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srachai
次女カイちゃんと私↑パタヤにて
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妻はタイ人、娘ばかり3人も!

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■近況

2009年の9月15日に脳梗塞を発症、右手が少し不自由になりました。
MRAで脳梗塞の部位を特定でき、素早い処置をとれたので大事に至りませんでした。
快復にむけてリハビリ中です。
(2011/01/01更新)

■自己紹介・リンク

[ はじめに ]
タイのスラチャイです。
英語学習に王道はありません。
毎日毎日の地道な努力の積み重ねが必要です。
スラチャイはNHKのラジオ英語会話で現在の英語力を身につけました。
一日僅か15分の学習でも数年間継続すれば相当な学習効果が期待できます。

[ 名前 ]
松井 清 (スラチャイ)

[ 略歴 ]
・福岡県出身
・国立高知大学卒業
・準大手建設会社に就職
・50歳で会社を早期退職
・99/10 タイ全土を旅行
・00/10 タイに移住
・03/07 カイちゃん誕生
・07/06 シーファーちゃん誕生
・現在タイ国コンケン在住

[ 座右の銘 ]
Slow and steady wins the race.
遅くとも着実な者が勝利する
(NHK基礎英語芹沢栄先生)

[ 学習の手引き ]
・音読して耳から英語を吸収
・Think in English.
・ネイティブ発音付辞書活用
・英英辞典を活用(英和も)
・翻訳和文で専門用語確認

[ English Newspapers ]
Yomiuri
Mainichi
Asahi
Japan Times
Washington Post
Newyork Times
Bangkok Post
The Nations
Phuket Gazette

[ 英字新聞の英和対訳学習 ]
英字新聞(読売)
英字新聞(毎日)
英字新聞(朝日)
英字新聞(朝日2)

[ スラチャイ編集の辞書 ]
タイ日辞書(改訂版)
日タイ辞書(改訂版)
ラオ日辞書
日ラオ辞書

[ 英字新聞リンク ]
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2014年05月10日

NHK会長―これで信頼保てるのか

May 08, 2014
EDITORIAL: Momii’s behavior undermining NHK’s credibility
NHK会長―これで信頼保てるのか

As a public and nonprofit entity, Japan Broadcasting Corp. (NHK) should operate solely for the well-being of the public and outside the realm of government control. That is why NHK’s operations are financed by viewing fees paid by the public.
 営利を目的とせず、国家の統制から自立して、公共の福祉のために放送事業を行う。だから視聴者が、受信料を払って支える。公共放送のNHKとは、そんな存在である。

The job of the president is to supervise and manage its operations. But the current president, Katsuto Momii, has been behaving in a way that raises serious questions about NHK’s credibility.
 その業務を統括して管理するのが会長である。なのに、会長自身が、公共放送の信頼に関わる言動を続けている。

Momii triggered renewed controversy April 30 during a meeting of the NHK Executive Board, which he used to criticize a news program on the concerns of elderly citizens over the April 1 rise in the consumption tax rate.
“It is not news if you only say that a tax hike caused anxiety,” he said, arguing that the program should also refer to discussions among policymakers on measures to ease the added financial burden on low-income earners.
 4月30日の理事会でのこと。籾井勝人会長が、消費増税に不安を抱える人を取材したニュース番組について、「困ったというだけではニュースにならない」といった趣旨の発言をし、同じ番組の中で、低所得者への負担軽減策の議論も取り上げるべきだと主張した。

Efforts by the media to present different views about issues in their reports should be welcomed. The Broadcast Law stipulates that programs aired by NHK or any other broadcasters should be “politically fair.” The law also says that when dealing with contentious issues, broadcasters should try to “clarify disputed points from as many different angles as possible.”
 報道の際、異なる見方を紹介するのは歓迎すべきことだ。放送法も、NHKに限らず放送番組は「政治的に公平であること」「意見が対立している問題については、できるだけ多くの角度から論点を明らかにすること」と定めている。

But the widely accepted legal interpretation of these provisions is that whether news coverage of contentious issues is balanced should be judged on the basis of all related programs aired by a broadcaster, not on each single program.
 だが、異論とのバランスは、放送される番組全体で判断するという法解釈が一般的だ。個々の番組だけで考えねばならないということではない。

Even though the board members stressed they are trying hard to report different viewpoints through various programs, Momii would not be convinced.
理事たちが「いろいろな観点を、様々な機会をとらえて報道している」と説明しても会長は納得しなかったという。

As the person responsible for NHK’s programs, its president may sometimes find it necessary to get involved in debate over the content of specific programs.
 責任者として、番組の内容に関する議論に会長が加わることもあるだろう。

In his inaugural news conference in January, however, Momii made remarks that indicated his support of the government’s policies.
だが籾井氏は1月の就任会見で、政府に寄り添うような発言をした。

He later retracted the comments, saying he had expressed his “personal views” in public. He also tried to reassure viewers by promising that NHK’s programs would not be based on his opinions. But he has yet to admit that his ideas are inappropriate, given his position as the top official of a public broadcaster.
「公式の場で個人的な見解を述べた」と撤回し、「私の見解を放送に反映することはない」としたが、公共放送に携わる者として考え違いだったとは認めていない。

Imagine what would happen if such a person started meddling in news programs on the government’s policies. This prospect raises concerns that NHK may not be able to properly perform its journalistic role of monitoring and checking government behavior. This would give rise to suspicions that NHK finds it difficult to broadcast programs that are critical of the government because of concerns about ruffling Momii’s feathers.
 その籾井氏が政策に関わるニュースに注文をつければ、どうなるか。権力を監視するジャーナリズムの役割が十分に果たせるのかといった疑問も浮かぶ。会長の意向を忖度(そんたく)し、政府に批判的な報道がしにくくなるのではないかとの不信感も出てくるだろう。

Momii has also resorted to strong-arm tactics in personnel affairs.
 会長は人事でも、強引な手法を重ねている。

Soon after he took the top job at NHK, he forced all members of the Executive Board to submit undated letters of resignation.
 就任早々、日付のない辞表を理事に提出させた。

In the personnel reshuffle of executive board members in late April, Momii urged two general managing directors, who had just been reappointed in February, to resign for no specific reasons.
4月下旬の理事人事では、2月に再任したばかりの専務理事2人に特段の理由なく辞任を迫った。

When seeking consent for personnel changes from the Board of Governors, the upper-ranked decision-making body, Momii also refrained from disclosing his plan until the last moment on grounds the information could be leaked.
人事案は「情報が漏れる恐れがある」と、意思決定権を持つ経営委員会に直前まで示さず、同意を求めた。

When a governor asked the president to explain his decision for changing the responsibilities of some managing directors, Momii just simply said these were matters that are the “sole prerogative of the president.”
理事の担当替えなどで説明を求めた経営委員には、「会長の専権だ」と応じた。

We cannot help wondering how much consideration he gives to the feelings of people who pay viewing fees to NHK in the belief that a public broadcaster is necessary for the good of society.
 公共放送は必要と期待しながら受信料を払う人たちの思いを、どれほど、くみとっているのだろうか。

--The Asahi Shimbun, May 8
posted by srachai at 07:46| Comment(0) | 朝日英字

2014年05月09日

(社説)リニア新幹線 早めにブレーキを

May 07, 2014
EDITORIAL: Maglev Shinkansen project not something to be rushed
(社説)リニア新幹線 早めにブレーキを

Central Japan Railway Co. (JR Tokai) on April 23 submitted its final assessment report to the government on the environmental impact of the new maglev bullet train service, scheduled to start in 2027 between Tokyo's Shinagawa and Nagoya.
 品川―名古屋間で2027年の開業を目指すリニア中央新幹線の環境影響評価(アセスメント)について、JR東海が最終段階の評価書を国に提出した。

