Tuesday, November 01, 2022

Former world chess champion who called for an end to Putin's war is in hospital in Moscow

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Mystery surrounds the condition of the former world chess champion Anatoly Karpov, who is widely reported to have suffered multiple head injuries and to have been placed in an induced coma.

He is variously reported to have fallen over or been attacked - ChessBase has a page with the various reports. There is even one quoting his wife as saying the whole story is nonsense. 

It may be no coincidence that Karpov has called for an end to the war in Ukraine:

He told a TV channel in Kazakhstan: 'I wish [the war] would end sooner, so that peaceful people would stop dying.'

He added: 'In the end ordinary people are the victims. Ordinary people fight, politicians and generals decide, and ordinary people fight, civilians die.

'I am not even talking about soldiers and officers. No, I could not imagine at all that Russians and Ukrainians would go to war. I have many friends in Ukraine.'

Karpov became world chess champion in 1975 when Bobby Fischer declined to defend his title and remained champion until Garry Kasparov defeated him in a match in 1985. 

As a young man Karpov was seen by the regime as the ideal Soviet citizen: the son of a worker from a city in the Urals and not Jewish. 

Before the Soviet Union dissolved, he served as a member of the Supreme Soviet Commission for Foreign Affairs and the president of the Soviet Peace Fund,

He later reappeared as a supporter of Vladimir Putin and has been a member of the Duma since 2011. He backed the annexation of Crimea.


nigel hunter said...

To me,very suspicious.I do hope we do not hear of his sudden demise.

Frank Little said...

One assumes he was as cautious in life as he was over the chessboard. What he said is hardly rabble-rousing. Russia is sick.