May 04, 2006

Moussaoui: Punishment for a Terrorist

Zacarias Moussaoui has been sentenced to life in prison, and will not receive the death penalty. This issue divides some people. The crime is surely deserving of the death penalty, but isn't that what a suicide bomber WANTS? I think the judge nailed it:
U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema responded: "You came here to be a martyr and die in a big bang of glory. But to paraphrase the poet T.S. Eliot, instead you will die with a whimper," she said, borrowing a line from "The Hollow Men."

The judge then followed the decision of the jury and ordered the al Qaeda terrorist to spend the rest of his natural life in prison.
How do you punish a man who has been prepared to, and even looks FORWARD TO, dying for his cause? You rob him of that glory. You deny him the martyrdom that was to be his reward. You put him in solitary confinement where he cannot spread Allah's word. You let him die an old, broken man in prison, not as a hero who was killed by the evil empire. He does not go forward to meet Allah, Allah will have to come and collect him when his body expires from age.

That is exactly how you should deal with a suicide bomber.

And Justin is right: In Prison, there is a justice even among the lawless. Those who commit heinous crimes are often dealt with by the populace who have not totally lost their morals. Child molesters are even put on protective watch in the prisons, for fear of them being found with their privates tucked into their shirt pocket. Even criminals love America. So how much more danger from other inmates will Moussaoui be in, when he helped orchestrate the largest civilian attack on America ever, and the mass-murder of thousands?

Instead of killing citizens of the Infidel Empire, he may well die at the hands of robbers and petty criminals. The middle east pioneered the idea of punishments fitting the crime; Thieves having their hands cut off at the wrist, Perjurers having their tongues removed, Adulterers, likewise. There is no glory to Allah in dying a failed martyr, just shame. That is the most fitting punishment I can think of.

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