オバマ氏演説 そっけなかった「アジア重視」

The Yomiuri Shimbun January 30, 2014
Obama makes only brief reference to Asia in State of Union address
オバマ氏演説 そっけなかった「アジア重視」(1月30日付・読売社説)

U.S. President Barack Obama stressed on Tuesday night that he would put priority on supporting middle-class Americans, and promised to create more jobs and alleviate income disparities between rich and poor. It was apparently a speech aimed at restoring his floundering approval rate ahead of midterm elections in November.
 中間所得層への支援を優先課題に掲げ、雇用創出や所得格差是正の実現を約束した。11月の中間選挙に向け、低迷する支持率の回復を意識した演説と言えるだろう。

In his annual State of the Union address, a policy speech for the year, Obama expressed his strong determination to make 2014 “a year of action.”
 オバマ米大統領が、1年間の施政方針を示す一般教書演説を行って、今年を「行動の年」と位置づけた。固い決意がうかがえる。

Obama last year had a harsh confrontation with the Republican Party, which controls the House of Representatives, which resulted in a partial shutdown of government functions. He had a series of failures in both domestic and foreign affairs that temporarily sunk his approval rate to its lowest level since his inauguration.
 オバマ氏は、下院を支配する共和党と激しく対立し、政府機能の一部停止という事態を招いた。内政、外交とも失点続きで、支持率が一時は、就任以来最低の水準にまで落ち込んだ。

If his Democratic Party slips to a minority in both houses of Congress in this year’s mid-term elections, the Obama administration is certain to be rendered ineffectual for the remainder of its term. The question is what strategy he will use to recoup the lost ground.
 中間選挙で、民主党が上下両院で少数党に転落すれば、政権のレームダック化は決定的だ。巻き返しへの戦略が問われている。

Obama stressed in the speech what he has accomplished regarding the recovery of the U.S. economy after the financial crisis. He then proposed minimum wage hikes in consideration of low-income earners who have not yet benefited from the economic recovery. He also referred to the expansion of job opportunities with the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement and immigration reform.
 オバマ氏は演説で、金融危機後の経済再生の成果を強調した上で景気回復の恩恵を得ていない低所得者層に配慮し、最低賃金引き上げを提案した。環太平洋経済連携協定(TPP)に伴う雇用拡大や移民制度改革も表明した。

All of these are policies that would help cement the support base for Democrats.
 いずれも、民主党の支持基盤固めにつながる政策だ。

Confrontation with GOP

It is noteworthy that Obama said he would use executive orders if his bills are not passed in Congress. Even if Republicans refuse to raise minimum wages, Obama stressed he would issue an executive order to raise the wages of some federal contract workers.
 特に注目されるのは、議会で法案が可決されない場合、大統領令を発すると述べたことだ。最低賃金引き上げを共和党が拒んでも、連邦政府契約職員に限っては、大統領令で引き上げるという。

This illustrates a point of conflict between his party and Republicans. But the GOP has reacted sharply against Obama, criticizing him for disrespecting Congress. There is concern that confrontation between the two parties will intensify.
 共和党との対立軸を鮮明にした形だが、共和党は早くも「議会軽視」と強く反発した。対立はかえって先鋭化する恐れがある。

Obama made relatively fewer references to foreign and security policies, as compared to domestic issues, as this is an election year. The president stressed U.S. combat troops will withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of this year and the U.S. war against terrorism “will finally be over.” But we hope Obama will maintain all possible measures against terrorism even after U.S. forces leave the country.
 選挙の年だけに、内政が重視され、外交・安全保障政策への言及は比較的少なかった。
 アフガニスタンに駐留する米軍戦闘部隊が今年末に撤収し、テロとの戦いが「ようやく終わる」と強調した。撤収後もテロ対策には万全を期してもらいたい。

Apparently with the so-called shale gas revolution in mind, the president also stressed “America is closer to energy independence.” But it would be a problem if this makes the United States less interested in Middle East affairs.
 エネルギー問題では、「シェールガス革命」を念頭に、「エネルギー自給に近づいた」と述べた。これが、中東への米国の関心の減退につながっては困る。

Obama also said: “We will continue to focus on the Asia-Pacific, where we support our allies [and] shape a future of greater security and prosperity.” The president clearly said he maintains a foreign policy with emphasis on Asia, but his reference to the region remained brief and dry.
 アジア太平洋については「引き続き、重視し、同盟国を支え、より安全で繁栄した未来を形作っていく」と主張した。「アジア重視」政策の継続は言明したものの、そっけない表現にとどまった。

For the second straight year, Obama did not attend an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum summit meeting. We wonder how he will realize the United States’ “focus” on the region.
 オバマ氏はアジア太平洋経済協力会議(APEC)首脳会議を2年続けて欠席した。「重視」をどう具体化していくのだろうか。

With the rise of China, closer unity among the United States and its Asian allies, including Japan, is now needed more than ever before.
 中国の台頭を受け、米国と、日本など同盟国との結束が今ほど必要なときはない。

Obama should demonstrate his leadership more clearly during his tour of Asian countries scheduled for this spring.
オバマ氏は今春のアジア歴訪で、指導力を一層発揮することが求められる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Jan. 30, 2014)
(2014年1月30日01時35分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2014-02-01 07:40 | 英字新聞

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