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消費者庁 できるか縦割り行政の打破

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Apr. 20, 2009)
Consumer agency must avoid turf wars
消費者庁 できるか縦割り行政の打破(4月20日付・読売社説)

Will a new agency be able to function as a sort of new control tower for administration of consumer affairs?
 消費者行政の新しい司令塔として機能するのだろうか。

A new government organization will be inaugurated by the end of this year to replace the current system of consumer affairs management that has too often shown the negatives of sectionalism among ministries and agencies such as the failure to detect a spate of food mislabeling cases and to prevent accidents caused by defective products.
 度重なる食品偽装を見抜けなかったり、欠陥商品による事故を防止できなかったりと、省庁ごとの縦割りで弊害が目立った消費者行政の立て直しを担う新組織が、年内にも発足する。

A bill to form a consumer affairs agency is highly likely to become law at the current Diet session as the House of Representatives approved it Friday.
 消費者庁を設置するための修正法案が衆院で可決され、今国会での成立が確実になった。

The government and the ruling coalition parties initially submitted a bill to establish the envisaged agency as an external organ of the Cabinet Office, but the Democratic Party of Japan opposed it, making a counterproposal to set up a "board of consumers rights" as an organ independent from all the other government bodies.
 内閣府の外局に消費者庁を置く政府・与党案に対し、民主党は、各省庁から独立した「消費者権利院」の設置案を提示し対立してきた。

However, the DPJ has come to a compromise and agreed to revision of a bill sponsored by the government and the ruling coalition parties.
だが、民主党が歩み寄り、法案修正で合意した。

The start of Diet deliberations on the bill has been delayed to a large extent, but it was significant that the ruling and opposition parties were finally able to reach political agreement.
 法案の審議入りは大幅に遅れたが、ようやく政治決着にこぎ着けた意義は大きい。

===

Watchdog panel

A main point of their agreement was the position of a supervisory panel of experts, which was placed under the consumer affairs agency in the bill sponsored by the government and the ruling coalition parties.
 与野党合意のポイントは、政府・与党案で消費者庁内に置くとした有識者委員会の扱いだった。

In the revised bill, however, the panel was upgraded to a consumer committee ranking alongside the consumer affairs agency as a government watchdog.
 修正法案では、これを消費者庁と同格の監視機関となる「消費者委員会」に格上げした。

The revised bill, which has incorporated some of the ideas presented by the DPJ, has granted the envisaged committee strong authority not only to keep an eye on the consumer affairs agency and demand reports from the other government organizations but also to advise the prime minister and other Cabinet members to address problems.
 消費者庁を監視し、各省庁に報告を求めるほか、首相や閣僚に是正を勧告する強力な権限が与えられた。
民主党の主張を一部取り入れたものだ。

However, the ruling and opposition parties postponed dealing with many problems as they raced to a compromise.
 だが、妥協を急いだあまり、先送りされた課題も多い。

First, the bill does not clearly show how the consumer committee and the consumer affairs agency should coordinate their actions and request the other government organizations to respond quickly when a consumer problem arises.
 まず、問題が起きた時、消費者委員会と消費者庁がどう連携し、他省庁に迅速な対応を求めていくかがあいまいだ。

===

Danger of duplication

Meanwhile, if its secretariat is overexpanded, the consumer committee will be superfluous, becoming an entity similar to the consumer affairs agency.
 その消費者委員会の事務局が肥大化すれば、それこそ屋上屋を重ねることになる。

It is also difficult to select members of the committee, who must come from the private sector.
民間人を充てる委員会の委員の人選も難しい。

The consumer affairs agency, and the other concerned ministries and agencies will jointly administer many laws related to consumer affairs. However, demarcation of jurisdictions of each ministry and agency remains unclear.
 消費者関連の多くの法律は、消費者庁と各省庁の共管となる。だが、各省庁に残る権限との線引きもはっきりしないままだ。

There is an urgent need to build a system within the consumer affairs agency, able to quickly collect information on risks to consumers' safety and prevent or minimize damage.
 消費者の安全を脅かす情報を素早く収集し、被害防止や、拡大を防ぐための消費者庁内の体制作りも急務である。

Such problems should be studied more closely to prevent confusion after the launch of the consumer affairs agency.
 消費者庁発足後に混乱を招かないよう、こうした問題点をさらに詰める必要がある。

It is also very important that the ruling and opposition parties agreed to enhance central government support for expanding local consumer centers through an increase in the number of consumer counselors and other measures.
 与野党合意で、相談員の増員など地方の消費生活センター拡充を目指し、国の支援を強化することで一致した点は極めて重要だ。

The number of such offices that are closer to consumers, where they can seek advice in a friendly atmosphere, should be increased.
消費者が気軽に相談できる身近な窓口を増やしたい。

Reorganization of the consumer administration does not immediately guarantee its smooth operation.
 組織を再編したからといって、消費者行政がただちにうまく回転するわけではない。

It is a fact that central government bureaucrats have so far given priority to manufacturing and industrial sectors. They must change their mentality drastically to focus truly on the people.
 霞が関のお役人はこれまで、生産者や産業界を重視してきたのが実態だ。その姿勢を、国民本意に転換するための抜本的な意識改革が欠かせまい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 20, 2009)
(2009年4月20日01時27分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-20 08:38 | 英字新聞

海賊対処法案 安易な修正は避けるべきだ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Apr. 19, 2009)
If the antipiracy bill ain't broke, don't fix it
海賊対処法案 安易な修正は避けるべきだ(4月19日付・読売社説)

Cooperation between the ruling and opposition parties is desirable to ensure the early enactment of the antipiracy bill. But such cooperation should not result in the bill being amended without due consideration, as changes could compromise the effectiveness of antipiracy measures.
 法案の早期成立には与野党の協力が望ましい。だが、安易な法案修正で悪影響が出るのは避けるべきだ。

