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VOA慢速英语2020 乔治·布什总统任期中的故事

时间:2020-08-27 23:58来源:互联网 提供网友:nan   字体: [ ]

Welcome to THE MAKING OF A NATION – American history in VOA Special English. I'm Steve Ember. This week in our series, we continue the story of President George Herbert Walker Bush. He was elected the forty-first president of the United States in nineteen eighty-eight. George H.W. Bush was president when the Cold War ended between the United States and the Soviet1 Union. The Cold War had lasted more than forty years. Both sides were heavily armed with nuclear weapons. People worried that one wrong move could lead to the end of the world. But by the late nineteen eighties, the world was changing. The Soviet Union was dying. On November ninth, nineteen eighty-nine, East Germany opened the Berlin Wall for the first time since it had been built. The wall had divided communist East Germany from democratic West Germany since nineteen sixty-one. Citizens and soldiers together soon began tearing it down.


Tensions continued to ease as communist rule in most of the former Soviet republics ended by the early nineteen nineties. Fifteen republics had belonged to the Soviet Union. By the end of nineteen ninety-one, most had declared their independence. They became a loosely formed group called the Commonwealth2 of Independent States. Countries that had considered the United States their enemy, now looked to it to lead the way to peace and, they hoped, prosperity. As the Soviet Union was dying, President Bush repeatedly negotiated with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. One of those meetings took place in the spring of nineteen ninety in the United States. It led to an agreement calling for both sides to destroy most of their chemical weapons. The two leaders also agreed to increase trade relations. The American and Soviet presidents met in Moscow in July nineteen ninety-one. There, they signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, known as START I. This treaty called for both sides to reduce their numbers of long-range nuclear weapons. They promised to cut the number by about one-third over seven years. START I became the first agreement between the two powers to order cuts in existing supplies of nuclear weapons.


In September nineteen ninety-one, President Bush said the United States would remove most of its short-range nuclear weapons from service. He also said the United States would destroy many of them. The next month, the Soviets3 announced that they would do the same. On December twenty-fifth of that year, Mikhail Gorbachev resigned as president, as the Union of Soviet Socialist4 Republics came to an end. "Compatriots, due to the situation, which has evolved as a result of the formation of the Commonwealth of Independent States, I hereby discontinue my activities at the post of president of the U.S.S.R." Six months earlier, Russians had chosen Boris Yeltsin as the first democratically elected leader of Russia. When the Soviet Union collapsed5, he became the most important leader of the former republics. President Bush and President Yeltsin signed another strategic arms reduction treaty, START II, in January nineteen ninety-three. "My fellow citizens, last night I ordered U.S. military forces to Panama. No president takes such action lightly." One of George Bush's military actions as president was to send troops into Panama in December nineteen eighty-nine.


They captured the country's leader, General Manuel Noriega. The United States had charged Noriega with drug trafficking. He had also refused to honor election results that showed another candidate winning the presidency7. President Bush said he also sent troops to the Central American nation to protect the thirty-five-thousand Americans living there. The American troops easily defeated Noriega's forces. He was taken to the United States where he was tried, found guilty and sent to prison for many years. The United States then supported the presidency of Guillermo Endara, the winner of the election in Panama. "Five months ago, Saddam Hussein started this cruel war against Kuwait. Tonight, the battle has been joined." In August nineteen ninety, Iraq invaded its neighbor, Kuwait. The United Nations Security Council passed a resolution threatening war on Iraq unless it withdrew from Kuwait. The council set a deadline of January fifteenth, nineteen ninety-one. But Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein refused. The United States and other nations were receiving much of their oil from Kuwait and neighboring Saudi Arabia.


President Bush succeeded in forming a coalition8 with thirty-eight other countries against Iraq. The purpose was to free Kuwait and protect Saudi Arabia against a possible Iraqi invasion. "This military action, taken in accord with United Nations resolutions and with the consent of the United States Congress, follows months of constant and virtually endless diplomatic activity on the part of the United Nations, the United States, and many, many other countries. Arab leaders sought what became known as an Arab solution, only to conclude that Saddam Hussein was unwilling9 to leave Kuwait. "Others traveled to Baghdad in a variety of efforts to restore peace and justice. Our secretary of state, James Baker10, held an historic meeting in Geneva, only to be totally rebuffed. This past weekend, in a last-ditch effort, the secretary-general of the United Nations went to the Middle East with peace in his heart -- his second such mission. And he came back from Baghdad with no progress at all in getting Saddam Hussein to withdraw from Kuwait." Coalition forces began an air war against Iraq on January seventeenth, nineteen ninety-one. They bombed Iraqi targets in Iraq and Kuwait. On February twenty-third, the Iraqis set fire to hundreds of Kuwaiti oil wells. "It looks like what I envisioned hell would look like. The country of Kuwait is burning." The coalition had the long and difficult task of putting those fires out.


