Gary Lineker endorses academic who described Israel's Gaza operation as 'textbook genocide'

The BBC Match of the Day host tweeted a commentary by Raz Segal was 'worth 13 minutes of anyone’s time'


Gary Lineker has appeared to endorse an Israeli academic who described Israel's operation in Gaza as a ‘textbook genocide’. 

The BBC Match of the Day star said a commentary by Raz Segal, an Israeli associate professor of Holocaust and genocide studies, was “worth 13 minutes of anyone’s time.”

Segal was interviewed by Guardian columnist Owen Jones to discuss the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

Explaining why the conflict was a ‘textbook genocide’ in the context of the 1948 UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, Segal claimed: “We have both the intent and dynamics of violence on the ground [in Gaza] and because the intent is expressed so explicitly and so directly [by Israel] in such unashamed ways and it’s continued to be expressed in this way then I do think that what we’re seeing in front of our eyes is a 'textbook case' of genocide.”

“That now in the last six weeks have created, in the language of the convention, conditions calculated to bring about the destruction of the group [Palestinians].”

Segal, who is employed by Stockton College in New Jersey, has previously written for The Guardian asserting that Israel, which he calls a 'settler state' was misusing the legacy of the Holocaust to win sympathy from Western leaders like US President Joe Biden.

Meanwhile, Lineker’s hopes of remaining Match of the Day host appeared to have been given a major boost earlier today.

Barbara Slater, the corporation’s director of sport, told MPs on the Media, Culture and Sport Committee that relations with the football icon were “really good”. 

Earlier this year, Lineker found himself in hot water when he tweeted that the language used around the UK’s immigration policy was “not dissimilar to that used by Germany in the 1930s.”

The £1.35 million a year BBC star was criticised by various public figures across the political spectrum and Jewish community. 

He stepped back from his Match of the Day presenting duties “until an agreement was reached on social media use”.

Just days later, the BBC reversed its position and announced that Lineker would return to air and would initiate an independent review of its social media guidelines.

Slater presided over the BBC’s response in the row. Asked whether she thought the corporation would keep him beyond a contract due to expire in 2025, she said: “I’m not sure it’s fair to ask me to speculate on an individual contract. 

“But what I would say is I do think that there is a new set of guidelines.

“Gary knows those guidelines. You know, he understands them. He is supportive of them. And the relationships between Gary and the BBC are really good. 

“And I think you’ve heard him…he’s said that publicly too. So, you know, in a way, we love Gary and Gary loves the BBC.”

Lineker has been approached for comment.

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