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(James Warden/Stars and Stripes)

Samood, Iraq, July 26, 2008: Spc. Hiram Elizondo crosses the steep banks of a canal early in the morning while searching fields around Samood, Iraq, for weapons caches. Soldiers with Fox Troop, 2nd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment awoke at 4 a.m. to start patrolling before the worst of the heat arrived. But even Iraq’s coolest temperatures can be strength-sapping, especially when soldiers must lug all their gear on their backs.

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