Ignoring an obvious problem; Failing to address an issue that stands out in a major way.忽略明显的问题，避而不谈的事情；
The imagery for this phrase is something like this: 这个词组的寓意是这样When there's a big problem that is easily noticeable, 当有一个显而易见的事情时yet nobody is willing to discuss or even acknowledge it, then the issue sticks out like a sore thumb.但没有人愿意去谈论或者承认It's as if there is a giant elephant in the room and everyone is just ignoring it despite how big and apparent it is. 就好比屋子里有一头象，尽管很大很明显，但是依然没有人留意到。Seriously, you can't miss them. 认真来讲，你应该会留意到。
The exact origin of this phrase is unclear, 词组的来源不是很确定however, the phrase looks to be a relatively recent one, only being found in print as early as the mid 20th century, though it's always possible that the idiom is older. 但是，词组相对来讲是比较新的，大约在20世纪时候被发现。Wikipedia states that the Oxford English Dictionary credits the New York Times newspaper from June 20th, 1959, as the first recorded use of this phrase as a simile.维基百科记录，牛津词典记录1959年6月20号的纽约时报第一次提到过这个词组。
A century later, China is not so much the elephant in the room, but the elephant in the region.