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复盘阿富汗撤离行动:局面混乱无序,难民前路迷茫

Inside the Afghan Evacuation: Rogue Flights, Crowded Tents, Hope and Chaos
复盘阿富汗撤离行动:局面混乱无序,难民前路迷茫

WASHINGTON — On the last day of August, when President Joe Biden called the airlift of refugees from Kabul an “extraordinary success,” senior diplomats and military officers in Doha, Qatar, emailed out a daily situation report marked “sensitive but unclassified.”

华盛顿——8月的最后一天,当拜登总统声称从喀布尔空运难民的行动“格外成功”时,在卡塔尔多哈的高级外交官和军方官员通过电子邮件发出了一份标为“敏感但非机密”的每日形势报告。

The conditions in Doha, according to their description, were getting worse. Almost 15,000 Afghan refugees were packed into airplane hangars and wedding-style tents at Al Udeid Air Base, home to the 379th Air Expeditionary Wing and nearby Camp As Sayliyah, a U.S. Army base in the Persian Gulf nation.

根据他们的描述,多哈的情况越来越糟。大约1.5万名阿富汗难民挤在乌代德空军基地(Al Udeid Air Base)的机库和婚礼式帐篷里。该基地是美国空军第379远征联队的驻地,附近还有美军在这个波斯湾国家的赛利耶陆军基地(Camp As Sayliyah)。
 

塔利班掌权后,人群每天都聚集在喀布尔国际机场外。

Two hundred and twenty-nine unaccompanied children were being held near the base, including many teenage boys who repeatedly bullied younger children. There were a “large number of pregnant women,” some of whom needed medical attention, and increasing reports of “gastrointestinal issues” among the refugees.

基地附近容留了229名无人陪伴的儿童,其中有许多男性青少年曾屡次欺凌比他们小的孩子。还有“大量孕妇”,其中一些人需要医疗看护,难民中报告有“肠胃问题”的人也越来越多。

The reports were daily distillations of the complexity, chaos and humanity behind the largest air evacuation in U.S. history, as scores of diplomats, troops, health workers, security officials and others scattered across the globe sought to rescue tens of thousands of refugees. Whatever plans the Biden administration had for an orderly evacuation unraveled when Kabul fell in a matter of days, setting off a frenzied, last-minute global mobilization.

随着分散在全球各地的数十名外交官、军人、卫生工作者、安全官员和其他人员试图营救数万名难民,这些每日报告概括了美国历史上最大规模的空中疏散行动背后的复杂、混乱和人道问题。不管拜登政府制定了怎样的有序撤离计划,当喀布尔在短短数天内被占领时,这还是引发了一场疯狂的、争分夺秒的全球动员。

Biden and his aides have insisted that the evacuation of Kabul after the Taliban seized the city on Aug. 15 was done as efficiently as possible. But State Department emails, documents from the Health and Human Services, Homeland Security and Defense departments, as well as interviews with officials and refugee advocates, suggest otherwise.

拜登及其助手坚持认为,在塔利班8月15日占领喀布尔后,撤离工作已经尽可能高效地完成了。但根据国务院的电子邮件,卫生与公众服务部、国土安全部和国防部的文件,以及对官员和难民权益倡导者的采访,都可以看到情况并非如此。

Within hours of Biden’s speech Tuesday at the White House marking the end of America’s two-decade war, a private charter plane from Mazar-i-Sharif, Afghanistan’s fourth-largest city, arrived at the air base in Doha — one of 10 way stations in eight countries — with no notice, carrying no U.S. citizens but hundreds of Afghans. The manifest for the plane, apparently chartered by a former Marine’s law firm, offered “no clarity” about whether its passengers deserved special visas for helping U.S. troops.

拜登上周二在白宫发表讲话,宣布结束这场持续20年的战争,在那之后的几个小时里,一架来自阿富汗第四大城市马扎里沙里夫的私人包机在没有提前通知的情况下抵达乌代德空军基地(设在八个国家的10个中转站之一),飞机上搭载的并非美国公民,而是数百名阿富汗人。这架飞机是由一名前海军陆战队员的律师事务所包租的,旅客名单“没有明确”说明机上乘客是否应该因为帮助美国军队而获得特殊签证。

“There are multiple other ‘rogue’ flights that are seeking the same permissions” to land, emails from State Department officials sent that day said. “We have 300 people in Doha now who are basically stateless. Most have no papers.”