The report was compiled with unprecedented speed. It was drawn up less than a month after the governors of seven prefectures along the new Chuo Shinkansen Line gave their feedback on JR Tokai's draft report issued last September.
 前段階の準備書に対し、沿線7都県知事の意見を受けてからわずか1カ月足らずという、異例の早さである。

Why the great haste?
 なぜこんなに急ぐのか。

"We did not act in haste," insisted JR Tokai President Koei Tsuge.
Be that as it may, the final report leaves too many questions unanswered.
 柘植康英(つげこうえい)社長は「拙速とは考えていない」と語るが、率直に言って評価書は疑問だらけだ。

For instance, it gives effectively no consideration to the huge volume of displaced dirt that will result from the civil engineering work, other than to perfunctorily note that JR Tokai will "repurpose part of the dirt."
 土木工事で出る膨大な残土の処理法については、「自社で再利用」としたぐらいで、ほとんどゼロ回答だった。

And with regard to concerns voiced by the Shizuoka prefectural government about a possible landslide at the proposed dirt dumping ground, the report dismisses the threat and refuses to accommodate the latter's request for changes in the plan.
「置き場が崩落する恐れ」を懸念した静岡県からの変更要請も、「安全性は十分」と一蹴した。

The report also rejects the Nagano prefectural government's request that the tracks through Oshika village be laid through a tunnel rather than on a bridge for safety reasons.
JR Tokai's reason for rejecting the change was that it would "delay the project's completion and also produce more displaced dirt."
 長野県は安全上の懸念から、大鹿村の橋梁(きょうりょう)部をトンネルに変えるよう求めたが、「工期が延び、残土も増える」と拒んだ。

The report does, however, show some improvement over last year's draft report. For instance, JR Tokai promises further studies on the impact on local wildlife.
Also, for the first time, it came up with estimates of greenhouse gas emission increases at the time the service starts. This should have been discussed in the draft report. Anyway, better late than never.
 一部の野生動物への影響を追加調査するとしたり、名古屋までの開業時点での温室効果ガス排出増加の見通しを初めて出したりと、前進した点もある。だが全体として、準備書で出しておくべき情報が今になって出てきただけ、との感は否めない。

Under Japan's environmental assessment system, local governments are no longer in a position now to formally voice their opinions to JR Tokai. This makes the responsibility that much greater for the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism and the Ministry of Environment, both of which will examine the report. We expect meticulous work from them.
 環境アセスの制度上、自治体が正式に意見を出す機会はもうない。今後、評価書を審査する国土交通省と環境省の責任は重い。厳しい点検を求めたい。

Tsuge said he wants construction to begin as early as this autumn to ensure that operations start on schedule in 2027. Expectation has been voiced that an early start of this service will stimulate the nation's economy. And since JR Tokai is footing the entire bill, which is in excess of 9 trillion yen ($88.6 billion), the company obviously wants to avoid any added expenditures or delays.
 柘植社長は、27年開業に向け、今年秋にも着工したいとの考えを示した。日本経済の起爆剤として、リニアの早期開業への期待もある。9兆円超の事業費を全額負担する以上、開業が延び、経費が膨らむのを避けたいのもJR側の本音であろう。

But unlike the Tokaido Shinkansen project that needed to be completed in time for the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, there is no social justification for setting 2027 as the target year for the completion of the new maglev Shinkansen project. Moreover, winning the understanding of residents along the service route, who will be affected in varying degrees, is indispensable to the project's success. JR Tokai must not be stingy with the time this will require.
 ただ、東京五輪に間に合わせる必要があった東海道新幹線と違い、27年という目標に、社会的合理性があるわけではない。他方、建設で大小の影響を被る沿線住民の理解は不可欠である。このためにかける時間を惜しんではならない。

The project will involve digging really deep under central Tokyo and building unprecedentedly long tunnels through the high-altitude Akaishi mountain range, known as the Southern Alps. There may well be unforeseen developments requiring JR Tokai to rework its plans.
 リニア計画は都心部の大深度地下や、隆起が続く南アルプスで、過去に例のない長大トンネル建設に挑む。予想外の事態で計画の練り直しを迫られる展開もありえよう。

We recommend that the company not be obsessed with the target year and be always aware of the importance of applying the brakes early, so to speak, and re-examining the project plan.
時期にこだわらず、早めにブレーキをかけて、計画を再点検することの大切さを忘れないでもらいたい。

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party, which has been strongly in favor of extending the service route beyond Nagoya to Osaka right from the start, has come up with a proposal to fast-track the project by getting the government to extend an interest-free loan of 3.6 trillion yen to help JR Tokai cover the construction costs for the extended section. But considering the time needed just for the assessment of environmental impacts of the Nagoya-Osaka stretch, we doubt that fast-tracking will be technically feasible.
 「大阪までの一括開業を」と主張する自民党は、国に3兆6千億円の建設費を無利子融資させ、工事を急がせる案をまとめた。しかし、名古屋―大阪間の環境アセスにかかる時間だけ考えても、技術的に無理だろう。

The bigger the project, the more thorough the planning must be. Getting JR Tokai to understand this is the responsibility of politicians.
 大事業であればこそ、慎重な計画づくりを促す。それが政治の果たすべき役割である。

--The Asahi Shimbun, May 5
posted by srachai at 08:27| Comment(0) | 朝日英字

2014年05月08日

袴田事件が問うもの―死刑のない社会を考える

May 06, 2014
EDITORIAL: Hakamada case reinforces arguments against death penalty
袴田事件が問うもの―死刑のない社会を考える

The Japanese government can legally end a person’s life as punishment for a crime.
 人の命を、刑罰として国家が奪う。

The Shizuoka District Court’s recent decision to order a retrial for a long-time death-row inmate reminded us afresh of the grave problems inherent in this capital punishment system.
 それがいかに重いことか、世に問いかけたのが、死刑囚袴田巌さんに対する静岡地裁の再審開始決定だ。

Iwao Hakamada was sentenced to death over a 1966 quadruple murder. If his sentence had been carried out, the state would have committed a dreadful and irreparable mistake.
 もし刑が執行されていたら、取り返しがつかなかった。

When he was released in late March after spending 48 years behind bars, Hakamada showed signs of mental illness. His condition highlighted the cruelties of living under the constant fear of being executed.
 48年ぶりに拘束をとかれた袴田さんは、精神を病んでいた。いつとも知れぬ執行と日々向き合う過酷さも垣間見えた。

INEVITABLE HUMAN ERRORS
■誤判は避けられない

Five years have passed since the “saibanin” lay judge system was introduced in Japan. Under the system, randomly selected ordinary citizens are tasked to decide whether the accused should be given a death sentence.
 裁判員制度の導入で、死刑にすべきかどうかの判断を市民が担って5年になる。

More than 80 percent of citizens support the death penalty, according to a government survey.
 政府の世論調査では、死刑の存続を8割以上が支持する。

But it can hardly be said that sufficient national debate has been held on the various issues concerning capital punishment.
 しかし、この究極の刑のあり方について、国民的な議論を十分重ねてきたとは言い難い。

Tough penalties should certainly be meted out for the unpardonable crime of murder. But is the death penalty the only possible option for such cases?
 人の命を奪う許しがたい犯罪には厳正な刑罰で臨まねばならない。だが、その選択肢はいまの死刑しかないのだろうか。

This is a question that all people living in a society that has adopted capital punishment should ask themselves.
 死刑がある社会を生きる一人ひとりが問い直すべき問題であろう。

Hakamada is certainly not the only victim of false accusations.
 振りかえれば、袴田さんだけの問題ではなかった。

