Iran, like other parts of the globe, is suffering from severe droughts, especially in its south. But unlike other parts of the globe, Iran has a ready explanation that skips over complex questions of climate change: It's all our fault.
According to Iran's official news agency, Hassan Mousa, an Iranian vice president, said Western countries, led by the United States, are using sophisticated technology to cause droughts as part of a "soft war" against Iran.
The remarks were made at a ceremony to introduce the country's new chief meteorologist, and one can only wonder what that poor man, if he has any kind of scientific background, must have been thinking.
This is not the first time Iran has accused the West of inflicting droughts. Last year, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said "special equipment" was being used to cause clouds to dump rain on Europe, leaving none for Iran.
The Iranians seem completely oblivious to the fact that the United States is going through its worst drought in 55 years with over half the country designated by the government as suffering moderate to severe drought. They might think, or so one would expect, that if we had "special equipment" to dump rain on Europe we would use it to dump a little on ourselves.
Or maybe the Iranians think if we developed a super-drought weapon we would first test it on our own farmers, just to be sure it worked.
The American drought is a serious natural disaster, doing immense damage to corn and soybean crops, livestock and pasture and range. We suppose we should thank the Iranians for bringing a little light comic relief to a grim situation. Tehran should be sure to thank us when it starts raining again.
Dale McFeatters is a senior writer for the Scripps Howard News Service.