Heavy rains and flash flooding that began in March have affected 24 of 31 provinces across the Islamic Republic of Iran. The flooding has killed 70 people and injured 1,076 people according to the authorities.
It is estimated that 10 million people have been affected and that as many as 2 million may be in need of some form of assistance. At least 500,000 people are reportedly displaced. The widespread damages to the road and transportation network are making villages and small towns inaccessible. While information on humanitarian needs is still limited, the greatest needs are reported to be in the water, sanitation and hygiene, health, shelter and agriculture sectors. Source: https://reliefweb.int
For the last four decades, the regime has sacrificed Iran to its ideology and dogmatism, Political Islam, giving decision-making powers to devout bearded morons with mouthful titles:
Grand Ayatollah and Supreme Leader of the Revolution / آیت الله العظمی/ رهبر معظم انقلاب (Ali Khamenei, the one and only), Sign of God /آيتالله (e.g. Ahmad Jannati and many more) /حجت الاسلام والمسلمین (e.g. Hassan Rouhani and hundreds more).
Add to this as the protocol may demand or at will to flatter them: Seyyed – descendant of Muhammad / سید , Highness /حضرت, and Haji / حاجی.
These morons have exacerbated the issues facing the country by a speciously appealing and foolish Economy of Resistance, Jihad of Agriculture, and many juicy development plans to serve the kleptomaniac. Thousands of useless dams were built, although most were dry before the end of spring.
Since late March, as people were preparing to celebrate the Nowruz, incessant rain has flooded large parts of Iran. The results have been life losses, thousands of homes ruined, roads blocked, bridges destroyed, electricity, gas, and water supplies cut.
No natural disaster can be avoided, but its cause, the climate change, can be predicted as the consequences of our choices. We, humans, have put our utmost effort into destroying the planet; we mourn and light candles when we suffer its consequences to feel good; then we forget them.
The obdurate simpletons swiftly dismiss the climate change as fake news when it takes its toll in silence, and small but everlasting changes are observed by scientists. Notwithstanding, the climate change can in a few hours become a devastating phenomenon, as lately the cyclone Idai did in Mozambique and Zimbabwe.
In the past decades the morons in Iran have neglected the climate change, pollution and demographic pressure. Their noses are still in the revolutionary theories of the political Islam of the 1960s–1970s. They are obsessed with sexism, hijabs for women, and the enemies they are keen to create and then boasting of their own self-importance in destroying them.
By deliberately throwing away close, mutually beneficial partnerships globally, they have wilfully damaged the economy and spent the meagre resources in pursuing military and megalomaniacal ambitions. They have led the country down a dangerous path with a heavy price for the population to pay.
The people, willy-nilly and in silence, have bent to their wishes. The awakening of the people to the poor situation of the country is recent. A major earthquake in 2017, followed by smaller ones, was accompanied by protests that faded as time went by. The incompetence of the authorities was flagrant, but no change took place, no lessons learned.
Presently, massive flooding is devastating large parts of the country. The unprepared morons have chosen to respond with the same uncoordinated moves that they adopted in the aftermath of the earthquake: ridiculous agitation, absurd discourse, thoughtless decisions.
Once More The Iranian Media Failed Its Calling
As it relentlessly rained and the dried riverbeds filled with years of waste became noisy torrents, alarmed citizens were updating their social media accounts with pieces of worrying news. Undoubtedly, help and rescue at a very large scale was needed. However, the Iranian propagandist media were slow to report it.
When Shiraz, a major touristic town, was hit the issue became a national one. Thousands of domestic tourists were stranded and the pictures of the flooded Qur’an Gate, a cherished touristic spot, and the dozens of cars carried away by the water awakened the unconscious to the dangers.
As the flood hit the headlines, other reports were arising from many regions. As of April 1st, ReliefWeb, the largest humanitarian information portal, has estimated that the flooding and landslides affect at least 23 of the country’s 31 provinces. As we write, according to Iranian officials, 70 have been killed, 768 injured, thousands of homes destroyed.