During the 1980s, four death-row inmates, including Sakae Menda, were acquitted in retrials. Since 2010, four prisoners serving life sentences have been acquitted in retrials, including Toshikazu Sugaya, who was wrongfully convicted of murdering a 4-year-old girl in Ashikaga, Tochigi Prefecture, in 1990.
 80年代、免田栄さんら4人の死刑囚が再審で無罪を言い渡された。無期刑でも2010年以降だけで足利事件などの4人が再審無罪となっている。

These cases cannot be simply regarded as the regrettable results of sloppy criminal investigations in the old days. Just two years ago, four people were wrongfully arrested over online threats posted through their computers, which had been remotely manipulated. The four were later found innocent, but two of them had “confessed” to the crime.
 昔の捜査はいい加減だった、と片づけられることでもない。つい2年前のパソコン遠隔操作事件では、のちに無実だと分かった4人のうち2人が「自白」していた。

Some people may think that innocent people would never confess to a crime. But those suspects were held for days after their arrest. They eventually succumbed to pressure from investigators who used leading questions and coercive tactics in the interrogations.
 やってもいない罪を認めるなんてありえない、と思う人もいるだろう。だが逮捕され、連日取り調べられるなか、取調官の誘導や強要に屈して虚偽の自白をすることが現実に起きた。

Humans prosecute and judge others under the criminal justice system, so it must be assumed that false accusations and wrongful convictions can occur.
 人間が犯した罪を、訴追し、裁くのもまた人間だ。誤判はありうるという前提に立って、考えざるをえない。

BEYOND EYE-FOR-EYE JUSTICE
■「報い」を超えて

Since the second half of the 20th century, many nations, mainly in Europe, have abolished capital punishment.
 20世紀後半以降、先進国では欧州を中心に死刑の廃絶が進んだ。

Among industrialized nations today, only Japan and some U.S. states still execute criminals. South Korea and Russia stopped conducting executions in the 1990s, effectively abolishing the death penalty.
執行を続けるのは、米国の一部の州と日本だけだ。韓国、ロシアは90年代に執行を止め、事実上の廃止国になった。

Punishments against crimes are based on each country’s social culture, and simply following the global trend may not be the best answer.
 刑罰はそれぞれの社会文化に根ざしている。世界の潮流に従えばいいというものではない。

Heinous crimes and people demanding severe punishments exist in any country. But many countries have chosen something other than capital punishment as the maximum penalty. Japan would probably be better off learning from their views and opinions.
だが、どの国にも憎むべき犯罪があり、厳しい世論がある状況を抱えつつ、死刑ではない最高刑を選んできた。その知見から学ぶことはあるはずだ。

Under another widely adopted approach, executions are suspended temporarily to allow a public consensus to emerge on the issue through in-depth debate.
 死刑の執行を一時停止し、議論の深まりを待つ方法も広くとられてきた。

In the Japanese government’s poll on the issue, more than half of the respondents who supported the death penalty cited concerns that abolishing capital punishment would lead to an increase in vicious crimes. But there is no clear proof that the death penalty is an effective deterrent to crime.
 政府の世論調査では、死刑存続を支持する人の半数以上が、廃止すると凶悪犯罪が増えることを理由に挙げた。しかし、死刑に特別な抑止力があるかどうかは、立証されていない。

Many respondents also supported the notion that people who have committed heinous crimes should pay with their lives.
 凶悪犯罪には命をもって償うべきだという理由を挙げる人も多かった。

Although atrocious crimes spark broad and strong public demands for heavy punishments, death sentences are not handed down in all of these cases. The difficulty in dealing with the issue lies in the fact that a criminal penalty should not be regarded as merely the price for a crime.
 だが今でも、社会の処罰感情が強い犯罪のすべてに死刑が適用されているわけではない。刑を「報い」としてだけでとらえるべきでない難しさがある。

The suffering is immeasurable among people who have lost family members and loved ones due to criminal activities. Their demands for severe penalties against the culprits are understandable.
 犯罪で家族や愛する人を奪われた遺族らの厳罰を求める気持ちは当然のものだ。その痛みは計り知れない。

But some bereaved families want the offenders to live out their lives making amends for the crimes they have committed.
 一方で、あえて加害者に生きて償うことを要望する遺族もいる。

It is impossible to punish criminals in a way that can satisfy all the diverse feelings of the victims and their families. What is important is to ensure that society provides support for crime victims and bereaved families.
被害者のさまざまな思いを加害者の刑に反映させるには、限界がある。必要なのは、被害者と遺族を社会がいかに手厚く支えていくかではないか。

In some abhorrent cases, families can no longer live in their homes where crimes have taken the lives of family members, and the perpetrators refuse to offer apologies let alone compensation for the suffering they caused.
 突然、犯罪で家族を失い、現場になった自宅にも住めない。加害者からは被害弁済どころか反省の言葉さえない。そんな不条理なことが現にある。

Systems have been established in recent years to allow crime victims to take part in the trials of the suspects and to receive information on how the sentences have been carried out.
 近年になって被害者が裁判に参加する制度や、加害者の刑の執行状況を知らせる制度などが整ってはきた。

But much more needs to be done to ensure that crime victims can receive sufficient financial support and psychological care.
それでも金銭的な支援、心理的なケアなど取り組むべきことは多い。

The government should consider long-term support to help crime victims deal with various difficulties.
 犯罪に起因するさまざまな困難と向き合う、息の長い支援を考えていかねばならない。

LIMITED INFORMATION DISCLOSURE
■限られた情報公開

Japan had 132 inmates on death row at the end of April.
 4月末現在、確定死刑囚は132人いる。

Until seven years ago, the Justice Ministry didn’t publish the names of executed inmates or the locations where the executions were conducted. The ministry showed execution sites to Diet members and journalists, but such efforts for information disclosure proved temporary.
 法務省は7年前まで、死刑執行の対象者の名前や場所などを公にしてこなかった。国会議員や報道機関に刑場を公開したこともあるが、一時的なもので終わった。

The government has been keeping strict control on information concerning executions. Such a show of public authority has serious implications. There is no denying that the government’s reluctance to disclose information about executions has hampered healthy public debate on capital punishment.
 死刑執行がきわめて重い公権力の行使でありながら、政府は情報公開を極度に制限してきた。これが死刑をめぐる議論を妨げてきたことは否めない。

Another issue is whether hanging is an appropriate execution method. Nearly six decades have passed since the Supreme Court ruled that death by hanging did not violate the constitutional ban on cruel penalties. Even some experts who support capital punishment are calling for a review of this method.
 絞首刑という方法がふさわしいかも論点だろう。残虐な刑罰を禁じる憲法に反しないとする最高裁判決から約60年がたつ。死刑存続派の識者からも見直しを求める意見が出ている。

A multipartisan group of lawmakers against the death penalty once considered proposing life imprisonment without parole as an alternative to capital punishment.
 超党派の国会議員でつくる死刑廃止議連は、仮釈放のない無期刑(重無期刑)の新設を検討していた。

It has long been pointed out that the gap is too large between capital punishment and a life sentence, which is actually an “indefinite” prison term with the possibility of parole that may lead to the offender’s return to society.
いずれ社会に戻れるかもしれない無期刑と死刑の落差はかねて指摘されてきた。

The government has been avoiding asking citizens what they think of life imprisonment without parole as an alternative to the death penalty. But this is a question that the government itself should face head-on.
 死刑の代替刑として、重無期刑をどのように考えるか。政府は市民に意見を問うことを避けてきたが、正面から向き合うべき問題ではないか。

--The Asahi Shimbun, May 6
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2014年05月07日

(社説)中国新疆テロ 民族政策の失敗だろう

May 05, 2014
EDITORIAL: Xinjiang bombing reflects China’s flawed policy toward minorities
(社説)中国新疆テロ 民族政策の失敗だろう

China has been hit by a string of violent incidents linked to problems concerning ethnic minorities in the country.
 中国で少数民族問題を背景とする事件が相次いでいる。

