Landau, Moshe

(1912- )
   Born in Danzig, Germany, and educated in law at the University of London, he settled in Palestine in 1933. In 1948, he was appointed a judge of the Haifa District Court, an office he held until 1953, when he was appointed a justice of the Supreme Court of Israel. He was the presiding judge at the trial of Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann and served as president of the Supreme Court from 1980 to 1982. In 1987, he was appointed to head a commission of inquiry to examine the methods used by the Shin Bet (Shabak)-General Security Service in interrogating suspected terrorists. The Landau Commission determined that in dealing with dangerous terrorists who represent a grave threat to the safety and security of the state of Israel and its citizens, "the use of a moderate degree of pressure, including physical pressure" in order to obtain crucial information, was unavoidable under certain circumstances. Although it established specific measures and parameters for guarding against the inappropriate use of interrogation methods, the Landau Commission was accused by the United Nations and international human rights monitoring agencies of having legitimized activities often defined as torture.

Historical Dictionary of Israel. .

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