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Unity, Not Isolationism Will Defeat Da'esh

President Barack Obama and French President Francois Hollande embrace during a joint news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Nov. 24, 2015.

We must be vigilant but also stay true to our common values.

In the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris, France that killed 130 people in mid-November, it becomes even more important to find a balance between security and compassion.

Unity, Not Isolationism Will Defeat Da'esh
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“In every generation,” said Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland, “our common humanity has been tested by those who seek to impose their will through fear, violence, and eradication of free choice -- by those who resort to violence because they can’t succeed in open, tolerant, democratic societies.”

It is true that we must be vigilant, said Assistant Secretary Nuland at the Berlin Security Conference, which took place immediately after the Paris attacks. But we must also stay true to our common values: our right to live together in peace, in security, and in freedom, in open and tolerant societies.

“We must advance those principles in our own space and wherever victims of oppression and violence seek our help in defense of their own dignity and their right to live democratically,” she said.

“In a 21st century world, we cannot protect ourselves from mayhem by building our own exclusive fortress. It just won’t work. As we have seen, the viciousness of Da’esh, the suffering in Syria . . . sooner, rather than later, they can show up on our streets. So we must act, and we must do so together,” said Assistant Secretary Nuland.

“Let the terror in Paris call us once again to unite in defense of our security, our freedom, our democratic values.”