Deliberations on the antipiracy bill started at the House of Representatives last week. The bill is aimed at enabling Maritime Self-Defense Force vessels to escort not only Japan-related, but also foreign ships. Also, MSDF vessels would be able to fire at pirate ships that approach and pursue commercial ships with the aim of disabling them. These are the pillars of the government-sponsored bill.
 海賊対処法案の審議が衆院で始まった。日本関係船舶以外の外国船も警護できるようにする。民間船舶に接近し、つきまとう海賊船に対して、船体射撃で危害を与えることを認める。それが法案の柱である。

MSDF vessels are now engaged in missions to escort Japan-related ships off Somalia based on the maritime policing provision of the Self-Defense Forces Law. But these activities are stopgap measures until the new law is enacted.
 海上自衛隊の艦船は、自衛隊法の海上警備行動を根拠として、ソマリア沖で日本関係船舶を警護している。この活動は、あくまで法案成立までの応急措置だ。

The MSDF vessels have already received rescue requests from foreign vessels on two occasions and repelled the pirates with long-range acoustic devices. Their use of weapons is largely limited as it is restricted by the Mariners Law.
 既に3回、警護対象外の外国船の救援要請を受け、大音響発生装置で不審船を追い払うなどした。船員法が根拠のため武器使用が大幅に制限されている。

An early enactment of the legislation is desirable if Japan wants to ensure the effectiveness of MSDF missions.
海自が効果的な活動ができるよう、法案成立は一日でも早い方がいい。

===

DPJ demands impractical

Of great interest will be how negotiations on amendments to the bill between the ruling and opposition parties turn out.
 今後の焦点は、与党と民主党の修正協議である。

The Democratic Party of Japan has asserted that an antipiracy headquarters should be established in the government, and that MSDF personnel on the mission should have dual status as members of the headquarters. The party also calls for revising the bill to require Diet approval for antipiracy operations. The current bill only requires the government to report such operations to the Diet.
 民主党は、政府に海賊対処本部を新設し、海自隊員に本部員の身分を併任させるべきだ、と主張している。法案の定める海賊対処行動の国会報告を、国会承認にすることも求めている。

But we have doubts about the DPJ's demands.
だが、いずれの主張にも疑問がある。

The proposed antipiracy headquarters is modeled after the International Peace Cooperation Headquarters overseeing Japan's contribution to U.N. peacekeeping activities. Such a body, however, could well be superfluous as such a task can be assumed by the Defense Ministry.
 海賊対処本部は、国連平和維持活動(PKO)を所管する国際平和協力本部がモデルだが、防衛省の屋上屋になりかねない。

It would be most effective to place MSDF vessels on antipiracy missions under the control of the Joint Staff of the Defense Ministry. A new body could cause confusion in the chain of command.
海自艦船は統合幕僚監部が指揮するのが最も効率的だ。新たな組織は指揮系統を混乱させる恐れがある。

Some DPJ members even go as far as saying that the Japan Coast Guard should play a leading role in antipiracy missions, and that MSDF members should be transferred to the JCG when taking on such missions. Their assertion stickles over the form in which the mission is conducted and is utterly nonsensical.
 民主党には、「海上保安庁が主体で対応すべきだ」として、海自隊員の身分を海保に移すよう求める意見まである。形式主義の極みで、全くナンセンスだ。

Behind their assertion is a notion associated with the former Japan Socialist Party that holds that "the Self-Defense Forces are bad and should not be used unless this cannot be avoided," a line of thinking that emerged in the early 1990s, underpinning calls for establishing a separate body assigned to carry out peacekeeping operations.
 この主張の背景には、1990年代前半のPKO「別組織論」のように、「自衛隊は悪いもので、使わない方がいい」という旧社会党的な発想がある。

It is only natural to utilize the organization that is most fit for a given mission. This is why the MSDF vessels were dispatched, not JCG ships.
 任務の内容に最もふさわしい組織を活用するのは至極当然のことだ。だからこそ、今回は、海保でなく、海自を派遣したのだ。

===

Diet approval problematic

The DPJ's insistence that antipiracy operations must get Diet approval is not consistent with legal provisions governing SDF mobilization.
 海賊対処行動を国会承認事項とすることも、自衛隊を動かす法律の整合性の面で問題がある。

Maritime policing activities taken when foreign ships intrude into Japan's territorial waters do not even have to be reported to the Diet. Diet approval must be sought for exceptional activities, such as the mobilization of SDF troops when Japan is attacked or under the clear threat of armed attack, and when it is deemed that Japan's public order cannot be maintained by police.
 領海侵犯時などの海上警備行動には国会報告さえ義務づけられていない。国会承認が必要なのは、防衛出動や治安出動など、極めて限定された自衛隊の行動だ。

If Diet approval was required and the DPJ supported Diet approval for the current antipiracy mission, there would be no immediate problem. But such a provision could hamper Japan's efforts to deal with piracy in the future if it became rampant in a different sea zone.
 今回、民主党が国会承認に賛成するなら当面の支障はないが、将来、別の海域での海賊に迅速に対応できないリスクも生じる。

The ruling parties should be aware of these problems and deal carefully with amendment negotiations with opposition parties.
 与党は一連の問題を踏まえ、修正協議は慎重に進めるべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 19, 2009)
(2009年4月19日01時28分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-19 08:02 | 英字新聞

パキスタン支援 アフガンとともに安定を図れ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Apr. 18, 2009)
Stabilize Pakistan, Afghanistan together
パキスタン支援 アフガンとともに安定を図れ(4月18日付・読売社説)

To stabilize the situation in Afghanistan, which is struggling at the front line of the war on terrorism, support for its neighbor Pakistan must be expanded in a coordinated international action to bolster the security situation in both countries at the same time.
 テロとの戦いの最前線に立つアフガニスタンを安定化させるには、隣国パキスタンへの支援を強化し、両国を同時に安定に導く必要がある。

Thirty-one countries, including Britain, China and the United States, and 18 international organizations participated in a donors conference in Tokyo on Friday and decided to extend more than 5 billion dollars to Pakistan over the next two years. Japan and the United States each pledged 1 billion dollars.
 米英中など31か国と18国際機関が参加したパキスタン支援に関する会合が東京で開かれ、2年間で総額50億ドル超の支援を行うことを決めた。日本は米国と並ぶ10億ドルの支援を約束した。

