Death Penalty Sought For Detainees

There was some talk of whether it would be a good idea to seek the death penalty for terrorism suspects, because it could make martyrs of them--perhaps something they would want, something the U.S. should deny them, and something that could provide some gratification, if not a rallying point, to jihadists who support them. But Attorney General Eric Holder said that he will seek the death penalty for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and the four other Guantanamo detainees who will be transferred to New York for trial in a federal court for masterminding and helping to carry out the 9/11 attacks:

"We are, as I indicated, seeking the most serious punishment," Holder said. "I intend to ask for the death penalty when it comes to those five individuals. That is an indication, I think, of how serious I view these cases, how negative the consequences of their actions were and how they must face the ultimate justice," Holder said at a news conference today.

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Chris Good is a political reporter for ABC News. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and a reporter for The Hill.

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