Last week, a bombing incident in Urumqi, the capital of the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, caused many casualties. The two suspects, who both died, were reportedly Uighur men.
 新疆ウイグル自治区のウルムチで先週、爆破事件があり、多くの死傷者が出た。死亡した2人の容疑者はウイグル族の男性だという。

The attack came at the conclusion of a four-day visit to Xinjiang by President Xi Jinping. During his inspection tour in the region, Xi urged local officials to make every possible effort to ensure public safety.
 その当日まで、習近平(シーチンピン)国家主席が4日間にわたり新疆各地を視察し、治安対策に万全を期すよう指示した矢先だった。

The timing and location of the attack appear to signal a bold challenge to the Xi administration.
 事件の時間と場所の選び方には、習政権に挑みかかるかのような意図すらうかがわれる。

It is infuriating that the attack, carried out in front of a train station, a public place, caused casualties among innocent citizens who happened to be there at the time. Such indiscriminate terrorism, whatever the purpose may be, is absolutely unpardonable.
 駅前という公共の場所で罪のない市民を巻き込むことに強い憤りを覚える。こうした無差別テロは決して許されない。

Having said that, we want to pose a question to the Chinese government. Why do incidents of violence related to Uighurs keep occurring so frequently even though successive governments in Beijing have pledged to respect the rights of ethnic minorities as their policy?
 そのうえで中国政府に問いたい。歴代政権は少数民族の権利を尊重する方針を掲げてきたのに、なぜウイグル族に関係する事件がこうも続発するのか。

In another incident last autumn that is still fresh in our memories, a car with three members of a Uighur family inside plowed into Tiananmen Square in Beijing.
 昨秋、北京・天安門にウイグル族の一家3人が自動車ごと突っ込んだ事件は記憶に新しい。

Since then, reported incidents related to Uighurs have taken place at a rate of about one a month.
以後、伝えられるものだけでほぼ1カ月に1度、ウイグル族に絡む事件が起きている。

These gloomy episodes indicate a failure of the policy toward ethnic minorities adopted by the Communist Party administration, which is composed mainly of Han Chinese, who constitute 90 percent of the country’s population.
 これは、人口の9割を占める漢族主体の共産党政権が、少数民族政策に失敗したことを意味しているのではないか。

Every time such an incident happens, the Chinese government describes the culprits as “violent elements seeking to break up China while acting in concert with an organization based overseas.”
 犯行グループは「国外組織と連絡をとりつつ我が国の分裂を図る暴力分子」。中国政府は事件のたびに、そう説明する。

By issuing such statements, Chinese leaders are effectively claiming that the government is making ardent efforts to promote economic development of Xinjiang, and that its policy toward Uighurs is working. Beijing is trying to characterize the perpetrators of these incidents as heretics isolated in society.
 中国政府は新疆の経済発展に力を注いでおり、ウイグル族への施策はうまくいっている。事件を起こすのは民意から遊離した連中だ――というわけだ。

Indeed, there has been a movement for political independence among Uighurs. There is also an organization to promote the movement outside China.
 確かにウイグル族の間で政治的独立をめざす動きはあった。国外にも組織がある。

But these facts do not necessarily support the argument that all these incidents were politically motivated.
しかし、だからといって、これほど相次ぐ事件は政治的動機だけでは説明しきれない。

Many of the reported incidents were apparently triggered by troubles concerning the daily lives of Uighur people.
むしろ、日常の中でのトラブルから発展する事件のほうが目につく。

Last summer, for example, a standoff between locals and police turned violent in Hotan, a city in Xinjiang. The Chinese government described that incident as rioting by an armed group. But it was actually a disturbance triggered by the move of local authorities to shut down a mosque used by Uighurs.
 例えば昨年夏、同じ新疆の都市ホータンで「武装集団による騒ぎ」とされた事件は、ウイグル族のイスラム教礼拝所が地元当局の圧力で使えなくなったことによる騒動だった。

The family that carried out the Tiananmen Square attack last autumn is said to have repeatedly filed complaints with the local authorities over a certain problem.
 昨秋の天安門突入事件を起こした一家は、地元政府に何らかの不満があって陳情を繰り返していたと伝えられる。

It seems there is deep distrust between authorities and Uighurs stemming from administrative problems.
 行政の現場で、当局者とウイグル族住民との信頼関係が壊れているのではないか。

The distrust will only grow if, under these circumstances, the Chinese government tramples on the social and religious customs of Uighurs under the pretext of anti-terrorist measures.
そのうえさらにテロ対策の名のもとに、生活や信仰上の習慣をふみにじるようなことになれば、不信感の増大を招くだけだ。

The situation cannot improve as long as this cycle of terrorism and suppression continues.
 テロと弾圧の応酬では事態の打開はありえない。

What China, as a multiracial nation, needs now to ensure social stability is not the use of force but a wise and effective policy to bring about reconciliation.
多民族国家中国の安定にいま必要なのは、力の行使ではなく、融和を導く賢明な政治ではないか。

--The Asahi Shimbun, May 4
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2014年05月06日

首相欧州歴訪 防衛装備協力で連携強化せよ

The Yomiuri Shimbun 4:00 am, May 05, 2014
Japan, European countries should strengthen ties in defense equipment
首相欧州歴訪 防衛装備協力で連携強化せよ

Japan and Europe are partners that give priority to keeping international order and promoting free trade. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to six European countries should give momentum to further solidifying strategic relations with Europe.
 日本と欧州は共に国際秩序を重んじ、自由貿易を推進するパートナーである。安倍首相の欧州6か国歴訪を機に戦略的関係を一層強化したい。

During their meeting, Abe and British Prime Minister David Cameron agreed to launch so-called two-plus-two talks between their foreign and defense ministers at an early date and promote joint development of defense equipment and technology. Technology for protective clothing against chemicals was among their immediate joint development projects.
 安倍首相は英国のキャメロン首相との会談で、外務・防衛閣僚会合(2プラス2)の早期開催や防衛装備品・技術の共同開発の促進で一致した。当面は化学防護服の技術などが対象となる。

The agreement was made by applying the new “three principles on transferring defense equipment” that the Cabinet approved last month to replace the previous three principles on arms exports.
 日本政府は先月、武器輸出3原則に代わる「防衛装備移転3原則」を閣議決定している。その新たな原則を適用するものだ。

Abe is scheduled to hold talks with French President Francois Hollande on Monday, during which they are expected to agree on joint development of such defense equipment as unmanned underwater vehicles.
 5日のオランド仏大統領との会談でも、無人潜水機などを念頭に開発協力で合意する見通しだ。

The government has already agreed with Australia to make vessel fluid dynamics a subject for their joint research.
 政府は既に、豪州との間でも、船舶の流体力学分野を研究課題とすることで合意している。

Such bilateral cooperation in the field of defense equipment will not only improve defense technology, but also curb development costs. The efforts are likely to embody a “proactive contribution to peace,” a diplomatic policy pursued by the Abe administration.
 こうした防衛装備面の協力は、防衛技術を向上させるとともに、開発費の抑制にもつながる。安倍政権の掲げる「積極的平和主義」の具体化にもなろう。

The administration should therefore collect intelligence in earnest and carry out the necessary discussions to determine what defense equipment and technology should be developed to maximize the benefits for both parties in an agreement.
 どんな装備・技術の共同研究・開発を進めれば、双方にとってメリットが大きいか、真剣に情報収集し、議論を重ねるべきだ。

Sending a message to China

In separate meetings, Abe confirmed with Cameron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel the importance of obeying international law in connection with the East Asian situation. Moreover, a joint statement by Abe and Cameron clearly stated that the two nations confirmed their commitment to the freedom of navigation and overflight.
 キャメロン首相やドイツのメルケル首相との会談では、東アジア情勢に関連し、国際法を順守する重要性を確認した。日英の共同声明には「航行及び上空飛行の自由」を尊重することも明記した。