Pakistan nearly defaulted on its debt last autumn, mainly because of the global financial crisis. Although the International Monetary Fund has decided to step in with an emergency loan program, the country was obliged to take steps to cut its fiscal deficit and adopt an austere monetary policy.
 パキスタンは昨年秋、世界同時不況のあおりで債務不履行の危機に直面した。国際通貨基金の融資で当面の危機は回避したものの、あわせて財政赤字削減や金融引き締めなどの義務が課せられた。

===

Militants hide out in Pakistan

Two militant groups--the Taliban, which opposes the Afghan government, and members of the international terrorism organization Al-Qaida--are holed up along the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan.
 アフガンとの国境一帯は、反政府武装勢力タリバンや国際テロ組織アル・カーイダが潜伏する。

They have been attacking U.S. and North Atlantic Treaty Organization forces deployed in Afghanistan from Pakistan. When they are repulsed by U.S. and NATO forces, they flee into Pakistan, complicating mop-up operations by the U.S. and European forces.
アフガンに展開する米欧軍に越境して攻撃を仕掛け、反撃を受けるとパキスタン側に逃げ込むため、米欧軍の掃討作戦は難航中だ。

Development of the region around Pakistan's border with Afghanistan has lagged behind, and the majority of the population there is poor. Cuts in development project budgets and the tight monetary policy may worsen poverty there and heighten the risk that the area, already a hotbed for terrorism, will breed even greater numbers of militants.
 国境一帯は開発が遅れ、貧困層が多い。開発予算の削減や金融引き締めで貧困が拡大し、今以上にテロの温床と化す恐れがある。

A destabilized Pakistan would be a nightmare for the international community because the country possesses nuclear weapons.
核保有国パキスタンの不安定化は国際社会にとって悪夢だ。

The participating nations at the donors conference decided to extend huge financial support to Pakistan because they decided that the vicious circle between poverty and terrorism must be ended.
 各国が支援会合でパキスタンへの巨額支援を打ち出したのは、貧困とテロの悪循環を断ち切る必要がある、との判断からだ。

However, there is little ground for optimism about the situation in Pakistan. President Asif Ali Zardari, who took office last year, is in confrontation with the opposition leader, former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, and lacks charisma.
 だが、先行きは決して楽観できない。昨年就任したザルダリ大統領は、野党指導者のシャリフ元首相と対立し、求心力が乏しい。

Another problem is the presence in the military and other sectors of the Pakistani government of elements sympathetic toward Islamic militants. Coupled with anti-U.S. sentiment due to across-the-border attacks by U.S. drones, the Taliban have expanded its sphere of influence.
 軍部などにイスラム過激派のシンパが少なからずいることも問題だ。米軍無人機の越境攻撃による反米感情も重なって、タリバンの活動地域は拡大しつつある。

Zardari told the Tokyo conference that he intended to maintain his country's antiterrorist policy and called for the cooperation of the international community in that endeavor. Japan, which hosted the conference, must support Pakistan through official development assistance and other programs.
 大統領は会合で、国内のテロ対策を進める考えを表明し、国際社会の協力を求めた。会合を主催した日本としても、パキスタンの取り組みを政府開発援助などを通じ後押ししていく必要があろう。

Also, international support for Afghanistan should be reinforced.
 アフガンに対する支援も強化しなければならない。

===

Bigger role possible for Japan

The United States plans to send more troops to Afghanistan and expand its support for the livelihood of the Afghan people. The latter is a field in which Japan has long played a leading role, such as by constructing schools and clinics. Therefore, the scope for active involvement by Japan in the reconstruction of Afghanistan will expand, we believe.
 米国は軍の増派とともに民生分野の支援を拡大する方針だ。学校や診療所の建設など、日本が一貫して主導的役割を果たしてきた分野である。日本の活躍できる場も増えるだろう。

But in reality, support programs in the field have been mainly limited to those conducted by the Japan International Cooperation Agency and nongovernmental organizations. It has been pointed out that there is work in which the Self-Defense Forces can actively be involved, for instance, in participation in provincial reconstruction teams (PRTs) and dispatch of transport helicopters.
 だが、現状は国際協力機構(JICA)や民間活動団体(NGO)中心の支援に限られている。地域復興チーム(PRT)への参加や輸送ヘリコプターの派遣など、自衛隊が活躍できる分野もあると指摘されている。

Although SDF dispatches to Afghanistan may be difficult under the current Diet situation, the government should keep studying the possibility of sending the SDF to the country.
 現下の国会情勢では難しかろうが、アフガンへの自衛隊派遣の可能性も引き続き探るべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 18, 2009)
(2009年4月18日01時28分 読売新聞)
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by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-18 10:16 | 英字新聞

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by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-17 13:04 | アドセンス

週刊新潮「誤報」 第三者調査で徹底検証せよ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Apr. 17, 2009)
Weekly magazine needs better standards
週刊新潮「誤報」 第三者調査で徹底検証せよ(4月17日付・読売社説)

Shukan Shincho, the weekly magazine that carried a series of articles in the form of first-person accounts from a man who claimed to have attacked reporters at The Asahi Shimbun's Hanshin Bureau in 1987, has published an article explaining how the magazine gathered materials for the articles, which have been found to be false.
In an article in the latest issue, which came out Thursday, the magazine appeared to be playing the victim, implying it was duped by the man. An explanation such as this is a far cry from being a thorough investigation of the matter.
 まるでだまされた被害者と言わんばかりの内容では、到底、検証記事とは言えまい。
 朝日新聞阪神支局襲撃事件などの「実行犯」と称する男の手記を載せた週刊新潮が、16日発売号で取材経緯を説明する記事を掲載した。

After the series of articles was published, the man denied he was responsible for the fatal shooting when he was interviewed by another weekly magazine.
 手記掲載後、男は別の週刊誌などの取材に対し、自分が実行犯であることを否定していた。

