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Iranians Celebrate President Raisi’s Helicopter Crash

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Iranians around the world are celebrating the disappearance and possible death of Iran President Ebrahim Raisi’s after the helicopter carrying him and his foreign minister crashed on Sunday.

There is still no confirmation on any deaths, but many Iranians inside Iran and in the diaspora are rejoicing at the possibility.

While State media halted all of its regular programming to show prayers being held for Raisi across the country, a different narrative emerged on social media, and in the homes of Iranians across the globe.

Iran International has obtained footage of celebratory fireworks in the skies of Iran.
“Let’s celebrate the good news of Ebrahim Raisi’s chopper crash,” said one Tehran resident heard in a video sent to Iran International.

More videos obtained by Iran International show Iranians watching and cheering on fireworks set off reportedly in response to the news.

There are reports that the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) is increasing its presence in response to prevent an uprising.

“Aside from being one of the most conservative presidents Iran has ever seen, Raisi rose to prominence in the Islamic Republic through the brutal judicial system where he was a member of the notorious ‘Panel of Death,’ sending thousands of political prisoners to the gallows. There’s a reason why he earned the moniker ‘Butcher of Tehran,” said Jonathan Harounoff, Israel and Iran journalist and analyst.

Harounoff told Iran International news that Raisi has become synonymous with everything opponents to the Islamic Republic inside Iran and abroad despise.

“Widespread bureaucratic corruption, woeful economic mismanagement, sky-high inflation, high unemployment. Not to mention tight censorship and severe punishment or death for political dissent,” said Harounoff.

Women’s rights activist Masih Alinejad declared today as “World Helicopter Day” and said this is “the only crash in history where everyone is worried if someone survived.”

Videos circulating on the platform X also show Iranians inside Iran dancing to the news outlets coverage of Raisi’s crash, and potential demise.

And Iranians in the diaspora are rejoicing too. In London, people came out to show their happiness, throwing a dance party in front of the embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

“Some Iranians online were posting mockingly that while Raisi’s whereabouts and condition remain unknown, conspiracy theories are likely to proliferate, especially concerning whether or not the Mossad was behind this. Even though this was more likely than not a crash related to inclement weather,” said Harounoff.

Harounoff said there’s one joke that exploded and gave new meaning to not to believe everything you read.

One particular joke that eventually got out of hand was that the helicopter pilot’s was actually a Mossad agent named Eli Copter – and Hamas’ main Telegram page went on to cite that as a fact.

The victims of the Iranian government are also taking to social media to express their joy.

The daughters of anti-regime protestor Minoo Majidi, a 62- year-old mother, who was shot by security forces with 167 shotgun pellets in Kermanshah and died during the Woman-Life- Freedom uprisings in 2022, posted themselves having a drink and toasting to the news.

Two Iranian women, who were brutally attacked by Iran’s security agents during nationwide uprisings in 2022, posted a video on X together celebrating the potential end of a man who enforced discriminatory laws that led to their torture.

Mersedeh Shahinkar was at a protest with her mom in Tehran, triggered by the death of Mahsa Jina Amini, when a security agent shot a projectile that took out her eye.

The other woman in the video is Sima Moradbeigi. Morabeigi, a young mother, lost her mobility in her right arm after being shot by an Iranian revolutionary guard in the arm during Woman-Life-Freedom protests.

Near the end of the video, Mersedeh says, “we are returning [to Iran] with these suitcases.”