On February twenty-fourth, the allied11 ground war began as part of the operation known as Desert Storm. That ground war lasted just one hundred hours. Saddam Hussein withdrew his forces from Kuwait. But he was still in control of his own country. Years later, some Americans continued to criticize the Bush administration for not trying to oust12 the Iraqi leader. They believed that Bush should have sent forces to capture Baghdad, the Iraqi capital. After the war ended, Kurds in northern Iraq rebelled against Saddam Hussein. So did Shiite Muslims in southern Iraq. The Iraqi government crushed both uprisings. The defeated Kurds fled to Iran and Turkey and into the mountains of northern Iraq. President Bush ordered American troops to help give humanitarian13 aid to the refugees. The troops established refugee camps for the Kurds. As time passed, Iraqi soldiers and aircraft continued to attack the Kurds in the north and the Shiites in the south. Coalition forces led by the United States established "no-fly" zones barring Iraqi aircraft over northern and southern Iraq. Coalition planes enforced these no-fly zones in the years that followed.


By late nineteen ninety-two, drought and conflict had caused widespread suffering in Somalia. "I want to talk to you today about the tragedy in Somalia, and about a mission that can ease suffering and save lives. Every American has seen the shocking images from Somalia. The scope of suffering there is hard to imagine. "Already, over a quarter million people have died in the Somali famine. In the months ahead, five times that number, one and a half million people, could starve to death." The violence and the collapse6 of the government were keeping many Somalis from receiving food and other aid. "The security situation has grown worse. The U.N. has been prevented from deploying14 its initial commitment of troops. In many cases, food from relief flights is being looted upon landing. Food convoys15 have been hijacked16, aid workers assaulted. Ships with food have been subjected to artillery17 attacks that have prevented them from docking. "There is no government in Somalia. Law and order have broken down. Anarchy18 prevails. One image tells the story – Imagine seven thousand tons of food aid, literally19 bursting out of a warehouse20 on a dock in Mogadishu, while Somalis starve, less than a kilometer away, because relief workers cannot run the gauntlet of armed gangs roving the city."


President Bush -- in the last year of his term -- sent American troops to Somalia to assist in the aid efforts. But the following year, in October of nineteen ninety-three, eighteen American soldiers on a raid were killed in a battle in Mogadishu. More than eighty were wounded. The failed operation would haunt the American military for years to come. The events of that day were the basis for the book and movie "Black Hawk21 Down." In December of nineteen ninety-two, as Bush was about to leave office, he and the leaders of Canada and Mexico signed the North American Free Trade Agreement. NAFTA called for removing taxes and other barriers to trade in North America. Some Americans accused Bush of sacrificing American jobs to lower-paid workers in Mexico by supporting NAFTA. Others praised him for supporting the agreement, which still had to pass Congress. But, by the time it did, George Bush was no longer president. He had lost his campaign for a second term. In November of nineteen ninety-two he lost the election to the Democratic governor of Arkansas, Bill Clinton. That will be our story next week.



