WASHINGTON, July 27, 1953 (UP) - Stopping Communist aggression in Korea cost the free world billions of dollars, tens of thousands of lives, and measureless misery. -- Exactly how much it cost the United States to fight the Korean war probably can never be determined.
The best Defense Department estimate is that Korea cost $15,000,000,000. World War I cost about $25,080,000,000 and World War II $323,623,501,000.
Even harder to estimate than the money costs are the costs in terms of human suffering. More than three years of war left millions of Koreans homeless and their land devastated.
American battle casualties alone, through last Friday, totaled 139,272, including 24,965 dead, 101,368 wounded, 2,938 captured, 8,476 missing, and 1,525 previously reported captured or missing and since returned to duty.
Pentagon sources officially estimate South Korean casualties at more than 184,000 and those of other United Nations forces at around 13,500 - before the heavy fighting of recent weeks.
These figures add up to more than 336,772 casualties for all U.N. forces.
The enemy, however, suffered more, according to the most recent U.S. estimate. As of last April 20, according to this estimate, North Korean and Chinese Communist casualties totaled 1,185,000.