US presidential candidate Barack Obama was not granted access to secret FBI documents about Icelandic Nobel laureate Halldór Laxness after his office in the US Senate recently applied for permission on behalf of literary scholar Chay Lemoine.
Lemoine has for three years applied for access to various documents about Laxness in the US, and has been granted access to most, but four FBI documents remain, which allegedly include information that have the potential to jeopardize national security and visa information, which is categorized as private, Fréttabladid reports.
After a few unsuccessful attempts, Lemoine’s decided to request assistance from his senator, Obama, but according to answers from the FBI given to Obama’s office, the FBI’s decision is final and the Laxness documents will remain confidential.
“I think it is remarkable that Obama’s office took the time in the middle of their campaign to react to my letter. I didn’t really expect that they would contact the FBI for me. But Obama’s representative thanked me for my letter about my troubles with the FBI and informed me that, unfortunately, the institution’s decision regarding my case is final,” Lemoine told Fréttabladid.
“Halldór would certainly have enjoyed this, that senators and secret service in this country are so concerned about him after all these years,” Lemoine said, adding that he will try finding other ways to gain access to the documents about Iceland’s most successful author.
Laxness lived in the US between 1927 and 1929 and tried to make it as a filmmaker in Hollywood. He particularly liked Greta Garbo and wanted her to play Salka Valka (who later became the heroine on one of his most famous novels) in a movie he wrote called A Woman in Pants.
Laxness was optimistic and excited at the beginning of his stay, but after constant delays and rejections he grew tired of show business and the American way of life. He moved back to Iceland and turned to socialism, according to gljufrasteinn.is.