This is rich coming from an old war criminal and father of the settlements in the West Bank. The idea that Israel may be criticised in the West is seemingly beyond understanding in insulated Israel. And note the casual racism towards Muslims. The supposedly moderate face of Zionism:
Shimon Peres said England was “deeply pro-Arab … and anti-Israeli”, adding: “They always worked against us.”
By contrast, relations with Germany, France and Italy were “pretty good”, he added.
He added: “There is in England a saying that an anti-Semite is someone who hates the Jews more than is necessary.”
His remarks, made in an interview on a Jewish website, provoked anger from senior MPs and Jewish leaders who said the 87-year-old president had “got it wrong”.
But other groups backed the former Israeli prime minister and said the number of anti-semitic incidents had risen dramatically in the UK in recent years.
The controversy follows the furore last week over David Cameron’s remark that Gaza was a “prison camp”, as he urged Israel to allow aid and people to move freely in and out of the Palestinian territory.
Mr Peres, a Nobel Peace Prize winner who is three years into his seven-year term as president and was awarded an honorary knighthood by the Queen in 2008, said that England’s attitude towards Jews was Israel’s “next big problem”.
“There are several million Muslim voters, and for many members of parliament, that’s the difference between getting elected and not getting elected,” he said.
“And in England there has always been something deeply pro-Arab, of course, not among all Englishmen, and anti-Israeli, in the establishment.
“They abstained in the [pro-Zionist] 1947 UN partition resolution … They maintained an arms embargo against us in the 1950s … They always worked against us. They think the Arabs are the underdogs.”