'One should not expect any gratitude from Karpov''

7/27/2005 – After Anatoly Karpov's sharp-worded attack towards the current FIDE administration, we have received a second rejoinder, from Zurab Azmaiparashvili, FIDE Vice President, whom Karpov accused of "attacking policemen like a madman". Here it is, together with some feedback from our readers on the Karpov controversy.

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A reply to Anatoly Karpov

For me Karpov's interview on ChessBase was not a surprise as I am very well aware of the ungratefulness of his nature. Unfortunately, the language one of the outstanding World Chess Champions has been using, came as a surprise for me, and not only me, as ordinary people know and respect chess as a wise game, which improves intellectual potential of a person.

I have mentioned that one should not expect any gratitude from Karpov to Ilyumzhinov, for everything the latter had done for him. At least one would think, we should expect some respect to a person who has been doing his utmost to support chess during the last decade, with a sizeable, multimillion share for him, Mr. Karpov. This is not a matter of culture, this is a matter of education.


FIDE Vice President and grandmaster Zurab Azmaiparashvili

There are ongoing rumours that Mr. Karpov is aiming at the office of the FIDE President. The motivation is supreme: to defend the interests of chess and chess players. Wonderful, but just a moment! I have a couple of small questions to my double colleague.

  1. How would Mr. Karpov explain his attacks against me, if he does not know the core of the matter? In Calvià I was defending the interests of my colleagues, the chess players, who were undeservedly hurt and humiliated: the women's team of Russia, who were not called to the stage for the awards; a live legend Nona Gaprindashvili; Zsuzsa Polgar and Baadur Jobava, who were best in performance; a captain of the USA's women's team, Mr. Truong, who did not receive the medals. All these people are safe and sound, and if Mr. Karpov has some doubts about my words, he could make some inquiries from them. Otherwise, I expect an official apologies from Mr. Karpov, especially in the light of the recent verdict of the court in Calvià, which announced that I am totally innocent.

  2. Mr. Karpov, two years ago, at he Benidorm tournament, has openly labelled all the tournament participants, Anand, Topalov, Polgar, Radjabov, Karjakin, etc. idiots, because they did not agree with his opinion. The tournament organiser, who was following the regulations, and the Chief Arbiter excluded Mr. Karpov from the list. After this he used all his influence to abolish this wonderful event. After 2003 this tournament stopped functioning. Bravo, Anatoly Evgenievich, you are a really influential person! My question is as follows: in your capacity as FIDE President, would you also use all your influence to abolish the unwanted tournaments and punish the organisers who do not obey to you?

This is Anatoly Karpov for the people who don't know him. An excellent chessplayer who never earned the respect of his colleagues because of his behaviour.


Player in the FIDE presidential elections? Anatoly Karpov

Now he is dreaming of becoming FIDE President, with the support, as he says, of ECU and its 53 European Federations. Did he consult the Presidential Board of ECU, or at least its President, Mr Boris Kutin for such a matter? Did he ask for the opinion of the European Federations?

Anatoly is mostly searching for business opportunities. With the sponsors who can support his campaign, his federation and possibly with Ilyumzhinov! Even if he doesn't get elected, he will surely make a little something for himself. If he is also so fortunate to get elected, he hopes to expand his business throughout the world by using FIDE.

That's why he is talking now about people who are "plundering" FIDE. Because, based on his own character, he cannot possibly imagine that someone could be leading an international federation without "plundering" it.

Unfortunately for Karpov, his history is well-known and published everywhere. The match he never played against Fischer, the way he beat Korchnoi, the involvement of the Soviet mechanism in his first match against Kasparov, his becoming World Champion in 93 after having lost to Short in the semifinals etc. And fortunately for chess, it is the representatives of the National Federations (backed by their chessplayers) who will decide if they should vote for Karpov as FIDE President.

GM Zurab Azmaiparashvili


Feedback

on the Karpov interview and Makropoulos reply

P.T. Ummer Koya
This has reference to the article entitled “ Anatoly Karpov speaks his mind” published in the website of the Chess Base News on 6th July 2005, which contains excerpts from am interview with Mr. Karpov. In that article there is a highly damaging reference about me by way of a quote from Mr. Karpov:

"It is absurd to have people like Zurab Azmaiparashvili in the FIDE team, who is attacking policemen like a madman, or the convicted Indian Ummer Koya."

