When the news subsided, Ross’s wife had to explain to her children why Dad was crying. “They had never seen me cry before,” he says. And when we talk to the camera today, tears return. “It’s obviously still a moment that I really can’t talk about,” he says.

Ross would of course stay at work trying to broker peace between Arafat and Netanyahu or Arafat and Prime Minister Ehud Barak. Clinton was determined, but that wasn’t enough. The 2000 high-stakes Camp David Summit fails to produce an agreement, and we see Clinton in his final days in office in January 2001 talking to Arafat, who calls him a “great man.”

“No, I’m not,” Ross Clinton quotes. “I am a loser.”

Of course, the film does not answer his main question conclusively: What went wrong?

But there is a clue. It is Miller who most directly poses one of the most serious problems: Was the United States ever really equipped to be an “honest broker”? Was real peace ever possible when, as Miller retrospectively says, Americans were essentially Israel’s advocates?

“I don’t think I’m free from prejudice,” he says. And he asks, “Did we have Palestinian lawyers?”

“The Human Factor,” a Sony Pictures Classics release, was rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America, “For Some Violent / Bloody Pictures.” Running time: 108 minutes. Three out of four stars.

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