Keflavik Agreement

December 11, 2020 in Uncategorized by

In order to make the U.S. military presence in Iceland more attractive, the United States provided significant economic and diplomatic assistance to the Icelanders. [17] The United States also tolerated the Icelandic government`s overtly exclusive policy towards non-American movements and followed the Icelandic government`s request not to deploy black soldiers to Iceland. [28] The ban on the deployment of black soldiers ended in the mid-1960s. [28] Under the agreement, the Icelanders would not bear the costs of the military base and could unilaterally cancel the agreement. [29] The Americans also provided financial assistance for the operation of Keflavellek Airport. [30] The Americans were allowed to detain 3900 soldiers on Icelandic soil at Keflavék, gain access to the territory and build four radar stations. [30] Iceland provided the territory to the base and all related costs for the military base were borne by the Icelandic contribution to NATO, which meant that Iceland had nothing to pay to NATO`s collective funds. [30] Although Iceland remained allied with the United States during the Cold War, the country continued to trade with the Soviet Union, and domestic political resistance to the U.S. military presence was strong, led by the Icelandic Anti-War Movement (Isebin: Samt-k her`msandstéinga, then Samt-k herst-varandst`inga). A 1955 poll showed that more Icelanders were against the base than they supported it, but polls in the late 1960s and early 1970s showed a majority in favour of the bilateral defence agreement with the United States.

[17] [34] With the outbreak of the Korean War, Icelandic statesmen began to think seriously about the US military base in Iceland, as NATO`s formal security guarantees without a military presence were deemed insufficient to protect Iceland. [26] On 5 May 1951, a new NATO agreement between Iceland and the United States was signed. [27] In accordance with this defence treaty, the United States assumed full responsibility for Iceland`s defence for an indeterminate period. This new agreement cancelled the Keflavék agreement. As a result of the agreement, the United States had several thousand soldiers and several interceptors at Keflavék Air Base; they were the Icelandic defence forces.