1 Soviet Sw9wR     
  • Zhukov was a marshal of the former Soviet Union.朱可夫是前苏联的一位元帅。
  • Germany began to attack the Soviet Union in 1941.德国在1941年开始进攻苏联。
2 commonwealth XXzyp     
  • He is the chairman of the commonwealth of artists.他是艺术家协会的主席。
  • Most of the members of the Commonwealth are nonwhite.英联邦的许多成员国不是白人国家。
3 soviets 95fd70e5832647dcf39beb061b21c75e     
  • A public challenge could provoke the Soviets to dig in. 公开挑战会促使苏联人一意孤行。
  • The Soviets proposed the withdrawal of American ballistic-missile submarines from forward bases. 苏联人建议把美国的弹道导弹潜艇从前沿基地撤走。
4 socialist jwcws     
  • China is a socialist country,and a developing country as well.中国是一个社会主义国家,也是一个发展中国家。
  • His father was an ardent socialist.他父亲是一个热情的社会主义者。
5 collapsed cwWzSG     
  • Jack collapsed in agony on the floor. 杰克十分痛苦地瘫倒在地板上。
  • The roof collapsed under the weight of snow. 房顶在雪的重压下突然坍塌下来。
6 collapse aWvyE     
  • The country's economy is on the verge of collapse.国家的经济已到了崩溃的边缘。
  • The engineer made a complete diagnosis of the bridge's collapse.工程师对桥的倒塌做了一次彻底的调查分析。
7 presidency J1HzD     
  • Roosevelt was elected four times to the presidency of the United States.罗斯福连续当选四届美国总统。
  • Two candidates are emerging as contestants for the presidency.两位候选人最终成为总统职位竞争者。
8 coalition pWlyi     
  • The several parties formed a coalition.这几个政党组成了政治联盟。
  • Coalition forces take great care to avoid civilian casualties.联盟军队竭尽全力避免造成平民伤亡。
9 unwilling CjpwB     
  • The natives were unwilling to be bent by colonial power.土著居民不愿受殖民势力的摆布。
  • His tightfisted employer was unwilling to give him a raise.他那吝啬的雇主不肯给他加薪。
10 baker wyTz62     
  • The baker bakes his bread in the bakery.面包师在面包房内烤面包。
  • The baker frosted the cake with a mixture of sugar and whites of eggs.面包师在蛋糕上撒了一层白糖和蛋清的混合料。
11 allied iLtys     
  • Britain was allied with the United States many times in history.历史上英国曾多次与美国结盟。
  • Allied forces sustained heavy losses in the first few weeks of the campaign.同盟国在最初几周内遭受了巨大的损失。
12 oust 5JDx2     
  • The committee wanted to oust him from the union.委员会想把他从工会中驱逐出去。
  • The leaders have been ousted from power by nationalists.这些领导人被民族主义者赶下了台。
13 humanitarian kcoxQ     
  • She has many humanitarian interests and contributes a lot to them.她拥有很多慈善事业,并作了很大的贡献。
  • The British government has now suspended humanitarian aid to the area.英国政府现已暂停对这一地区的人道主义援助。
14 deploying 79c9e662a7f3c3d49ecc43f559de9424     
(尤指军事行动)使展开( deploy的现在分词 ); 施展; 部署; 有效地利用
  • Provides support for developing and deploying distributed, component-based applications. 为开发和部署基于组件的分布式应用程序提供支持。
  • Advertisement, publishing, repair, and install-on-demand are all available when deploying your application. 在部署应用程序时提供公布、发布、修复和即需即装功能。
15 convoys dc0d0ace5476e19f963b0142aacadeed     
n.(有护航的)船队( convoy的名词复数 );车队;护航(队);护送队
  • Truck convoys often stop over for lunch here. 车队经常在这里停下来吃午饭。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • A UN official said aid programs will be suspended until there's adequate protection for relief convoys. 一名联合国官员说将会暂停援助项目,直到援助车队能够得到充分的保护为止。 来自辞典例句
16 hijacked 54f3e68c506e45e75f9a155a27738c2f     
劫持( hijack的过去式和过去分词 ); 绑架; 拦路抢劫; 操纵(会议等,以推销自己的意图)
  • The plane was hijacked by two armed men on a flight from London to Rome. 飞机在从伦敦飞往罗马途中遭到两名持械男子劫持。
  • The plane was hijacked soon after it took off. 那架飞机起飞后不久被劫持了。
17 artillery 5vmzA     
  • This is a heavy artillery piece.这是一门重炮。
  • The artillery has more firepower than the infantry.炮兵火力比步兵大。
18 anarchy 9wYzj     
  • There would be anarchy if we had no police.要是没有警察,社会就会无法无天。
  • The country was thrown into a state of anarchy.这国家那时一下子陷入无政府状态。
19 literally 28Wzv     
  • He translated the passage literally.他逐字逐句地翻译这段文字。
  • Sometimes she would not sit down till she was literally faint.有时候,她不走到真正要昏厥了,决不肯坐下来。
20 warehouse 6h7wZ     
  • We freighted the goods to the warehouse by truck.我们用卡车把货物运到仓库。
  • The manager wants to clear off the old stocks in the warehouse.经理想把仓库里积压的存货处理掉。
21 hawk NeKxY     
  • The hawk swooped down on the rabbit and killed it.鹰猛地朝兔子扑下来,并把它杀死。
  • The hawk snatched the chicken and flew away.老鹰叼了小鸡就飞走了。
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