Iranians the biggest gamblers in Asia? What are the odds?

In the US, gambling online is technically illegal, but that doesn’t stop millions of Americans from playing poker and betting on sports over the internet. Some of us are even known to fund our travels that way (allegedly).

It turns out all of us dangerous gambling delinquents have something in common with the Iranians– we’re both fans of non-government-sanctioned internet gambling.

A British online gambling outfit called RummyRoyal has determined that the Islamic Republic of Iran has the highest ratio of online gamblers to population in all of Asia. This despite the fact that gambling is forbidden in Islam and under Sharia law.

Sasha Arkin, RummyRoyal’s game room manager, sees this as a good sign coming from Iran: “[T]hrough the exchange of messages and money, [Iranians] are breaking out of their isolation imposed by the State.”

It’s nice to know that the US and Iran, two countries often at odds with each other, have something in common: a propensity for passing dumb laws and an inability to enforce them. (Also we both like gambling.)