Retributive Justice: The 9/11 Attack’s Participant

On September 11, 2001, four coordinated terrorist attacks were carried out by al-Qaeda, targeting the Pentagon building and the Twin Towers. The attack occurred as a result of a plane hijacking by nineteen terrorists. This case is dedicated to exploring the case of one of the terrorists who participated in the 9/11 attacks in the United States is trialed and convicted in a U.S criminal court. In this case, the prosecutor will argue for a sentence based on retribution. Under this case, the retributive justice will be capital punishment because the terrorism act took two thousand one hundred and ninety-six lives. The argument is expected to include several points, such as the absence of possibility that the convicted individual committed other related crimes, the fear of capital punishment, and the need to serve justice.

The 9/11 attack cost a lot of lives both for the United States and foreign nationals. Imprisoning this criminal can lead to them escaping or communicating with the outside world. They can be involved in other coordinated attacks on the soil or other countries either directly or indirectly. Since lives were taken, retributive justice, such as capital punishment, will ensure that the crime is not committed again by the same person or the bad ideas being spread by them (Roberson & O’Reilley, 2020). Thus, it is necessary to carry out preventive measures to avoid reoffending.

The fear of death is another argument in support of the prosecution of the criminal. Capital punishment as retributive justice, in this case, will make people think twice before they can commit a crime. They will be aware that there are no second chances of criminal acts. This will make them change their minds on what they may be planning to do. In the execution of each capital punishment, about 3 to 18 murders are deterred. The offender should suffer the same way their victims suffered because their lives did not deserve to be taken. The death of the convicted criminal should not be brutal. In the United States, capital punishment is carried out in the quickest and most peaceful ways as much as possible. An example is a lethal injection and induced death using given chemicals.

In addition, retributive justice will make the victims’ families feel that justice has been served and, in some way, it will make them feel relieved. Using other forms of punishment will leave the victims’ families bitter and plan on retaliatory or developing hatred over other people. It will also make them feel safe knowing that the threat has been put under control. In some cases, the criminals come back to hurt the victims’ families in revenge for the action taken against them. Therefore, capital punishment as a form of retributive justice may provide a cost-effective method.

Life sentencing can be costly to the United States government regarding finances and time. The expenditure on this person may be on food, health, and providing of tight security because of the crime he committed. In the process, it also limits the population in prisons. Since retributive justice is based on the proportionality of punishment given to the crime committed, the convicted criminal will not use their position, wealth, or influence over the judgment. People widely know that a given punishment is supposed for a given crime committed.

To conclude, since the terrorist committed atrocious crimes, they must be prosecuted with utmost scrutiny to ensure that they never reoffend. The basis for the argument lies in the idea of retribution for the crimes committed and the need to punish the criminal with measures that are proportionate to the crime being committed. In this case, the argument favors capital punishment because the terrorist act took the lives of almost three thousand people, and there is no other just way to handle the conviction.


Roberson, C., & O’Reilley, M. (2019). Principles of criminal law (7th ed.). Pearson.

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DemoEssays. (2022) 'Retributive Justice: The 9/11 Attack's Participant'. 24 December.


DemoEssays. 2022. "Retributive Justice: The 9/11 Attack's Participant." December 24, 2022.

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DemoEssays. "Retributive Justice: The 9/11 Attack's Participant." December 24, 2022.