An Iranian general has accused Israel of causing climate change in the revolutionary Shiite Muslim republic by stealing the water out of clouds passing over the Mediterranean.
Brigadier General Gholam Reza Jalali, head of Iran’s Civil Defense Organization, revealed the charges during an agricultural conference in the capital city of Tehran. He claimed Iranian scientific centers have proven that Israel and an unnamed neighboring country were secretly cooperating to extract the moisture out of clouds bound to pass over Iran, thus robbing the country of rain and snow.
“Joint teams from Israel and one of the neighboring countries make the clouds entering into Iran barren. Moreover, we are faced with the cases of cloud theft and snow theft,” Jalali said, according to a translation reported by Iran’s semi-official Tasnim News Agency of comments featured by the Iranian Students’ News Agency.
The official further cited a recent four-year study showing that all highlands exceeding roughly 7,200 feet extending from Afghanistan to the Mediterranean have received snowfall except for Iran.
Jalali’s claims were quickly contradicted, however, by the director general of the Weather Forecast and Early Warning Office at the official Iran Meteorological Organization, Ahad Vazife. He said that he was confused as to the source material that the general was referencing and asserted that the entire region was being affected by a drought, not just Iran.
“Perhaps they have documents in this regard, and I’m not in the pipeline, but based on meteorological information, there is no possibility that a country will steal snow or clouds,” Vazife told the Iranian Students’ News Agency in a follow-up piece, adding that, if it was possible for a country to steal clouds, the U.S. would not be suffering its own water shortage because Washington would just steal it from other countries in its vapor form.
Vazife warned that “raising such issues not only fails to solve any of our problems, but distracts us from finding the correct solutions,” emphasizing that these discussions were best held in a scientific environment.