Originally published: 2019-06-17 01:47:24
Horrific weather, strong earthquakes happening simultaneously in Iran is devastating an already devastated country — will the Iranian government do anything to provide for its own people from Mother Nature’s fury?
Where they spend their budget is controllable — what Mother Nature has in store for them is not.
Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, Has Visited Iranian Leaders
Occurred shortly after a visit from President Donald Trump to Japan one of the worlds closest US allies (BBC).
The timing of this trip, according to the press, is no coincidence but is designed to ease tensions between the USA and Tehran as Japan are trusted by both administrations and are well placed to mediate between the two.
Irrespective of the success or not of the Abe visit, it may prove irrelevant as other factors will undoubtedly impact and affect the role that Iran may play in future geopolitical events.
Decisions regarding political and military expansionism and how to counter both external and internal opposition could be determined by Mother Nature.
Indeed this is probably already happening and yet seemingly ignored by the professional pundits.
Iran Suffered an Earthquake of 7.3 Magnitude (Nov 2017)
The scale of devastation to infrastructure and the loss of life and injuries ensured that this colossal quake made global media headlines (BBC).
As with many natural disasters, after less than a week the world moved on to report other issues and media reporting on the aftermath became scarce.
Rebuilding and damage repair for the Iranian authorities became impossibly difficult not only because of weather, impassable terrain, and lack of competent human resource but also as sanctions (RadioFarda) on Iran ensured the cost of raw materials necessary continued to rise to unprecedented levels.
The paradox that Iran is able to sponsor military expansionism but unable to fund reconstruction for its indigenous population after a natural disaster did not go unnoticed by Iranians and several protests subsequently gained momentum but were quelled by the authorities (NYT) — 25 Iranians killed and 4,000 arrested was no ordinary protest.
News On Iran Consistently Ignores the Plight of the Iranian People
Iran is very rarely off our News Channels these days, not due to natural disasters but as a result of Iran’s desire for nuclear arms and their expansionist Middle East policy relevant to Yemen, Syria, Hizbollah, and Hamas with the U.S., Saudi counter challenge to the Iranian regime.
Reports of wider conflict, Trumps’s breaking of the Paris accord and Iranian expansion in the region take up much media time, follow up commentary and studio debate.
Given the high profile position Iran has acquired in the western media, it is somewhat perplexing given the importance of climate change that no TV news has been devoted to the recent devastating floods in Iran (BBC).
Dozens of people have been killed, thousands displaced and evacuated, rivers and dams have burst, hundreds of bridges and roads destroyed, and numerous villages beyond the point of reconstruction (al Jazeera).
How is it that such a natural catastrophe relating to one of the most prolific countries exposed to global and western media has managed to avoid anything other than tenuous media attention?
Damage to Iranian Infrastructure and Economy Is Intense
The damage to Iranian infrastructure is so immense that normal trade for daily consumer goods has been made impossible throughout the country.
Reports from the Iran friendly al Jazeera have been sparse but incredibly have reported devastation of such severity , suggest that even if no further heavy rains occurred reconstruction would take decades.
The number of bridges destroyed has ranged from 200 to 725 and estimated cost of repairs is $2 billion.
There is no reason to doubt the devastation to the internal infrastructure within Iran caused by mother nature.
If one considers the sanctions imposed on Iran by the U.S. Administration together with recent internal issues it is obvious that the current Iranian government are under severe pressure domestically to satisfy those directly impacted by the turmoil, exacerbated by external factors.
Their economy is suffering as sanctions bite.
Oil exports are falling, unemployment is high and getting worse, consumer goods are rising and the local currency is in free fall further increasing the price of products.
The Iranian Riyal is decreasing in value and locals do not want to be paid in Riyals in the knowledge that the currency will buy them less consumer goods next week than this week.
Foreign currency revenues in dollars are dwindling since the sanctions and obviously imported goods necessary for rebuilding , reconstruction and everyday life are becoming increasingly expensive.
The transfer of US dollars via any type of payment system such as SWIFT is under the sanctions banner and therefore not permissable.
The attempt by Iranian friendly Europeans to implement a Euro funds transfer system, INSTEX (RadioFarda), has faded as the European Union understand it would be subject to US sanctions irrespective that the Iranians do not have the technical competencies nor infrastructure to create the necessary mirror system to enable such financial transactions.
How long can the regime continue in power when it is apparent that the country both economically and socially is experiencing such enormous devastation and turmoil?
Moreover, can Iran continue with its expansionist policies and ideology in funding and supporting the Houthis in Yemen, Assad in Syria, Hezbollah in Lebanon, and Hams in Gaza while being unable to satisfy and support its domestic population?
Will Mother Nature do what military might and political will have so far failed to do for those opposed to the Iranian totalitarian theocracy?
Actions Against Iran Has 2 Fronts
Paradoxically, it is not only the Trump Administration that seek to limit Iranian designs.
Russia too is exceptionally aware that Iran has to have her wings clipped as recent Russian actions against Iran have highlighted.
Putin’s understanding of Israel’s red lines coincides with Russia’s desire to ensure that Iranian influence is diluted. Having assisted Syria, and Russia in maintaining Assad in power.
Iran has acted as Russia’s puppet – thanks very much for your efforts, your work is now done now go back home.
Another unexpected and unpalatable negative consequence for Iran directly resulting from the floods has been the necessity to recall Iranian militias from conflict zones to assist with the reconstruction activities.
Undoubtedly, the need for Iran to relocate front line militias from Syria clearly weakens both her military and political objectives and after all her investment in these areas the anticipated, political influential yield must seem exceptionally poor.
It may be that at some time these militias may be returned from whence they came but not only does Iran have to deal with reconstruction but also establish a firm hold on internal dissent.
The militias I suspect have been relocated to deal with this latter issue rather than bridge and road reconstruction for which they probably lack the necessary competencies.
Actually, Actions Against Iran Has 3 Fronts
Mother Nature has recently dealt Iran and her population some devastating blows which will surely have an impact on Iran’s ability to behave how she would like to behave politically and militarily.
Could it be that the weather will be the best weapon that those opposing Iran will be relying upon to limit the aims and objectives of the totalitarian theocracy causing so much global havoc?
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