Margaret Thatcher should be given the Nobel Peace prize, Boris Johnson has said.
Writing in the Daily Telegraph on Monday, the mayor of London attacked the decision to award the prize to the European Union last week, dismissing the bloc as nothing more than "a clutch of ugly plate-glass office blocks in Brussels".
"It wasn’t as if the EU was the body that helped to keep the peace during the Cold War. Most people would agree that was the work of Nato, and the threat of retaliation against Soviet aggression," he said.
"It wasn’t the EU that went toe to toe with Russia over the stationing of Soviet missiles in Europe. It was Reagan and Thatcher.
"It was her ideas of free market democracy that inspired the peoples and politicians of Eastern Europe – and in some cases still do. Why not honour her, rather than a bureaucracy?"
He added: "I suggest we turn down this meaningless award for an institution that has got things so badly wrong, and insist that it be handed instead to a woman who got it overwhelmingly right. Thatcher, not the EU, understood the route to peace in Europe."
Thatcher, who turned 87 on Saturday, was also praised for her leadership during the Cold War by US Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney on Saturday.
"The US is blessed with courageous friends. Happy Birthday to the Iron Lady, Margaret Thatcher - a tower of strength in the cause of liberty," he said on Twitter.
However the former Conservative prime minister remains a divisive figure and her many critics are unlikely to view her as fostering a peaceful society during her time in office.
At the Brighton TUC Congress in September a stall was set up selling T-shirts bearing messages celebrating her death ("Hey Ho The Witch Is Dead").
In his column Boris also attacked the EU for "hollowing out of democracy" on the contient and said some people felt as oppressed by Brussels as they did by the Nazis.
"The reason the Greeks are turning out dressed as Nazis is that they feel as trampled on and as humiliated as they did when the swastika flew over the Parthenon," he said.
"We are now proposing to give formal control of eurozone tax and spending policies to the EU institutions – a shorthand for German control."