It seems that the heroes arrived too late, and the poor devil had already been beheaded. But after retrieving the head from the dog's mouth, the quick-thinking rescuers snapped it back on again, leaving the hearty soldier none the worse for wear, except for some dog slobber.
CNN military analyst James Marks, a retired Army general, questioned its authenticity.
He told CNN in a phone interview that the flak jacket in the picture had a kind of trim along the edges that he'd never seen before, and that the open-legged pants, as opposed to gathered hems, struck him as odd.
He also questioned what appeared to be camouflage paint on the face.
"We have not used camo paint with conventional forces serving in Iraq," Marks said.
Yeah...That was the clue. As opposed to the blank expression and painted-on pupils. Nice work, Sherlock.