first: suicide is not always about cowardice. is throwing oneself on a hand grenade to save friends cowardice? is volunteering for the forlorne hope (the front wave of a ground assault) an act of cowardice since it virtually guarantees death? we need to be more careful. the suicide attackers weren't afraid. that's clear. they were many things, but not afraid. we need to recognize that because retaliations to anything we do will come. how do you deter or "scare" people who are perfectly willing to die?
second: i know i may be a bit idealistic. but please don't speak on behalf of god. i consider myself religious. god is god; no one speaks for god but god. but ... read the new testament. you'll find that there is very little support for the death penalty there. and ... if you're a christian ... the new testament trumps the old. for the record, i'm very anti-death penalty, just as most catholics and progressive protestants are.
regardless ... if you read the quote i put up, you'll notice that i'm not opposed to retaliation. i'm not even opposed to using violence (i'm not a pacifist). but we can strike in righteous anger w/o becoming savage ourselves. that's the point camus makes. we can strike evil w/o pity while at the same time not becoming inhuman ourselves.
btw, this is turning into an interesting conversation. i appreciate that. now i'm off to mass.