of withstanding economic devastation far exceeding Iran’s.

但朝鲜已证明自己有能力抵御远比伊朗所遭受的更严重的经济打击。

In the 1990s, North Korea was plunged into a famine that killed up to 10 percent of the population. But it neither succumbed to internal unrest nor sought to end the crisis by opening up to the outside world.

90年代,朝鲜出现饥荒,导致该国10%的人口死亡。但朝鲜既没有被内乱压垮,也没有寻求通过向外部世界开放来结束危机。

The famine, Mr. Myers wrote, “may have strengthened support for the regime by renewing the sense of ethnic victimhood from which the official worldview derived its passion.”

迈尔斯写道,那场饥荒“也许重新点燃了民族受害情绪,进而巩固了对该政权的支持,朝鲜官方世界观中的激愤正是源于这种民族受害情绪”。

“Many migrants remember a widespread yearning for war with America during the famine,” he added.

“很多移民都记得,在那场饥荒期间,民众普遍渴望和美国开战,”他接着说。

This is why some analysts doubt that even the most extreme sanctions, including perhaps those imposed by China, could change North Korea’s calculus. Since the famine, though North Korea’s economy has grown reliant on Chinese imports, the country has overhauled its food system.

这正是为什么,一些分析人士怀疑,即便是最极端的制裁,可能包括中国实行的那些制裁,也无法改变朝鲜的考量。饥荒过后,尽管朝鲜的经济依赖中国的进口,但该国已对其粮食制度进行了改革。

An Ability Beyond Removal

无法消除的能力

Some rogue weapons states, such as Iraq under Saddam Hussein, rely on imported technology or assistance. North Korea’s programs, however, appear largely indigenous.

一些流氓武器国家,比如萨达姆·侯赛因(Saddam Hussein)时代的伊拉克,依靠进口技术或援助。然而,朝鲜的武器计划似乎主要靠自己。

This means that, while specific sites could be shut down or weapons removed by a potential agreement or set of strikes, the knowledge to reconstitute them may be there for good.

这意味着尽管可以通过潜在的协议或一系列打击行动关闭具体的场所,运走武器,但复原它们的知识也许会永远存在。

If North Korea remains bent on acquiring a nuclear-capable intercontinental ballistic missile, then no obvious action short of all-out war could completely derail this drive. Cyberattacks, for instance, can only slow its progress.

如果朝鲜依然决心要获得能够搭载核弹的洲际弹道导弹,那么显然,任何不包括全面战争在内的行动都不会彻底破坏这项活动。比如,网络攻击只会让它的进展放慢。

North Korea is believed to already have short- and medium-range missiles and rockets hidden around the country. Strikes to rapidly destroy these weapons, analysts believe, would be unlikely to succeed before the country could launch at least some.

朝鲜据信已经把短程和中程导弹和火箭弹藏在了全国各地。分析人士认为,在为了迅速摧毁这些武器而发起的攻击取得成功之前,朝鲜可能至少可以发射部分武器。

Seoul, the South Korean capital and a city of 25 million, would be a likely target. Any strike plan, whether to disarm North Korea or punish it, would have to ask whether this was an acceptable risk.

有2500万人口的韩国首都首尔可能会成为朝鲜的目标。任何打击计划,不管是为了解除朝鲜的武装还是惩罚它,都必须问问这个风险是否可接受。

The High Costs of a Deal

协议的高昂代价

Any agreement that North Korea would be likely to consider minimally acceptable would come at huge cost to the United States and its allies. North Korea would be likely to require:

朝鲜可能觉得可以接受的任何最低限度协议,都会让美国及其盟友付出巨大的代价。朝鲜可能会要求:

■ A tacit acknowledgment of the country’s right to retain its existing programs.

■ 默许该国有权保留现有的武器计划;

■ A declaration that the United States considered the North Korean government legitimate and would not seek to topple it.

■ 美国宣布承认朝鲜政府的合法性,且不会寻求推翻它;

■ The lifting of sanctions.

■ 取消制裁;

■ The withdrawal or reduction of the American military commitment to South Korea.

■ 美国收回或减少对韩国的军事承诺。

“They want to see the end of that alliance,” said Joshua H. Pollack, the editor of the Nonproliferation Review, suggesting that North Korea has drawn inspiration from the way that the United States broke with Taiwan in order to normalize relations with China in the 1970s.

“他们想看到美国和韩国的联盟瓦解,” 《防扩散评论》(Nonproliferation Review)的主编乔舒亚·波拉克(Joshua Pollack)说,并称朝鲜从70年代美国为了与中国关系正常化而与台湾断交的做法中获得了灵感。

Mr. Pollack emphasized that North Korea probably saw this as a long-term goal to be accomplished over many years, rather than something to demand up front and all at once.

波拉克强调,朝鲜可能把这当成一个需要经过多年才能实现的长期目标,不会一下就提出这个要求。

Still, he said, North Korea may see this as the only way to reduce the existential threat that its weapons program is meant to curb.

但他仍表示,朝鲜也许认为这是降低生存威胁的唯一办法。该国的武器计划就是为了遏制这种威胁。

Any partial or full American withdrawal would risk sending the American relationship with South Korea and Japan into crisis, empowering North Korea and weakening American influence in Asia.

美国部分或全部撤军可能会导致美国与韩国和日本的关系陷入危机、朝鲜实力增强和美国在亚洲的影响力被削弱。

Even if a president deemed these costs worthwhile, he or she might find the politics of such a deal insurmountable.

即便美国总统认为这些代价是值得的,他或她可能也会发现围绕这样一份协议产生的政治争斗无法克服。

A Drift Toward Disaster

朝着灾难的方向发展

As time goes on, analysts say, the risks only grow.

分析人士称,随着时间的推移,风险只会增加。

“If the current action-reaction cycle continues,” Daryl G. Kimball, the executive director of the Arms Control Association, wrote in a recent policy brief, “it will not only diminish the prospect of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, but it will increase the risk of a devastating nuclear war.”

“如果当前的行动-反应循环继续下去,” 美国军控协会(Arms Control Association)的负责人达里尔·G·金博尔(Daryl G. Kimball)在最近的一份政策简报中写道,“不只会降低朝鲜半岛无核化的希望,还会加大出现一场毁灭性的核战争的风险。”

John R. Bolton, the Bush administration’s ambassador to the United Nations, told Fox News this week that the only “way to end North Korea’s nuclear weapons program is to end North Korea” by bringing about the government’s total collapse.

布什政府驻联合国大使约翰·R·博尔顿(John R. Bolton)本周对福克斯新闻(Fox News)表示,唯一可以“终结朝鲜核计划的办法是”是让政府彻底倒台,从而“终结朝鲜”。

Mr. Pollack, asked if he agreed, at first dismissed Mr. Bolton as a “hard-liner,” saying a war would risk nuclear devastation, but then he acknowledged that the assessment of North Korea’s determination was probably correct.

被问及是否同意上述观点时,波拉克先是认为博尔顿是“强硬派”而不予考虑,称战争可能会引发核毁灭。但随后,他承认对朝鲜的决心的评估可能是正确的。

“They’re not gonna give this stuff up,” Mr. Pollack said.

“他们不会放弃这个东西的,”波拉克说。

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