These actions were all made in light of China’s attempts to change the status quo by force through such actions as establishing an air defense identification zone. Japan should use every opportunity to gain international solidarity in urging China to abide by international rules.
 東シナ海での防空識別圏の設定など、力による現状変更を試みる中国を念頭に置いたものだ。中国に国際ルールの順守を求めるには、様々な機会を通じて国際社会の結束を強めることが重要だ。

On another issue, it was significant that Abe concurred with the British and German leaders on the necessity of working toward concluding the thorny talks on an economic partnership agreement between Japan and the European Union next year.
 一方、難航する日本と欧州連合(EU)との経済連携協定(EPA)交渉について、英独首脳との会談で、来年の妥結を目指すことで一致した意義も大きい。

The EU is somewhat behind in its talks with Japan compared with the talks between Tokyo and Washington, which made significant progress toward sealing a final accord on the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade framework.
 環太平洋経済連携協定(TPP)交渉の最終合意へ日米協議が大きく前進したため、欧州には出遅れ感がうかがえる。

Issues including the EU’s removal of high tariffs on automobiles and TVs are at the center of the Japan-EU negotiations. Taking advantage of the current momentum, both sides should expedite talks to find common ground.
 EPA交渉は、EUが自動車やテレビにかけている高関税の撤廃などが焦点だ。この機運を生かし、互いに妥協点を見いだすよう協議を急ぐ必要がある。

At a lecture in London, Abe urged businesses to invest in Japan.
 首相はロンドンでの講演で、対日投資の促進を呼びかけた。

Referring to the nation’s regulatory barriers as solid bedrock, Abe stressed that “the drill bit is spinning at the fastest possible speed” to break through that bedrock. He also indicated his willingness to lower the effective corporate tax, saying, “We’re going to improve our corporate taxation still further.”
 障壁になっている岩盤規制を切り崩す「ドリルの刃は最大速度で回転している」と強調した。法人税についても「改革を一層進める」と明言し、実効税率の引き下げに意欲を示した。

That Abe made international pledges carries weight. The prime minister should exercise leadership in realizing regulatory reform as well as fixing corporate taxation.
 国際公約した意味は重い。首相は指導力を発揮し、規制緩和や法人税改革を実現すべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, May 4, 2014)
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2014年05月05日

安倍政権と憲法―平和主義の要を壊すな

May 03, 2014
EDITORIAL: Abe taking pacifist Constitution away from the people
安倍政権と憲法―平和主義の要を壊すな

Japan’s Constitution cannot be revised with a simple majority vote in the Diet.
 国会の多数決だけで、憲法を改めることはできない。

Any constitutional amendment must first be initiated through a vote of two-thirds or more of all members of each house in the Diet and then approved by the public with a majority vote in a special referendum. This procedure is stipulated in Article 96 of the Constitution.
 憲法を改正するには、衆参両院の3分の2以上の賛成で発議し、国民投票で過半数の承認を得なければならない。憲法96条が定める手続きだ。

Last spring, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe began a political campaign to make it easier to rewrite the Constitution by easing this procedure, but later gave up the idea.
 安倍首相は昨春、この手続きを緩めようとして断念した。

Abe’s attempt was foiled by opposition expressed by many Japanese who became aware of its dangerous implications. They realized that if the government is allowed to change the Constitution at will, the all-important principles of constitutionalism, which restrict the power of government, would be violated.
 時の政権の意向だけで憲法が変えられては、権力にしばりをかける立憲主義が侵される。こう気づいた多くの国民が、反対の声を上げたからだ。

Abe is now seeking to tamper with the supreme law in a different way.
 安倍首相は、今年は違うやり方で、再び憲法に手をつけようとしている。

Instead of pursuing a change in a constitutional provision, the prime minister is working to enable Japan to exercise its right to collective self-defense through a Cabinet decision to change the government’s interpretation of the Constitution regarding the issue. The government’s traditional position has been that Japan has the right to collective self-defense, but is banned by the Constitution from exercising that right.
 条文はいじらない。かわりに9条の解釈を変更する閣議決定によって、「行使できない」としてきた集団的自衛権を使えるようにするという。

This way, even a Diet vote is not needed to make the policy change, which raises some serious constitutional questions.
これだと国会の議決さえ必要ない。

What would be the consequences of that step? The pacifist ideal of the Constitution would lose its spirit even if it remains alive in form.
 その結果どうなるか。日本国憲法の平和主義は形としては残っても、その魂が奪われることになるのは明らかだ。

COLLECTIVE SELF-DEFENSE MEANS DEFENDING ALLIES
■本質は他国の防衛

Some policymakers within the government have proposed to make it clear that Japan’s exercise of its right to collective self-defense would be limited to the minimum necessary--only in areas surrounding Japan and in situations where it is needed to ensure the nation’s existence.
 政権内ではこんな議論がされている。集団的自衛権の行使は日本周辺で「わが国の存立を全うする」ための必要最小限に限る。

They argue that the 1959 Supreme Court ruling over the so-called Sunagawa Incident, which concerned the constitutionality of the presence of U.S. forces in Japan, didn’t ban Japan from using its right to collective self-defense. The ruling actually said, “It is indisputable that, as an act of exercising its proper powers as a nation, Japan is allowed to take self-defense measures that are necessary for maintaining its own peace and security and ensuring its existence.”
それは59年の砂川事件の最高裁判決も認めている――。

These policymakers are making the case for allowing Japan limited use of its right to collective self-defense.
いわゆる「限定容認論」だ。

One example often cited in this argument is a situation in which a U.S. warship comes under attack in waters near Japan. Abe and other proponents of the proposal ask whether it is acceptable that the Self-Defense Forces are not allowed to come to rescue when a U.S. naval vessel operating to defend Japan comes under attack. They warn that the SDF’s failure to help a U.S. ship in such a situation would mean an end to Japan’s security alliance with the United States.
 しばしば例示されるのは、日本近海での米艦防護だ。首相らは日本を守るため警戒中の米艦が襲われた時、自衛隊が救えなくていいのかと問う。それでは日米同盟は終わる、とも。

But many people in and outside the government believe the SDF can respond to such cases as part of Japan’s exercise of its right to individual self-defense or its police authority.
 しかし、これは日本の個別的自衛権や警察権で対応できるとの見解が政府内外に根強い。

In other words, this problem can be solved without treating it as the constitutional issue of collective self-defense. There is no need to use a distorted interpretation of the Supreme Court ruling over the Sunagawa Incident, which only acknowledged Japan’s right to individual self-defense, as a tool to promote the case for collective self-defense.
 ことさら集団的自衛権という憲法の問題にしなくても、解決できるということだ。日本の個別的自衛権を認めたに過ぎない砂川判決を、ねじ曲げて援用する必要もない。

A decision to allow Japan to use its right to collective self-defense, even if the use is limited to the minimum necessary, would amount to a total about-face on the traditional security policy.
 仮に集団的自衛権の行使を認めれば、どんなに必要最小限だといっても、これまでの政策から百八十度の転換となる。

Collective self-defense, by nature, involves the defense of other countries. But a small leak can eventually sink a great ship.
 集団的自衛権の本質は、他国の防衛という点にある。アリの一穴は必ず広がる。

It is difficult to impose an effective restriction on Japan’s use of its military power that is clearer than the current rule that Japan can only use armed force when it is directly attacked.
「日本が攻撃された時だけ武力を行使する」という以上に明確な歯止めを設けることは困難だ。

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s draft proposal to revise the Constitution calls for making the SDF full-fledged national defense forces that can take part in collective self-defense operations.
 自民党の憲法改正草案は、自衛隊を集団的自衛権も行使できる「国防軍」にするという。

