Che Guevara's Death Commemorated With Irish Stamp

Ireland's An Post postal service is commemorating the 50th anniversary of the death of Che Guevara, who had Irish roots, with a stamp, which has generated criticism.

The stamp features the world-famous "Viva Che!" image by Dublin artist Jim Fitzpatrick, which depicts Guevara in a black and white portrait against a bright-red backdrop.

"A famous revolutionary of Irish descent and the artwork by an Irish artist that became one of the world’s great iconic images, all come together in a stamp which has just been issued by An Post," the state-owned postal service wrote in a statement. "The stamp (€1), designed by Red&Grey, is based on Jim Fitzpatrick’s artwork, which appears on t-shirts, posters, badges and clothing worldwide and is now rated among the world’s top 10 most iconic images."

Fitzpatrick, the artist who created the image that inspired the stamp in 1968, took to social media to share his joy about his work being used on an Irish stamp.

"I have the stamps. I never thought I would see this day. Fantastic," Fitzpatrick said in a video posted on Instagram. "Thanks to everybody in An Post for the honor. It is an honor. Brilliant."

However, the commemoration has generated controversy.

"Ireland glorifying the murderous Che Guevara on its stamps is a grotesque insult to the many lives he slaughtered," U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., wrote on Twiter.

"Ireland just put domestic terrorist Che Guevara on a stamp [because] of his Irish heritage. [That's] like commemorating Timothy McVeigh," Jack Posobiec, political director for the conservative Rev 18 PAC, wrote on Twitter – making reference to the Oklahoma City bomber.

Guevara, who assisted Fidel Castro in overturning the Cuban regime of Fulgencio Batista, was executed in Bolivia on Oct. 9, 1967.

An Post also released a Guevara-related envelope, which features a quote from his father that reads: "... in my son's veins flowed the blood of Irish rebels."

The stamp of the left-wing Marxist revolutionary is available for purchase in Ireland's main post offices, Dublin’s General Post Office and online.

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