U.S. Sailors and Marines landed in Reykjavik, Iceland this past week to prepare for NATO’s largest war games since the Cold War: exercise Trident Juncture 18. During their short stay, American service members decided to pregame for the military exercise in such a way that would make the Vikings themselves blush.
A legion of 6,000 to 7,000 American troops stormed Reykjavik’s beaches, raided its establishments, and drank until almost every tap went dry. Crowd favorites like Sæta Svínið ( that’s Sweet Pig in English ) and America Bar were the first to feel the effects of the four-day long American rager. The blitzkrieg against the capital’s beer supply was so aggressive that the majority of the city’s bars had to make emergency beer runs to keep up with the troops’ unquenchable thirst. Ölgerð Egils Skallagrímssonar, a local brewery on the island nation, worked tirelessly throughout the weekend to send shipments of beer to the beleaguered bars and restaurants of Reykjavik. Ingvar Svendsen, owner of American Bar, stated “We had to send people out of the bar to our warehouses to bring beer back as quickly as possible…..Other bars ran out of beer altogether.”
Much to applause of the Hopshock staff, the troops seemed to favor local brews over the imported variety and apparently were very willing to sample the cities collection of fine craft beer. No disturbances were reported over the weekend with many locals saying that both parties enjoyed each other’s company.
After their four day stay in Iceland, the sailors and Marines sailed toward Norway to officially begin Trident Juncture 18. Lasting until the later part of November, the ongoing NATO-led exercise is a collection of 50,000 servicemembers from 31 nations to test the alliance’s defense capabilities.