In Myanmar, a Genocide by Any Other Name

Stratfor | 4th December 2017

Rohingya refugees

Once upon a time here in Dhaka, Bangladesh, this teeming city on the Buriganga River, the bells of the Holy Resurrection Church echoed for miles. Armenians built their house of Orthodox Christian worship amid the palm groves in 1781, almost two centuries after Persian Shah Abbas the Great conquered eastern Armenia and thousands of them migrated to Bengal. They and their progeny prospered as traders in jute, silk and leather. In 1880, the church clock stopped ticking, perhaps because of rust from the tropical damp, and the bells rang no more. Despite that ill omen, the Armenians of Dhaka were among the lucky few of their compatriots spared the Ottoman Turks' genocide during World War I. Yet genocide is no stranger to Bangladesh, known from 1947 to 1971 as East Pakistan. More than a million Bangladeshis died during the India-Pakistan War of 1971, when West Pakistani soldiers raped tens of…

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About the Author

charles-glassCharles Glass is a broadcaster, journalist and writer, who began his journalistic career in 1973 at the ABC News Beirut bureau with Peter Jennings. He covered the October Arab-Israeli War on the Egyptian and Syrian fronts. He also covered civil war in Lebanon, where artillery fire wounded him in 1976. He was ABC News Chief Middle East correspondent from 1983 to 1993. Since 1993, he has been a freelance writer in Paris, Tuscany, Venice and London, regularly covering the Middle East, the Balkans, southeast Asia and the Mediterranean region. He has also published books, short stories, essays and articles in the United States and Europe.