AB Annual Meeting

From left: Thordis Edwald, Jonas Sigurgeirsson, Karitas Kvaran, Armann Thorvaldsson, Hannes H. Gissurarson, Kjartan Gunnarsson, Sigridur Snaevarr, Baldur Gudlaugsson, and Rosa Gudbjartsdottor.

The Public Book Club, Almenna bokafelagid, AB, held its annual general meeting on 26 May 2023. AB was founded on 17 June 1955 in order to counter the disproportionate influence of the communist-dominated book club Language and Culture, Mal og menning, supported by Soviet money, the notorious ‘Russian Gold’. AB is now a publishing company rather than a book club, however. AB’s Director, Jonas Sigurgeirsson, gave a report about last year for the other shareholders, Kjartan Gunnarsson, Baldur Gudlaugsson, and Armann Thorvaldsson. Also present was the Academic Adviser to AB, Professor Hannes H. Gissurarson. One of the most-discussed books published by AB in 2022 was A Banker’s Reckoning (Uppgjor bankamanns) by Larus Welding who was Director of Glitnir Bank when the Icelandic banking sector collapsed in October 2008. He describes the collapse, and the long and brutal criminal investigations to which he was subsequently subjected. The other book was The Impeachment Case Against Geir H. Haarde (Landsdomsmalid) by Hannes H. Gissurarson who argues that the process was deeply flawed by which Haarde, Prime Minister at the time of the bank collapse, was indicted and ultimately acquitted of anything except an alleged minor formal lapse (not putting the impending bank collapse on the agenda of government meetings). Even that conviction which did not entail any punishment, and with the state being ordered to bear all the costs of the process, was based on very weak legal grounds. Gissurarson has written in English a summary of the book which has been published in parts 1, 2 and 3 in the European Conservative.

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