Denmark–United States relations
Denmark–United States relations refers to the current and historical relations between Denmark and the United States. Denmark has an embassy in Washington D.C. The United States has an embassy in Copenhagen. Denmark has a trade office in Atlanta, Georgia. and a consulate general in New York. Both countries are members of NATO.
Diplomatic relations date back to 1783, when Denmark signed a commercial treaty with the United States. In 1792, Denmark recognized the independence of the United States. In 1801, diplomatic relations were established, and an American legation was opened in Denmark. The diplomatic relations have never experienced an interruption, since 1801.
In 1916, Denmark sold their Danish West Indies to the United States, and both countries signed the Treaty of the Danish West Indies. The deal was finalized on 17 January 1917, when the United States and Denmark exchanged their respective treaty ratifications. The United States took possession of the islands on March 31, 1917 and the territory was renamed the Virgin Islands of the United States. During the World War II, in April 1941, the United States established a temporary protectorate over Greenland.
Denmark is a close NATO ally, and relations are described as "excellent". Denmark is active in Afghanistan and Kosovo as well as a leader in the Baltic region. The former Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen reaffirmed that Denmark would remain engaged in Iraq even as its troop levels there decline. Denmark was the only Scandinavian country to approve of the American Invasion of Iraq, and Denmark and the United States consult closely on European political and security matters. Denmark shares U.S. views on the positive ramifications of NATO enlargement. Denmark is an active coalition partner in the War on Terrorism, and Danish troops are supporting American-led stabilization efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq. The United States also engages Denmark in a broad cooperative agenda through the Enhanced Partnership in Northern Europe. The U.S. policy structure to strengthen U.S.-Nordic-Baltic policy and program coordination.
Denmark's active liberal trade policy in the European Union, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and World Trade Organization largely coincides with U.S. interests. The U.S. is Denmark's largest non-European trade partner with about 5% of Danish merchandise trade. Denmark's role in European environmental and agricultural issues and its strategic location at the entrance to the Baltic Sea have made Copenhagen a center for U.S. agencies and the private sector dealing with the Nordic/Baltic region.
Following World War II, the United States developed a geopolitical interest in Greenland, and in 1946 the United States offered to buy Greenland from Denmark for $100,000,000, but Denmark refused to sell.
Thule Air Base, the U.S. Air Force base and early warning radar at Thule, Greenland a Danish self-governing territory serve as a vital link in Western defenses. In August 2004, the Danish and Greenland Home Rule governments gave permission for the early warning radar to be updated in connection with a role in the U.S. ballistic missile defense system. At the same time, agreements were signed to enhance economic, technical, and environmental cooperation between the United States and Greenland.
1968 Thule Air Base B-52 crash
The 1968 Thule Air Base B-52 crash was an accident on 21 January 1968, involving a United States Air Force B-52 bomber. The aircraft was carrying four hydrogen bombs on a Cold War "Chrome Dome" alert mission over Baffin Bay when a cabin fire forced the crew to abandon the aircraft before they could carry out an emergency landing at Thule Air Base. Six crew members ejected safely, but one who did not have an ejection seat was killed while trying to bail out. The bomber crashed onto sea ice in North Star Bay, Greenland, causing the nuclear payload to rupture and disperse, which resulted in widespread radioactive contamination. The United States and Denmark launched an intensive clean-up and recovery operation, but the secondary of one of the nuclear weapons could not be accounted for after the operation completed.
American President Bill Clinton visited Denmark in 1997, and again in 2007. American President George W. Bush made an official visit to Copenhagen in July 2005, and Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen met with Bush at Camp David in June 2006.
President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama traveled to Denmark to support the Chicago bid for the 2016 Summer Olympics in October 2009, and in December 2009, Obama visited Denmark again for the 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference.
In March 2009, Danish Foreign Minister Lene Espersen met American Foreign Minister Hillary Clinton in the Gaza Donor Conference, and again in a NATO meeting in April 2010, where they met in Estonia.
In March 2009, Crown Prince Frederik and Princess Mary visited the Midwest. They visited The Danish Home in Chicago, and the Danish villages of Elk Horn, Ames, Kimballton and Dana College in Iowa. In Nebraska, the couple visited the Grand View University.
"States like Iowa and Nebraska boast numerous examples of Danish settlements... Both universities have made great strides to become highly recognized institutions of higher learning, as well as strengthening ties between Denmark and the United States," Crown Prince Frederik said.
On 9 March 2011, American President Obama invited Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen to the White House, where they discussed counter terrorism, the situation in Middle East, and environmental issues.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Denmark – United States relations.|
- "American — Danish Business Council". Retrieved 30 April 2011.