The Arab television station Al-Arabiya has aired footage yesterday of what it claims were Iraqi men kicking and stepping on the corpse of Mohammed Hamza al-Zubaidi, a prime minister under Saddam Hussein who was linked to the suppression of Shiites after the 1991 Gulf War.
On December 5th 2005 U.S. military reported that al-Zubaidi, 67, had died of heart failure at a U.S. military hospital. Al-Arabiya quoted a U.S. Army spokesman saying that al-Zubaidi's body had been turned over to the Iraqi government after the autopsy.
Nonetheless a body, which is claimed to be that of al-Zubaidi, was shown being stepped on and kicked. Voices could be heard saying, "step on his mouth."
This unpleasant piece of footage, if genuine, raises a number of questions:
1 When and where was the footage taken?
2 Had the corpse really been handed over the official Iraqi authorities?
3 If the authorities had received the corpse, how is it that it fell into the hands of an angry mob?