What the Abe administration is trying to achieve is realizing this proposal without making an amendment to the Constitution through the established formal procedure.
安倍政権がやろうとしていることは、憲法を変えずにこれを実現しようというに等しい。

The administration is making an outrageous attempt to push through an effective constitutional amendment based on a government proposal merely through discussions within the ruling camp.
 政府が方針を決め、与党協議だけで実質的な改憲をしてしまおうという乱暴さ。

Why is the Abe administration getting away with such unacceptable behavior?
なぜ、こんなことがまかり通ろうとしているのか。

NO EFFECTIVE CHECKS ON GOVERNMENT BY LEGISLATURE
■行政府への抑止なく

The most obvious factor behind this distressing political landscape is the inability of the Diet to do its job properly. It is failing to perform its role of clarifying important policy issues through discussions in order to provoke meaningful public debate.
 真っ先に目につくのは国会の無力だ。論争によって問題点を明らかにし、世論を喚起する。この役割が果たせていない。

Abe has been making little effort to offer serious answers to questions from opposition parties in the Diet, and the wretchedly weakened opposition has been letting him get away with it.
 対立する政党の質問にまともに答えようとしない首相。それを許してしまう野党の弱さは、目を覆うばかりだ。

Some LDP lawmakers who initially voiced skepticism about Abe’s initiative have quickly become extremely quiet, apparently after the prime minister started signaling the possibility of a Cabinet and party leadership reshuffle.
 自民党内にあった慎重論も、内閣改造や党人事がちらついたのか、またたく間にしぼんだ。

The nation’s legislature is totally impotent to monitor and check the behavior of the administration in any effective way to prevent its dangerous moves.
 立法府から行政府への監視や抑止がまるで利かない現状。

What would happen if, to top it all, the constitutional restriction on Japan’s use of its military capabilities is removed?
そのうえ、憲法の歯止めがなくなればどうなるか。

Japan has been following U.S. military policy. It doesn’t take a huge leap of faith to foresee the scope of SDF operations expanding beyond the “minimum necessary” under pressure from Washington.
米国の軍事政策に追従し続けてきた日本だ。米国の要請に押され自衛隊の活動が「必要最小限」を超えるのは想像に難くない。

In 2003, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi supported U.S. President George W. Bush’s decision to declare war on Iraq and, in response to a U.S. request, sent SDF troops to the Middle East to support reconstruction efforts.
 03年のイラク戦争で、小泉首相はブッシュ大統領の開戦の決断を支持し、自衛隊を復興支援に派遣した。

Koizumi justified his decisions simply by repeating that supporting the United States was in Japan’s best interest. The Koizumi administration showed no signs of making objective, cool-headed assessments of the situation.
小泉氏の理屈は「米国支持が国益にかなう」の一点張り。情勢を客観的に判断する姿勢は見えなかった。

Abe has established the National Security Council. But the minutes of its meetings have not been published, and the newly enacted state secrets protection law is likely to allow the government to keep the public in the dark about the process of making policy decisions to mobilize the SDF.
 安倍首相は国家安全保障会議を発足させた。だが、議事録は公開されず、特定秘密保護法によって自衛隊を動かす政策決定過程は闇に閉ざされそうだ。

Under these circumstances, would the government be able to make the right decision should it be asked to send SDF troops to battlefields of another U.S.-led war? Would the Diet and the public be able to stop such a deployment of the SDF?
 こんな体制のもと、第二のイラク戦争への参加を求められたら、政府は正しい判断を下せるのか。国会や国民がそれを止めることができるのか。

DON'T TAKE CONSTITUTION FROM THE PEOPLE
■憲法を取り上げるな

Some administration officials are saying the government should try to win the support of as many members of the public as possible for the initiative, which would allow the government to mobilize SDF troops for participation in collective self-defense operations.
 「自衛隊員に出動命令を出すからには、一人でも多くの国民の理解を得たい」。政権の中からはこんな声が聞こえる。

If the government insists on making it possible for Japan to exercise its right to collective self-defense, there is only one path it should take.
 集団的自衛権の行使をどうしても認めたいというのならば、とるべき道はひとつしかない。

It should present a draft amendment to the Constitution to take the step and follow the formal procedure--initiating the amendment through a vote of a two-thirds majority in each house of the Diet and then getting it approved by the people with a majority vote at a special referendum.
そのための憲法改正案を示し、衆参両院の3分の2の賛成と国民投票での過半数の承認を得ることだ。

To be fair, the security situation in East Asia is certainly becoming dangerous due to North Korea’s development of nuclear arms and China’s aggressive military buildup. We can understand that the government is pursuing this initiative out of a desire to ensure Japan’s security.
 北朝鮮の核開発や中国の軍備増強などで、東アジアの安全保障環境は厳しくなっている。いまの議論が、日本の安全を確実にしたいという思いからきていることはわかる。

If so, the government should first start debate on legislative moves needed to deal with specific issues, instead of immediately touching the Constitution.
 ならば一足飛びに憲法にふれるのでなく、個々の案件に必要な法整備は何かという点から議論を重ねるべきではないか。

Even if the government’s proposal is reasonable from the viewpoints of policy and military needs, that doesn’t justify distorting key constitutional principles through a change in the government’s interpretation of them.
 仮に政策的、軍事的合理性があったとしても、解釈変更で憲法をねじ曲げていいという理由にはならない。

The way the Abe administration is pursuing this controversial initiative is totally inconsistent with the prime minister’s pledge to put the Constitution back in the hands of the people. Instead, it is tantamount to taking the Constitution away from the public.
 いまの政権のやり方は、首相が唱える「憲法を国民の手に取り戻す」どころか、「憲法を国民から取り上げる」ことにほかならない。

--The Asahi Shimbun, May 3
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2014年05月04日

朝日支局襲撃―「排他」に立ち向かう

May 02, 2014
EDITORIAL: On a mission to stop growing trend toward intolerance
朝日支局襲撃―「排他」に立ち向かう

May 3, Constitution Day, is a date that is etched into our memory. On this day 27 years ago, a man wielding a shotgun stormed The Asahi Shimbun’s Hanshin Bureau in Nishinomiya, Hyogo Prefecture, and opened fire, killing 29-year-old reporter Tomohiro Kojiri and seriously injuring another reporter.
 あす憲法記念日は、私たちにとって忘れがたい日である。27年前、兵庫県西宮市の朝日新聞阪神支局が散弾銃を持った男に襲撃され、小尻知博(こじりともひろ)記者(当時29)が殺された。

In a statement claiming responsibility for the attack, the assailant, who called himself a member of “Sekihotai,” said the “anti-Japanese Asahi must return to its former self 50 years ago.”
 「赤報隊」を名乗る犯人は犯行声明で「反日朝日は50年前にかえれ」と主張した。

In an editorial published immediately after the attack, we pledged to “defend a democratic society where diverse values of members are respected and remain committed to freedom of speech.”
 事件直後、社説は「多様な価値を認め合う民主主義社会を守り、言論の自由を貫く」と誓った。

To our deep regret, the 15-year statute of limitations on the case expired in 2002 with no culprit apprehended. Still, our determination has remained unshakable.
残念ながら、事件は未解決のまま時効を迎えてしまったが、その決意にいささかも揺るぎはない。

With that said, our democratic society, where people should respect the values of others, even when they differ, appears to be under threat. The disturbing fact is that there is a growing trend toward refusing to accept people with different ideas and attacking them.
 その「多様な価値を認め合う民主主義社会」がいま、揺らいでいる。深刻なのは、自分たちと違う価値観の人々の存在そのものを否定し、攻撃する動きが勢いを増していることだ。

