A tale of two narratives emerged on social media, after Iran's president Ebrahim Raisi, foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and several other senior officials died Sunday in a helicopter crash.

While Iranians opposed to the government rejoiced at the news of their deaths, messages of condolences, and even a moment of silence at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) took place for a man whose legacy has him known as "the Butcher of Tehran."

Iranian-Canadian human rights lawyer Kaveh Sharooz says Raisi's hands are "covered in blood."

"He's a man of no particular talent, frankly, except, following the regime's line and carrying out its dirty work," said Shahrooz.

Just after the 1979 Islamic Revolution, the clerical regime began killing its political opponents and dissidents, most famously in 1988. Sharooz said that year became known as the 1988 massacre when then Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa, ordering the execution of imprisoned opponents, including those who had already been tried and serving a prison sentence.

Raisi was instrumental in that, said Sharooz.

"Raisi himself, was a member of what came to be known among the prisoners as a death commission. You know, he would conduct 2 or 3 match trials where political prisoners that had already gone through trials several years earlier, would be retried, and most of them were actually sent to hang. And from then on, he sort of continued his policy of murder and torture," said Shahrooz.

Despite having committed what many critics allege are crimes against humanity, the leader of the democratic, free world, the United States officially sent their condolences.

When asked about reports of Iranian people celebrating the death of President Raisi, the State Department's Spokesperson said Monday, "I can certainly understand why people inside Iran would feel that way when you look at the brutal repression that happened under President Raisi's tenure, especially when you look at his abuse of women and girls, I can see why the people in Iran would feel that way in response to his death, but I obviously can't speak for them."

Shahrooz told Iran International "it's shocking to me, that so many democratic countries, are not just giving condolences to the regime, but there are actually saying condolences to the people of Iran as if the people of Iran are in mourning, when in fact, you know, we have evidence that they're actually out there celebrating."

On X, NATO's Spokesperson offered their "condolences to the people of Iran" for the death of Raisi.

Many readers were outraged by the tweet, and responded by adding the following 'context note' below the statement: "Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi killed thousands of innocent people for no reason, earning himself the nickname “The Butcher of Tehran.”"

The US Senate Chaplain offered a prayer for Iran's President, saying "Lord, we pray for the Iranian people who mourn the death of their president."

When asked what could explain such a disconnect or potential failure in diplomacy with the people of Iran, Shahrooz said the West mistakenly believes Iran's regime will change its behavior based on carrots.

"It's a continuation of a policy of appeasement that we've seen for far too long. You know, Iran's regime has been able to get away with quite a lot without, substantial pushback, from the West. They've, attacked Western countries. They recently attacked Israel. And regrettably, the Western policies have simply been to go along in the hopes that, Iran will also play along," said Shahrooz.

Meantime, Iranians inside the country set off fireworks to celebrate Raisi's death and diaspora Iranians took to street parties from the Netherland to Canada.

It's not just Iranians celebrating, said Shahrooz.

"I've seen reports of, Syrians, for example, celebrating because they recognize that the Islamic regime and people like Raisi have been responsible for their misery as well," said Shahrooz.

Victims of the Islamic Republic and their families also posted videos to social media rejoicing at the demise of Raisi and his entourage.

Speculations and morbid jokes about the circumstances and the cause of the crash flooded the online world. From puns about helicopter crashes to jokes about the succession race like this one posted by Israel-Iran journalist and analyst Jonathan Harounoff.

"Iranian social media has simply lit up with both jokes and humor, but also very poignant messages," said Shahrooz.

Shahrooz said "the jokes are simply a way for people to exert some power because they've been powerless for decades."

A striking image of a women's braided hair taking down a helicopter is also being shared widely on social media.

Commentators online say the image has become a symbol of women taking down the President who enforced discriminatory laws that led to the torture and demise of many Iranians for decades.

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