BTW Iceland averages less than two homicides per year:
The U.S. Ambassador to Iceland wants to carry a gun.
Despite being assigned to one of the safest countries in the world, Jeffrey Ross Gunter has been “paranoid” about his security since coming to Reykjavik last year, according to a dozen diplomats, government officials, former officials and individuals familiar with the situation. As a result, Gunter wanted the State Department to obtain special permission from the Icelandic government for him to have a firearm. He also wanted door-to-door armored car service, and entertained the idea of wearing a “stab-proof vest.” . . .
Since his nomination in May 2019, Gunter has created an increasingly “untenable” working environment at the Embassy in Reykjavik, according to current and former diplomats familiar with the situation. He has already had seven Deputy Chiefs of Mission (DCM’s), experienced Foreign Service Officers who traditionally serve in the number-two job. The first deputy prepared for more than a year and spent months learning Icelandic, only to be blocked from coming to post because Gunter reportedly “didn’t like the look of him” at their introductory meeting. The second DCM made it to Iceland, but only lasted six months.
After that, Gunter tried to persuade frustrated officials in the European Bureau he didn’t need a DCM and could manage the relatively small mission on his own. Unconvinced, they set up a rotation system until a suitable candidate could be found.
“In order to ensure continuity of support for Embassy Reykjavik while Ambassador Gunter selected a new, permanent DCM, the State Department also deployed four experienced career foreign service officers to serve short-term details as Acting DCM from January 2020 to June 2020,” a State Department spokesperson said when asked about the high turnover. “These temporary duty assignments were of short duration by design.”
But Gunter didn’t get along with the acting deputies either. According to three individuals familiar with the situation, the ambassador once “flew into a rage” because a DCM left snow boots under their own desk in the middle of the Icelandic winter. Sources said he accused others of various, unsubstantiated infractions, including trying to undermine him to Washington and being complicit with the “deep state.”
In February, after attending a conference in Washington, Gunter refused to return to Iceland — leaving a temporary deputy in charge on the ground for months, in the middle of a global health crisis.
How did this nut get this job anyway?
Gunter graduated from Beverly Hills High School, UC Berkeley and USC’s Keck Medicine Center.
Gunter’s 2016 campaign donations included $58,563 to various state Republican party committees, $33,400 to the Republican National Committee and the maximum $5,400 to Trump’s presidential campaign, according to Federal Election Commission records compiled by the website OpenSecrets.org.
Gunter is a member of the board of directors of the Republican Jewish Coalition, which bills itself as “the unique bridge between the Jewish community and Republican decision-makers.”
Gunter has said he was among the youths playing baseball at Beverly Hills’ Roxbury Park in the final scene of the 1973 Oscar-wining drama “Save the Tiger.”
100 days feels like 100 years.