Israel should not have submitted to ICJ jurisdiction on genocide case, says Alan Dershowitz

‘This is one of the most absurd abuses of the judicial process in modern history. Israel did not commit genocide.’

By Vered Weiss

American jurist and advocate for Israel Alan Dershowitz told Ynet that Israel made a mistake in submitting to the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) at The Hague.

Although Dershowitz was proposed as one of the candidates to represent Israel as a judge, he said he would have “challenged the jurisdiction of the court.”

He added, “I may have not been the right person to send if they wanted to take the court seriously.”

Alan Dershowitz continued with his criticism of the ICJ and  the case brought by South Africa alleging that Israel is committing genocide in Gaza.

“It is not a real court. It’s a court whose judges are picked by their countries, it reflects foreign policy, not rule of law, not judiciary.”

He added that Israel should have refused to submit to the jurisdiction of the court and should not allow any ruling of the court to dictate its foreign policy.

“I think that Israel made a mistake in submitting to the jurisdiction of the court, and it would make a mistake in complying with any ruling of the court,” Dershowitz said.

He argued that the case has no basis in fact.

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“This is one of the most absurd abuses of the judicial process in modern history,” Dershowitz argued. “Israel did not commit genocide.”

He continued, “The number of civilians who were killed is proportional to the number of combatants, it is lower than any war in modern history.”

“Israel is trying its best to preserve civilian life, whereas Hamas is doing its best to take civilian lives,” Dershowitz argued.

“I personally would ignore any decision that comes down. I’ll probably just read it out of curiosity, but it will have no impact on my thinking; it’s utterly irrelevant.”

Dershowitz praised Israel’s choice of former Supreme Court Justice Aharon Barak to represent Israel at the ICJ, although he opposed Netanyahu’s proposed judicial reform.

Dershowitz said, “There could be no better person in the world than Aharon Barak,” he said. “He is the most respected Israeli judge probably in the history of Israel.”

Regarding the potential outcome of the case at the ICJ, however, Dershowitz said the arguments won’t make as much of an impact as the bias of the court.

“I don’t think the arguments will have much of an impact, many of the judges are told how to vote by their government,” he said.

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Dershowitz concluded, “No one should take the results of this court seriously. It is not a real court.”