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France Surrenders. Not!

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I was hoping that if waited long enough ChessBase would post this press release so I wouldn't have to. French organizer Leo Battesti has been endorsed by the French chess federation in his run for FIDE president in the May 2006 elections. The rest of the release is pure happytalk, nothing concrete at all. Let's hope we see a platform of what he would do differently. As chessplayers know, change for the sake of change is playing without a strategy. Bad positions can always get worse, even if it's hard to imagine in this case.

This is the first formal hat toss I've seen. Has Karpov said anything committal? Don't think so. There are rumors that a certain Euro business-type with long-standing chess connections is considering a run, but you didn't read that here.


I think Karpov calling Ilyumzhinov a "dickhead" (even if it was mistranslated) is just about the coolest thing I've heard, ever.


Does BK really want to get back in the chess politics game? What on earth for?

And BK was the REAL "Fourth K", not Kramnik.

Can anyone give a brief summary of how the election works, how long the term of the president is, etc, and give an idea of what you think the chances that Ilyumzhinov could win would be? Everyone seems to hate the guy, but I imagine getting rid of him is not so simple.....

IMO nothing will get worse than this anybody is better than Kirsan and co.

Mig if BK runs for election what are his chances?? Can he beat Kirsan?

If BK becomes pres, it will be the best thing that has happened to FIDE in a quarter-century. He's capable, dedicated to chess, and unlike many other player-turned-politicians, actually has some knowledge of business and organization.

Could he win? How does FIDE president get elected? Would he have to, essentially, out-bribe Ilyumzhinov to get delegate votes?

For those of us who don't know, who is this BK character?

Sorry, he's like Voldemo-- in the Harry Potter books. He who must not be named. Wait, I have no idea what, or who, you are talking about. I'm not even here.

Who's BK? Burger King? Balexander Khalifman? Brustam Khazimdjanov? Banatoly Karpov? Barry Kasparov? Bladimir Kramnik? Bata Kamsky? Or just ... Bachar Kouatly?

well I dont have any idea who BK is and I dont care who he is. I am voting for him.

GO GO BK we all support you.


Bessel Kok, of course.

The Burger King is too busy playing (American) football this year. Of course, the season will be over by late January or so, and then he'll be free.

well I did a Google seach of BK


and I came up with his pictures. and an interesting note that he was cosponsor of the Aeroflot tournament. wow.

Sounds like a real nice person.


the pictures are a bit of a way down. scroll down you will find him. He looks like a businessman in a good suit.

it looks like back in 1977 he was an IM from Lebanon who played in the first asian junior tournament in Manila.


per the one listing on google.

but most of the press seems to be in french. My guess is that he presently lives in France. found a quote he is a French GrandMaster.

he is presently a GM. but it looks like he went inactive in the year 2000. http://www.chessmetrics.com/PL/PL20748.htm

apparently he is director of Europe Chess. ( in french Europe Echecs )

Nigel Short comments on BK


where Nigel says:

I met Kirsan in Jakarta, we had a dinner together, and Bachar Kouatly was also there. Kouatly told me that the old format is wrong, and what we want is a chess Wimbledon to bring more excitement. There was one major flaw in his reasoning..........


You didn't search for BK, you searched for Bachar Kouatly. If you had googled BK you would have found more of interest. But interesting links anyway!

it must be bessel kok. that makes more sense.


Bessel Kok makes sense.

here is part of the week in chess #233 from april 1999.

2) Anand "still considering" match offer
Businessman and chess fan Bessel Kok has been in negotiations with Kasparov and Anand since March 12th to try and bring them together for a match for "The Ultimate World Chess Championship" in October this year. Kok has brought in Canadian entrepreneur Serge Grimaux to promote and organise the event and also GM Fridrik Olafsson (former FIDE President) and Dr. William Wirth. Kasparov has accepted their proposals for the match with a prize fund of US$3,000,000: US$2,000,000 for the winner and US$1,000,000 to the loser and to put on the line the title of World Chess Champion he holds. However in a press release from the promoters on Sunday it was made clear that Anand had not accepted yet and that there was a deadline of Friday, April 23, 1999.

In an interview with the Indian paper, Indian Express http://www.indian-express.com/ie/daily/19990425/isp25004.html he said he was unconcerned about his bad result at Dos Hermanas saying that he had simply played too much in the last few months. He commented that he had been approached by Bessel Kok about a match with Kasparov and was "still considering it". On the deadline that has just passed he said "I can't really make a comment on that" but asked about a match against Kasparov he said "You will get to know it soon." His crowded schedule for the rest of the year was mentioned and he was asked again about the match and he said "Maybe towards the end of the year".

Bessel Kok now needs to decide whether the offer remains on the table.


I hope Bessel Kok runs and wins. he will be great for chess. looks to me like the perfect person.

Word on the street (i.e. to me) is that the FIDE elections are already over. It's all about numbers and Kirsan has already secured support from 100-105 federations, that is more than 70% of the votes. If Kok, Karpov and the French insist and create tickets, they will have to share the rest 30%. In such a situation, my feeling is that at least Kok would never enter a completely lost war...

Yes Giannis. You are saying differently the same things that I was saying in another post. "has already secured support from 100-105 federations" ... is of course different from distributing bananas to Guatemala and Ghana, but ... I guess you'll agree that both sentences mean the same thing. Right?

Well another thing I'd like to say : even if many critics can be formulated against FIDE, let's - at least - point out the fact that what's being carried out today for the new WC cycle is far superior than what we could see for the past 5 or 10 years.

Last little point about Kramnik's WC legitimacy : now that Topalov agreed to play the title in a 8 player tournament and not in matches, it will be hard for Kramnik to claim for anything since ... he was invited in San-Luis and he'll still probably be invited to play directly matches in next cycle.

But Makropoulos interview has a lot of arguments to defend FIDE's work. Even a person like me, who is VERY opposed to Kirsan Illumjinov, has to admit that the new cycle brings new blood.

FIDE kind of reminds me of some women i knew in the past. They lie fully knowing what they are doing, and when time comes, are ready to make all kinds of explanations and excuses and most of all, admit that what they did was not the best thing but they are willing to try do things better from now on. Which, in the long run, naturally, wouldn't change anything.
My point is, it's easy to make statements about there being room for improvement, and much harder to act against one's nature and actually act upon such statements in the long run.
Of course FIDE has to sound agreeable and nice now, it's the move to be expected after having lied. Excuses can always be found, explanations can always be made. But a leopard doesn't change his stripes. If they were a decent organisation, they would've not lied in the first place, just before the tournament.
FIDE's current management are a bunch of no-good politicians furthering their own aims, being agreeable when needed, being tyrannical when they can. There's no reason to trust them. Why would there be?
If chessplayers really want a better federation, Kirsan and his cronies will not get support in the next election.
But the sad thing is that more than change for better, people generally prefer stability, even if circumstances aren't completely to their liking. It's just easier.

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    This page contains a single entry by Mig published on November 1, 2005 1:14 PM.

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