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Afghanistan War: Fighting ends as winter begins

With the onslaught of bitter cold in Afghanistan, the Taliban head indoors.

Grubbs described seeing his IV bags freeze in Paktika, so he began carrying them in his cargo pockets to keep them liquid. Rehydrating a victim with cold IV fluid can also contribute to hypothermia.

Weapons can jam in winter when moisture freezes in the bolt mechanism, and precision sniper rifles need to be aimed differently when the barrel is very cold, according to Arsenault, who has extensive cold-weather fighting experience.

“If you even breathe near a gunsight when it's below 32, that sight is going to fog up badly,” Arsenault said. “Cold weather will always play havoc with radios and equipment.”

And so it goes as U.S. troops enter into their 10th year of winter fighting the Afghanistan War.