Fact Check

Did Anthony Hopkins Say, 'Israel Means War and Destruction, and America Is Behind This War'?

According to the quote that's been shared across social media, the Welsh actor also said, "I'm ashamed to be an American."

Published April 11, 2024

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Actor Anthony Hopkins said, "Israel means war and destruction, and America is behind this war, and I'm ashamed to be an American."

According to multiple online accounts, Academy Award-winner Anthony Hopkins said, "Israel means war and destruction, and America is behind this war, and I'm ashamed to be an American."

The quote attributed to Hopkins is not new, but it once again made the rounds in 2024, following the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war in October 2023. However, there is no evidence to support the claim that Hopkins ever made such a statement, nor is it typical of him to speak of politics.


The fabricated quote has been shared across social media platforms, often in the context of discussions about conflicts involving Israel. However, there is no record of Hopkins ever making such a statement in any interview, public appearance or other media outlet. Furthermore, Hopkins has consistently refrained from discussing political matters publicly and has emphasized his role as an actor rather than a political commentator. While Hopkins became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2000, he has maintained his Welsh nationality and has never renounced his British citizenship.

The advocacy nonprofit website Israellycool called out the quote as fake in 2020, pointing to the group Santa Feans for Justice in Palestine, who published the fake Hopkins quote in May 2016. According to its Facebook page, Santa Feans for Justice in Palestine is an "educational and activist organization supporting Palestinian human rights and an end to the illegal Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands." However, that post gained little traction, with only one person commenting to say it was "fake news" and that "Anthony Hopkins never said this."

In 2014, the fake quote was shared by a now-defunct X account (formerly Twitter) and again fell under the radar, with the few commenters who noticed it pointing out that the quote was fictitious and that the "Silence of the Lambs" actor has always been vocally proud of his Welsh roots. The quote was also shared to X in 2018.

The X account of influencer Rania El Khatib also shared the fake quote in 2014, with many commenters again noting that Hopkins is British and that the quote is fake. One commenter even responded, "Where's the source for this putative quote? Book? Interview? Article? Tweet? While I can't claim none exists, I can't find a single bit of evidence that he said it. A very famous, Knighted, Oscar winning actor saying something that would upset or anger millions would be news."

At the bottom of the image of Hopkins that El Khatib shared to X in 2014 is a credit to the Facebook account of Les indignés d'Algérie, which hasn't posted since 2017. According to its intro section, Les indignés d'Algérie is an activist page whose name means "the outraged people of Algeria," according to Google Translate. The bogus Hopkins quote was posted in French to its Facebook page on Dec. 30, 2013, and received one comment in French six months later, translated to read: "Except that Anthony Hopkins is not American but British."

Further, Hopkins has been known for his reluctance to engage in public discussions about world events. In a 2019 feature in Interview magazine, conducted by Brad Pitt, Hopkins stated:

"People ask me questions about present situations in life, and I say, 'I don't know, I'm just an actor. I don't have any opinions. Actors are pretty stupid. My opinion is not worth anything. There's no controversy for me, so don't engage me in it, because I'm not going to participate.'"

Aside from the false Hopkins quote not being linked to any reputable publication or news outlet, online commenters consistently and rightfully brought up the actor's British nationality.

Hopkins was born in the Port Talbot neighborhood of Margam, Wales, and has retained a strong connection to his Welsh roots throughout his life. He has often spoken fondly of his homeland and its cultural heritage. Despite his status as a naturalized U.S. citizen, Hopkins has never shied away from acknowledging his Welsh heritage. In fact, he has frequently expressed pride in his Welsh identity and has credited his upbringing in Wales for shaping his character and career.

Hopkins has spoken warmly about his homeland, once remarking about the famed and long-running Treorchy Male Choir, "As a Welshman that can't sing, I never feel more proud to be Welsh than when I hear the Treorchy Male Choir – the Master Choir of them all. If I could sing I would apply for membership myself."

In a statement to the BBC upon becoming a U.S. citizen, Hopkins expressed gratitude to America, stating, "America has been very generous to me, magnanimous really. I thought it would be good to give something back. It was a decision of the heart."

At the time of his naturalization ceremony in 2000, according to CBS News, his spokeswoman, Catherine Olim, clarified, "He has taken a dual citizenship. He hasn't renounced his British citizenship," before adding of the actor's adopted American homeland, "This has been his home for some time and it seemed like the right thing to do."

In a 1998 interview with Us magazine, prior to gaining U.S. citizenship, he insisted, "I don't want to settle in England. I want to be in America." Further, Hopkins told The Times of Israel in an interview published in October 2022. "I'm not American, I come from Wales."

Despite the underlying message of the bogus quote, Hopkins has apparently enjoyed a warm relationship with Israel throughout his career. In 2014, according to reports, he attended an "intimate evening" in Malibu, California with guest of honor, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, held at the home of Israeli film producer and onetime spy Arnon Milchan

Hopkins also starred in the 1976 historical drama, "Victory at Entebbe," in which he played then-Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. Based on real-life events, "Victory at Entebbe" recounts the raid of an airport in Uganda in a bid to free Israeli hostages following the hijacking of a plane by a Palestinian terrorist group, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

Regarding the specific quote attributed to Hopkins about Israel and America, there is no credible source or evidence to substantiate its authenticity. Hopkins has never made any public statements aligning with the sentiments expressed in the quote, and there is no record of him expressing such views in any interview, speech or public appearance. Therefore, the claim that Anthony Hopkins made the statement in question is unequivocally false.

Snopes has previously reported on Hopkins, including the time he wrote a fan letter to "Breaking Bad" actor Bryan Cranston.


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Nikki Dobrin is based in Los Angeles and has previously worked at The Walt Disney Company, as well as written and edited for People, USA Today and The Hill.