The rescue services in Iran are understaffed, untrained, and poorly equipped. Even with the best goodwill and efforts they cannot succeed in facing the urgencies. The earlier reports focused on the people’s solidarity in the flooded area and the help provided by the citizens from spared areas. As the scale of the disaster in the making became widely known, the official propagandists woke up from the coma that engulfs Iran during Nowruz holidays.
Hasty Agitation And Balderdash
The Iranian president Hassan Rouhani and ministers flew from one spot to the next to bring their compassion and help to the victims, albeit professional rescue planning and practical advice to alleviate people’s pain were in want. All they had to offer were words and more words, creating a torrent of balderdash.
Ali Khamenei, spending Nowruz in Khorasan, a few days after the first floods, sent a message to the Friday Imam of Shiraz, presenting his condolences to the heartbroken people and asking for swift and serious relief efforts.
On April the 3rd, two weeks after the first flood, in his first public monologue after the new year, Khamenei preferred to give a lecture on the enemies, Islamic order and Evil (طاغوت). Next day, he was busy appointing as the trustee of Astan Quds Razavi one of his morons, His highness authority on Islam and Muslims, Ahmad Marwi, حضرت حجتالاسلام والمسلمین احمد مروی. As one might recall, Quds Razavi generates a revenue of hundreds of billions of USD. However, the Leader did not hint at the possibility of channelling some of these proceeds to the heartbroken people struggling in mud.
The IRGC swiftly assumed the first role in the rescue and relief operations, with a strong theatrical style.
Tasnim website reported: Maj. Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari, commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, visited the city of Poldokhtar, Lorestan province, and listened to the people’s demands and confidence, learning first hand from their problems and the relief efforts.
The commander of Air Force Corps, Hajizadeh, in Ilam declared: Helicopter facilities and drones of the IRGC are in service for the victims of the flooding.
Did anyone read about contingency planning for such forces to anticipate the issues and coordinate with other rescue operations? Any particular safety and health measures adapted to the field of operations that were to be undertaken? The simple answer is: NO!
The 700-character articles, repeating the same lines, were accompanied by the photos of IRGC commanders talking to journalists.
The morons from Tehran in charge of the country are talking about a hasty, thoughtless and uncoordinated rescue operation, all the while pushing down their responsibilities to the local governors like hot potatoes. The latter in turn are pressing them down onto the shoulders of the regional vice-governors and mayors. These lowly valets are on their own to receive the hot potatoes. They will take the blame for the failures, shortcomings and mismanagements of their superiors.
First Aid Or First The Politics of Hate?
Ridicule does not kill, otherwise by now the morons in the regime would be dead and their counterparts in the US administration would follow suit.
The din started with Mike Pompeo’s statement. The Trumpian yes-man, glib and infuriating as any ayatollah can be, and who does not miss an occasion to prove his lack of refined manner and subtle thoughts, declared:
On behalf of the American people, we offer our condolences to the victims of the recent floods in Iran. These floods once again show the level of Iranian regime mismanagement in urban planning and in emergency preparedness. The regime blames outside entities when, in fact, it is their mismanagement that has led to this disaster. They even jail environmentalists for attempting to help Iran prepare for these very issues. The United States stands ready to assist and contribute to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, which would then direct the money through the Iranian Red Crescent for relief.
Point taken. However, not only was it ill-timed and required subtle wording that Pompeo is incapable of, but it also came from a US administration which has let down Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria in 2017.
The Iranian foreign minister, Ali Khamenei’s yes-man, the glib and infuriating M.J. Zarif, was quick to react. Pompeo gave the Iranian propaganda machine a bone to chew on.
As a long-standing habit, the Iranian officials do not miss an occasion, or even the chance to create surrealistic ones, to condemn the terrorist acts of the US in regard to secondary sanctions that would not allow the international help to reach Iran.
Once more, the worn-out tricks were out of the bag: the flood was the creation of our enemies, our enemies are exaggerating the extent of damages done by the flood, our poor people are suffering from US sanctions, etc., etc.
Preserving The Regime Comes First
In this racket, no one can really have a realistic picture of the amount of help offered by the international communities, those deemed acceptable to the Iranian authorities, and how much of it will reach the victims, first falling into the hands of the profiteers linked to the morons of the mouthful religious titles.
