July 26 (UPI) — Prior to the 1979 revolution, Iran’s population of 34 million people relied on a stable water supply, sourced from millennia-old underground canals and aquifers. The Iranian revolution, hijacked by the mullahs, changed all that.
The theocratic regime handed control of the nationalized water industry — and indeed over 80% of all other business, industrial and service sectors — to the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, the regime’s equivalent of the Gestapo. The IRGC answers directly to the elderly supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. It pays no tax and corruptly siphons vast financial resources into its own pockets and into financing proxy wars and terrorism across the Middle East and further afield.
The IRGC members use oil revenues stolen from the Iranian people to race ahead with the clandestine construction of a nuclear weapon and ballistic missile delivery systems capable of reaching Tel Aviv, Israel. They have impoverished the nation. As the country with the second- largest gas and fourth-largest oil reserves in the world, Iran is a crumbling ruin, the legacy of 42 years of Islamic fundamentalism.
Combining rank incompetence, venal corruption and a total disregard for environmental concerns, the IRGC set about a decades-long program of widespread hydropower dam building in a series of huge and dishonestly lucrative infrastructure projects that blocked and diverted rivers and drained lakes and aquifers. As the population of Iran expanded exponentially to its current 83 million, and climate change saw summer temperatures often soaring to 50 degrees C (122°F), the water crisis grew.
Iran’s farmers account for more than 90% of water usage and have been repeatedly encouraged to accelerate crop and stock production to feed a population starved by government ineptitude and mismanagement. Faced with dwindling water supplies, Iran’s farmers have been forced to bore deeper wells into the depleting groundwater resources to irrigate their crops and water their livestock. It is reckoned that the number of wells has multiplied more than 13 times since the 1979 revolution, with most of them illegal and draining far more water than can be sustainably maintained.
Now renewable water resources, which were estimated at around 135 billion cubic meters in 1979, have fallen to 80 billion cubic meters, with experts predicting that water shortages may force up to 70% of Iranians, or 58 million people, to move to other parts of Iran, or eventually to flee the country altogether, if something is not done to resolve the crisis in the next 20 to 30 years.
The current extreme heat and lack of rainfall has caused an extended drought, creating catastrophic water shortages and desertification, particularly in Khuzestan province in the southwest of the country. The “Islamic Republic” has reacted in its usual brutal fashion, ordering a vicious crackdown on large-scale street protests that have resulted in the deaths of at least 10…