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穆巴拉克下台之后

发表时间:2011/2/15字号:T|T
目击埃及近况: Unwillingly,andwithhistinearalmostpetulantlyondisplay,HosniMubarakhasbowedtothecourageousprotesterswhoin18dayshavebroughthimdownafternearly30yearsofironrule.InEgypt,andacrosstheArabw...

目击埃及近况:

Unwillingly, and with his tin ear almost petulantly on display, Hosni Mubarak has bowed to the courageous protesters who in 18 days have brought him down after nearly 30 years of iron rule.

In Egypt, and across the Arab world, there is now no reason why western principles and pragmatism should be aligned – at long last.

Stunned by the vigour of the youthful protests that toppled the Ben Ali regime in Tunisia and have now unravelled the Mubarak dictatorship, Washington, London, Paris and Berlin have all wobbled and waffled. Barack Obama’s administration began by describing Egypt, and its alliance with President Mubarak, as “stable”. After 10 days of turmoil, it called for an “orderly transition”.

Then, dismayed and wrong-footed by Mr Mubarak’s defiant refusal to stand down on Thursday night, President Obama sharpened his tone. “The Egyptian government must put forward a credible, concrete and unequivocal path toward genuine democracy, and they have not yet seized that opportunity”. That was, just in time, the right place to be.

Mr Mubarak and his allies had blustered about “foreign diktats”. The floundering regime had variously accused Hamas and Zionists – those inseparable allies – of being behind the uprising. That could never shield him from the hunger for freedom of his people – and they know who they are.

This Nile Revolution portends huge uncertainty. Western capitals fear that the great boulder that has just landed in the stagnant pool of Arab despotism will set waves coursing across the region. Instability is the new certainty. But opportunity is boundless, and if the west wishes to recover its standing in the Arab world it must stay firmly on the side of freedom.

It is not just that western support for autocracy and indulgence of the corruption of Arab rulers is morally indefensible. Such a policy cannot deliver long-term stability. It breeds extremism and, in extremis, failed states. The longer corrupt and dictatorial regimes stay in power, the more likely it is that the most reactionary strains of Islamism will come to the fore.

It is a miracle that, in spite of the Faustian bargain the US and Europe struck, colluding in an Arab Exception to democracy, there is still strong support for the universal values championed by the west. The young insurgents of Egypt are claiming these for themselves, and deserve support and respect. These were dignified and moving protests by the most dynamic sectors of Arab society.

Until now, they have had scant support from a west bamboozled by rulers who claimed the only alternative to their tyranny was the obscurantism of the mullahs.

That spell may have broken, giving the west the chance to get behind a new era of freedom.

曾对抗议声浪装聋作哑而出尽洋相的胡斯尼?穆巴拉克(Hosni Mubarak),终于不情愿地向勇敢的抗议者低头。这些抗议者在18天内将铁腕统治埃及近30年的穆巴拉克赶下了台。

在埃及乃至整个阿拉伯世界,西方原则与务实主义如今再也没有理由不能统一了。

近期,年轻人主导的抗议活动先后推翻了突尼斯的本?阿里(Ben Ali)政权和埃及的穆巴拉克独裁统治。华盛顿、伦敦、巴黎和柏林方面在震惊之下,出现立场摇摆,拿不定主意。巴拉克?奥巴马(Barack Obama)政府最初将埃及以及美国与穆巴拉克总统的联盟形容为“稳定”。经过10天的动荡后,美国方面呼吁进行“有序过渡”。

然后,奥巴马总统对穆巴拉克周四晚发表不甘示弱、拒绝下台的讲话感到失望和意外,升高了自己的批评调子。“埃及政府必须制定一条迈向真正民主制度的可信、具体和毫不含糊的路线,迄今为止他们尚未抓住这个机遇”。这话说得及时,而且恰到好处。

穆巴拉克及其盟友曾经拿“外国发号施令”大做文章。陷入危机的埃及政权先后指控哈马斯和犹太复国主义者(那些不可分割的“盟友”)在幕后推动大规模抗议。但那决不可能令穆巴拉克得以高高在上,不理会埃及人民对自由的渴望——埃及人民知道自己是谁。

这一“尼罗河革命”预示着巨大的不确定性。西方各国政府担心的是,刚刚砸进阿拉伯专制统治这潭死水的巨石,将会掀起势不可挡的波浪,冲击该地区各国。不稳定必将成为新的现实。但机会也是无限的,如果西方希望恢复自己在阿拉伯世界的声望,就必须坚决站在自由一方。

西方对威权政府的支持、对阿拉伯统治者腐败的纵容,在道义上是站不住脚的。不仅如此,这种政策还不可能带来长期稳定。它会滋生极端主义,在最糟糕的情况下还会催生“失败国家”。腐败及独裁的政权在台上呆得越久,伊斯兰主义最极端派别就越有可能成气候。

奇迹在于,尽管美欧与阿拉伯统治者达成浮士德式交易,合谋制造阿拉伯世界在民主方面的“例外论”,但阿拉伯各国对西方崇尚的普世价值观仍存在强有力支持。埃及的年轻抗议者正要求实践这些价值观,他们理应得到支持和尊重。埃及的抗议,是阿拉伯社会最具活力的群体发起的有尊严且令人感动的抗议。

直到现在为止,这些抗议者几乎没有得到西方的支持,因为阿拉伯的统治者哄骗西方相信,如果他们的暴政被推翻,取而代之的将是推行愚民政策的毛拉们。

这个咒语也许已不攻自破,让西方有机会支持一个崇尚自由的新时代。

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