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Filed Under Politics

Iranian Nuclear Woes Smack of NIMBY-ism

Posted January 23, 2006

At a recent neighborhood association meeting, people drank fruit juices and sampled the three bean salad. There was polite conversation all around, but it seemed that the thing on the tip of everyone's tongue, and the one thing nobody wanted to bring up, was Iran's nuclear program.

"People around here like the neighborhood a certain way," said Turkmenistan. "They asked me to take down my yard gnomes, and I felt like 'no' wasn't an answer."

Iran stood in the corner and picked at the stuffed mushrooms. "We've been here as long as anyone. It's like they hold that against us. New neighbors come and go, and all of a sudden they have the right to tell me how to paint my fence?"

Iran continued, and everyone else stopped speaking. They strained to listen in, so Iran whispered. "They're just jealous of the awesome power that God has granted us."

Iran wants to go nuclear, and there's a feeling in the neighborhood that nobody should have to put up with it. Is it the case of the NIMBY Not In My Back Yard syndrome suffered by so many communities? Iran thinks so, but nobody else will come out and say it.

"It's a shaky neighborhood all the way around," said next door resident Afghanistan. "My windows have been out, I've lost cable. Iran's notion of energy independence isn't going to help me."

Iran's other close neighbor, Iraq, would not answer the door. We knocked several times, and it appears that nobody's home.

"There's been a little neighborhood rivalry," says Turkmenistan. "India and Pakistan lived together for a long time, but recently went through a really ugly divorce. Their kid Kashmir is a problem child, and everyone feels really bad for him. Now, it's like, if India gets a ping pong table, Pakistan has to have one. Then Pakistan goes out and buys a BMW, and there's one in India's driveway the next day. The nuclear thing is all a part of that. Like iPods. Something else will come along, and everyone can fight about that."

"Nukes depress the real estate market," said Azerbaijan. "I'm thinking of retiring, getting a place on the Caspian Sea. This would complicate things."

"I blame America," says Iran, "who doesn't even live here. They just have a couple of summer houses, and they act like they own the place. If they even show up at the neighborhood association meeting, which they never do, I'm not talking to them."



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