As a matter of course, Shukan Shincho then had to admit the man's account was false and apologize for the articles. But Shinchosha Publishing Co., which puts out the weekly magazine, should not leave the matter solely with the editorial staff of the magazine. The publisher should thoroughly examine the cause and background of the misreporting through an investigative panel that includes third-party members and find exactly where responsibility lies.
 誤報を認め、謝罪したのは当然だが、発行元の新潮社は、編集部任せではなく、第三者を交えた調査委員会で原因と背景を徹底検証し、責任を明確にすべきだ。

===

Confirmation lax

In the apology, the weekly magazine cited the failure to gather sufficient evidence to support the man's account as the reason why it ended up running false reports. This certainly seems to be the case. It also appears that much could have been verified with just a little bit of time and effort on such matters as where and how the man lived at the time of the incident.
 今回の新潮記事では、誤報の原因として「裏付け取材の不足」を挙げている。その通りだろう。事件当時、男がどこでどんな生活をしていたのかなど、少しの手間で確認できたはずのことも多い。

Particular caution is needed when someone approaches a media organization in an attempt to sell information. It is likely that the weekly's slackness in its principal task of confirming information resulted in its swallowing of the man's false story.
 特に、今回のように自ら情報を売り込んでくる相手には注意を要する。基本的な確認作業を怠った安易な姿勢が、虚偽情報の鵜呑(うの)みにつながったのではないか。

The treatment given by the weekly to the man, which can be described as excessive, also should not be overlooked.
 取材相手への過剰とも言える処遇も見過ごせない。

The man was given 900,000 yen in "manuscript expenses" as well as accommodation fees for three months. The weekly also shouldered a one-month advance payment for staying at an Internet cafe, which was necessary for the man to get a resident's registration, and helped the man find an apartment and obtain a passport.
 計90万円の「原稿料」に加え、3か月分の宿泊費、住民登録するためのネットカフェへの前払い金1か月分を負担し、アパート探しや旅券取得も手伝っていた。

Such cushy treatment could cause informants to tailor their stories for reporters by misrepresenting facts. This point should be investigated as well.
 行き過ぎた便宜供与は、情報提供者が取材者に迎合し、情報をねじ曲げる危険性をはらんでいる。こうした点も検証すべきだ。

===

Explanation came too late

Also, the weekly has been too slow in providing a full account of the series of articles.
 取材経緯の説明も遅すぎた。

The articles were carried over four consecutive weeks beginning from late January.
 問題の手記は、1月末から4週連続で掲載された。

Soon after the final installment was published, the Asahi carried a story on factual errors in the Shukan Shincho articles following a complaint by a former employee at the U.S. Embassy in Japan that the man had falsely said the employee asked him to attack the newspaper bureau.
 終了直後、「襲撃を依頼した」とされた元在日米国大使館職員の抗議を受けた。事実関係の誤りを指摘する朝日新聞の検証記事も出ていた。

The National Police Agency chief also in effect denied the credibility of the man's account.
警察庁長官も手記の信憑(しんぴょう)性を事実上否定していた。

Despite these developments, why did the weekly take so long to explain itself?
 にもかかわらず、なぜもっと早く説明しなかったのか。

While the weekly is known for having exposed scandals involving politicians, it also has been accused in a number of cases of infringing on people's rights or of defamation.
 週刊新潮は過去に政治家の不祥事などを暴く一方で、人権侵害や名誉棄損も引き起こしてきた。

In the latest article, the weekly argues that "weekly magazines have a mission to report in depth even 'events' and 'allegations' that have yet to be proved as truth." This kind of perception most likely caused the misreporting.
 今回の記事では、「週刊誌の使命は、真偽がはっきりしない段階にある『事象』や『疑惑』にまで踏み込んで報道することにある」としている。こういう認識こそ、誤報の背景ではないか。

Recently, a series of court rulings have been made regarding slack reporting for articles in weekly magazines and have ordered publishers to pay huge amounts in compensation.
 最近、週刊誌記事に対し、取材のずさんさを指摘し、高額賠償を命じる判決が相次いでいる。

Shukan Shincho has lost several such court cases. In one of the cases, a district court ordered the president of the publisher to pay compensation, saying the president failed to effectively provide training for editors and establish systems to check articles before publication. The publisher must address these structural problems.
 週刊新潮も敗訴が続く。1審判決とはいえ、「社内研修や記事チェック体制を整えていなかった」として、社長個人が賠償命令を受けた例もある。こうした体質を改めていかねばならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 17, 2009)
(2009年4月17日01時51分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-17 09:31 | 英字新聞

海兵隊移転協定 民主党は「反米」志向なのか

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Apr. 16, 2009)
DPJ taking wrong stance on marine relocation
海兵隊移転協定 民主党は「反米」志向なのか(4月16日付・読売社説)

The main opposition Democratic Party of Japan has reiterated that the Japan-U.S. security alliance is the linchpin of this nation's security. But does the party really regard it this way?
 民主党は、日米同盟を「わが国の安全保障の基軸」と強調している。だが、本当にそう考えているのか。大いに疑問を抱かせる対応である。

The House of Representatives approved Tuesday an accord that commits Japan and the United States to following through on the planned transfer of U.S. marines from Okinawa Prefecture to Guam by 2014. But the DPJ voted against the accord.
 在沖縄米海兵隊のグアム移転に関する日米協定承認案の衆院採決で民主党が反対した。

Due to the constitutional superiority of the lower house, the accord will clear the Diet within 30 days regardless of how the House of Councillors votes on the bill.
 協定承認案は、与党などの賛成多数で衆院を通過した。憲法の規定で、参院の議決にかかわらず、協定は30日以内に承認される。

===

Opposing accord unwise

Under the accord, 8,000 U.S. marines would be transferred to Guam, and Japan would shoulder 2.8 billion dollars for projects related to U.S. base facilities for the marines in Guam. This would result in a significant reduction in the prefecture's burdens in hosting U.S. bases. The measures must be implemented as stipulated.
 協定は、2014年までに米海兵隊員8000人をグアムに移転し、日本がグアムでの米軍施設整備費28億ドルを支出する内容だ。沖縄の基地負担を大幅に軽減するものであり、着実に実現したい。

