Daily Israel Report

Watch: UN's Schabas Called Netanyahu 'Greatest Threat to Israel'

UN Gaza probe leader caught on tape with anti-Israel bias again, this time slamming PM in 2010 at 'lawfare' conference.
By Ari Yashar
First Publish: 8/17/2014, 5:51 PM

United Nations General Assembly
United Nations General Assembly
Reuters

A video clip has been revealed exposing the anti-Israel bias of Canadian Law Professor William Schabas, who last week was appointed to head the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) committee on allegations of Israeli "war crimes" in Gaza.

In a 2010 panel discussing "lawfare" at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Schabas referenced a quote by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in which he listed the key threats on Israel as being the Iranian nuclear program, rockets aimed at Israeli civilians, and Judge Richard Goldstone.

Goldstone accused Israel in a 2009 UN report of "war crimes" in Gaza, a core accusation he later retracted.

"Frankly, if I had to think of an individual who would be the greatest threat for the survival of Israel, I'd probably choose Netanyahu," Schabas can be seen saying glibly in the video, to the uproarious laughter of the panel. The statement begins shortly after the 38:00 minute mark in the video embedded:

The comments come after a video from a 2013 panel recently surfaced, in which Schabas clearly revealed his eagerness to prosecute Israel over its actions in Gaza, even if that involved “twisting things and maneuvering” in the international legal arena.

Asked about the possibility of prosecuting Israel for “ecocide," Schabas expressed optimism on gradually enlarging the scope of legal accusations against Israel.

"When [the term] 'genocide' was invented there was no court at all. There was no court for crimes against humanity, but we have them now. And with a bit of luck and by twisting things and maneuvering we can get them (Israel) before the courts," Schabas said.

Since being tapped for the UNHRC Gaza probe, Schabas did not deny in an interview last Wednesday with Israel's Channel 2 that the international community has a double standard regarding Israel's conduct of war.

In that same interview, Schabas refused to define Hamas as a terrorist organization, saying he would need to consult with the two other members of the UNHRC committee before stating an opinion to avoid any "predispositions" in judgement.