A Storm Is Brewing In The Chess World

Chess tournament controversy

By Euronews

last updated: 27/12/2017

The World Chess Championship in Saudi Arabia has become mired in controversy


What does one expect when the governing body of World Chess, FIDE, is a group named Kirsan

and the ET’s?

The motto of FIDE is Gens una sumus, which is Latin for “We are one people”. In the FIDE Handbook one finds:

Chapter 01 – Status, principles and aims of FIDE


The FIDE Motto is “Gens Una Sumus” (We are one family). The FIDE seal is a white Knight intersected by five white latitudinal lines on a black globe, with the word “FIDE” in black at the base of the Knight, and the FIDE motto in black below the globe. The FIDE flag is the FIDE Seal at the centre of a sky-blue background, on both sides of the flag, measuring 100 x 150 cm. or in proportion thereto.

Under Kirsan this has become the theory of FIDE. In practice the so called “organization” excludes at will with a cavalier and capricious disregard of their own rules. In reality the only rule in the FIDE handbook is:

The Royal game will be much better off when Kirsan is taken out (of this world) by any means necessary.

The Hebrew Hammer

Before the start of the Petrosian Memorial the Legendary Georgia Ironman picked Boris Gelfand to win. I scoffed. In the previous tournament, the FIDE Grand Prix in Tashkent, GM Gelfand tied for last place without winning a game. This came on the heels of the first stage of the 2014-2015 FIDE Grand Prix in Baku, Azerbaijan, where he tied for first place with Fabiano Caruana. With only a few days separating the tournaments, Tim said the players were being bussed around the former Soviet heartland like a circus troop. As can be seen from the play, the players obviously need a break for rest, but something as simple as that is apparently anathema to the FIDE leadership. Kirsan and the ET’s do not play, so why would they know anything about a chess player needing rest?

Decades ago Mad Dog Gordan had a collection of baseball cards that consisted of Jewish players. He called them the “Hammering Hebe’s.” Tim calls Boris Gelfand, the “Hebrew Hammer.” I can assure you this is a terrific sign of respect from the LGI! I, too, have a great deal of respect for the Hammer, but not enough to predict an obviously exhausted Gelfand to win the tournament named after the legendary Tigran Petrosian.

The Hebrew Hammer beat Peter Leko in the final round of the Petrosian Memorial today to finish tied for third place at +1, along with Levon Aronian, who also won his last round game. Alexander Grischuk finished first in an impressive performance, while Vladimir Kramnik came second, showing the good form that has eluded him recently.

Boris Gelfand did not win the tournament, but I was wrong to scoff at Tim’s suggestion that he would win. Never discount the Hebrew Hammer!