Despite that caveat, it is all too often possible to recognise that a people, usually a minority, is being persecuted for ethnic or religious reasons. That truth prevailed in Rwanda, in Yugoslavia, in Sudan before it was divided and it prevails in Yemen today.
That truth is also real in Myanmar, where more than 160,000 of that country’s 1.1m Muslims have fled to Bangladesh to escape what they describe as ethnic cleansing.
Myanmar, a country with a Buddhist majority, is controlling access to the area so massacre allegations cannot be corroborated or refuted. What is certain though is that religion is again at the catalyst in genocide.
It is interesting too to compare the international community’s reaction to Noble peace winner and effective leader of Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi, for so long a darling of the West. Her less than emphatic reaction to the slaughter has not drawn anything like the criticism — justified — faced by President Trump after Charlottesville. Are we hypocrites?