Conscience and Casualties

In its 160th week at war, the U.S. still made routine grumbling noises about shortages—just to hold its franchise on griping. Its citizens, perhaps downing a vague sense of guilt, had just enjoyed one of the biggest Christmas spending sprees since the fabulous '205.

All this was part of a deep conviction: that the U.S. is big and strong enough to fight a hard war and still keep the home fires burning. But last week, as casualty lists began to lengthen in newspapers from Framingham to Bellingham. one cold truth settled over the country. The nation was now spending, at...

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