I wish to point out that no court in India or abroad has ever convicted me or awarded any punishment to me. That being the case, to qualify me as "the convicted Indian Ummer Koya" is an affront on my personality and reputation, and is also highly derogative and damaging. From your introductory note that these quotes from Mr. Karpov are specially provocative , it is evident that you published it with full knowledge of its impact and with the deliberate intention of tarnishing my image. This is neither fair nor proper on the part of any publisher.

Reply from the editor
We published the interview, which was given by Anatoly Karpov to newspaper journalist Hartmut Metz and translated by Eric van Reem, as submitted. The interview was authorised by Karpov, distributed by the organisers of the Mainz Chess Classic, and published in numerous places. In reproducing the quote given above news publishers are not saying they agree with the statement or even condone it. What we are doing is simply reporting that Anatoly Karpov, a former world champion, made such a statement. However, we would like to apologize for any distress it might have caused you. – Frederic Friedel

Paul Fulbright Richardson, Texas, USA
You have a world-class website, and the legacy of journalistic excellence you will be passing on to current and future generations of chess players is secure. However, because so many of your readers are young, I would probably have recommended using the character string "d***head" (or something similar) rather than the expletive. I could cite a variety of professional, ethical or moral reasons for this, but I'll focus instead on a good business reason for Chessbase.com to redact the word – it's good business (profanity will drive away some readers). I've been reading your site nearly daily for two years, and, as a result, have bought several ChessBase products. This is the first time I've written in with any kind of criticism.

Reply from the editor
Paul, we have an extremely wide readership with visitors from over 100 countries. We have to assume that (a) most people in the world do not pick up the connotation with the phrase Anatoly (or his translator) used; and (b) 80% would not understand "d***head" (damnhead? duckhead?). For your information: the word Karpov used in the original German version of the interview was "Schwachkopf", which I would personally have given as "dimwit" or something similarly innocuous. But the official version of the interview sent to us was different, and we couldn't change the wording there. – Frederic Friedel

Harvey Patterson, Ottawa, Canada
Mr. Makropoulos makes some very good points about Karpov's interview. I don't think it was necessary or wise to make negative comments about Kasparov and Azmaiparahvili. Unfortunately, FIDE is probably the only international sports federation in the world where it is absolutely true to say that even a dickhead would be a better president than the incumbent. As far as I'm concerned, Anatoly Karpov is the perfect dickhead for the job.

Andrew Bell, San Diego, USA
A child-like letter. FIDE doesn't really defend its record in this letter, rather it takes shots at Mr. Karpov. The "eye for an eye" mentality that seems so prevalent in FIDE's upper management is on showcase here. Where else in the world would a professional organization engage in petty back-and-forths with a client (one of its most famous) for all to see?

Also, how can Makropoulos attempt to end the letter with: "Kirsan is the only president in the history of FIDE, and maybe in the history of all international federations, who has contributed dozens of million dollars for the sport he loves. By the way, some of these millions went directly to Anatoly's pocket..."

Ridiculous. Regardless of Kirsan's philanthropy toward FIDE, to take another parting shot at Karpov like such is indefensible. He made money playing chess implies what? That he should keep his mouth shut? He earned that kind of money because he is the 3rd greatest player ever. FIDE should take no credit for that and shouldn't try to use it as a muzzle.

I should add that Karpov is also foolish and petty too, but he is representing himself -- not a professional, worldwide organization. Also, tell Karpov that he is no longer the greatest player in the world. He hasn't been that since Yuri Andropov was perched in the Kremlin.

Neil Owen, Stoke on Trent, England
Its worth mentioning that during his long career, Karpov was never really one for openings, and he used his strong middlegame and endgame to steamroller his opponents. If his ambitions in becoming FIDE president are the same as his chess, than watch out FIDE. I think he certainly has the respect from chessplayers needed to be in such a role.

Marcel Balcarek, Franktown, USA
FIDE's record over the last decade speaks for itself. It is not a good record. It is time to play a new game. FIDE needs to produce a unification cycle that is fair from the perspective that all the top competitors start equal. I also think that there is now no player who can brag about how great they are. The future world champion needs to PROVE they are the best by starting on a level playing field and showing us they are the best. Bring the status and prestige back to the world championship.


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