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Blair Watch Project

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Speaking of political issues, with Tony Blair going to Libya the door is wider open for the 2004 FIDE KO championship to be held in Tripoli this summer. I'm all in favor of Libya coming in from the cold, making reparations, and selecting a new, sane, leader in at least a vaguely democratic fashion. But if they don't let the Israeli players participate it's a joke, especially considering the FIDE motto is "Gens Una Sumus" or We are One Family. Maybe someone who had more than one semester of Latin can tell us how to amend the FIDE motto to "We Are One Family, Except the Jews." At one point the FIDE site said that they were hoping for a special dispensation to allow the Israelis to play, but the latest FIDE reports on the event don't mention this.

I'd love to go cover the KO like I did the last one in Moscow (2001). But since my passport shows I have visited Israel I won't be allowed into Libya to do so. While I have disagreed with most of the directions Ilyumzhinov has pushed chess (time control, KO, political instead of corporate sponsorship), I believe he thinks he is helping chess with his actions. I also think FIDE can be worked with and transformed and doesn't need to be discarded and/or replaced, as many suggest. But is this really the best we can hope for? Places that radically restrict event attendance for profane racial, religious, and political reasons? Background and current status of Libya and its relations with the US here.

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    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on March 29, 2004 4:08 AM.

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