DANIEL VAUGHAN: Good Riddance To Ebrahim Raisi (1960-2024) - The Hangman Of Tehran

 May 20, 2024

Ebrahim Raisi, the former President of Iran, is dead. The world is a better place. He died in a brutal helicopter crash on the side of a mountain, where little remained of the vehicle or its passengers. While official state media in Iran is mourning, if you look at leaked social media posts from the country, Iranians are celebrating.

Those celebrations are hidden as much as possible, however. That's because Raisi was known as "The Hangman of Tehran." Other Western reports call him the "Butcher of Tehran." Either way, the man was a stone-cold killer who slaughtered as many of his own people as he did Jews, Americans, and anyone else his plots targeted.

Early in his career, Raisi made his name as the Deputy Prosecutor responsible for going after dissidents in Iran. The 1988 "death committees" led by Raisi and others killed between 2,500 and 30,000 people after kangaroo court proceedings.

In 2023, after taking power, Raisi bragged about putting down riots in the country in the previous year. The "riots" were protests because the state murdered Mahsa Yina Amini, a 22-year-old woman who died in police custody after being arrested for wearing her veil incorrectly.

The demonstrations sparked by Amini's death were met with a violent repression that the U.N. Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Iran described as crimes against humanity. According to the U.N. report, at least 550 Iranians died at the hands of paramilitaries and security forces and 60,000 Iranians were detained for taking part in the protests, whose slogan was "Woman, Life, Freedom." At least nine men were hanged in connection with the protests, one of them in public.

Two women who celebrated Raisi's death were Mersedeh Shahinkar and Sima Moradbeigi. "Shahinkar was blinded by the security forces' brutality amid the 2022 protests, while Moradbeigi lost the use of one of her arms after an armed guard blasted her elbow apart from point-blank range."

Ebrahim Raisi was a hardline supporter of every form of evil the theocratic Iranian regime pushed out. That is his legacy, and he reveled in the nickname of being a butcher or hangman.

That's why there's a certain level of irony in how he died. The helicopter Raisi died in was a Bell 212 helicopter, a 50-year-old chopper. Due to constant sanctions, Iran likely struggled to maintain this and many other commercial and military vehicles.

To add insult to injury, Raisi's helicopter effectively vanished in northern Iran's hilly, mountainous terrain. A deep fog, intermixed with cold rain and snow, set in, effectively masking the crash site. After the crash, Iran took around 15 hours to find it and had to call in help from neighboring Turkey and Russia.

Following the updates from state media throughout the day was amusing. If the crash hadn't killed Raisi and his cohorts, Iran's imbecilic search and rescue operation most certainly would have.

Iran claimed to have made phone contact with the helicopter and two survivors at various points. This claim faded hard when it became clear Iran couldn't find the crash site.

Searchers started chasing "leads" they got. Some reported they "smelled gas." But that turned out to be a wild goose chase, too, when it turned out the searches didn't know the difference between car fumes and helicopter fuel.

And then there was the weather itself. Searchers were mired in the muck and mud of rain and snow, with no visibility. Iran has claimed all kinds of capabilities with drones and other military aircraft. Yet when they needed that capability the most, Iran waited half a day for Turkey to send over a drone with thermal imaging.

Mighty Iran was reduced to nothing more than a mere bystander in the search for its own President. Losing its President, Foreign Minister, and other ranking officials wasn't embarrassing enough. Iran could do nothing to prevent it, and even less to find the missing bodies.

We'll undoubtedly see ludicrous displays of mourning from various world officials. But it's not a day of mourning. It's one of celebration. One of the deeply evil men in the world who sought blood at every turn met a fitting end, getting scraped across a mountainside slope like a squashed bug. His own country was helpless to do anything about it, and his only company was likely wild animals.

The world is a better place without the Hangman of Tehran. He met fate that he doled out to his people and those around him. Hopefully, the rest of the despotic Islamic Iranian regime meets a similar fate. The world could use some more improvement.

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Thomas Jefferson
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