Brian J. Foley [Florida Coastal School of Law]: "If U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema throws out the government's bid to have the death penalty imposed on confessed al-Qaida conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui, as a result of apparent misconduct by government lawyers in the sentencing hearing,
she will be doing the government -- and rest of us -- a giant favor. Moussaoui will end up being sentenced to life without parole. It's best to keep him alive, since he pled guilty in the case and apparently has knowledge and understanding of Al Qaeda. If our government kills him, we can never get any further information from him.
In this way, Judge Brinkema can help our political leaders avoid the mistake they made in killing Timothy McVeigh after he was convicted of the 1996 Oklahoma City bombing. There has been speculation that there were other people involved in that bombing besides McVeigh and Terry Nichols (also convicted for perpetrating this crime) who remain unknown to us. You never know: McVeigh, perhaps years from now, might have had a change of heart. That could have led us to the other perpetrators, and people associated with them. In an effort to seek retribution, our leaders helped him take that information to the grave. If accomplices remain at large, they may strike again.
Intelligence is a more potent weapon than revenge."