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OpEdNews Op Eds    H4'ed 2/20/21

Icelanders: Most Peaceful and Politically Conscious of People

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Sunset at Seljalandsfoss
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Shots were fired at a politician's property recently for the first time in Icelandic folk's memory. During the weekend of January 21-2, bullets from a .22 pistol were fired into Reykjavik Mayor Dagur B Eggertsson's car and his office. He was not present in either occasion.

Two men were arrested and questioned. One man in his 60's was remanded in custody during an investigation. Reykjaviks borgmester fandt skudhuller i sin bil efter ballade om p-plads - TV 2

On February 2, it was reported that the accused is a former police man, Hallur Gunnar Erlingsson, and is considered dangerous. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison for sexually assaulting three young girls, in 2003. Former Police Officer Suspected of Shooting at Reykjavík Mayor's Car - Iceland Monitor (mbl.is)

Eggertsson has been mayor since 2014. He is a member of the Social Democratic Alliance (a coalition of four parties including the traditional Social Democrats, a feminist and a green party). Speculation was rampant that the mayor had been hoarding three parking places in a city overloaded with personal cars. It turned out that he did not control those three spaces.

Despite the disclosure that the rumor was incorrect, the fact remains that the mayor's car was parked before a three-story mansion that he owns. An architect designed square was built before his villa, which the mayor had arranged to be renovated with tax funds amounting to ten times what had been appropriated, according to Denmark's Christian Daily newspaper. Island var kendt som verdens fredeligste land. Indtil borgmesterens bil blev ramt af pistolskud - Kristeligt Dagblad (kristeligt-dagblad.dk)

What this indicates is the deep-seated distrust that average Icelanders have for politicians, especially since the financial crisis of 2008.

Little Crime, Murder, Violence

While crime rates are low, and shootings most unusual, just four weeks after the shooting at the mayor's care and office, an Albanian immigrant was shot several times in his home. He died of multiple wounds. This is the first shooting death since 2007. The dead man, 32, owned a physical security company. Eight persons have been arrested. Seven were in custody as of February 18. The key suspect is a Lithuanian immigrant. From Iceland - More Arrests In Reykjavík Shooting (grapevine.is)

Very few crimes involve firearms. Iceland has traditionally had a homicide rate of less than one per year for the last several decades. There have been 37 homicides in the last two decades. Four homicides in 2017 and four again last year were exceptional.

There are very few rapes. Nevertheless, reported rapes in 2015 numbered 178 (54 per 100,000), triple that of 2004 when the rate was 17.4 per 100,000 population. Greater porn media, tourism and immigration are partially responsible for this increase. Iceland Rape, 2003-2020 - knoema.com

Five percent of women in all of Europe reported having been raped, in 2014. In Iceland, even with the recent increase, just one tenth of one percent have experienced such violence. In the U.S., one in five women are raped, 19.3%.

Domestic violence, although infrequent, doubled last year to 60 cases over 30 in 2019.

Icelanders are generally not a violent people. In fact, they are deemed the most peaceful country in the world for 13 years running. "- Chart: The State Of Global Peace In 2020 | Statista*

Not even Iceland's police are violent.

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Ron Ridenour is a retired journalist, anti-war and radical activist; author of a dozen books, including "The Russian Peace Threat: Pentagon on Alert".

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