Iceland and World War II

Ask IR

Iceland and World War II

Q: Why is there a lack of information about Iceland in World War II? I am amazed by the lack of information on Iceland in world war 2. Is this because the history is written by the victors?

Are the Icelandic people OK with the fact England needed to occupy your country?

The Brits wanted our harbors but obviously Iceland in the mid-Atlantic with a much smaller population was far more important and easier to take.

It just amazes me that there is no comment on what they did!

Tom, Ireland ---

A: Many, many books have been written about World War II in Icelandic but very few have been translated into English or other languages, perhaps because of a lack of action; nothing really happened during World War II in Iceland, except for the fact that it changed the society for the good. Iceland became an independent nation on June 17, 1944, when Iceland’s ruler, the Kingdom of Denmark, was occupied by Germany. When the Brits came here, Nazi Germany had occupied Norway, Denmark, Poland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, half of France, Czechoslovakia and Hungary. Next on the list was maybe Iceland, so when the British army came to Reykjavík, to an unarmed nation, Icelanders looked at it as a shield. We did not want to be part of Hitler’s empire. PS