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Soldiers returning from Iraq are greeted by family members during a refueling stop in Maine

Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Specialist Cory Davis from Somersworth, N.H. is greeted by his mother, Beth Davis, as he arrives in Maine for a refueling stop as they make their way to Fort Hood, Texas after being one of the last American combat units to exit from Iraq on Dec. 16, 2011 in Bangor, Maine.

US forces formally ended their nine-year war in Iraq with a low-key flag ceremony in Baghdad on Thursday. NBC's Richard Engel reports.