2018年の予測 (4)

Dec 26, 2017 | 11:57 GMT
2018 Annual Forecast (4)

2018年の予測 (4)

The Asia-Pacific is home to more people than any other region. Centered on the western rim of the Pacific Ocean, this region includes the easternmost countries of continental Asia as well as the archipelagos that punctuate the coast. Several of these countries, most notably China, experienced rapid economic growth in the second half of the 20th century, giving the region a new sense of global economic relevance that continues today. 

archipelagos:群島, 諸島; 多島海.
punctuate:を強調する. 〜に句読点を付ける[打つ]
relevance:適切(さ), 妥当性

That relevance, however, depends largely on China, a power in transition whose rise is testing the network of U.S. alliances that have long dominated the region. How effectively Beijing manages its transition will shape the regional balance of power in the decades to come. 

Section Highlights
As North Korea races to achieve a viable nuclear deterrent, the United States could choose to launch a military strike against it. But because of the steep costs that such action would carry, Washington is more likely to shift toward a policy of containment.
China will take advantage of the United States' distraction in North Korea to deepen its conciliatory outreach to its Southeast Asian neighbors.
Though the United States will intensify its economic offensive against China, the limits of those measures and Beijing's appeals within the World Trade Organization will prevent the outbreak of a trade war.
At home, President Xi Jinping's steady consolidation of power will give him freer rein to enact critical reforms. However, he will have to reconcile measures to improve financial stability and pollution control with the need to maintain stable growth.

viable:〈計画などが〉実現[実行]可能な; 成功の見込める
conciliatory :〈態度・やり方などが〉なだめるような; 懐柔的な; 融和的な.
consolidation:強化する[される]こと; 強固.

Coping With a Nuclear North Korea More Information
North Korea became the center of gravity in the Asia-Pacific region in 2017 as it passed the year with 16 missile tests and the underground detonation of a nuclear device. There will be no difference in 2018 as Pyongyang tests its weapons' re-entry and guidance capabilities, launches missile salvos over Japan, considers testing intercontinental ballistic missiles near their maximum range or conducts an atmospheric nuclear test over the Pacific Ocean. Though estimates vary, many experts predict that North Korea will achieve a viable nuclear deterrent in 2018. 

salvos:(礼砲の)一斉発射, (戦争での)一斉砲火[爆撃].
atmospheric :大気の, 大気中の, 大気によって起こる

Within this tight window, the United States will have to decide whether to curb North Korea's nuclear capabilities by force or manage them through a strategy of deterrence. This weighty decision will be at the forefront of global leaders' minds next year, ultimately resting with U.S. President Donald Trump and his advisers. 

weighty:〈問題などが〉重要な, 重大な(⦅よりくだけて⦆important); 〈人が〉影響力のある; 〈発言などが〉説得力のある.
forefront:(活動・関心・責任などの)第一線, 中心, 重要部分, 先頭; (物の)最前部; (戦闘などの)最前線
resting:〈決定・責任などが〉 【人に】かかっている, ≪…≫ 次第である ≪with≫

The first (and less likely) scenario of crippling Pyongyang's nuclear program would require a preventive military strike. Should the United States choose this course, North Korea's response would have devastating consequences, including a massive disruption to regional trade that would heavily damage the electronics, automotive and appliances industries and send shockwaves throughout the global economy.


South Korea would bear the brunt of North Korea's retaliation, though Japan may suffer attacks as well. China, meanwhile, would have to decide whether to intervene on the Korean Peninsula to secure a territorial buffer on its doorstep and to stem the outflow of refugees that would likely ensue — raising the specter of confrontation between it and the United States. 

brunt:bear [suffer, take] the brunt of 〈攻撃・批判〉の矢面に立つ; A〈悪い状況〉の影響を被る.
specter:不安(材料). 幽霊, 亡霊(ghost).

If Washington begins leaning toward a military strike, several signs will warn of its coming. First, the United States will pull out all the stops in its campaign to pressure Pyongyang into cooperation, perhaps even leveling harsh sanctions on some of China's core financial institutions and economic entities that do business with North Korea. These measures would come at a time when China is already undertaking a difficult overhaul of its economy, creating economic fallout in and beyond the region. 

pull out all the stops:最大限の努力をする、全力を尽くす、とことんまで頑張る
leveling:level a gun at 〜に銃[筒先]を向ける、〜に銃の狙いを定める
economic fallout:経済的低迷

Second, the United States and its Asian allies would begin moving their military hardware. Washington would order the long-term deployment of two or three carrier battle groups to the waters around the Korean Peninsula; regional intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance assets would increase; land-based air power, such as stealth fighters, would relocate nearby; submarine deployments would become more frequent; and South Korean troops and reserves would mobilize.


Of course, the absence of any or all of these developments wouldn't rule out a preventive strike, since the United States is capable of launching a limited attack on North Korea with its existing presence in the Asia-Pacific. Moreover, an attempt to shoot down a North Korean missile, successful or not, could spark a war. 

rule out:〔実行などを〕不可能にする、妨げる

Barring the unlikely event of a coup in Pyongyang, any measures short of military action won't sway North Korea from its path toward a credible nuclear deterrent. Despite agreeing to a severe U.N. sanctions package against the country in 2017, neither China nor Russia wants the North Korean government to collapse. As a result, they will avoid any action that jeopardizes its stability unless they believe the measures would forestall a strike by the U.S. military. Even if the international community deepens its sanctions regime to an oil embargo or trade ban, North Korea has many tools at its disposal for insulating its leaders and achieving its not-so-distant nuclear goals. 

Barring:…がなければ; …を除いては.
short:なしで(は), Aがなかったら(without)
forestall:を阻止[予防]する(stop, prevent).
insulating: 孤立させる

What a North Korean Nuclear Test Over the Pacific Might Look Like

What a North Korean Nuclear Test Over the Pacific Might Look Like
Given the massive costs that a military strike against North Korea would carry, as well as the short time frame in which it must be executed, the United States is more likely to choose its second option: containment and deterrence. The former might entail the economic isolation of the North Korean government, with the intent of limiting the growth of its nuclear arsenal. The latter would involve the gradual buildup of ballistic missile defenses, the permanent monitoring of North Korean activities and the compression of military decision-making channels among the United States and its allies. 


Still, a strategy of deterrence carries its own long-term risks, including a heightened threat of miscalculation, similar buildups by Russia and China, and the nuclearization of South Korea and Japan. Furthermore, the fortification of a U.S.-aligned defense infrastructure around North Korea could undermine the missile architecture of Russia and China, bringing their mutual interests further in line, just as the deployment of the U.S. Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense system to South Korea has. 

As tension mounts on the Korean Peninsula, the United States will work to renew the resolve of its most important regional allies. Over the past year, its ties with South Korea and Japan have strengthened. Though Seoul firmly opposes the idea of a preventive military strike against Pyongyang, neither it nor Tokyo would be able to stop Washington from launching one. Even if the United States rejects that route, a pre-emptive strike meant to interrupt an impending North Korean attack would still be on the table. 





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