“还有多架‘自作主张’的飞机正在寻求同样的降落许可,”美国国务院官员当天发出的电子邮件称。“我们现在在多哈有300人,他们基本都没有国籍。大多数人没有证件。”

Administration officials have acknowledged the rough conditions at Doha, but say they are working to improve them. White House officials declined to comment on the record for this article.

美国政府官员承认,多哈的条件很恶劣,但表示他们正在努力改善。白宫官员拒绝就本文发表正式评论。

The total number of evacuees, and where they are currently waiting, is still not clear, though Biden said Tuesday that more than 120,000 had been evacuated. As of Friday, Alejandro Mayorkas, secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, said about 40,000 people had arrived in the United States at airports near Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia. Officials expect about 17,000 more to arrive by next Friday and thousands more may ultimately end up living in a dozen other countries.

尽管拜登上周二表示,已有超过12万人被疏散,但目前尚不清楚撤离的总人数,以及他们所处的等待地点。截至上周五,国土安全部部长亚历杭德罗·马约卡斯(Alejandro Mayorkas)说,大约有4万人已经抵达华盛顿和费城附近的机场。官员们预计,到本周五,将有大约1.7万人抵达,还有数千人可能最终生活在其他十几个国家。

U.S. officials have said the refugees are being thoroughly vetted, with the authorities feeding fingerprints, portraits and biographical information into federal databases to weed out potential risks. Mayorkas said the Defense Department had sent hundreds of biometric screening machines to 30 countries.

美国官员表示,这些难民正在接受全面审查,当局将他们的指纹、照片和履历信息输入联邦数据库以排除潜在的风险。马约卡斯说,国防部已经向30个国家送去了数百台生物识别筛查机。

But unclassified briefing documents titled “2021 Afghanistan Repatriation Mission” reveal that in some cases, spotty information is being collected: Flight manifests have been at times incomplete or missing, visa or citizenship status is unknown, and there is a lack of basic demographic data.

但题为《2021年阿富汗归国任务》的非机密简报文件显示,在某些情况下,他们收集到的是不连贯的信息:航班清单有时不完整或有缺失,签证或公民身份不明,以及缺少基本的人口数据。

The documents show that the flights into the United States started as a trickle. On Aug. 19, four days after the Taliban seized control of Kabul, 226 people on two separate flights arrived at Dulles International Airport. Jordan Air JAV 4825 included 44 dogs — but no information about its 58 passengers.

文件显示,进入美国的航班刚开始寥寥可数。8月19日,在塔利班控制喀布尔四天后,226人乘坐两架飞机抵达杜勒斯国际机场(Dulles International Airport)。约旦航空(JAV)的4825航班携带了44只狗——但没有关于其58名乘客的信息。

Ten days later, on Sunday, 13 flights landed at Dulles carrying 3,842 people, including six refugees who tested positive for the coronavirus and six unaccompanied boys: four teenagers, one younger school-age boy and one toddler. Flight CMB 581, which landed that day at 6:38 p.m., carried 240 passengers. But government records provide few details: “about three” U.S. citizens, including two people over 65 and one passenger who tested positive for the virus.

10天后,13架载有3842人的航班降落在杜勒斯机场,其中包括六名新冠检测呈阳性的难民和六名无人陪伴的男孩:四名青少年、一名年幼的学龄期男孩和一名幼儿。当天下午6点38分降落的CMB 581航班共搭载有240名乘客,但政府记录提供的细节很少:“大约三名”美国公民,包括两名65岁以上的人和一名病毒检测呈阳性的乘客。

Mayorkas said of the about 40,000 people who had reached the United States from Afghanistan, about 22% were U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents and the rest were Afghans, including many who were at risk of retribution at the hands of the Taliban.

马约卡斯说,在从阿富汗抵达美国的约4万人中,大概22%是美国公民和合法永久居民,其余的是阿富汗人,包括许多面临塔利班报复风险的人。

The confusion about the refugees began before they left Kabul, as overwhelmed consular officials struggled to identify and verify those who had valid claims to be evacuated.

关于这些难民的混乱始于他们离开喀布尔之前,当时不堪重负的领事官员吃力地识别和核实那些有正当理由要求撤离的人。

A senior State Department official who was in Kabul described a desperate situation at the gates around the city’s airport and crowds that were so frenzied that officials worried they could slip “into a mob at any given moment.”

一名在喀布尔的国务院高级官员描述了该市机场周围的严峻情况,人群如此狂乱,以至于官员们担心他们可能“随时会开始闹事”。

“Every day was a constant improvisational effort to figure out what was going to work that day,” he said. “And I would say, everybody who lived it is haunted by the choices we had to make.”

