Any particularly horrible crime gives ammunition to proponents of the death penalty. Any particularly egregious Soviet violation of the so-called "spirit of detente" provokes Western analysts to seek a suitable punishment, or at least a threat short of military force, that would induce the Russians to be less beastly and more cooperative. The simple and understandable desire to do something is usually accompanied by an implicit theory of deterrence and, less often, by evidence that the proposed deterrent will be effective.