December 15, 2011 6:28 PM

Last U.S. base in Iraq prepares to turn out the lights

The young Army officer who's in charge of logistics at the last U.S. base in Iraq is a Sudanese refugee, one of the "lost boys" who fled their war-ravaged homeland in the mid-1990s. His staff sergeant survived a deadly improvised-explosives attack during his third tour here in 2005, then returned for two more. When they and the five other members of their team process the final load of equipment from what was once a network of more than 500 American bases, the nearly nine-year U.S. occupation and military presence in Iraq will be history.

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