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#174: American History: Foreign Policy During the 1920s

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British and American officials signing a British war loan in 1917
British and American officials signing a British war loan in 1917

FAITH LAPIDUS: Welcome to THE MAKING OF A NATION - American history in VOA Special English.

The nineteen twenties are remembered as a quiet period in American foreign policy. The nation was at peace. Americans elected three Republican presidents in a row: Warren Harding, Calvin Coolidge and Herbert Hoover. These conservatives in the White House were generally more interested in economic growth at home than in relations with other countries.

对于美国来说,20世纪二十年代是对外政策的平静时期。此时的美国处于和平年代。美国人先后选出三位共和党人当总统,分别是:哈丁、柯立芝和胡佛。从总体上说,这些保守派的总统对国内经济发展比对美国对外关系更感兴趣。

But the United States had become a world power. It was tied to other countries by trade, politics and shared interests. And America had gained new economic strength.

但美国毕竟已经成为世界强国,它通过贸易、政治和其它共同利益与其它国家联系在了一起,此时美国的经济实力也进一步增强。

This week in our series, Bob Doughty and Shirley Griffith discuss American foreign policy during the nineteen twenties.

(MUSIC)

BOB DOUGHTY: Before World War One, foreigners invested more money in the United States than Americans invested in other countries -- about three billion dollars more. The war changed this. By nineteen nineteen, Americans had almost three billion dollars more invested in other countries than foreign citizens had invested in the United States.

第一次世界大战前,外国对美国的投资超过美国对外国的投资,差额约为30亿美元。但一战扭转了这一局面,到1919年的时候,美国对外投资反而超过了外国在美投资约30亿美元。

American foreign investments continued to increase greatly during the nineteen twenties.

20世纪二十年代,美国对外投资继续大幅增长。

Increased foreign investment was not the only sign of growing American economic power. By the end of World War One, the United States produced more goods and services than any other nation, both in total and per person.

美国经济实力的增强不仅仅体现在对外投资的增长上,到一战结束时,美国所生产的产品和服务无论在总量还是人均上都超过了世界其它国家。

Americans had more steel, food, cloth, and coal than even the richest foreign nations. By nineteen twenty, the United States national income was greater than the combined incomes of Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Canada, and seventeen smaller countries. Quite simply, the United States had become the world's greatest economic power.

美国钢铁、食品、服装和煤碳的产量比世界最富裕的几个国家的产量都要高。到1920年,美国的国民收入比英国、法国、德国、日本 、加拿大和其它十七个小国家的国民收入的总和还要多。一句话,美国已经成为世界上经济实力最强大的国家。

A steel worker at a rolling mill in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
A steel worker at a rolling mill in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

SHIRLEY GRIFFITH: America's economic strength influenced its policies toward Europe during the nineteen twenties. In fact, one of the most important issues of this period was the economic aid the United States had provided European nations during World War One.

美国强大的经济实力影响到了这个时期美国对欧洲的外交政策。事实上,这一时期最重要议题之一就是美国在一战期间向欧洲提供的援助贷款。

Americans lent the Allied countries seven billion dollars during the war. Shortly after the war, they lent another three billion dollars. The Allies borrowed most of the money for military equipment and food and other needs of their people.

战争期间,美国向同盟国提供了70亿美元的援助,在战后不久又提供了30亿美元。大部分援助被同盟国用来购买军事装备、食品和其它必需品。

The Allied nations suffered far greater losses of property and population than the United States during the war. And when peace came, they called on the United States to cancel the loans America had made. France, Britain, and the other Allied nations said the United States should not expect them to re-pay the loans.

战争期间,欧洲各国所遭受的财产和人员损失要远远超过美国,因此,和平到来时,欧洲各国呼吁美国免除它们的债务。法国、英国和其它同盟国说,美国不应该指望它们偿还债务。

BOB DOUGHTY: The United States refused to cancel the debts. President Coolidge spoke for most Americans when he said, simply: "They borrowed the money." He believed the European powers should pay back the war loans, even though their economies had suffered terribly during the fighting.

可美国拒绝这么做,柯立芝总统说出了大部分美国人的想法。他对欧洲国家的要求简单回应道:"这些钱是他们向我们借的。"他认为,即使欧洲各国在战争期间遭受到严重的经济损失,它们也要偿还战争债务。

However, the European nations had little money to pay their loans. France tried to get the money by demanding payments from Germany for having started the war. When Germany was unable to pay, France and Belgium occupied Germany's Ruhr Valley. As a result, German miners in the area reduced coal production. And France and Germany moved toward an economic crisis and possible new armed conflict.