“每天都得不停地急中生智,来弄清楚那天有什么是管用的,”他说。“我想说,生活在这里的每个人都被我们不得不做的选择折磨着。”

As they raced to evacuate refugees from Kabul, the most critical question facing the Biden administration was: where to put them?

当他们迅速从喀布尔疏散难民时,拜登政府面临的最关键问题是:把难民安置在哪里?

National security adviser Jake Sullivan said the administration had anticipated needing transit centers for an eventual evacuation. But within days of the collapse of the Afghan government, the Pentagon and the State Department rushed to secure more agreements with countries in Europe and the Middle East to allow refugees to be housed temporarily at 10 U.S. bases — officially known as lily pads because the refugees were intended to stay there only a short time.

国家安全顾问杰克·沙利文(Jake Sullivan)表示,政府已经预料到需要中转中心来完成最终的撤离。但在阿富汗政府垮台后的几天内,五角大楼和国务院匆忙与欧洲和中东国家达成更多协议,允许难民暂时被安置在10个美军基地——官方称之为“莲叶”,因为原本只打算让难民在这些地方短暂停留。

At the same time, military officials began “Project Allies Welcome,” setting up temporary housing at eight military bases in the United States.

与此同时,军方官员开始了“欢迎盟友计划”,在美国的八个军事基地搭建临时住房。

The question of what will happen over the long term to refugees who arrive in the United States is a moving target.

到达美国的难民从长远来说会怎么样,这要视具体的情况而定。

Some have arrived with completed visa applications in recognition of their service alongside the U.S. military. Those people, and their families, will become permanent residents and could earn citizenship.

他们中的一些在抵达时带着完整的签证申请,作为他们为美军服务的表彰。这些人及其家人将成为永久居民,并可能获得公民身份。

But the vast majority of the refugees are being granted what is known as “humanitarian parole,” which allows them to live in the United States for a fixed period, in most cases two years. They may be required to apply for asylum and will get help to find a home in the United States while they wait for their cases to be processed.

但是绝大多数难民都获得了所谓的“人道主义缓期”,这允许他们在美国生活一段固定的时间,大多数情况下是两年。他们可能会被要求申请庇护,并在等待申请处理期间获得帮助,在美国找到一个家。

Officials said they were considering asking Congress to pass legislation that would provide all of the refugees with legal status, much the way lawmakers did for Cubans in the 1960s and Vietnamese refugees in 1975.

官员们表示,他们正在考虑要求国会通过立法为所有难民提供合法身份,就像立法者在上世纪60年代为古巴人和1975年为越南难民所做的那样。

As of Thursday, more than 26,100 Afghans fresh off planes had been shuttled to a cavernous room near Dulles, including 3,800 on Wednesday alone. Officials said the arriving evacuees were usually there for less than a day for processing — and in some cases out in an hour or two — surrounded by the sound of crying babies and exhausted-looking people.

截至上周四,超过26100名刚下飞机的阿富汗人被送往杜勒斯附近的一个大型设施,其中仅上周三一天就有3800人。官员们表示,抵达的撤离者通常会在那里停留不到一天的时间办理手续,有时候一两个小时以后就会出来——周围都是哭泣的婴儿和看起来筋疲力尽的人。

During a tour Thursday evening of the hangar-size facility, Secretary of State Antony Blinken was told that many people arrived dehydrated and in need of medical care; several women have given birth since they arrived in the United States, including one who had triplets Wednesday. Additional interpreters have been sent to the center to make up for a shortage of staff who spoke Dari or Pashto when it first opened Aug. 22.

上周四晚在造访这个机库大小的设施时,国务卿安东尼·布林肯(Antony Blinken)被告知,许多人到达时已经脱水并需要接受医疗护理;已有多名女性在抵达美国后分娩,其中包括一名上周三产下三胞胎的女性。该中心在8月22日第一次开放以来已派遣了额外的口译人员,以缓解达里语或普什图语工作人员短缺的问题。

Children ran throughout the maze of hallways between curtained-off rooms where people slept, covered with blue blankets. Seeing three children standing off to one side, Blinken stopped, crouched down and introduced himself.

儿童在迷宫般的走廊里跑来跑去,走廊位于人们用窗帘隔开用于睡觉的房间之间,房间里盖着蓝色的毯子。看到三个孩子站在一边,布林肯停了下来,蹲下身子做了自我介绍。

“Welcome to America, my name is Tony,” he said, tapping his chest. “Nice to meet you.”

“欢迎来到美国,我叫托尼,”他拍拍自己的胸口说。“很高兴认识你们。”
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