This morning comes more saber rattling from Iran, the troubled Middle-Eastern regime that routinely issues threats against real and perceived enemies. This time the object of the Iranian leadership’s vitriol is Google.
Google has dropped the name of the body of water historically known as the “Persian Gulf.” The map instead offers no name for the area.
According to a report from the Associated Press, “Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast says that if Google does not restore the name of the Persian Gulf, it will face ‘serious damages.’” The country has threatened to sue Google.
However the naming of the Gulf is disputed. Many Arab countries assert that it should be called the Arabian Gulf instead.
It’s not clear whether Google dropped the name because of this dispute. However it’s very unlikely that Iran has any real recourse through the US or European court system over the issue.
This is certainly not the first such “international incident” for Google Maps. Cambodia was upset with Google about how the country’s border with Thailand was drawn on Google Maps. And a Nicaraguan military commander moved troops into Costa Rica, creating controversy, and blamed the episode on Google Maps.
Most recently Google Street View photography on Google Maps supposedly revealed a secret military base in Israel.