A comparison between the 2009 and 2010 budget has shown that the Icelandic government raised spending on its military personnel while making cuts to the domestic social welfare system.
Pressan, who compared the budgets for the two years, reported on the differences in spending. They found that between 2009 and 2010, the tax money spent on Iceland’s NATO military personnel increased from 612 million ISK to 736 million ISK, marking an increase of about 20%.
At the same time, spending on education decreased by about 2 billion ISK, spending on health care decreased by about 4 billion ISK, and spending on family services decreased by about 700 million ISK. In addition, cuts were made across numerous areas of the agricultural sector. There were also significant cuts made to homes for the elderly and a library for the blind.
While Iceland has no standing army, it does maintain what is known as the Iceland Crisis Response Unit (ICRU), which works with NATO. Created in 2001, it has been deployed to Afghanistan, among other places in the past.