Iceland has never had an army, except in Vestmannaeyjar (the Westman Islands), where three or four forks were always ready to meet a foreign invasion, after they were invaded in 1627.
It was the Ottoman Empire pirate Jan Janszoon van Haarlem who arrived in Iceland that year and captured 242 islanders and killed 36. He then sold them on the slave market in Algiers.
Since then, no battle has been fought on Icelandic soil.
Before the year 1200, Icelanders behaved barbarically, killing people left and right, burning cloisters and enslaving the Irish.
Now we are watching with tears what’s going on in the world out there.
There is no hope. There are up to 500 people killed a day in the forgotten war in Syria; 300,0000 in three years. The population of Iceland.
Thousands have also died in the East Ukraine conflict in the last ten days.
Eleven hundred in the three-week-old fight in Gaza.
On the Guardian’s website earlier today: Hopes of a new ceasefire in the three-week-old Gaza war rose and then quickly fell on Tuesday afternoon when a senior official announced a 24-hour pause in fighting, saying he was speaking on behalf of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, the two main militant organisations – a statement quickly disavowed by Hamas.
I don’t like Hamas but I must admire they are good in PR. And Israel, tries its best to top them.
I don’t like wars; those who suffer the most are innocent children, innocent people.
And what frightens me is that today’s situations are somehow similar to 1914, which started 100 years and one day ago. Small wars, small fights became a worldwide war.
In the following four years, five empires fell and 20-25 million people lost their lives.
Let that not happen again.
Páll Stefánsson - [email protected]