Tuesday, January 9, 2007

How Mythologies Derail Efforts at Peace

It is only through excruciatingly honest examinations of the past that we can hope to move forward. For the collective as for the individual; change and progress can only occur when we have acknowledged and fully internalized where our starting points are, and how we arrived at them. Dennis Ross' assessment of the misconceptions of what transpired at Camp David and what was contained in the Clinton agreements or parameters is an excellent case in point.
As he has said, "Everyone is entitled to their own opinions. They are not entitled to their own facts."

"Why is it important to set the record straight? Nothing has done more to perpetuate the conflict between Arabs and Israelis than the mythologies on each side. The mythologies about who is responsible for the conflict (and about its core issues) have taken on a life of their own. They shape perception. They allow each side to blame the other while avoiding the need to face up to its own mistakes. So long as myths are perpetuated, no one will have to face reality."
Dennis Ross, NY TIMES; January 9th, 2007


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