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[翻译]新闻传真 - 缅甸保留一座犹太教会堂

来源:慢速英语   时间:2014-01-10 13:49:14

Hello and welcome back.  I’m Jim Tedder in Washington.  Today we travel to Burma to hear how people are trying to save the past.  Then we will talk about climate change and forest fires.  They were a big problem for many parts of the world last year.  Stay with us for “As It Is” …a way to learn and improve your American English …from VOA.

今天我们来到缅甸,了解人们如何保留过去的历史。接下来,我们谈论气候变化和森林大火。去年,它们是全世界很多地方的重大问题。

Changes in Burma’s political life are giving Rangoon's historic area a new appearance. Very tall modern buildings are fast replacing buildings from colonial times.  But business groups, historians and one of the country's last Jewish families are joining to preserve a 100-year-old synagogue. They want to keep the religious center as a historic part of the past of Burma, also known as Myanmar.

缅甸政治生活的改变给仰光历史地区带来了新景象。高耸的现代化建筑快速取代殖民地时期的建筑。但企业集团、历史学家和该国家最后的犹太家族之一正在共同参与保护一座百年犹太教会堂。他们希望保留这个宗教中心,作为缅甸历史文化的一部分。

The Mesmuah Yeshua synagogue is in a neighborhood that was very common in colonial Rangoon.  Mosques, Hindu temples, churches, and Buddhist pagodas share streets with markets, outdoor salesmen and hardware stores.  The protected historic building dates back to 1896.  A member of the Samuels family has cared for it over many years.

木斯米亚约书亚犹太会堂是仰光殖民时期非常普遍化的街区。清真寺、印度教寺院、教堂和佛塔共享这里的市场、户外推销员和五金店。这座受保护建筑要追溯到 1896 年。Samuels 家族的一位成员照看它多年了。

For the past 35 years, Moses Samuels has been the trustee --- the guardian -- of the synagogue.   He inherited the responsibility from his father -- who followed his own father in the work.  He looks forward to the time when his son takes the responsibility for the synagogue.  Moses Samuels is hopeful about the future of the community.

过去 35 年,Moses Samuels 一直是这座犹太教会堂的守护人。他从父亲那里继承了这份责任,他的父亲则也是继承父亲的工作。他在期待他儿子承担起犹太教会堂责任的时刻。Moses Samuels 对这个社区的未来充满希望。

Sammy Samuels is Moses Samuels’ son.  The younger Mr. Samuels recently returned to Myanmar after studying at a Jewish university in New York.  He has celebrated all his major life events in the synagogue.

Sammy Samuels 是 Moses Samuels 的儿子,他刚刚在纽约一所犹太教大学完成学业后回到缅甸。这座犹太教会堂见证了他人生的所有大事。

“It is the main reason we stick here.  We could have closed.  We could have moved to other countries. But it’s very important to us.  I used to play around here, I had my bar mitzvah here, I had my Shabbat dinner here, I had my wedding here.”

“这是我们坚守这里的主要原因。我们本来可能已经关闭了,本来可能搬到其他国家了。但它对我们很重要。我过去经常在附近玩,我的受戒仪式在这里,我的安息日晚餐在这里,我的婚礼也在这里。”

For years, the building fell into disrepair.  And, it lost its roof during a cyclone in 2008.  The U.S. ASEAN Business Council donated money to keep the synagogue standing.  But now the Samuels family is taking it over.

这座建筑年久失修,并且在 2008 年的一场旋风中失去了屋顶。美国东盟商务理事会曾经捐助资金维护犹太教会堂。但是现在,Samuels 家族接过了它。

Mr. Samuels says tourism has increased in the country, helping the family's travel business, Myanmar Shalom. The business permits them to pay the cost of repairs.

Samuels 说,该国家的旅游业在增长,也帮助了他家的旅游公司“缅甸沙龙”。这个公司使他们可以支付修缮费用。

Writer and historian Thant Myint-U heads the Yangon Heritage Trust.  The organization has promised to save Rangoon’s historic buildings.  He says the synagogue's preservation effort involves more than just the building.  Thant Myint-U says it means to recover Burma's past.  The goal is to help people understand the city's rich history of differing ethnic groups.

