Decapitated Bodies Found near Baghdad

Several conflicting stories are floating around about two decapitated bodies found this weekend in Baghdad.

Two bodies found near Baghdad (Aljazeera)

“The decapitated man and the woman, who was shot dead, were brought to the hospital last night” by the Iraqi national guard, according to a hospital official in the town of Mahmudiya, 40km south of Baghdad. He said “they had no identity papers on them” and their nationality could not be determined. The hospital said the woman had been found wearing jewellery, an apparent sign that it was not a case of common crime.

An Iraqi national guard spokesman had said earlier that the two victims were Iraqis and their bodies were found on Saturday night on the road near Yusifiya, 20km south of Baghdad. The area around Yusifiya and the neighbouring towns of Mahmudiya and Latifiya are known to Baghdad residents as the “triangle of death”. They are the scenes of almost daily attacks on US military convoys, Iraqi security forces, truckers suspected of transporting goods for US forces, and foreigners travelling the main north-south roads which traverse the area.


Bodies of Two Westerners Found South of Baghdad
(Reuters)

Iraqi police have found the bodies of a man and a woman, both believed to be Westerners, south of Baghdad, the director of the hospital that received the corpses said Sunday. He said the man had been beheaded and the woman had been shot, but no other details were immediately available. The bodies were found late Saturday.”Their features suggest they were Westerners,” the director of Mahmudiya hospital, Daoud Jassim, told Reuters.

Bodies of Man and Woman Found Near Iraqi Capital (VOA)

Hospital officials in Iraq say police have found the bodies of a man and a woman south of Baghdad. Both appeared to be Westerners, but neither had identification. A hospital official said the man was beheaded and the woman had been shot. The bodies were recovered late Saturday about 20 kilometers south of the capital. Earlier Saturday, insurgents beheaded an Iraqi contractor who they said was working for U.S. forces.


Two more bodies found south of Baghdad
(Sidney Morning Herald)

The unidentified bodies of a decapitated man and a woman who died of bullet wounds have been found south of the Iraqi capital, hospital officials have said. “The decapitated man and the woman who was shot dead were brought to the hospital last night” by the Iraqi national guard, said a hospital official in the town of Mahmudiyah, 40 kilometres south of the capital. “They had no identity papers on them,” he said, adding that their nationality could not be determined. The hospital said the woman had been found wearing jewellery, in an apparent sign that it was not a case of common crime. An Iraqi national guard spokesman had said earlier that the two victims were Iraqis and their bodies were found last night on the road near Yussifiyah, 20 kilometres south of Baghdad.

The area around Yussifiyah and the neighbouring towns of Mahmudiyah and Latifiyah are known to Baghdadis as the “triangle of death”. They are the site of almost daily attacks on US military convoys, Iraqi security forces, truckers suspected of transporting goods for US forces and foreigners travelling the main north-south roads which traverse the area.

So, we have two dead people, one of whom is a man, the other a woman. They may be Iraqis or Westerners. They may have both been beheaded, or one beheaded and one shot, or both shot and also decapitated.

Jeff Quinton is beginning a roundup of blogger reaction.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.