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Iranian General Accuses Israel of Stealing His Country’s Clouds and Snow

Brigadier General Gholam Reza Jalali, head of Iran’s Civil Defense Organization, yesterday told members of the press that Israel has been stealing Iran’s clouds while also working to ensure that whatever clouds do make it into Iranian air space are unable to release rain.

Relations between Iran and Israel have always been tense, but I doubt anyone imagined one side would go as far as to accuse the other of stealing their clouds. Well, that’s exactly what happened yesterday, when, during a press conference, Iranian General Gholam Reza Jalali said that his country’s prolonged drought has been caused by foreign interference, more specifically by Israel and “another country”. Jalali tried to back up his claims by citing a survey showing that all mountainous areas above 2,200 meters between Afghanistan and the Mediterranean are covered in snow, except those in Iran.

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The Unkai Terrace of Tomamu – A Magical Place Above the Clouds

Located in Japan’s Tomamu Resort,  on the island of Hokkaido, the Unkai Terrace is a unique scenic spot perched high atop a mountain peak that is often above the clouds, offering tourists breathtaking views of the white, fluffy sea beneath them.

The “unkai” (sea of clouds) phenomenon has been attracting tourists to the resort town on Tomamu for years. The natural hot springs in the area and the differences in temperature during the few hours when night turns into day determine the formation of an immaculate white blanket of clouds over the mountainous region, but only a few people had the chance to see the unique effect from above, until a gondola system was put in place. It takes early-bird tourists up the mountain to the Unkai Terrace, right above the sea of clouds, where they can watch the sunrise, take photos of the Hidaka and Tokachi mountain peaks as they pierce the fluffy fog and enjoy a refreshing cup of coffee or a bowl of soup. Although the gondola fare is pretty expensive (around $20), the view from Unkai Terrace is definitely worth every yen.

Unkai-Terrace

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Beautiful Lenticular Clouds

These unusual clouds are called lenticular clouds because of their lens-like shape and they tend to form at high altitudes, normally aligned at right-angles to the wind direction.

They have often been mistaken for UFOs in the past, due to their odd shape, but they are becoming more common these days. They are indeed another of mother nature’s wonders, truly a sight to behold!

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