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Iran Cleric: We Have No Good Revenge Targets, Only US Heroes Are SpongeBob and Spider-Man

“Are we supposed to take out Spider-Man and SpongeBob? … All of their heroes are cartoon characters.”

Elias Marat



Revenge Targets

(TMU) — For the average person watching events in the Middle East over the past week, it’s difficult to glean any humor from the looming threat of a major regional war between the United States and Iran.

However, one Iranian cleric has made comments which can either be viewed as a cutting and acidic bit of sarcasm, or an unintentionally hilarious comment reflecting how Iran’s religious authorities view popular U.S. culture.

Iranian cleric Shahab Moradi commented in a television interview carried on Iranian state television, that Iran would never be able to avenge the loss of Maj. Gen Qassem Soleimani because the U.S. only has such fictional “heroes” and SpongeBob SquarePants and Marvel Comics’ legendary web-slinger, Spider-Man.

In a clip from a live interview aired on the IRIB Ofogh channel that was posted Saturday night on Twitter, Moradi explained:

“If anyone around the world wants to take their revenge on the assassination of Soleimani and intends to do it proportionately … who should we consider to take out in the context of America?

Think about it. Are we supposed to take out Spider-Man and SpongeBob?

They don’t have any heroes. We have a country in front of us with a large population and a large landmass, but it doesn’t have any heroes. All of their heroes are cartoon characters—they’re all fictional.”

Last Thursday, a U.S. drone attacked a convoy near Baghdad’s airport, claiming the lives of 10 people including Soleimani and the leader of Iraq’s Kataeb Hezbollah, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis. The drone strike has sent shockwaves across the Middle East and the globe, stoking fears of a major conflict.

Soleimani, who commanded the elite Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps’ extra-territorial operations arm, or Quds Force, had long been viewed as a national hero by most Iranians. The major-general, who has been praised by Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as a “living martyr of the revolution,” has been widely credited within the country and across the region as the man responsible for halting the rise of ISIS and preventing it from making major incursions into Iran.

However, the top general has been depicted as a major bogeyman in the U.S. press and as the man responsible for forming the myriad Shia Muslim militia across the Middle East, and especially Iraq, that have clashed with the U.S. troops occupying the region.

Western sources have compared Soleimani with various characters drawn from literature, comic books, and film—including The Dark Knight or Batman, fictional Soviet spymaster Karla from the Cold War-era spy novels of John le Carré, the villainous Keyser Söze from 1995 crime film The Usual Suspects, and British literary swashbuckler the Scarlet Pimpernel.

British tabloid newspaper the Sun even ran an obituary Friday on the top Iranian security official under the sub-header “BRUTE’S BLOODSHED!” titled “Assassinated Iranian general Qasem Soleimani was James Bond, Nazi Erwin Rommel and Lady Gaga in one evil man.” The title has been lambasted by social media users as a particularly grotesque example of the West demonizing its rivals.

Since Soleimani’s assassination, Iran’s authorities have vowed to exact “severe revenge” on U.S. military forces in the region. In an interview with CNN on Sunday, Maj. Gen. Hossein Dehghan—a top military adviser to Ayatollah Khamenei—reiterated Tehran’s desire to avenge Soleimani’s death.

However, the official was clear that they don’t desire a major war. Dehghan explained:

“It was America that has started the war. Therefore, they should accept appropriate reactions to their actions.

The only thing that can end this period of war is for the Americans to receive a blow that is equal to the blow they have inflicted. Afterward they should not seek a new cycle.”

Referring to Trump’s threat to bomb 52 Iranian targets, including sites important to the Iranian culture—a move that would constitute a war crime—Dehghan reiterated that the attacks would focus on military targets. He said:

“If he says 52 we say 300—and they are accessible to us.

No American military staff, no American political center, no American military base, no American vessel will be safe.

[Trump] doesn’t know international law. He doesn’t recognize UN resolutions either. Basically he is a veritable gangster and a gambler.”

By Elias Marat | Creative Commons |


Get Ready for This Week’s Full “Strawberry Moon” – The Last Supermoon of 2021

Elias Marat



Whether it’s rare conjunctions, supermoons or the dazzling ring of fire solar eclipse earlier this month, 2021 has been a year absolutely filled with brilliant lunar events.

However, this month will see the year’s last supermoon– with a full “strawberry moon” gracing our night skies in the latter half of this week.

A “supermoon” takes place when a new or full moon is at its closest approach to Earth in its orbit. As a result, the moon will appear to be significantly larger and brighter than the usual full moons taking place throughout the year. Researchers remain split on whether the upcoming June moon is, indeed, a supermoon.

Much of this has to do with the different criteria used by various publications over which full moons actually qualify as supermoons, according to NASA.

“For 2021, some publications consider the four full Moons from March to June, some the three full Moons from April to June, and some only the two full Moons in April and May as supermoons,” said the space agency’s Gordon Johnston.

And while the expectation of a dazzling red- or pink-hued moon would make sense given the June moon’s title as a “strawberry moon,” the moon will be its typical golden hue.

