May 10, 2010: Iran is finishing up eight days of naval exercises. This is actually a publicity event, largely for domestic and foreign media. Among the highlights were a domestically made torpedo (which no one was allowed a close look at, to insure that it was new, and not an older American or Chinese model with a new paint job) and ten new helicopter gunships for the navy. These were actually U.S. made AH-1s, which Iran had bought in the 1970s. Photographers were allowed a close look, and the only thing new about these helicopters was the paint and Chinese electronics installed in the cockpit to replace the elderly U.S. stuff. The only weapons seen on the helicopters were also 1970s vintage. Some of the helicopters were flown, however, proving that a few are still operational.
The lifestyle police have been ordered to become more active. Women with tans are being arrested (even though the lifestyle cops can only see faces) for possible sunbathing offenses (female police later do a more extensive search to confirm if a crime has been committed.) Companies are now being fined for using any of many foreign words on their signs or ads. Foreign words are seen as a corrupting influence.
Next month, the UN is planning to bring to a vote new economic sanctions. Iran has allies in the UN (most of them purchased with cheap energy exports or other economic deals), and the sanctions are not expected to put any real pressure on Iran to halt its nuclear weapons program. … >>>