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[经济学人] [2009.6.18] Omar Bongo 奥马·庞戈

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发表于 2010-4-29 04:28 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
Omar Bongo

Jun 18th 2009
From The Economist print edition


Omar Bongo Ondimba, president of Gabon, died on June 8th, aged 73
奥马·庞戈·昂迪马,加蓬总统,6月8日逝世,终年73岁




ON THE Atlantic coast of Gabon, white sand beaches slope out into the ocean. That sand, in which few tourists leave their footprints, was Omar Bongo’s. Elephants and buffalo stroll down to the water, and leatherback turtles make their nests: his elephants, his buffalo, his turtles. Oil rigs and gas flares punctuate the horizon: his oil, 3.2 billion barrels in proven reserves. Eastwards, the silver carriages of the world’s most expensive railway rattle five times a week through his hardwood forests between Libreville, the capital, and Franceville, in his homeland, carrying loads of his manganese or piled high with his okoumé and ozigo logs, bound mostly for China.

在加蓬的大西洋海岸上,白色的沙滩倾斜入海。那些沙是属于奥马·庞戈的,鲜有游客在上面留下他们的足迹。大象和水牛悠闲的踱步入水,棱皮龟在建造它们的窝:这些都是他的大象,他的水牛,他的龟。钻油塔和气火炬点缀在地平线上:那是他的石油,已探明储量为32亿桶。向东望去,银色的车厢运行在世界上最昂贵的铁路上,每周五次往返于首都利伯维尔他的阔叶林和他的家乡弗朗斯维尔之间,托载着他的锰矿或高高堆起的他的奥古曼和蜡烛橄榄木材,大部分都将运往中国。

Mr Bongo made no distinction between Gabon and his private property. He had ruled there so long, 42 years, that they had become one. It was therefore perfectly natural that an oil company, granted a large concession for coastal drilling, should slip him regular suitcases stuffed with cash. It was natural that $2.6m in aid money should be used to decorate his private jet, that government funds should pay for the Italian marble cladding his palace, and that his wife Edith’s sea-blue Maybach, in which she was driven round Paris, should be paid for with a cheque drawn on the Gabonese treasury. Of the $130m in his personal accounts at Citibank in New York, it was probable—though Citibank never asked, and nobody ever managed to pin a charge on him—that much of it was derived from the GDP of his country.

庞戈先生并不区分加蓬和他的私人财产。他已经在这里统治了如此之久——42年,以至于他们已经和为一体。因此,一家得到巨大特许权能在海边钻井的石油公司经常塞给他装满现金的箱子是再自然不过的了。同样理所当然的是,援助款中的260万美元用于装修他的私人喷气飞机,政府基金用于支付他府上铺盖的意大利大理石,他的妻子伊迪丝开着穿梭巴黎的海蓝色迈巴赫也用加蓬国库的支票买单。他在纽约花旗银行的私人账户有1.3亿美元,很有可能——虽然花旗从未问过他,也从没有人能够对他收取费用——其中的大部分来自于他国家的GDP。

The suggestion of fiddling public finances flummoxed and infuriated him. Corruption, he once explained to a reporter, was not an African word. No more was nepotism: he simply looked after his family, supplying them with villas in Nice as well as the ministries of defence and foreign affairs. When French judges in 2009 froze nine of his 70 bank accounts, he was outraged. An attack on him was obviously an attempt to destabilise his country. He was equally indignant when in 2004, after a “Miss Humanity” pageant was held in Libreville, Miss Peru charged him with sexual harassment for summoning her to the palace and, he hoped, to his nifty behind-the-panelling bed. If something was in Gabon, by nature or chance, he évidemment had first dibs on it.

对于他挥霍公共钱财的暗示让他难堪和愤怒。他曾向一位记者解释说,腐败,不是一个非洲词语。裙带关系也不是:他只是照顾他的家庭,为他们提供尼斯的别墅、国防和外交部门。当2009年法国法官冻结了他70个银行账户中的9个时,他暴怒了。攻击他显然是企图破坏他国家的稳定。同样让他愤怒的是,2004年“人道小姐”选举盛会在利伯维尔举行之后,秘鲁小姐控告他性骚扰,因为他将她招入总统府并且想将她引到他豪华的镶板背后的床上。如果有什么东西必然或偶然的出现在加蓬,他都理所当然的拥有优先权利。

France, the ex-colonial power in Gabon, went along with this. Mr Bongo, though short, was every inch a Francophile, from his platform heels through the immaculate tailoring to his gravelly-but-grammatical French. Their bargain, too, was a neat one. He allowed the French to take his oil and wood; they subsidised and protected him. At various times through his long political career, when opposition elements got brash or multi-party democracy, which he allowed after 1993, became too lively, the French military base in Libreville would turn out the paratroopers for him. In France, to which he went as often as he could, he had his choice of 39 properties, four of them on the Avenue Foch in Paris, in which to hobnob with the cream of the Elysée. Swanning round as he did, paying for everything with crisp wads of notes, he naturally funnelled money to French politicians, right or left, who caught his eye. When Valéry Giscard d’Estaing complained about Gabonese funding of his rival, Jacques Chirac, Mr Bongo once again failed to grasp what he objected to.

