June 5, 2008 | National Review Online

Who Says We Can’t Find Common Ground with al Qaeda?

 At his arraignment today, upon being advised by the military court of the possibility that he could be executed if convicted, Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the jihadist savage who orchestrated the 9/11 attacks that killed nearly 3000 Americans, explained that this was fine by him because he would like to be a “martyr.”  We should be delighted to accommodate him.  I see the makings of a deal here.

From the usual suspects, we’re hearing the drivel about how killing him will only “fan the flames” of radicalism (to borrow Obama’s vapid phrase).  Do they really think letting him live but keeping him in jail for life would mollify our enemies?  (In 1997, Egyptian terrorists in Luxor brutally murdered scores of tourists in an effort to extort the U.S. into releasing the Blind Sheikh — they seemed fairly upset about his life-sentence, and have continued to be upset as he continues to serve it.)  The flames of radicalism are already on full-time fan, folks.  It’s silly to think we can affect them much one way or the other.  We have to forget about them and do what our security requires.

Captured terrorists acquire great prestige in the jihadist movement.  From their prison cells, they have been known to issue fatwas, plan attacks, direct operations, and assault and maim the American prison authorities, soldiers and sailors who are assigned to guard them.  Let them become martyrs … and the sooner the better.