Sometimes the original issues are not the point anymore. People may feel offended, betrayed, or misrepresented. These emotional issues may come up while discussing the original issue; when closing the discussion about the original issue, do not assume you can close the discussion about the new emotional issues with it. If you do that, you are offering a wall of silence to the offended party.
Depending on the character of the other party, this might lead to deeper entanglement where you were trying to pull out: More FlameBait being presented, more criticism of your past and current actions, more emotional involvement by other parties, more reputation damage to everybody involved -- whether you like it or not, and whether you are trying to pull out or not. The mechanisms feeding this deeper entanglement vary:
Therefore, even if you think that the original issue no longer bears discussing, or if you think that the discussion is degrading, sometimes you can't help taking that last FlameBait: You will have to face the emotional issues. Sometimes a CleanBreak is the only way to pull out. NameTheConflict and duke it out one last time.
"I can't hear you: I'm inside my protective blanket of fear"
I don't understand "protective blanket of fear." -- AlexSchroeder
I remember that as kids we'd close our ears using the palms of our hands and shout "I can't hear you! I'm not listening!" (Ich hör' dich nicht!) -- but that is not a "wall of silence." -- AlexSchroeder
Fear is one motivation, and a powerful one, for silence. Fear of consequences, fear of making a situation worse. Note that to a third party, your wall of silence is equivalent to a wall of not hearing. Perhaps this is one advantage of DiminishingReplies - it acknowledges receipt.