Ilyumzhinov: Chuck Norris owes me a bottle of whisky
By mishanp on July 11, 2010
While perhaps no surprise to the jaded observer, interviews with the President of the Internation Chess Federation are often extraordinary. Where else, in the middle of a heated election campaign, can you find a candidate talking openly about aliens, astrology, clairvoyants and meetings with such assorted characters as Saddam Hussein, Colonel Gaddafi, Bobby Fischer and Chuck Norris.
This interview, with Alexander Levit of the Ukrainian “FAKTY”, was published last week but must have been conducted over a month ago when Kirsan Ilyumzhinov was in Odessa for the end of the ACP rapid tournament. It does, of course, touch on the campaign for FIDE President – e.g. Ilyumzhinov claims to have put $50 million of his personal funds into FIDE – but it’s more remarkable when it moves on to other topics:
Did you meet Fischer?
When Russia recognised the debts of the former USSR, Bobby Fischer wrote to the Kremlin with a request to return him the royalty payments for his book, “My Sixty Memorable Games,” that was published in a print run of 100,000 copies in the former USSR. Many well-known chess players studied it. It was also, by the way, a book that I’d enjoyed reading. However, Moscow rejected Fischer’s request. He was angry and declared that he wouldn’t have anything more to do with the Russians. Then I wrote him a letter indicating that I was personally prepared to pay the Soviet Union’s debt. I flew to Budapest and Fischer met me at the airport. We went to his flat and made lunch: I’d brought caviar and vodka. I remember we also cooked pelmeni. I gave Bobby 100,000 dollars and he wept: “For the first time in my life I haven’t been deceived, I’ve been paid for my efforts”.
Here is the full article.
He’s an honorable President.
I know you will be deleting this Susan, but perhaps you’re reading it. It’s a disgrace that you are supporting that man. Just read what he says about astrology – and where do you think the money he’s pouring into chess are coming from.
I have to say that my opinion of you has dropped by a very large amount within the last few months. Deep down I think you know that you’re wrong.
I don’t believe at all that Mr Iljum… paid Fischer that money. Where is the proof? Why was this payment never mentioned earlier? This man will say anything to curry favour with the chess world in order to get reelected!
A: You, posting as an anonymous, know that I will delete your post? You are wrong.
B: Where did I say that I support or not support either candidate? Do you know something I do not?
C: Do you know the people behind the 2 camps? I do personally and first hand, not political spin published on some clearly not neutral websites. I am also sure that I know a lot more than most people do about many of these issues with my 35+ years in chess. Karpov has been my friend for a long time and I know most of these people for a long time.
D: As I stated countless times on my site, I am presenting everything both sides send to me, all of them. The chess community deserves to have all the information and not political spin.
So if you lose respect for me by reporting the news fairly then so be it. If you know specific information or facts about either candidate or their teams then send it to me and I will publish them. I do not take what politically or financially motivated chess journalists write as facts.
Another anon (11:03) insulting people without a clue. Sad.
Bleh….I respect your being fair Susan. My take on it is simple. Illu has not really done much for chess…he has to pour his own money into it…which suggests he can’t find sponsors with any weight. He also showers poor federations…who have the same voting power as any other country with cheap little Gifts. I don’t think I’ve liked the WCC since the old KK matches….24 games…a real match..the candidates…etc..now its just not right. Anand is the rightfull champion to be sure….but where has chess progressed in the past 20 years?? Nowhere. I’m not sure what Karpov would do..and I think thats a problem…because his PR is pretty bad. As an excellent past World chess champion…I’m sure he has a lot to add and contribute but I really think he needs to distance himself from the people who fractured FIDE in the 80..90’s,,,whenever that was. I’d personally like him as president….I’m just not sure he’d do better…and he really doesn’t seem to have a game plan.
Illu likes UFO’s …Psychics…whatever…the dudes a loon…but he also has all the poor countries in his pocket. Karpovs game is busted….Sort of sucks…would be nice to get a good Prezident. If I could suggest one…I’d probably select Mr B Kokk.
Well, i totally disagree with that anonymous comment; I do think that it must be quite hard for Zsuzsa to make her position known, as she has to keep her neutral side as she is involved in the admistrative side of chess, and therefore that would be a bit out of order if she were to take sides out in public.
We all know of her good relations with the current president in the past, but as she says, doesnt mean she has a particular liking for him, or that even agrees with him.
Therefore, i think she definetly took the best stand , and kept herself aside from all the say-say, etc showing once more that she definetly is a lady in a world previously dominated by men !
Mind the fact that i support Karpov to president, as i think that the current president has done too much harm to FIDE and chess as a whole; Not to mention that it is time for a change as welll.
So, i consider those comments a bit out of place, posted by someone who doesnt really measures his words, taking it out on Zsuzsa for some weird reason?!?
Ignore them, Susan!! And come back to competitive chess, please ! lol