The DPJ argued it opposed the accord as the disclosure of information on the relocation plan is not sufficient and the grounds for cost calculations have not been made clear.
 民主党は、反対の理由として、グアム移転に関する情報開示が不十分なうえ、経費の積算根拠が不明確だ、と主張する。

Such problems have arisen mainly because the United States has yet to decide on certain details of the relocation plan. Of course, the government should call on the United States to cooperate in disclosing more information and see if it can reduce its financial burden.
 これらの問題は主に、米側の移転計画の詳細が決まっていないことに起因している。政府が米側に働きかけ、情報開示や経費節減に努めるのは言うまでもない。

But opposing the accord means something very different. It would not be wise to overturn the landmark accord that will see 8,000 U.S. marines leave the prefecture. Such a move would significantly damage the relationship of trust that exists between Japan and the United States.
 だが、協定に反対するのは、次元の違う重みを持つ。米兵8000人の削減という画期的な合意を覆すのは得策でないうえ、日米の信頼関係を大きく損なう。

The DPJ also opposes the planned relocation of the U.S. Marine Corps Futenma Air Station in Ginowan within the prefecture. This relocation plan is seen as integral to the relocation of marines to Guam. The DPJ stance is that the functions of Futenma Air Station should be relocated outside the prefecture or abroad.
 民主党は、海兵隊のグアム移転と一体の計画とされる普天間飛行場の沖縄県内移設にも反対し、県外・国外移設を訴えている。

When Japan and the United States reached a basic agreement on the return of Futenma Air Station in 1996, it was premised on the air station being relocated within the prefecture. Even concerned local governments, including the Okinawa prefectural government, have accepted this, although they have called for minor adjustments regarding the location of alternative facilities. This is because the local governments want to see their burdens reduced as soon as possible.
 普天間飛行場の返還は1996年の日米の基本合意以来、一貫して県内移設が前提だった。沖縄県など地元自治体も、代替施設の位置の微修正は求めているが、県内移設は容認している。迅速な負担軽減を希望するからだ。

Revisiting the plan to relocate Futenma within the prefecture would mean turning the clock back 13 years. Is the DPJ determined and confident enough to press ahead with undoing every bilateral agreement related to the relocation and to renegotiate with the United States to try to achieve a new agreement that would better serve Japan?
 県内移設の見直しは、時計の針を13年前に戻すことを意味する。民主党は、一連の日米合意をすべて白紙にする覚悟と、再交渉を通じて日本により有利な合意をまとめる自信があるのだろうか。

The DPJ also has called for the discontinuation of the Maritime Self-Defense Force's refueling activities in the Indian Ocean and for a review of the so-called sympathy budget allocation tied to hosting U.S. forces in Japan. DPJ leader Ichiro Ozawa has said that the U.S. Navy's 7th Fleet alone would be sufficient to secure the U.S. military presence in the Far East in connection with the realignment of U.S. forces in Japan.
 民主党は、インド洋での海上自衛隊の給油活動の中止や、在日米軍の思いやり予算の見直しも唱えている。小沢代表は「在日米軍は第7艦隊で十分」と発言した。

Such remarks could be interpreted as meaning Ozawa is taking an anti-American stance rather than acknowledging the importance of the Japan-U.S. security alliance.
 これでは、日米同盟を重視するどころか、「反米」志向と受け止められても仕方あるまい。

===

Recognize responsibilities

It is not a bad thing per se to make demands of the United States. But it is a serious defect of the DPJ to make demands while failing to talk about the burdens it would take on to strengthen the alliance.
 米国に注文すること自体は悪くない。だが、民主党の重大な欠陥は、要求するだけで、同盟強化のため自らどんな負担をするのか、何も具体的に語らないことだ。

Prior to the next lower house election, the DPJ should hold intraparty discussions on its foreign policy and security platform so it can present comprehensive policies on these matters. This would be the minimum responsibility that a political party seeking to take power should fulfill.
 民主党は衆院選前に、外交・安全保障全般の党内論議を行い、包括的な政策をきちんと明示すべきだ。それが、政権交代を目指す政党として最低限の責任である。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 16, 2009)
(2009年4月16日01時32分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-16 12:00 | 英字新聞

安保理議長声明 北朝鮮の挑発行為を許すな

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Apr. 15, 2009)
Provocation by DPRK must not be tolerated
安保理議長声明 北朝鮮の挑発行為を許すな(4月15日付・読売社説)

It is an act of provocation by North Korea to resist a consensus decision reached by the international community.
 国際社会の総意にあらがう北朝鮮の危険な挑発行為だ。

The U.N. Security Council on Monday unanimously adopted a presidential statement condemning North Korea's long-range rocket launch on April 5.
 国連安全保障理事会は全会一致で弾道ミサイル発射を非難する議長声明を採択した。

Immediately after that, North Korea announced it would boycott the six-party talks on the nation's denuclearization and restart its nuclear facilities.
北朝鮮はその直後、6か国協議をボイコットし、核施設を再稼働させる方針を表明した。

Pyongyang's move will heighten tensions across East Asia and undermine efforts for peace and stability in the region.
 東アジアの緊張を高め、平和と安定に逆行する動きだ。

===

United action needed

The five nations that with North Korea are involved in the six-party talks--Japan, China, Russia, South Korea and the United States--must take strong and united action if North Korea violates the six-party talks agreement, which aims at dismantling Pyongyang's nuclear programs.
北朝鮮の核廃棄を目指す6か国協議の合意を反古(ほご)にする行動に出るなら、日米韓中露の5か国は結束して強い対応措置を取らねばならない。

The Security Council's presidential statement said North Korea's recent launch contravened Security Council Resolution 1718, and the Security Council demanded that the nation not conduct any further launches.
 安保理の議長声明は、「北朝鮮による4月5日の発射」について、「安保理決議1718に違反する」と認定し、さらなる発射を行わないよう北朝鮮に求めている。