然而,欧洲各国实在是没钱还债。法国试图以德国发动战争为由让德国支付战争赔款,再拿赔款来还美国的钱。但是德国也无力支付战争赔款,于是,法国和比利时就占领了德国的鲁尔工业区,结果导致那里煤矿减产。法国和德国日益滑向经济危机,并面临再次爆发战争的可能。

SHIRLEY GRIFFITH: An international group intervened and negotiated a settlement to the crisis. The group provided a system to save Germany's currency and protect international debts. American bankers agreed to lend money to Germany to pay its war debts to the Allies. And the Allies used the money to pay their debts to the United States.

最后,一个国际组织出面干预调停,才化解了这场危机。这个组织设计了一个金融机制,挽救德国的货币,保护国际债务。美国银行家们同意借钱给德国,让德国向同盟国支付战争赔款,然后,同盟国再利用德国的赔款来偿还它们欠美国的债务。

BOB DOUGHTY: Some Americans with international interests criticized President Coolidge and other conservative leaders for not reducing or canceling Europe's debts.

柯立芝总统和其他一些保守派的领导人拒绝减免欧洲债务的做法招来一些有国际视野的美国人的批评。

They said the debts and the new payment plan put foolish pressure on the weak European economies. They said this made the German currency especially weak. And they warned that a weak economy would lead to serious social problems in Germany and other countries.

这些人说,新的债务支付机制是愚蠢的,让本来就脆弱的欧洲经济雪上加霜,特别会使德国货币更加疲软。同时他们警告说,脆弱的经济将会导致德国和其它国家出现严重的社会问题。

However, most Americans did not understand the serious effect that international economic policies could have on the future of world peace. They believed that it was wrong for the Europeans -- or anyone -- to borrow money and then refuse to pay it back.

然而,大多数美国人并没有认识到国际经济政策对日后世界和平会产生多么严重的影响。他们认为,无论是欧洲人还是世界上任何人,欠债不还就是不对。

SHIRLEY GRIFFITH: Many Americans of the nineteen twenties also failed to recognize that a strong national military force would become increasingly important in the coming years. President Coolidge requested very limited military spending from the Congress. And many conservative military leaders refused to spend much money on such new kinds of equipment as submarines and airplanes.

20世纪二十年代,许多美国人也没有意识到强大的军事实力会在后来的几年中变得越来越重要。柯立芝总统向国会提交的军费开支预算数目甚小,而许多保守的军方领导人拒绝在潜水艇和飞机等新式武器开发方面投入大量资金。

Some Americans did understand that the United States was now a world power and needed a strong and modern fighting force.

不过,也有一些美国人已经认识到,美国现在是一个强国,需要强大和现代化的军队。

One general, Billy Mitchell, publicly criticized the military leadership for not building new weapons. But most Americans were not interested. Many Americans continued to oppose arms spending until the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii in nineteen forty-one.

一位叫比利.米切尔的将军公开批评军方领导人不建造新武器的做法。但大多数美国人对这个问题没有兴趣。他们反对军费开支,直到1941年日本偷袭珍珠港,这种态度才出现转变。

BOB DOUGHTY: American policy toward the League of Nations did not change much in the nineteen twenties.

20世纪二十年代,美国对国联的态度没有多少改变。

In nineteen nineteen, the Senate denied President Wilson's plea for the United States to join the new League of Nations. The United States, however, became involved unofficially in a number of league activities. But it continued to refuse to become a full member. And in nineteen thirty, the Senate rejected a proposal for the United States to join the World Court.

1919年,参议院否决了威尔逊总统关于美国加入国联的要求。美国非正式地参与了国联的一些行动。尽管如此,美国仍然拒绝成为国联的正式成员。1930年,参议院还拒绝了让美国加入国际法庭的提议。

The United States also continued in the nineteen twenties to refuse to recognize the communist government in Moscow. However, trade between the Soviet Union and the United States increased greatly during this period. And such large American companies as General Electric, DuPont, and R-C-A provided technical assistance to the new Soviet government.

