A Countryside of Concentration Camps: Burma could be the site of the world’s next genocide

Graeme Wood in The New Republic:

ScreenHunter_468 Jan. 24 19.09The U.S. government has sent diplomats to monitor Arakan, and at key junctures in the blossoming of bilateral relations, Obama has brought up the Rohingya issue. But the Rohingya are, so far, unlucky casualties of progress, and their ongoing ethnic-cleansing hasn’t been enough to sour Obama’s rapport with the Burmese president, Thein Sein. Nor, it seems, has it managed to stir the outrage of Aung San Suu Kyi, whose lack of comment has made activists, once piously reverent, now treat her as something between demoness and fool.

With Suu Kyi silent, and the international community collectively golf-clapping as Burma edges toward freedom, the Rohingya are nearly friendless in their displaced-person camps and grim ghettos, with few real champions other than a handful of Muslim countries (Saudi Arabia, Malaysia) not known for their capacity to deal with humanitarian crises. Obama closed his Rangoon speech on what he no doubt meant as a cheery note: “I stand here with confidence that something is happening in this country that cannot be reversed.” Increasingly, it sounds like a prophecy of doom.

More here.