The statement, which did not take a position on whether the launch was to put a communications satellite into orbit or to test-fire a ballistic missile, unequivocally stated that the launch itself constituted a contravention of the resolution.
 発射が「人工衛星」か「弾道ミサイル」かには触れず、「発射」自体が決議違反と明示した。

Pressure to stop North Korea conducting further launches would have been rendered toothless if the international community had accepted Pyongyang's claim that a satellite launch was within its rights as a sovereign state.
 「衛星打ち上げは主権国家の権利」という北朝鮮の主張を認めれば、発射に歯止めをかけられなくなる。

It is no surprise that the presidential statement reflected claims by Japan and the United States, in maintaining that no activity linked to a ballistic missile program could be tolerated.
弾道ミサイル計画に関連した活動は容認できない、との日米の主張を反映したのは当然だ。

North Korea had issued a strong warning stating that future six-party talks would not be held if the Security Council discussed the launch issue. An immediate release of an announcement by the North Korean Foreign Ministry condemning the presidential statement was predicted. However, its content cannot be overlooked.
 北朝鮮は、安保理が発射問題を扱えば、6か国協議は「なくなる」と強く牽制(けんせい)してきた。議長声明を糾弾する外務省声明をただちに発表したのは予想通りだが、その内容は看過できない。

Insisting it has a right to develop its space program, North Korea stated it would continue with launches in the name of its satellite program.
 北朝鮮は「宇宙利用の権利を引き続き行使する」として、衛星打ち上げに名を借りたミサイル発射の継続を明らかにした。

Ignoring a call in the presidential statement for an early resumption of the six-party talks, North Korea said it "will not participate in the talks any longer nor it will be bound by any agreement of the six-party talks."
 さらに、6か国協議の早期再開を求めた議長声明を無視して、今後、協議には「二度と絶対に参加せず、いかなる合意にも拘束されない」と宣言した。

In addition, Pyongyang's announcement that it would restart its disabled nuclear facilities and extract plutonium for nuclear weapons by reprocessing spent nuclear fuel rods equals an avowal to once again aim at developing a nuclear missile.
 加えて、無能力化した核施設を再稼働させ、使用済み核燃料棒の再処理で核兵器用プルトニウムを抽出する方針を示したことは、核ミサイルの開発を目指すと公言したに等しい。

Playing its typical game of brinkmanship, North Korea may press the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama on an early resumption of U.S.-North Korea negotiations and seek to benefit from a resultant compromise deal.
 いつもながらの瀬戸際戦術で、オバマ米政権に米朝交渉の早期再開を迫り、譲歩への見返りを狙っているのかもしれない。

But the six-party talks will lose all meaning if North Korea does as it has threatened to do, and restarts its nuclear facilities.
だが、北朝鮮が言葉の通り、核施設の再稼働に踏み切れば、6か国協議は意味を失ってしまう。

===

China should take leading role

The responsibility of China, the chair of the six-party talks, is growing more onerous. As the North's largest trading partner and biggest supporter, we hope China will take every effective measure it can against Pyongyang, including a strict application of sanctions on the nation.
 6か国協議の議長国である中国の責任は重みを増している。最大の貿易国、支援国として、北朝鮮への制裁の徹底などあらゆる有効な手段を講じてもらいたい。

This is a grave situation for Japan, which is located within the range of North Korea's Rodong missiles. In close cooperation with the United States and South Korea, Japan needs to search for effective measures to halt Pyongyang's nuclear development program.
 ノドン・ミサイルの射程に入っている日本にとっては深刻な事態だ。米国や韓国と緊密に協議し、核開発阻止に実効的な方策を探っていく必要がある。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 15, 2009)
(2009年4月15日01時39分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-15 15:49 | 英字新聞

安心社会の実現 経済危機後の展望が重要だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Apr. 14, 2009)
Govt must rebuild as it puts out economic fire
安心社会の実現 経済危機後の展望が重要だ(4月14日付・読売社説)

The security of people's livelihoods cannot be assured by the implementation of short-term economic stimulus measures alone, because the source of anxiety is deeply rooted.
 国民生活の安心は、目先の景気対策だけでは取り戻せない。不安の源はもっと深いところにあるからだ。

With Prime Minister Taro Aso in attendance, the government on Monday launched a new panel to discuss the realization of a society in which people can live with peace of mind.
 政府は13日、麻生首相も出席して「安心社会実現会議」をスタートさせた。

The purpose of the panel is to discuss the future direction of the state and the shape of its basic policies. With its members drawn from a wide variety of fields, we can expect the panel's discussions to take a broad perspective.
 会議創設の趣旨には、「国家として目指すべき方向性や基本政策の在り方について議論する」とある。メンバーは幅広い顔ぶれが並んでおり、大きな視野での論議が期待されよう。

Types of families and career paths are becoming diverse amid the effects of the rapidly declining birthrate and graying society as well as structural changes in the nation's economy. Although the political world is required to quickly deal with social and economic changes at home and abroad, it remains in turmoil and is unable to hammer out suitable policies.
 少子高齢化の急速な進行や経済構造の変化などによって、家族の形や働き方は多様化している。国内外の社会・経済変動に、政治は即応しなければならないのに、混迷したまま、的確な政策を打ち出しあぐねている。

After the economic bubble burst in the early 1990s, Japanese society was subjected to the radical remedies of former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's structural reform efforts.
 日本社会は1990年代のバブル崩壊を経験した後、小泉構造改革の荒療治が行われた。

===

Reforms not always beneficial

Although the series of reforms yielded some successful results, including the disposal of bad loans held by financial institutions, it went too far and should rather be called market fundamentalism in some cases. The country's various institutions, including the social security system, have begun to fray around the edges.
 不良債権処理に成果を上げるなどしたものの、市場原理主義と呼ぶべき行き過ぎもあり、社会保障をはじめ、さまざまな分野で綻(ほころ)びが顕在化してきた。

