Was reading an article about the US’s options for discussing peace in Afghanistan, and was struck by this quote:
Endless war reinforces the political power of leaders who make war. Negotiations reinforce the power of political actors. Negotiations surface issues: you have to say what you want, and what you are willing to accept. Right now, no-one, not even a U.S. government official, can clearly articulate what the U.S. really wants in Afghanistan, and what the U.S. is willing to accept. What exactly the Taliban want, or are willing to accept, besides driving out foreign forces, has also been the subject of fierce debate. Negotiations smoke people out. You have to say what you want, and what you are willing to accept
Conversation, especially in the context of complex situations, helps us to introduce nuance. It takes us beyond yes/no options and invites multifaceted positions to be revealed. When we are faced with intractable problems, complex scenarios or mysterious situations, conversations open us to edges that would otherwise remain invisible, and therefore increase the possibility of finding a new and usefaul way through. Talk IS action.