The politics of demonizing the USA and blaming the EU’s slowness in all matters outmatch the necessity of helping the victims. For decades the mullahs have both snubbed the international relief help – we are rich enough to attend to the needs of our victims – and moaned about not receiving it because of the US politics.
The shortcomings of the emergency help for the victims do not only fall under the US secondary sanctions. Overcoming the worries of the timorous international bankers and providing the facilities to deliver help to the flooded areas is also the responsibility of the Iranian agencies. The relief aid can be in the form of goods and services from NGOs and the UN agencies. However, the Iranian authorities want the donators’ money; the cash that they can spend on other things. Why not buy something nice for the Syrian Bashar al-Assad?
The past experiences in domestic relief aids have been catastrophic. After the Bam earthquake, 2003, international and internal help was squandered by the authorities.
In November 2017, citizens, wary of corruption in official aid agencies, trusted the celebrities to collect aid for the victims of the Kermanshah earthquake. Irked by the public mocking their failures and the widespread distrust of the Islamic state, the authorities responded with smearing the aid-collectors by a chain of calumny, exposing them as tricksters and frauds.
Citizens’ solidarity with flood victims was met with an extraordinary interdict from the judiciary power. A moron, the deputy prosecutor general, said that any public fundraising, except through the official accounts of the Red Crescent Society and the Aid Committee, is prohibited and will be blocked.
Er? Is it any of your business? What is the legal base for such a preposterous declaration?
Ebrahim Raisi, the moron and executioner recently named as the head of Judiciary, also had something to say: By relying on the knowledge and abilities of the universities of the country, it is possible to prevent the occurrence of floods in all parts of the country.
Er? Just the most useless advice needed from a heartless blockhead. The judiciary has killed environmentalists, jailed others together with academics. It has muzzled constructive debates. Pity a nation, pity any nation, that a hypocrite of the worst kind can open its filthy mouth and get away with it.
Thundering Drums Of Discontent
As we write, to avoid the public ire, the regime is either busy minimizing the loss of life and damage caused by the floods, or boasting about how the governmental bodies have worked hard to supply electricity, water, and communication (especially internet services) everywhere.
Of course, one must believe in all these lies. But, the exasperation of the long-suffering citizens mounts.
The lack of coordination, the little and late relief aids, and the sheer stupidity of some actions (for example, blowing up the railway tracks in a hasty decision by the military, and later attributing it to “people’s demand”), not to mention the short visits from the morons, be it ministers or IRGC commanders, are by far too much to bear for anyone trying to find clean water, adequate food and a dry shelter.
For now, the ill-feelings are controlled and have been kept under wrap by the officials. However, as bad weather and rain continue, tempers run high and have reached the snapping point. The morons’ mismanagement over decades has aggravated the aftermath of the floods; the human crisis that looms in the horizon will shake the regime.
All Bitten By Decades Of Insolence
For decades, building dams was foolishly pursued and riverbeds carelessly modified. As the moors dried and the riverbeds shrunk, they offered cheap land for speculators to house a growing population. The cheaper prices of housing in flood prone areas meant that the people who bought them were not bothered by the risk. The deputies to the parliament kept their mouths shut, and local urbanists took their cut.
These areas were first hit by the flood; buildings, jerry-built, were washed out and disappeared in muddy water in no time.
During all the years that drought had prevailed, millions of tons of waste produced by citizens (non-biodegradable, for example plastic, tyres, chemicals) and sewerage broth had filled dried rivers or been dumped in other natural areas to be out of the way of the citizens. The flood has already moved and dispersed the waste. It will settle somewhere as the water recedes.
And then what? Will we go on denying the facts? Will we continue to brush the waste and sewage broth under carpets once more?
Over the years, the IRGC has boasted its capacities of being the power engine of modern infrastructure in Iran: dams, pipelines, roads, bridges, and railways. Name any project worth a couple of millions of USD and you have the IRGC as the contractor.
Presently, the bridges, main roads, and pipelines are damaged by the torrents or stagnating water, while dams have burst or are totally useless in withholding the excess of water. Decades of faulty planning and flaws in constructions are there for all to see.