Such market fundamentalism was responsible for bringing about the global economic crisis that has seen a great deterioration in the Japanese economy.
 市場原理主義は世界的な経済危機を招来し、日本も景気悪化に苦しんでいる。

With the ongoing graying of society and increasing number of single-person households, the social safety net, which has been built on people's family and community connections as well as corporate welfare programs, is in urgent need of review.
 社会の高齢化と単身化が進む中で、地縁血縁や企業の福利厚生に依存してきた社会の安全網も見直しを迫られている。

What should the government do? What kinds of roles should local governments, regional communities, companies, families and individuals play? In answering these questions, the new panel must start its discussions from scratch.
 政府のなすべき事は何か。自治体、地域社会、企業、家庭そして個人の役割は何か。安心社会実現会議には、まず根本に立ち返った議論が求められよう。

The panel also needs to discuss in concrete terms how to rebuild each of the various social security systems such as medicare, nursing care and pensions as well as employment measures and welfare benefits, and measures to cope with the declining birthrate. Needless to say, discussions on how to secure financial resources for reconstructing social security, which have been lacking so far, will be vital.
 さらに、医療・介護・年金、雇用、生活保護、少子化対策といった社会保障の各制度を、どう再構築していくかといった具体論にも踏み込む必要がある。無論、これまで抜け落ちてきた財源の議論も欠かせない。

===

Major undertaking

The panel likely will be led by Finance Minister Kaoru Yosano, who is concurrently serving as state minister in charge of financial services and economic and fiscal policy.
 会議は与謝野財務・金融・経済財政相が主導するようだ。

In parallel with discussions at the new panel, the government's Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy, which is supervised by Yosano, also is working on formulating a road map for solving economic disparities and carrying out social security reform. It is important for the two panels to work in tandem and work out ideas and policies.
 やはり与謝野氏が受け持つ経済財政諮問会議も、これと並行する形で格差問題や社会保障改革の工程表を具体化する。両輪となって理念と施策を打ち出すことが重要だろう。

Last week, the government and ruling parties compiled the country's largest-ever economic stimulus package that centers on a fiscal outlay of more than 15 trillion yen.
 政府・与党は先週、15兆円以上の財政出動を柱とする、史上最大の景気対策をまとめた。

If we look at this economic stimulus package as a measure to hold back the conflagration in front of us, what the new panel will tackle is a new urban plan that will keep the burden to be shouldered by future generations to a bare minimum.
 これを目前の大火を食い止める措置とすれば、安心社会実現会議が取り組むのは、将来世代にできる限り負担を先送りしないための新たな都市計画を提示する作業とも言える。

All preparations must be made so that the reconstruction of public welfare systems can be started as soon as it is certain the fire has been contained.
 消火活動にめどがつき次第、ただちに復興に着手できるようにしておかなくてはなるまい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 14, 2009)
(2009年4月14日01時53分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-15 11:05 | 英字新聞

発信箱:社歌=落合博

(Mainichi Japan) April 12, 2009
Boosting spirits with the power of corporate song
発信箱:社歌=落合博

An executive of a world-renowned company once told me: "We all sing our company's song when our baseball team wins a game. That feels so good. It brings us a sense of unity with the players and the company, and makes us proud of our company."
 「世界の」を冠して呼ばれる企業の男性役員は真顔で言った。「うちの野球部が試合で勝った時、みんなで社歌を歌う。あれは気持ちいい。選手や会社との一体感があり、いい会社に勤めているなと思う」。

As I nodded, he asked me, "Does the Mainichi Newspapers have a company song?"
うなずいていたら、「毎日新聞には(社歌)ありますか」と質問された。

At another major company, employees sing their corporate song and recite the founder's creed at their workplace and factories every morning. One employee in his 30s said it felt strange when he first joined the company, but now he's fully used to it.
 別の大企業では毎朝、職場や工場ごとに社歌を斉唱し、創業者の信条などを唱和する。30代の男性社員は入社当時、戸惑ったそうだが、今ではすっかり慣れた。

"There's some invisible effect in it," he says.
「見えない効果がありますね」

When newcomers were asked what they thought the most unnecessary thing at their company was, the most common answer was the corporate song, described variously as "embarrassing" and "old-fashioned." However, the situation has changed of late.
 会社の中で要らないものを新入社員に尋ねると、十数年前までワーストワンは社歌だった。「気恥ずかしい」「時代遅れ」が理由だろう。最近は事情が違うようだ。

In a book titled "Shaka" (Corporate songs, published by Bungei Shunju), corporate songs of about 40 major Japanese companies are listed, along with the history and episodes of each song. Since the lyrics of corporate songs reflect the spirit of the founders and management principles, they may be revised with the change of the times or corporate names.
 「社歌」(文芸春秋)には、日本を代表する企業約40社の社歌と制作事情などが紹介されている。歌詞には創業の精神、経営の理念などが込められていて、時代や社名変更に併せて改定されることもある。

"It's a philosophy etched in a musical score," says author Masazumi Yugari.
著者の弓狩匡純(ゆがりまさずみ)氏は「五線譜に刻み込まれたフィロソフィー」と書いている。

I listened to a CD titled "Shaka," released by King Records under Yugari's supervision, and was amazed by the diversity of corporate songs today -- ranging in style from J-pop, comic songs to rock. The image of corporate songs has changed.
 弓狩氏が監修したCD「社歌」(キングレコード)を聴いてみた。Jポップ風、コミックソング、ロック系などさまざま。イメージは変わった。

There's even a company that has embarked on a corporate song-making business. President Ryuichi Nishio says, "During a recession, everyone wants to get uplifted. Corporate songs help them improve their motivation."
社歌制作ビジネスに乗り出した会社もある。西尾竜一社長は「不況の時代、みんな元気になりたいと思っている。社歌はモチベーションアップにつながる」と話す。

