Officially, there is not yet an established link between the massacre at the Radisson Blu in Mali on Friday and the attacks in Paris a week ago. But news of another painful death toll at the hands of suspected Islamist gunmen caused the world to grieve anew this week and added even more urgency to the need for world leaders to swiftly unite and put a stop to further terrorism.
Mali is a former French colony, a reality that will cause many to connect this latest attack with the Paris atrocity. At this point, however, it appears that Al-Qaida offshoots are responsible. ISIL, a different group, is believed to have carried out the Paris attacks.
Nonetheless, the two attacks are further evidence that the world is beset by a frightening outbreak of terrorism. The situation requires strength, thoughtful leadership and cooperation. While the U.S. must take the lead, this is a global crisis and a global response is key.
The ongoing attacks undoubtedly put a greater spotlight on the fraction of radicals within the Muslim religion who wield violence in a poisonous quest for a twisted utopia. But the conclusion that all Muslims are to blame is the product of lazy minds. Ill-advised rhetoric that unnecessarily heightens tensions reflects on a speaker's leadership potential.
Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and Ben Carson vividly displayed these weaknesses this week.
Carson clumsily compared Muslims to dogs, apparently unaware that anything canine is a major insult in the Arab world. He potentially created enemies when strengthened alliances are needed to eradicate terrorists.
Trump was truly appalling. He called for requiring Muslims to register in a national database. Asked how this differs from Nazi Germany's Jewish registry, he repeatedly told journalists: "You tell me.''
OK: There is no difference. That a leading presidential contender proposed it ought to leave Americans shaken.