大学英语综合教程四 Unit 1 课文内容英译中 中英翻译
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Book IV Unit 1 The Icy Defender
Nila B. Smith
1 In 1812, Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of the French, led his Grand Army into Russia. He was prepared for the fierce resistance of the Russian people defending their homeland. He was prepared for the long march across Russian soil to Moscow, the capital city. But he was not prepared for the devastating enemy that met him in Moscow -- the raw, bitter, bleak Russian winter.
2 In 1941, Adolf Hitler, leader of Nazi Germany, launched an attack against the Soviet Union, as Russia then was called. Hitler's military might was unequaled. His war machine had mowed down resistance in most of Europe. Hitler expected a short campaign but, like Napoleon before him, was taught a painful lesson. The Russian winter again came to the aid of the Soviet soldiers.
3 In the spring of 1812, Napoleon assembled an army of six hundred thousand men on the borders of Russia. The soldiers were well trained, efficient, and well equipped. This military force was called the Grand Army. Napoleon, confident of a quick victory, predicted the conquest of Russia in five weeks.
4 Shortly afterwards, Napoleon's army crossed the Neman River into Russia. The quick, decisive victory that Napoleon expected never happened. To his surprise, the Russians refused to stand and fight. Instead, they retreated eastward, burning their crops and homes as they went. The Grand Army followed, but its advance march soon became bogged down by slow-moving supply lines.
5 In August, the French and Russian armies engaged at Smolensk, in a battle that left over ten thousand dead on each side. Yet, the Russians were again able to retreat farther into Russian territory. Napoleon had won no decisive victory. He was now faced with a crucial decision. Should he continue to pursue the Russian army? Or should he keep his army in Smolensk for the approaching winter?
6 Napoleon took the gamble of pressing on to Moscow, 448 kilometers away. On September 7, 1812, the French and Russian armies met in fierce battle at Borodino, 112 kilometers west of Moscow. By nightfall, thirty thousand French and forty-four thousand Russians lay dead or wounded on the battlefield.
7 Again, the Russian army retreated to safety. Napoleon had a clear path to Moscow, but the occupation of the city became an empty victory. The Russians fled their capital. Soon after the French arrived, a raging fire destroyed two-thirds of the city. Napoleon offered a truce to Alexander I, but the Russian czar knew he could bide his time: "We shall let the Russian winter fight the war for us."
8 Napoleon soon realized he could not feed, clothe, and quarter his army in Moscow during the winter. In October 1812, he ordered his Grand Army to retreat from Moscow.
9 The French retreat turned into a nightmare. From fields and forests, the Russians launched hit-and-run attacks on the French. A short distance from Moscow, the temperature had already dropped to minus 4 degrees Celsius. On November 3, the winter's first snow came. Exhausted horses fell dead in their tracks. Cannon became stuck in the snow. Equipment had to be burned for fuel. Soldiers took ill and froze to death. The French soldiers dragged on, leaving the dead along every mile.
10 As the Russian army was gathering its strength, the French had to flee Russia to avoid certain defeat. At the Berezina River, the Russians nearly trapped the retreating French by burning the bridges over the swollen river. But Napoleon, by a stroke of luck, was able to build two new bridges. Thousands of French soldiers escaped, but at the cost of fifty thousand dead. Once across the Berezina, the tattered survivors limped toward Vilna.
11 Of the six hundred thousand soldiers Napoleon had led into Russia, less than one hundred thousand came back. The weakened French army continued its retreat westward across Europe. Soon, Britain, Austria, Russia, and Prussia formed a powerful alliance and attacked these stragglers. In March 1814, Paris was captured. Napoleon abdicated and went into exile, his empire at an end.
12 By early 1941, Adolf Hitler, leader of Nazi Germany, had seized control of most of Europe. To the east of Hitler's German empire was the Soviet Union. On June 22, 1941, without a declaration of war, Hitler began an invasion of the Soviet Union that was the largest military land campaign in history. Confident of a quick victory, Hitler expected the campaign to last no longer than three months. He planned to use the blitzkrieg, or "lightning war," tactics that had defeated the rest of Europe. The invasion had three broad thrusts: against Leningrad and Moscow and through the Ukraine.
13 Caught off guard by the invasion, Soviet leader Joseph Stalin instructed the Russian people to "scorch the earth" in front of the German invaders. Farms and factories were burned, destroyed, or rendered useless. During the first ten weeks of the invasion, the Germans pushed the front eastward, and the Russians suffered more than a million casualties.
14 In the north, the Germans closed in on Leningrad. Despite great suffering, however, the people of Leningrad refused to surrender. As the battle of Leningrad dragged on into winter, the city's situation became desperate. As food ran out, people died from hunger and disease. By the middle of the winter of 1941-1942, nearly four thousand people starved to death every day. Close to one million people died as a result of the siege.
15 In the center of Russia, Hitler's goal was the capture of Moscow. Because the Germans had anticipated a quick victory, they had made no plans for winter supplies. October arrived with heavy rains. "General Mud" slowed down the movement of the Germans' lightning attack.
16 As Hitler's armies drew closer and closer to Moscow, an early, severe winter settled over the Soviet Union, the harshest in years. Temperatures dropped to minus 48 degrees Celsius. Heavy snows fell. The German soldiers, completely unprepared for the Russian winter, froze in their light summer uniforms. The German tanks lay buried in the heavy snowbanks. The Russian winter brought the German offensive to a halt.
17 By the summer of 1942, Hitler had launched two new offensives. In the south, the Germans captured Sevastopol. Hitler then pushed east to Stalingrad, a great industrial city that stretched for 48 kilometers along the Volga River. Despite great suffering, Soviet defenders refused to give up Stalingrad.
18 In November 1942, the Russians launched a counterattack. With little or no shelter from the winter cold in and around Stalingrad, German troops were further weakened by a lack of food and supplies. Not until January 1943 did the Germans give up their siege. Of the three hundred thousand Germans attacking Stalingrad, only ninety thousand starving soldiers were left. The loss of the battle for Stalingrad finally turned the tide against Hitler. The German victories were over, thanks in part to the Russian winter.
19 During 1943 and 1944, the Soviet armies pushed the German front back toward the west. In the north, the Red Army broke the three-year siege of Leningrad with a surprise attack on January 15, 1944. Within two weeks, the heroic survivors of Leningrad saw their invaders depart. By March 1944, the Ukraine farming region was again in Soviet hands. On May 9, 1944, Sevastopol was liberated from the Germans. The Russians were now heading for Berlin.
20 For Hitler, the invasion of the Soviet Union had turned into a military disaster. For the Russian people, it brought unspeakable suffering. The total Soviet dead in World War II reached almost 23 million.
Russia's Icy Defender俄罗斯的冰雪卫士
21 The elements of nature must be reckoned with in any military campaign. Napoleon and Hitler both underestimated the severity of the Russian winter. Snow, ice, and freezing temperatures took their toll on both invading armies. For the Russian people, the winter was an icy defender.