People who are intolerant toward others with differing views often like to use the phrase “anti-Japanese” when launching verbal attacks. The term, which was often used by those individuals attempting to demonize The Asahi Shimbun, is now part of the wider narrative.
 こうした言説の中で、かつて朝日新聞を攻撃するキーワードだった「反日」のレッテルはすっかり一般化してしまった。

Claiming Korean residents in Japan enjoy unfair “privileges,” some people repeatedly take to the streets to stage what can only be described as hate-speech protests. In Shikoku, known for its popular Buddhist pilgrimage route that covers 88 temples, signs saying, “Let’s protect our pilgrimage course from the hands of Koreans,” were discovered.
 在日コリアンに「特権」があるとして、街頭で激しいヘイトスピーチ(憎悪表現)を繰り返す人たち。四国では「遍路道を朝鮮人の手から守りましょう」との張り紙が見つかった。

Books intended to incite hatred against South Korea and China are gaining popularity, and headlines seemingly designed to promote racial discord appear in certain media almost daily.
 韓国や中国への嫌悪感をあらわにした本が人気を集め、一部メディアにも連日、それをあおるかのような見出しが躍る。

In a lawsuit filed in Kyoto against an anti-Korean organization that held hate-speech protests, the group has tried to defend its actions and the language it used claiming a constitutional right to freedom of expression. But, should speech designed to ostracize and hurt other members of society be respected? For all the arguments and efforts we have made championing free speech and expression, we cannot help but feel compelled to say no to that question.
 ヘイトスピーチをめぐる京都での訴訟で、訴えられた市民団体側は「表現の自由の範囲内だ」と正当性を主張した。だが、他人を排除し、傷つける言葉は許されるのか。表現・言論の自由の大切さを説き続けた私たちとしても、「それは違う」と言わずにはいられない。

Since the 1987 murder of our colleague, we have received strong support and encouragement from many of our readers. And with the support of those voices, we are always striving to protect freedom of the press.
 事件以来、多くの読者から叱咤(しった)激励をいただいた。その声にも支えられ、私たちは自由な言論を守ろうと努力してきた。

In particular, we believe we have made every effort to fight against any attempt by the powers that be to restrict people’s freedom. We did just that, for instance, during Diet deliberations on the state secrets protection bill. These efforts have been based in part on a lot of painful soul-searching that has taken place as a result of our news organization’s regrettable cooperation with the government before and during World War II.
 特に、戦争に協力した戦前への痛切な反省から、権力が自由を制約する動きには、全力で立ち向かってきたつもりである。特定秘密保護法案の審議のときもそうだった。

We cannot help but wonder if we could have done more to prevent this proliferation of hateful language plaguing our society today.
 ただ、これだけ排他的な言葉が世にあふれる前に、できることはなかったか。

Needless to say, we are committed to stand up for the victims of unwarranted attacks. We are also determined to pay close and serious attention to the backgrounds of those hatemongers who use and promote abusive language and those who support them so that we can help heal the widening rift in our society.
 理不尽に攻撃される人たちを守る側に立つことはもちろんである。そのうえで、攻撃的な言葉を繰り出す人、そうした主張に喝采を送る人々の背景にも目を向け、日本社会に広がる溝を埋めていきたい。

We don’t just want to promote the slogan “freedom of expression and speech,” we want to help create a society where everybody can live with dignity and live a life free of anxiety.
 求めたいのは、スローガンとしての「表現・言論の自由」ではない。誰もが尊厳を保ち、のびやかに生きられる社会そのものである。

On the anniversary of the day our colleague was slain, we remember afresh our principal mission as a news organization.
同僚の命が絶たれたこの日、その原点を改めて胸に刻みたい。

--The Asahi Shimbun, May 2

2014年05月02日

米のアジア重視 対中牽制に同盟諸国を生かせ

The Yomiuri Shimbun 7:06 pm, April 30, 2014
Obama’s reinforcement of Asian ties sends strong message to China
米のアジア重視 対中牽制に同盟諸国を生かせ

As U.S. President Barack Obama−known for his “Asia pivot” policy−reconfirms his nation’s unity with its Asian allies, the significance of his moves should not be underestimated.
 「アジア重視」政策を掲げるオバマ米大統領が同盟国との結束を確認した意義は大きい。

Obama recently finished his Asian tour, leaving his footprints in Japan, South Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines.
 オバマ氏が、日本、韓国、マレーシア、フィリピンのアジア4か国への歴訪を終えた。

The U.S. president has made his country’s presence felt in the Asia-Pacific region during the trip, stressing his unyielding stance against China’s expansion into Asia-Pacific waters where Beijing is unilaterally attempting to change the status quo, as well as his stand against North Korea’s nuclear development program. We welcome these moves.
 一方的な現状変更を伴う中国の海洋進出や、北朝鮮の核開発に対し、断固たる姿勢を鮮明にして、アジア太平洋における米国の存在感を示したことは評価できる。

One of the highlights of Obama’s Asian trip was the signing of a military pact between the United States and the Philippines, which paves the way for the re-stationing of U.S. troops in the Southeast Asian nation. Manila is currently engaged in territorial disputes with Beijing in the South China Sea.
 今回の訪問で注目されるのは、南シナ海での領有権を巡り中国と対立するフィリピンにおける、米軍再駐留に道を開く軍事協定に、米比両国が調印したことだ。

The Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement will give U.S. forces access to Philippine military bases. The pact will also enable the temporary rotation of U.S. troops through the country, and the deployment of fighter jets and warships.
 協定で、米軍はフィリピン軍基地の使用を認められる。常駐ではないが、部隊の巡回派遣や戦闘機、艦船の配備も可能となる。

The Philippines was once a strategic foothold of the United States. However, the island country refused to extend the stationing of the U.S. forces after the end of the Cold War, and U.S. troops withdrew from the country by the end of 1992.
 米軍はかつてフィリピンを戦略拠点としていたが、冷戦終結後、フィリピンに駐留延長を拒まれ、1992年までに撤収した。

After the U.S. withdrawal, China began reinforcing its influence in the South China Sea as if the country were aiming to fill the power vacuum. For example, Beijing has extended its control of a shoal over which the Philippines claims sovereignty. More recently, China has obliged fishing boats operating in the South China sea to obtain a license from the Chinese government, further raising tensions in the area.
 その後、フィリピンが領有権を主張する環礁に支配を拡大するなど、力の空白を埋めるように、南シナ海での勢力増強に乗り出してきたのが、中国だ。最近も、外国漁船に操業の許可申請を義務付けて、一段と緊張を高めている。

U.S. as stabilizer

The U.S.-Philippine pact will serve as a great opportunity to restore the influence of U.S. forces in the South China Sea. If U.S. forces enhance their cooperation with the forces of Asian allies, through efforts such as joint military exercises, this can be expected to work as a deterrent to China’s activities in the area. It is understandable that Obama said the purpose of the pact is “to promote regional stability such as in the South China Sea.”
 協定は、南シナ海での米軍のプレゼンスを回復する契機となる。共同演習などで、米軍が各国軍と協調を強めれば、中国の活動を牽制けんせいする効果を持とう。オバマ氏が、協定で「地域の安定を促進する」と述べたのは、うなずける。

In the Japan-U.S. joint statement issued during Obama’s trip to Japan, Obama reaffirmed that the Senkaku Islands, which are located in the East China Sea, are within the scope of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty. It is very meaningful that Obama expressed his intention not to condone China’s moves to seek hegemony also in the South China Sea through the U.S.-Philippines pact.
 オバマ氏は日米共同声明で、東シナ海の尖閣諸島が日米安保条約の適用対象だと確認した。米比協定によって、南シナ海でも中国の覇権主義的な行動は許さないとの意思を表明したことは重要だ。

