South West Greens have called for a reversal of the decision to choose Lord Kitchener, the World War I general, familiar to many from recruitment posters, as the new face of the £2 coin.
Lead South West Green Party European candidate, Dr Molly Scott Cato said:
“While we recognise the huge sacrifices made by ordinary men and women during World War I at home and abroad, I am clear that 2014 should be about remembering the monumental folly of war. Kitchener is a reminder of the days of industrial warfare and of the military and political leaders who made huge blunders costing millions of lives.”
The Green Party position is that only reconciliation and active peace-making can end the cycle of violence that wars give rise to. Greens point to the Middle East where the intervention of the UK and US in the Iraq War has led to the rise of Al-Qaeda and civil wars between Sunni and Shia.
Dr Scott Cato said:
“We need to recognise how our recent involvement in wars, particularly the Iraq War, has added to global tensions and fuelled the fire of terrorism in the Middle East, as we see today in the suffering of ordinary citizens in Fallujah. We need to use the 1914 centenary to focus attention on the futility and ‘the pity of War’ as described by the great WW1 poet, Wilfred Owen.”
The Green Party is supporting a petition  calling on the Royal Mint to withdraw this coin design and replace it with one that truly commemorates those who died and suffered in the First World War.