Crossing The Lines

Though barred from combat, female troops in Iraq often find themselves in full-fledged battle. An intimate look at the lives of the real G.I. Janes

For Captain Shonnel Makwakwa, it was a rare assignment "outside the wire": a chance to break the monotony of life on the base and get out onto the streets of Baghdad. But it didn't take long to realize that this was no routine mission. Minutes after Makwakwa's humvee pulled out of Camp Liberty last December, bad news crackled over the radio: a supply convoy of six 18-wheel trucks was ambushed at Checkpoint 50, a freeway cloverleaf that is a notorious shooting alley for insurgents. Makwakwa, a bright, fit New Orleans native, handles medical logistics for the U.S. 10th Mountain Division--the kind of...

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