British Government responds to criticism over First World War Centenary plans

Posted on centenarynews.com on 22 May 2013
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The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has responded to an open letter criticising the nature of national plans to mark the Centenary of the First World War in Britain.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the Department for Culture, Media and Sport said that:

"As the Prime Minister set out in October, we are working on a full programme of events to allow the public to commemorate the centenary of World War One".

"We will publish details shortly, but it will be a programme that encourages people to learn and think about the huge social and political significance of the First World War, and the enormous sacrifices that were made".

"There is, of course, debate around the place of the war in our history".

"It is not for the Government to set the terms of that debate, historians and others are free to express their own views".

The open letter criticising the nature of Britain's Centenary plans received the support of 49 public figures in Britain from the arts and politics.

The signatories state that the First World War was "a war that was driven by big powers' competition for influence around the globe" and questions "plans to spend £55m on a "truly national commemoration" to mark this anniversary".

Images courtesy of Wikipedia

Posted by: Daniel Barry, Centenary News

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