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Third Division Soldiers Prepare to Return to Iraq

In January, the more than 18,000 soldiers with the 3rd Infantry Division will begin deploying for a second combat tour in Iraq. The soldiers, who led the U.S. Army's invasion of Iraq last year, will be the first Army division to return to the country since the beginning of the offensive.

As they brace for another lengthy and challenging separation, NPR's Eric Westervelt talks with the soldiers and families based at Fort Stewart, Ga.

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Eric Westervelt is a San Francisco-based correspondent for NPR's National Desk. He has reported on major events for the network from wars and revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa to historic wildfires and terrorist attacks in the U.S.