Grim cost predicted in effort to destroy North Korea's nukes

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WASHINGTON (AP) - (11/0517) - The only way to locate and destroy with complete certainty all components of North Korea's nuclear weapons program is through a ground invasion. That blunt assessment from the Pentagon is in response to a letter from two Democratic congressmen asking about casualty assessments in a conflict with North Korea.

Rear Adm. Michael J. Dumont of the Joint Staff offered the assessment in response to a letter from congressmen Ted Lieu of California and Ruben Gallego of Arizona.

In a joint statement issued Saturday, 15 Democratic lawmakers and one Republican- all military veterans - call the assessment that a ground invasion would be required to destroy the North's nuclear arsenal "deeply disturbing." They say such an action could quickly result in hundreds of thousands, even millions of deaths.

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