another diplomatic fukcup
Arise, Shimon Peres, knight commander?
Herb Keinon, Jonny Paul, JPost, Oct 24 2008
Efforts to have President Shimon Peres “knighted” during a visit to London next month may have been set back by premature publication of the move, Foreign Ministry sources said Thursday. Yediot Aharonot, under a headline “Sir Peres,” reported Wednesday that Peres was expected to be appointed an honorary knight by Queen Elizabeth II in appreciation of his contribution to peace efforts in the Middle East and to furthering Israeli-British ties. While admitting that the embassy in London was working on the issue, the sources said that revealing these efforts prematurely could lead anti-Israeli forces in Britain to try to scuttle the idea. What is at issue is an appointment for Peres as an honorary member to the Order of St. Michael and St. George. Appointment to this Order, according to the Encyclopedia Britannica Web site, is conferred mostly on officials in colonial affairs, foreign-service officers and diplomats, and others who have performed important duties in Commonwealth countries. Foreigners may be admitted as honorary members, but they cannot prefix “Sir” to their first names. They can, however, place the initials of the order after their last name. In Peres’s case, therefore, he would become President Shimon Peres, KCMG, for Knight Commander of St. Michael and St. George. Bill Gates and Rudolph Giuliani are among foreigners with honorary knighthoods. The honorary appointment of Peres to this order is still under discussion between Buckingham Palace and the Foreign Office, which refused to comment on the matter Thursday. Peres will be making a three-day visit to the UK on Nov 18. Although this is not an official state visit, Peres will be a guest of the Queen. The Israeli Embassy in London said it was currently putting together Peres’s schedule with Buckingham Palace, the Foreign Office and Downing Street.
Peres to be knighted
Itamar Eichner, YNet, Oct 23 2008
Queen Elizabeth II is expected to bestow an unusual honor on President Shimon Peres in a few weeks, and name him a knight in her order. Peres is to be awarded the title, regarded as the United Kingdom’s highest honor, for his contribution to world peace and the relationship between Israel and the UK. Peres is expected to leave for an official presidential visit in Britain on Nov 18. When in London, he is slated to meet with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Foreign Secretary David Miliband. The highlight of Peres’ visit will be a speech before both houses of the British Parliament – the House of Lords and the House of Commons. Peres is also scheduled to visit Oxford University and speak before 1000 of its students. The president will also meet with heads of the British Academia and urge them to lift the unofficial academic ban placed on Israeli institutions. The next stop on the tour will be the City of London, where he will usher the London Stock Exchange’s trading day. Once officially titled “Sir”, Peres will join an exclusive list of modern world figures the like of ex-Beatle Paul McCartney, former US President Ronald Regan, U2′s lead singer Bono and Microsoft founder Bill Gates.