作家及历史学家吴丹敏是仰光文化遗产信托的主席。该机构承诺保护仰光的这座历史建筑。他说,保护犹太教会堂不仅仅是保存这座建筑。吴丹敏说,它还意味着还原缅甸的历史。其目标是帮助人们理解该城市不同族群的丰富历史。

“It’s also about revitalizing old Rangoon and old Yangon and revitalizing this in a way that helps all the people in this city, poor people, working class people, as well as middle class and other people, and help them both appreciate the multiculturalism here, but also help to engender and enable a new cosmopolitan Yangon to emerge in the 21st century as well.”

“它还是要还原仰光的历史,以一种帮助城市所有人的方式还原它,穷人、工人阶级、中产阶级以及其他人。帮助他们欣赏这里的多元文化,帮助产生、铸就新的 21 世纪的世界性仰光。”

Moses Samuels agrees that having many different religious communities is important.  He says he makes a point of having close personal relationships with other religious leaders in the city.

Moses Samuels 赞同很多不同宗教团体的重要性。他说,他公认地与该城市其他宗教领袖保持密切的个人关系。

To show support of religious unity, Burma's government sent Aung Min to the event.  He is the main peace negotiator for the ceasefires with armed groups in border areas.

为了体现对宗教团结的支持,缅甸政府派去了昂敏。他是与边境武装组织达成停战协议的主要和平谈判代表。

“This is part of my intention to celebrate the culture and heritage of the Jewish community in Myanmar.   We have longstanding Jewish culture and heritage here but we have less and less which is a sad thing to see so I came here in effort to celebrate that heritage. “

“让缅甸能够庆祝犹太社区的文化和传承,这是我意愿的一部分。我们这里拥有长期存在的犹太文化和传承,但却越来越少了,这很悲哀。所以我来到这里促成这种传承。”

As part of the synagogue's preservation plan, officials are planning to move the nearby Jewish cemetery.  It has 700 burial places.

作为犹太教会堂保存计划的一部分,官员们计划转移附近的犹太墓园。它有 700 个墓位。

Rangoon's last rabbi left in the 1960’s. Since then, no regular religious services have been held at the synagogue.  But it remains open to the public.

仰光最后的犹太教教士在 20 世纪 60 年代离开。从那时起,犹太教会堂就没有了常规的宗教服务。但它一直对公众开放。

Wildfires Are Deadly and Costly

森林大火引发伤亡、耗资巨大

Australia, Indonesia, Russia, Greece, and the United States …those are just a few places where huge wildfires have been a problem in recent years. In the American West, for example, three wildfires caused major damage in 2013. Fire experts say most of these fires are a result of climate change, land use, and human actions.  Steve Ember joins us with details.

澳大利亚、印度尼西亚、俄罗斯、希腊和美国……这仅是今年遭遇巨大火灾的少数几个地方。比如,在美国西部,今年早些时候的三起大火造成了重大损失。消防专家称,这些火灾大部分都是气候变化、土地使用和人类活动的结果。

June 2013: The Black Forest Fire destroys more than 500 homes in Colorado. Weeks later in Arizona, the Yarnell Hill fire kills 19 members of the Granite Mountain Hotshots -- a group known for its firefighting expertise. Then, in California, the Rim Fire becomes the third largest fire in state history.

2013 年 6 月,科罗拉多州的黑森林火灾毁坏了 500 多处房屋。几周之后的亚利桑那州,雅纳尔山大火导致 19 位“花岗岩山高手”消防小组的成员死亡——该小组以消防技术著名。接下来,加州的“环火”成为加州历史上的第三大火灾。

Bill Kaage directs wildland fire operations for the United States Park Service at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho. He says huge, costly wildfires were once rare.