To face the consequences of the floods, or prevent more villages from being devastated by further rains forecasted in the coming weeks, IRGC commanders are clueless. Therefore, they make a big show of using drones, helicopters, and heavy military engines. The archive pictures for the sponsored articles are provided by their PR brigade.
Hastily, villages and towns are evacuated mainly in Khuzestan. The published stories do not say what are the temporary facilities provided for them. All the officials are able to say is we shall compensate the victims.
We have already heard these promises in 2017, in the aftermath of the earthquakes in western Iran. Let’s add another rhetorical question to ask the authorities: when was it that we saw the effects of the compensations promised at that time?
The published pictures taken from flood stricken areas, mostly by local freelancers, tell stories of the people left to themselves to face the miseries of the floods after years of drought and accumulated pollution.
The provision of the theocracy relief aid to the flooded area, helped by IRGC, is a copycat of what the ayatollahs did in the aftermath of the earthquake in Kermanshah. After genuine citizen mobilization, we forgot the victims and let the regime continue its petty arrangements as before. Won’t we do the same again?
To face the consequences of flooding, the last thing needed is the hollow words of a herd of clerics who have written several dissertations on religious dogmas and points of Sharia, which no one reads. They are supported by a kleptocratic elite in uniform who possess 60% of the Iranian economy, and are keeping a greedy eye on what is left.
Unfortunately, these morons are not the only ones to blame. Those who have lived in a culprit silence, indulging in apathy, share the burden too.
Issues, Planning And Funding
As the water level lowers or the mud stagnates, many issues will loom on the horizon. In an earthquake, buildings are damaged, people are killed in great number, but, there is always a piece of dry land to sleep on.
In a flood there is no such thing. Everything is waterlogged or damp. Clean water is vital. In the short run, stagnating water poses serious health hazards, followed by pandemics. In the longer run, the psychological effects of the flood, the battle to survive it, and the hardship of building a new life in an inflation ridden country will chase thousands in the future.
Until the water stays high on the ground there is no hope of repairing the infrastructures of the villages and towns. Once the water recedes, thick and heavy sediments covering homes, streets and buildings, together with millions of cubic metres of rubble and people’s ruined possessions, have to be removed.
Rebuilding is going to be hard. Many businesses, schools and offices will fail to reopen for a very long time; many homes will be left derelict. A large number of the population will be jobless. The farmers will be the most affected. The sediments will turn into a solid layer of rock under the scorching sun. It will be some years before the barren lands are productive.
In the past decades, the infrastructures of the towns have fallen short in catering to the slowly migrating village dwellers looking for jobs, mostly men in their prime who brought their families as their situation improved. As the long-term scale of the consequences of the floods are realized, the exodus of the rural population to the urban areas will take on a momentum unseen before. Families will settle in the nearest town to survive.
Iran is facing a crisis beyond anything imagined before. Today, the food supply chains are disrupted, and stocks are going down sooner than any moron could ever imagine. The country has not the human power to provide the professionals for efficiently planning the reconstruction, or enough money to fund it.
The physical flood is already breaking the virtual dam in which years of crass incompetence and grotesque declarations from the authorities on Islam and Muslims, the morons running the country, have been cumulating.
The protests that followed the earthquake in 2017 shook the regime at its base, but the popular dissatisfaction was not strong enough to unite the sectorial revendications. The flood may do what years of the submission, silence, and apathy of the population have not been able to do: create a national strength to wash away the incompetent morons and to tear apart the Velayat-e faqih.
However, the signs of an emerging constructive force are not tangible. We Iranians embark on a wave of sentiment, without prioritization, vision, and regard to the needs of the country. We thrive on dissension, disagreement, and conflict; we act in such a way that often we not only fail in solving the problem, but we become part of it.
Will Mother Nature take care of us or make herself felt again with a new vengeance? Or will we let the USA decide for us by designating the IRGC as a Foreign Terrorist Organization?
The floods will drain the pus-filled regime but, would they have enough strength to miraculously unite a recalcitrant population to profound changes, and fight for their freedom and a serene life?