Iceland Wins Case Against Inter-Alpha Bank Bailout
January 29, 2013 • 10:21AM

The tiny nation of Iceland has scored a victory against the Anglo-Dutch financial oligarchy. Headlines are leading with words like "unexpected" and "surprise" in describing the ruling, by the Luxembourg-based European Free Trade Association (EFTA), affirming Iceland's decision to defend its sovereignty by not bailing out British and Dutch banksters ("bondholders") after the 2008 bankruptcy of IceSave bonds.

IceSave was an online bank designed by the Inter-Alpha banks to facilitate the financial bubble through "savings" bonds paying 6%, and further connected to the bubble network through branches in the island of Guernsey, a British Crown dependency in the English Channel. At the time of its failure, in October 2008, the combined nominal indebtedness of Iceland's three largest banks, Kaupthing, Landsbanki (IceSave's parent) and Glitnir, was more than five times Iceland's Gross National Product.

As runs developed against the banks in early October, however, Iceland's parliament quickly voted through a resolution putting the domestic depositors first in any bailout. When the bank failed on Oct. 7, the Brits quickly realized they were being frozen out, and passed their own resolution — taking effect 10 minutes after passage — seizing Icelandic assets under a post 9/11 anti-terror law, the first use of the 2001 law supposedly designed to contain jihadist terrorists. At some point, both the British and Dutch governments voted to bail out the bankrupt bondholders themselves!

In 2010, Iceland was forced to shoulder more of the foreign debt, in order to get an agreement with the IMF, but still maintained the authority of the original bankruptcy — taking control of the banks without assuming (all) their debts. During 2011, Iceland's citizens further supported their national sovereignty by voting up, not one, but two referendums, both affirming the takeovers. It was after those two rebuffs that the banksters undertook the suit through the EFTA which was denied today.

"It is a considerable satisfaction that Iceland's [defense] has won the day in the IceSave case; the EFTA Court ruling brings to a close an important stage in a long saga," the government said in a statement. In a recent interview with British television, Iceland's President Olafur Ragnar Grimsson denounced Britain's "eternal shame" for invoking the terrorism laws. "We were there together with al-Qaeda and the Taliban on that list," he said. "We have not forgotten that in Iceland."

This serves as perfect prelude for the Icelanders to be the first nation to pass a Glass-Steagall bill, which is now pending before the Economic Affairs and Trade Committee, and is expected to be voted on before national elections in April.