Good morning, Quartz readers.
Paris is under siege, and France has closed its borders. A series of attacks unfolded in the evening hours in the French capital. At the time of this writing, reports indicate the attacks left at least 40 dead; as many as 100 people were reportedly taken hostage in the Le Bataclan concert hall, while a shooting at a restaurant and an explosion outside a soccer stadium killed dozens.
French president François Hollande declared a state of emergency.
“We have to assure ourselves that no one can enter in order to commit any act, whatever that may be, at the same time these crimes have taken place,” he said. “This is a terrible hardship that is striking us. We know where this is coming [from], who these terrorists are.”
And though Hollande did not name them, speculation immediately focused on the Islamic State.
“What the terrorists want is to make us afraid, to seize us with fear, and it is something to be afraid of,” Hollande counseled. “But faced with this fear, there is a nation that defends itself and mobilizes itself and again will be able to overcome the terrorists.”
US president Barack Obama, in his own televised address, said the US stands ready to assist France, its oldest ally. “Those that think that they can terrorize the people of France or the values that they stand for are wrong,” Obama said.
Except of course they are not wrong; their terror already has been committed. The question now is how the world responds.—Heather Landy
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