Bill Kaage 在爱达荷州博伊西国家林火协调中心的美国国家公园管理局负责野外火灾。他说,破坏惨重的大型火灾曾经很少见。

“In the western United States, we have larger fires that occur over a larger period of time…”

“在美国西部,我们很长一段时间才会遇到大型火灾。”

Mr. Kaage says this change is forcing fire officials to change their methods.

Kaage 说,这种变化迫使消防官员改变他们的方法。

United Nations officials and fire experts say long periods of dry weather are one reason for the fires. They suspect the lack of rainfall results from climate change.

联合国官员和消防专家称,长期干旱天气是火灾的原因之一。他们怀疑,降雨不足则是气候变化的结果。

Another suspected cause is land use, including years of protecting new communities in areas where fires were likely. The idea is to aggressively put out all wildfires. That policy is called suppression.

另一个可能的原因是土地使用,包括保护火灾多发地区的新社区建设。其做法是主动扑灭所有野火,这叫做“抑制”政策。

But Stephen Pyne of Arizona State University does not believe the suppression method is successful. He says it has failed in every country likely to have wildfires.

但亚利桑那州立大学的 Stephen Pyne 不认为抑制的方法是成功的。他说,它在野火多发的各个国家都没能成功。

“(When) the smoke is on the horizon, and the TV cameras are out, it seems like an easy solution to call in the troops, bring in the airplanes and the helicopters, bomb it away, and then the problem is gone.  All we’ve done is put it off.”

“当看到天边的烟雾,出现在电视的镜头中,似乎有一个简单的方法就是呼叫消防部队,动用飞机和直升机,扑灭火势,然后问题就解决了。我们所要做的就只是把火扑灭。”

“Turn on your emergency lights…”

“打开应急灯……”

Stephen Pyne says suppression is a temporary measure that creates more dangerous fires later. It enables smaller trees and plants to build up. This vegetation acts as fuel that can carry fire to taller treetops.

Stephen Pyne 说,抑制政策是一种会造成更多后续危险的临时措施。它使矮小树木得以生长,这些植被会像燃料一样把火苗引向更高的树梢。

“We have a burn-out going on the south side…”

“南边要烧尽了……”

Oregon forester Marc Barnes says that when fires burned at low intensity in the past, it would clean the forest. Now, he says, fires are burning at high intensity and destroying all the trees and the forest.

俄勒冈州林业人员 Marc Barnes 说,过去火势较弱的时候,这样算是清理了森林。而现在火势变强了,则能烧毁所有的树木和森林。

He says money for fire-fighting should be spent on preventive measures like fuel reduction.

他说,防火资金应该花在减少可燃植被等预防措施上。

“Otherwise, we’re just going to keep having bigger and bigger fires.  We’re going to spend more and more and a lot less is going to get done by those agencies.”

“否则,我们只会遇到越来越大的火灾。我们的花费越来越多,而这些机构的收效则越来越小。”

He adds that “so much of their budgets are getting eclipsed by the budgets for fire suppression.”

他补充道,“他们这么多的预算,相比于抑制火灾的预算还是不够。”

Bill Kaage says the federal deficit has forced agencies like his to cut their budgets for fuel reduction.

Bill Kaage 说,联邦赤字迫使他们这类机构为减少易燃植被而削减预算。

“There’s a choice we’ve had to make to make sure we have the engines and the crews available to us for a response.”

“我们需要做一个选择,确保我们的‘发动机’和‘船员’随时准备就绪。”

The United States Congress has demanded a national plan of action to fight wildfires. Stephen Pyne says the move is, in his words “bold but underfunded.”

美国国会要求制定应对森林火灾的行动计划。Stephen Pyne 说,这个举动用他的话说“大胆却资金不足”。

It is meant to help government, landowners and others fight dangerous problems that seem to get worse year by year.

它的目的在于帮助政府、土地所有者和其他人解决这些逐年恶化的危险。

Thank you, Steve.  And thank you for spending some time with “As It Is” on the Voice of America.  I’m Jim Tedder in Washington.  More Learning English programs are headed your way, and there is world news at the beginning of the hour.