The Mainichi Newspapers does have a corporate song. Kyukin Susukida, a prominent poet in the late Meiji Era and a Mainichi employee, wrote the lyrics: "The light shines from the eastern sky, we stand raising the star as our banner." Unfortunately, the song is not sung at our initiation ceremony for newcomers or other occasions, and it's left languishing on the shelf. (By Hiroshi Ochiai, Sports News Department)
 毎日新聞にも社歌がある。明治後期を代表する詩人で、社員でもあった薄田泣菫(すすきだきゅうきん)が作詞を担当した。「光は東の空よりと かかぐる星の旗じるし……」と格調高い。残念ながら、入社式などで歌われることはなく、宝の持ち腐れになっている。(運動部)

毎日新聞 2009年4月11日 東京朝刊
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-13 08:55 | 英字新聞

日中韓首脳会談 「北」へ明確な意思表示が必要だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Apr. 12, 2009)
Intl community must unite on N. Korea
日中韓首脳会談 「北」へ明確な意思表示が必要だ(4月12日付・読売社説)

The international community has to stand together and clearly state its position to ensure North Korea refrains from further missile development and launches.
 北朝鮮にミサイルの開発や再発射の自制を迫るには、国際社会が結束して、明確な意思表示を行うことが必要である。

Prime Minister Taro Aso discussed issues related to North Korea on Saturday with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and South Korean President Lee Myung Bak in Pattaya, Thailand, where a series of regional summit meetings related to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations were scheduled but canceled due to chaos caused by demonstrations against the Thai government.
 タイ・パタヤで予定されていた東南アジア諸国連合(ASEAN)関連の会議が国内デモで中止されるという大混乱の中、麻生首相が中国の温家宝首相、韓国の李明博大統領と会談し、北朝鮮問題を協議した。

The three leaders agreed at their bilateral and trilateral meetings to accelerate negotiations on a U.N. Security Council presidential statement so that the council could send out a united message against North Korea's missile launch as soon as possible.
 3首脳は、ミサイル発射に対して、国連安全保障理事会が一致したメッセージを迅速に出せるよう、議長声明の調整作業を加速することを確認した。

North Korea's missile, which is said to have been a modified Taepodong-2 ballistic missile, failed to separate its second- and third-stage boosters, and to place a satellite in orbit. However, its flight distance was estimated to have been more than 3,000 kilometers, which is much further than the Taepodong-1 missile test-fired in 1998 traveled.
 改良型テポドン2とみられる北朝鮮のミサイルは、人工衛星の軌道投入や、2段目と3段目の切り離しには失敗した。だが、飛行距離は3000キロ以上と推定されており、1998年のテポドン1と比べて大幅に伸びている。

The extended range achieved by the Taepodong-2 does not pose any additional direct threat to Japan. But, if it leads to a general improvement of North Korea's missile technology, it would increase the threat posed by Pyongyang's Rodong medium-range ballistic missiles, which can hit any part of Japan.
 テポドンの長射程化は日本に対する直接の脅威ではないものの、ミサイル技術全般の向上は、日本を射程に収めるノドンの脅威を増すことになる。

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UNSC backing Japan stance

In any case, the latest missile launch remains an act that undermined peace and stability in Asia. If the international community takes an ambiguous stance toward Pyongyang this time, it would set a bad precedent that says a missile test conducted under the guise of a satellite launch cannot be denounced.
 今回のミサイル発射がアジアの平和と安定を揺るがすことに変わりはない。国際社会があいまいな態度を取れば、人工衛星打ち上げの名目なら非難されない、という悪(あ)しき前例を作る。

A draft presidential statement under negotiation at the U.N. Security Council includes a denouncement of the launch and a demand that Pyongyang refrain from test-firing a missile again. It also will list additional items to be put under embargo regarding North Korea to strengthen and strictly enforce the 2006 sanctions resolution.
 安保理で調整中の議長声明案は今回の発射を非難し、北朝鮮への再発射の自制要求を盛り込んでいる。2006年の制裁決議を徹底するため、北朝鮮への追加禁輸品目も具体的に指定するという。

If these contents remain in the document, the statement will be able to be evaluated as properly reflecting Japan's position. The government needs to continue making diplomatic efforts for a quick adoption of the presidential statement at the Security Council.
 こうした内容が最後まで維持されるなら、日本の意向が十分反映されていると評価できよう。政府は、迅速な採択に向けて外交努力を重ねる必要がある。

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ODA key to diplomacy

Meanwhile, the main agenda at the scheduled ASEAN-related summit meetings was how to bring about a recovery of the Asian economy.
 ASEAN関連の首脳会議の主要議題は、アジア経済の再生だった。

It is regrettable that the meetings were canceled, but the prime minister has already announced that Japan will provide 2 trillion yen as official development assistance for other Asian nations. It is important to set ODA projects in motion as soon as possible.
会議の中止は残念だが、麻生首相は既に、2兆円のアジア向け政府開発援助(ODA)の拠出を表明している。具体的な事業の実施を急ぐことが大切だ。

Japan's assistance to other Asian countries to help them stave off the economic crisis is significant in terms of preventing an escalation of the global recession that started in the United States. If the other Asian economies recover, it will eventually reward Japan.
 アジアの経済危機脱出に日本が協力することは、米国発の世界同時不況の深刻化に歯止めをかけるという重要な意味を持つ。アジア経済が回復すれば、その恩恵は日本にも還元されよう。

ODA is one of Japan's most powerful diplomatic tools. Since all 10 member countries of ASEAN have official relations with North Korea, providing them with ODA indirectly helps Tokyo in its diplomatic negotiations with Pyongyang.
 ODAは日本外交の有力なカードだ。ASEAN10か国はすべて北朝鮮と国交を持っており、対北朝鮮外交にも役立つはずだ。

However, Japan's ODA budget has been decreasing for 12 straight years and the amount is now exceeded by the United States and the major nations of Europe.
 しかし、日本のODA予算は12年連続で減少し、米欧主要国に追い越された。

It is a matter of course that the efficiency of ODA should be improved, but the budget allocated for it also should be increased as soon as possible after so many years of decline.
ODAの効率化は当然としても、予算自体も早急に増加に転じさせねばなるまい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 12, 2009)
(2009年4月12日01時46分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-04-12 09:55 | 英字新聞