[FOUNTAIN]Dialogue key to furthering cooperation

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[FOUNTAIN]Dialogue key to furthering cooperation

A man and woman with completely different tastes, personalities and ideals are confined in a glass box on a remote planet somewhere in the universe. They are not yet aware of the fact that the earth has been destroyed by nuclear weapons nor that they are being watched by giant aliens. The woman discovered the value of love, laughter and art from mankind. The man saw hypocrisy, cruelty and malice. The woman is emotional, passionate and active while the man is rational, cynical and cold.
After spending days arguing with each other, they realize that they are the only remaining man and woman left of the human race. They also come to realize that they are being raised as pets for the aliens. The hostility between the two turns into unconditional love as they become aware of the circumstances they are in. As the survivors of the mankind, they make love in order to reproduce and propagate the human race.
In his play “Our Friends the Humans,” French writer Bernard Werber wished to portray a certain characteristic of mankind that accepts differences, understands each other and seeks a mutual goal through dialogue and negotiation.
After an initial conversation, the man and woman give up talking. However, when they recognize a need for communication in order to survive, they began talking again. After they realize that they are the last remaining human beings, they actively consult each other and conclude that they must love each other. Negotiation and dialogue can work in hostile circumstances.
At the Korea-U.S. summit held in Chile, President Roh Moo-hyun reportedly persuaded President George W. Bush that talks can occur with an untrustworthy partner while asking President Bush to negotiate with North Korean leader Kim Jong-il. President Kim Dae-jung told Bush nearly the same during his 2002 Seoul visit. At the time, President Kim said, “President Reagan had called the Soviet Union a devil, but he still bargained with the devil. No matter how bad the partner might be, we should give dialogue a chance.”
President Bush considers Kim Jong-il more as the center of evil than compassion. It is not easy to interpret how President Bush accepted the requests. Nevertheless, we should never stop efforts to persuade President Bush to talk with Kim Jong-il.

by Chun Young-gi

The writer is a deputy political news editor of the JoongAng Ilbo.
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