The strawberry moon name instead reflects the time of year when Native American peoples harvested the fruit in parts of North America, notes the Farmer’s Almanac.  

The strawberry moon marks the final full moon of spring or the first of the summer season. It has also gone by a number of other names, according to The Farmer’s Almanac. These names include the birth moon, blooming moon, egg laying moon, green corn moon, hoer moon, hatching moon, honey moon and mead moon.

The full moon will be at its brightest on Thursday, June 24, at 2:40 p.m. ET, but won’t be fully visible until later that evening when it ascends past the horizon. The moon will then appear full for roughly three days, from about Wednesday morning through Saturday morning.

The precise time of the moonrise and moonset in your location can be found at  

And don’t worry if weather conditions won’t allow you to view this rare lunar event – you can also view it live from the comfort of your home using the Virtual Telescope Project’s livestream of the moon over Rome, Italy, which begins on June 24 at 3 p.m. ET.

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Police Rescue Dogs Trapped In Car on Sizzling Hot Day, Owners Complain About Broken Window

Elias Marat



Police in the UK acted quickly to save a two dogs locked inside a car in sizzling hot temperatures by smashing open a window, upsetting the car’s owner over the damage.

Officers responded Sunday to reports that a beagle and another dog were trapped in a car parked in the seaside British city of Brighton on a day of boiling heat.

In video captured of the incident, an officer can be seen jamming his baton through a rear window before finally shattering it to free the pooches.

This prompts the car alarm to go off as the car’s owners can be seen rushing toward it, upset over the police intervention.

A woman, standing with her shocked family, says: “You broke my window out!”

One of the officer responded: “It’s a hot day. You shouldn’t be leaving the dog in the car in this weather.”

The incident happened on a day when people across the region flock to the seaside resort city to dip into the beaches amid surging hot temperatures.

The onlooker who filmed the incident noted that the owners seemed unaware of the dangers posed to their pets by weather conditions.

“Where they had parked there is just no shade,” they told The Sun. “It’s directly on the seafront in 25°C (77°F) weather outside – I’ve got no idea what it was inside the car.”

The family was indignant over what they claim was an overreaction by the police.

“At first it was ‘what the f*** are you doing, why did you break my car window? I was only gone for 10 minutes,’” another witness explained.

“The bloke obviously thought he was completely in the right,” they added. “He didn’t really seem to have much empathy.”

According to UK animal welfare group RSPCA, outside temperatures of 22°C (71°F) can reach a brutal 47°C (116.6°F) inside a car within an hour.

“Police officers attended and tried to get a contact number for the owners of the car but were unable,” a Sussex Police spokesperson said. “Officers had no choice but to smash the side window to gain access and a kind member of the public donated a bottle of water.”

Authorities added that the officers let the pet owners off with a stern warning, without ticketing the family or separating their dogs from them.

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Scientists Prove What Causes Aurora Borealis for the First Time

Elias Marat



Since the dawn of time, humans have been mystified by what causes the aurora borealis or northern lights. However, a group of scientists have finally uncovered what causes the dazzling lightshow that has captivated people for so long.

Researchers at the University of Iowa have proven that the shimmering auroras are the result of powerful electromagnetic waves during geomagnetic storms, according to a newly published study.

According to the study, phenomena known as Alfven waves propel electrons toward Earth and cause the particles to produce the brilliant display of northern lights seen in the higher latitudes of our planet,

“Measurements revealed this small population of electrons undergoes ‘resonant acceleration’ by the Alfven wave’s electric field, similar to a surfer catching a wave and being continually accelerated as the surfer moves along with the wave,” Prof. Greg Howes, a co-author of the study, told CNN.

Scientists have long understood that the aurora was the likely result of electrons surfing across the electric field, at least since the theory was introduced in 1946 by Soviet scientist Lev Landau.

However, the University of Iowa professors were able to finally put the theory to the test through a simulation at a lab at the Large Plasma Device (LPD) in the Basic Plasma Science Facility of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

Using a 20-meter-long chamber to simulate the magnetic field of the Earth through state-of-the-art magnetic field coils, scientists were able to generate plasma similar to that which exists in spac.

“Using a specially designed antenna, we launched Alfven waves down the machine, much like shaking a garden hose up and down quickly, and watching the wave travel along the hose,” said Howes.

While this didn’t result in the type of auroras we might see in the sky, “our measurements in the laboratory clearly agreed with predictions from computer simulations and mathematical calculations, proving that electrons surfing on Alfven waves can accelerate the electrons (up to speeds of 45 million mph) that cause the aurora,” Howes noted.

Scientists across the country were elated by the results of the experiment.

“I was tremendously excited! It is a very rare thing to see a laboratory experiment that validates a theory or model concerning the space environment,” said Patrick Koehn, a scientist in the Heliophysics Division of NASA.

“Space is simply too big to easily simulate in the lab,” he added.

Researchers are hopeful that a greater understanding will allow forecasters to better understand weather conditions in space.

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