Speaking on a panel discussion at the Aspen Ideas Festival, Carnegie’s Marwan Muasher joined Anne-Marie Slaughter, Steve Clemons, and George Mitchell to discuss the situation in Syria, Iraq, and the broader Middle East. Muasher argued that the age of ideology in the Arab world is coming to a close and that those who are able to show results will succeed. “We cannot talk about the region in terms of ethnic purity or religious purity,” he said. “If we are to talk about a Middle East that is prosperous and stable, we have to talk about pluralism and inclusion, not exclusion, exclusionist policies, or exclusionist countries.”

Muasher argued that that Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) has been able to secure military victories because it’s operating in an environment that felt marginalized. “If we have a political process in which everybody feels included, ISIS will be far less effective than they are today.”

“The Arab world cannot remain hostage to political elites who are governing through a system without any checks and balances or to the radical Islamists who are threatening the cultural and political diversity of society,” he contended. “Those who want a pluralistic discourse have to work for one.”

The panel discussion was held by the Aspen Institute.