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Fighting the elements, not the enemy, on India's China border

Fighting the elements, not the enemy, on India's China borderDeath is a real and constant danger for the soldiers serving on India's Himalayan border with China, but until a deadly brawl on June 15 the only killers since 1975 have been the topography and the elements. "We get more than 100 casualties every year just due to terrain, weather conditions, avalanches... There is constant danger," said retired Lt. General DS Hooda, who until 2016 headed India's Northern Command. In the "cold desert" of the Galwan river valley in the Ladakh region where the fighting took place, winter temperatures can plunge below minus 30 Celsius (minus 22 Fahrenheit), cracking gun barrels and seizing up machinery.




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