There are many ways to understand the cost of war. The one that I expect most people would first think of is the human cost in lives lost and dreams forever stilled. For WWII the cost was very high. The United States bore only a small portion of that cost but it was still significant. The wall at the World War II Memorial has a gold star representing every 100 soldiers killed in battle. It is sobering to sit in front of the stars reflected in the pool in front of it and be humbled by those who made that sacrifice. Which brings another cost to the war, that of letting the sacrifice mean less than it should by allowing the freedom and the values that drove these soldiers into battle to be lost. That makes the cost too high.