20世纪二十年代,美国拒绝承认莫斯科的共产党政府,然而,苏联与美国之间的贸易往来在这一时期却显著增加。通用电器、杜邦公司和美国无线电公司等大企业都向苏联新政府提供技术援助。

(MUSIC)

SHIRLEY GRIFFITH: The Coolidge administration was involved actively in events in Latin America. Secretary of State Charles Evans Hughes helped several Latin American countries to settle border disputes peacefully.

柯立芝政府积极参与拉美事务。国务卿查尔斯.埃文斯.休斯帮助好几个拉丁美洲国家和平解决了边界争端问题。

In Central America, President Coolidge ordered American Marines into Nicaragua when President Adolfo Diaz faced a revolt from opposition groups. The United States gave its support to more conservative groups in Nicaragua. And it helped arrange a national election in nineteen twenty-eight. American troops stayed in Nicaragua until nineteen thirty-three.

在中美洲,当时的尼加拉瓜总统遇到反对派挑战时,柯立芝总统下令美国海军陆战队进入尼加拉瓜,支持尼加拉瓜国内的保守派团体,协助举办了1928年的尼加拉瓜全国大选。美国在尼加拉瓜驻军直到1933年。

However, American troops withdrew from the Dominican Republic during this period. And Secretary of State Hughes worked to give new life to the Pan American union.

与此同时,美国从多米尼加共和国撤军。休斯国务卿还使泛美联盟获得了新的生机。

BOB DOUGHTY: Relations with Mexico became worse during the nineteen-twenties. In nineteen twenty-five, Mexican President Plutarco Elias Calles called for laws to give Mexico more control over its minerals and natural wealth. American oil companies resisted the proposed changes. They accused Calles of communism. And some American business and church leaders called for armed American intervention.

美国与墨西哥的关系在20世纪二十年代转向恶化。1925年,墨西哥总统卡莱斯要求通过立法加强墨西哥对本国矿产等自然资源的控制。美国的石油公司反对这么做,并指责卡莱斯是共产分子,美国商界和宗教界的一些领导人要求美国政府出兵干涉。

However, the American Senate voted to try to settle the conflict peacefully. And American diplomat Dwight Morrow helped negotiate a successful new agreement.

然而,美国参议院投票决定,尽量通过和平方式解决同墨西哥的争端。美国外交家德怀特.莫罗成功推动两国谈判,让双方达成了新协议。

SHIRLEY GRIFFITH: These American actions in Nicaragua and Mexico showed that the United States still felt that it had special security interests south of its border. But its peaceful settlement of the Mexican crisis and support of elections in Nicaragua showed that it was willing to deal with disputes peacefully.

美国在尼加拉瓜和墨西哥的行动表明,美国仍然觉得拉丁美洲对其安全利益至关重要。和平处理与墨西哥的危机和支持尼加拉瓜大选则表明,美国愿意以和平方式解决同拉美国家的纠纷。

America's policies in Latin America during the nineteen-twenties were in some ways similar to its policies elsewhere. It was a time of change, of movement, from one period to another. Many Americans were hoping to follow the traditional foreign policies of the past. They sought to remain separate from world conflict.

从某种意义上说,20世纪二十年代美国对拉美国家的政策和它对其他国家的政策差不多。这是一个变革、发展、过渡的时期。许多美国人仍然希望沿袭传统的对外政策,尽量不卷入世界冲突。

BOB DOUGHTY: The United States, however, could no longer remain apart from world events. This would become clear in the coming years. Europe would face fascism and war. The Soviet Union would grow more powerful. And Latin America would become more independent.

然而,时局使美国不能再对世界事务冷眼旁观。在后来的几年中,这一点变得更为明确。欧洲将面临法西斯主义和战争的威胁,苏联日益强大,拉美各国变得更为独立。

The United States was a world power. But it was still learning in the nineteen twenties about the leadership and responsibility that is part of such power.

美国已经是世界强国,但在20世纪二十年代,美国仍在学习如何对待与之俱来的领导地位和职责。

(MUSIC)

FAITH LAPIDUS: Our program was written by David Jarmul. The narrators were Bob Doughty and Shirley Griffith. You can find our series online with pictures, transcripts, MP3s and podcasts at www.unsv.com. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter at VOA Learning English. Join us again next week for THE MAKING OF A NATION -- an American history series in VOA Special English.

___

This is program #174

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作者:郑烈波
the united states was a world power .but it was still learning in the nineteen twenties about the leadership and responsibility that is part of such power.
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