法国,这个加蓬的前殖民统治者,和这位庞戈先生非常合拍。庞戈先生虽矮,他身上的每一寸却都是亲法的,从他的厚底高跟鞋,到完美剪裁的服装,再到他零碎但语法正确的法语。他们之间的交易也很简单。他允许法国拿走他的石油和木材;他们给他提供资助和保护。在他漫长的政治生涯中,有那么几次,反对派变得激进,或者他1993年后才允许的多党民主变得太活跃,位于利伯维尔的法国军事基地就会派出伞兵保护他。他总是尽可能频繁的去法国,在那里他拥有39处房产,其中4处位于巴黎的佛什大道,他在里面与爱丽舍宫的精英亲密交谈。他在法国四处游访,为任何东西付账总是掏出一卷卷清脆的钞票,他也很自然的漏点钱给引起他注意的法国政客,左翼或右翼的。当瓦莱里·吉斯卡尔·德斯坦抱怨加蓬人资助他的对手雅克·希拉克时,庞戈先生又一次没能领会他反对的是什么。

Dirt roads and champagne
肮脏的道路和迷人的香槟


At home, since Gabon was his, he cosseted it one moment and ravaged it the next. In 2002 he created 13 national parks, but the trees and even the waterfalls could go for a consideration. His lordly airs were impressive for a farmer’s son from Lewai (now Bongoville), the youngest of at least nine children, born “without a cot or a nanny”, as he boasted on his website, and whose expectations under French rule had extended no further than working in the post office. Usefulness and scheming got him right to the top, to become President Léon M’ba’s right-hand man and, when M’ba died in 1967, president himself; as well as minister of defence, interior, information and planning.

在国内,因为加蓬是他的,他一时宠爱它,一时又蹂躏它。2002年他建造了13座国家公园,但那些树木甚至瀑布都花费不菲。他的贵族气质曾让来自雷崴(现在的庞戈维尔)的农民的儿子印象深刻,这个年轻人是家里面至少9个孩子中最小的,如他在他的网站中宣称的,他出生在“没有婴儿床和保姆”的家庭,而且按照法国人的规矩,他最大的愿望最多不过是能够去邮局工作。讲求实用性且善于谋划让他青云直上,成为总统莱昂·姆巴的得力助手,1967年姆巴逝世后,他封自己为总统,同样他还是国防部长、内政部长、信息部长和计划部长。

Gabon’s riches eased his way at every turn. A timber concession here, a stretch of paved road or a Bongo stadium there, disarmed anyone who objected to his way of doing things. Even Pierre Mamboundou, his most diligent opponent, was soothed after many years with $21.5m spent on his constituency. Business visitors to the capital found it chic, feudal and hospitable, like an Arab emirate; in Mr Bongo’s time, Gabon’s consumption of champagne was said to be the highest in the world. Everyone could be suborned or sweetened except his first wife, Joséphine, who became a pop singer after the divorce and sang cutting songs about her young replacement.

加蓬权贵在每个转折点上都为他铺路。这里一个木材特许权,那里一段铺路延伸工程或庞戈运动场,任何想反对他做事方法的人都被解除了武装。甚至连皮埃尔·曼邦度,他最勤勉持久的反对者,在多年中花费了2150万美元在他的支持者身上之后,都被安抚了。商务旅客觉得这个首都时髦、封建、好客,就像一个阿拉伯酋长国一样;在庞戈先生时代,加蓬的香槟消费据说是世界上最高的。每一个人都会被它征服或软化。除了他的第一任妻子,约瑟芬,离婚后她成了一名歌手,唱着挖苦她年轻接替者的歌。

Outside the glamour of Libreville, where the M’bolo hypermarché offered shining shelves of fine wines and best French cheese, a third of his people travelled on back-breaking roads between villages without clinics, subsisting on cassava and fishing. But Mr Bongo brought decades of tranquillity, a rare enough commodity in Central Africa; order, and prosperity for a close and favoured few. So on June 11th hundreds of Gabonese lined up, clutching his portrait, outside the presidential palace where, in a flower-filled chapel, he lay in state, rather small in his coffin, in the country that was his.

虽然M’bolo超级市场闪亮的货架上贩售着美酒和最好的法国芝士,在利伯维尔的魅力之外,他三分之一的人民仍然行走于没有卫生所的村落之间异常辛苦的道路上,靠木薯和捕鱼为生。但是庞戈先生带来了几十年的宁静——这在中非地区是一项足够稀有的商品、秩序、和一小群他亲密和喜爱的人的繁荣。因此6月11日,还有成百上千的加蓬人排着队,捧着他的肖像,在总统府外向他告别,在那里,在一个充满鲜花的礼堂中,棺材中的他显得如此的小,他庄严的躺着,躺在曾属于他的国家中。
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