Israel Ambassador to Britain Daniel Taub
Ambassador Daniel Taub decries anti-Semitism and "a sign of a great sickness inside British journalism
Israeli Ambassador to Britain, Daniel Taub, condemned on Sunday what he called an anti-Semitic "sickness" inside some parts of the British media.
"When a leading newspaper publishes anti-Semitic words, such as we heard on the release of Gilad Shalit alleging that this deal shows that Zionists values the lives of the 'chosen' more than it values the lives of anyone else – as if we wouldn't have begged to reduce the number of terrorists that should have been released – yes, that's insulting to Israel, but more than that, it's a sign of a great sickness inside media and inside British journalism," he said.
His speech was delivered to the Big Tent Israel advocacy conference in Manchester, and reported by the Jewish Chronicle.
Taub advised people who doubt that there is a delegitimization campaign against Israel: "Don't listen to Israel's enemies, but listen to its friends or at least those people who call themselves its friends.
"I can't count the number of times I've heard somebody say, 'I'm a friend of Israel and I support its right to exist'.
And I wonder, can you image anyone saying that in relation to any other country? 'I support Australia's right to exist' or 'Guatemala's right to exist' - as though that somehow makes me a friend of Guatemala. In relation to what other country does a discussion or policy descend into a question mark over the very existence of that state?
Speaking to a 700-strong audience in Manchester, the ambassador said that anti-Israel campaigns that delegitimize Israel opened a "new front for Israel" in the UK and were "a serious problem for those institutions and organizations which allow it to fester."