Meanwhile, in South Korea, Obama agreed with South Korean President Park Geun-hye to reinforce the two countries’ cooperation to prevent further provocations by North Korea, which continues its nuclear development activities. “We will not hesitate to use our military might to defend our allies and our way of life,” Obama said during a speech at a U.S. military base in the nation.
 一方、オバマ氏は、韓国の朴槿恵大統領と、核開発を進める北朝鮮による「挑発を阻止する」ための協力強化で合意した。さらに、在韓米軍基地での演説では、「同盟国を守るためなら軍事力行使もためらわない」と断言した。

Specifically, Obama has stated that the United States will continue to have the right of command over U.S.-South Korea coalition troops during contingencies for the time being. We believe it was appropriate for the United States to show that it will maintain responsibility in deterring North Korea’s movements.
 具体的措置として、有事における米韓連合軍の指揮権限を米軍が当面維持することも認めた。北朝鮮抑止に、米国が今後も責任を持つ姿勢を示したのは、適切だ。

Park has recently been increasing her inclination toward China. However, in a written reply to questions from a South Korean newspaper, Obama said that Seoul’s alliance with the United States serves as the foundation of South Korea’s security and prosperity, an apparent message urging to the nation to shift its focus onto cooperation with the United States and Japan.
 朴大統領は中国への傾斜を強めているが、オバマ氏は韓国紙への書面回答で、「米国との同盟が韓国の安全と繁栄の基盤だ」と述べた。日米韓の連携を重視するよう韓国にくぎを刺したと言える。

It is unlikely that the tensions in the Asia-Pacific region will end anytime soon. It will be essential for the United States and its allies to join hands and accumulate specific actions one by one.
 アジア太平洋の緊張は今後も継続するだろう。米国と同盟国が協力して、具体的な行動を積み重ねていくことが求められる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 30, 2014)
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2014年05月01日

(社説)原発ゼロの夏 内向きの経営脱する時

April 29, 2014
EDITORIAL: Utilities should start plotting nuclear-free future for themselves
(社説)原発ゼロの夏 内向きの経営脱する時

Electric utilities are still warning that a lack of nuclear power generation will cause power shortages and rises in electricity bills. It’s time for them to stop emphasizing such concerns in their attempts to win public support for restarting idled nuclear reactors.
 原発なしでは電気が足りず、電気代も上がる――電力会社はもう、そんな不安を前面に出す姿勢を改めるべきではないか。

Prospects are bleak for bringing reactors back online by summer, so the utilities have worked out plans to avoid a summer power crunch without using nuclear energy. If these plans are carried out, this summer will be the first without nuclear power generation since the Fukushima nuclear disaster unfolded in March 2011.
 この夏の原発再稼働が見通せぬ中、電力各社は「原発ゼロの夏」を乗り切る計画を示した。実現すれば、震災後初のこととなる。

Some utilities, however, will have to walk a tightrope. Kansai Electric Power Co., which was excessively dependent on nuclear power generation, will have only a 3-percent reserve capacity during the summer peak-demand period. That means efforts to reduce power consumption should not be relaxed.
 とはいえ、もともと原発に過大な依存をしていた関西電力では、真夏のピーク時の余裕は3%しかない。

But the company’s power supply plan for the summer indicates an amazing change in society. It was only two years ago that Kansai Electric Power restarted reactors at its Oi nuclear power plant, claiming that an absence of nuclear power would force it to carry out a rolling blackout, which could seriously affect corporate activities and operations of medical institutions.
節電の手を緩めてはならないが、つい2年前「原発ゼロなら計画停電もある」「企業活動や医療現場に影響が出かねない」と大飯原発を再稼働したときのことを思えば、世の変化に目を見張る思いだ。

The great change has been powered by larger-than-expected cuts in power consumption achieved through efforts by society as a whole.
 原動力は、予想を上回る節電の定着である。

In that summer, the power saving in the region served by Kansai Electric, which then relied on the Oi plant, was three times larger than expected. As it turned out, theoretically, there would not have been a power shortage in the region even if all nuclear plants had been offline.
 あの夏、大飯原発に頼った関電管内では予想の3倍を超える節電を達成。原発ゼロでも乗り切れた計算となった。

The summer last year was among the hottest in history, but there were no signs that power-saving efforts slackened.
昨年は歴史的猛暑だったのに、節電の定着ぶりは変わらなかった。

Based on its experiences during the past two summers, Kansai Electric has estimated that the amount of electricity to be saved this summer will be equivalent to the total power output from two and a half nuclear reactors. Ardent power-saving efforts by consumers made as a serious response to the disastrous nuclear accident have effectively created a huge power surplus.
 こうした実績から、関電は今夏、原発2・5基分の節電を見込むことができた。原発事故を真摯(しんし)に受け止めたユーザーの努力が「節電発電所」の建設につながったといえる。

In contrast, utilities have failed to make serious efforts to ensure a power supply without nuclear plants.
 電力会社の努力はどうか。

They have kept arguing that nuclear power generation is indispensable for a stable power supply, and they have applied for permission to restart reactors, including even risky ones close to densely populated areas.
 安定供給には原発しかないと説き続け、リスクが明らかに高い人口密集地付近の原発でも再稼働を申請する。

Meanwhile, they have been dragging their feet on establishing a system that makes it easier for them to buy surplus power from other utilities serving different regions. To prevent a power crunch, Kansai Electric plans to buy electricity from Tokyo Electric Power Co. for the first time this summer. The amount of power traded between the nation’s eastern and western regions, which run at different frequencies, has increased by only 20 percent since the Fukushima disaster.
一方で、余った電力を地域を越えて融通しあう仕組みはなかなか整わない。関電は今夏初めて、東京電力から融通を受けて電力不足を乗り切る計画だが、周波数の違う東西での融通能力は震災時から2割増えただけだ。

Most utilities have remained dependent on old thermal power plants with low energy efficiency. They have kept saying these thermal plants could break down at any time and force them to raise electricity charges to cover growing fuel costs. It was only very recently that utilities began to move toward building state-of-the-art, energy efficient thermal power plants.
 燃費がかさむ古い火力に頼り、「いつ故障とも知れない」「電気代が上がる」という説明も続く。最新鋭の高効率の火力発電所建設の動きが出始めたのは、ごく最近のことだ。

The Diet is now considering a bill to further deregulate the power market. The nation is heading into a new era when consumers including households as well as businesses can freely choose their power suppliers. The market has already been liberalized for large consumers like local governments. A growing number of them are switching to newly created power suppliers that offer cheaper electricity.
 電力市場の自由化を進める法案が、国会で審議中だ。家庭も含めて自由に電力会社を選べる時代へと移っていく。すでに自由化された自治体などの大口利用者は、電気代の安い新電力に乗り換え始めた。

Unless they change their way of thinking, large established utilities, which have long held regional monopolies, will find it increasingly hard to secure their long-term viability.
発想を切り替えねば、大手電力会社自身が生き残れまい。

People who are making power-saving efforts want to see the establishment of a system that ensures a safe and stable supply of electricity at the lowest possible cost. It is vital to expand the use of renewable energy sources and build up a reliable program for mutual supplies of surplus power for more efficient use of limited resources.
 節電する人びとが求めるのは、安全に安定して、できるだけ安く電気を使えるシステムをつくっていくことだろう。再生可能エネルギーを拡大し、限られた電気を融通し合える仕組みを早く根付かせたい。

The accident at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant has revealed huge potential risks lurking in nuclear power generation. From this point of view, the efforts of utilities to restart their nuclear power plants, driven by the fact that they have poured huge amounts of money into the facilities, appear to reflect a ruefully inward-looking attitude.
 福島での事故で巨大なリスクが潜むことが明らかになった以上、巨額の投資をしたから原発を動かしたいという経営の論理はあまりに内向きに見える。

--The Asahi Shimbun, April 28
posted by srachai at 08:09| Comment(0) | 朝日英字
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