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Barak: Israel must avoid self-fulfilling prophecies

Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Saturday warned Israel must avoid self-fulfilling prophecies in order to see "both sides" of the conflict.
Speaking to New York Times journalist Tom Friedman about the rise of political Islam, Barak stated: “We have to learn to accept it and see both sides of it and try to make it better."
He added that he is "worried about our tendency to adopt a fatalistic, pessimistic perception of history. Because, once you adopt it, you are relieved from the responsibility to see the better aspects and seize the opportunities” when they arise.
Speaking about the potential fall of moderate leaders in the West Bank and the take over of Hamas, Barak said Israel may "lose sight of the opportunities and the will to seize these opportunities."
Commenting on Israeli pessimism, he said it is not all "invented...you would be stupid if you did not look [at it] with open eyes." He added that such an attitude is a "major risk that you will not notice that you become enslaved by this pessimism in a way that will paralyze you from understanding that you can shape it. The world is full of risks, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t have a responsibility to do something about it — within your limits and the limits of realism — and avoid self-fulfilling prophecies that are extremely dangerous here.”
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