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Old May 8th 08, 02:51 AM posted to rec.games.chess.misc,rec.games.chess.politics
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Default The Euphemism in Botvinnik

THE WAY IT WAS


This, from a Soviet defector, supports the notion that

Botvinnik was, at least to some extent, controlling chess
information in Russia. -- Taylor Kingston

There was also force or its threat -- in one
form or another -- employed by both Botvinnik and
Karpov during their reigns. Those who refused to
contribute to the "collective" could be punished.

One handy weapon, which could lead to outright
starvation of one's family, was loss of ration cards.
Dogs and cats disappeared from the streets of Moscow
in the late 1940s. You did as Botvinnik wished or
your children might die from malnutrition. Times were
not quite so dire during Karpov's time, but Soviet
citizens did not eat well back then, either.

Concerning Bogatyrchuk, there was a nasty attack
on him by "Ludek Pachman" in the British Chess
Magazine when Pachman was still a dedicated
Stalinist. Interestingly, the English in the attack
was excellent; and from Pachman's anguished written
appeals after the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia,
we know that he wrote pidgin English. His book
CHECKMATE IN PRAGUE: THE MEMOIRS OF A
GRANDMASTER (1975) written after he was thrown
in prison for breaking with the party line still makes
for interesting reading. Pachman also was the target
of a Soviet boycott and spent his last days in Berlin.

So, then, Bogatyrchuk was a defector who
prompted the Soviet propaganda machine into action
in an attempt to discredit him. In fact, it was an
example of the kind of stuff offered here recently by
Juergen, our jerkin' gherkin, when attacking Korchnoi.
The very fact of the bogus attacks on Bogatyrchuk
lend his testimony considerable plausibility.

Yours, Larry Parr


wrote:
On May 7, 6:48?am, David Richerby
wrote:
wrote:
A particularly relevant quote from the Winter article is this,
written by Bohatirchuk in 1949:


"[Botvinnik's] trainer (now perhaps a whole retinue of trainers)
works out theoretical novelties for him and tests them in play with
other masters; publication of these trial games is forbidden until
Botvinnik uses that particular variation."


This, from a Soviet defector, supports the notion that Botvinnik
was, at least to some extent, controlling chess information in Russia.


Sure but that's standard stuff, surely? ?Doesn't every top-ten player
do that, except that these days, the trial games are probably against
the computer?


Well, it was not standard for most masters in Botvinnik's day,
whether Soviet or Western, to have "a retinue of trainers." So in that
sense he enjoyed a special privilege. As far as secret trial games are
concerned, yes, that was and is quite common. I cited the passage only
because, in saying "publication of these trial games is forbidden," it
provided some support, however minor, to the notion that Botvinnik was
controlling the flow of chess information.

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Old May 8th 08, 03:45 AM posted to rec.games.chess.misc,rec.games.chess.politics
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First recorded activity by ChessBanter: May 2006
Posts: 3,026
Default Ludek Pachman

POLITICAL PAWNS

"Gens Una Sumus" -- we are all one -- is the motto of FIDE, the
world chess body. Yet the tradition that chess should be above
politics eroded during the Cold War.

At the 1974 Chess Olympiad in France each team signed a pledge to
play against any other country. Then Rhodesia and South Africa were
expelled for purely political reasons and FIDE started down a slippery
slope. In 1986 Israel was banned from the Olympiad in the United Arab
Emirates.

FIDE also voted not to accredit an international tournament if a
master played against the wishes of his own chess federation. In
effect, this destroyed a standard of excellence and reduced players to
mere political pawns.

In an open letter Czech grandmaster Ludek Pachman recalled his
imprisonment "with a broken skull and backbone, hovering between life
and death, after a six-week hunger strike." His crime? Protesting the
Soviet occupation of his homeland.

His book "Checkmate in Prague: Memoirs of a Grandmaster" (1975) is
a vivid chronicle of his Kafkaesque battle with bureaucracy, arrest
and "trial."

Upon his release Pachman settled in Solingen, West Germany and
organized an international tourney in 1974. But at the last moment he
was excluded when both Russia and East Germany threatened to withdraw.
After that shameful incident Pachman was admitted to the West German
chess team and moved to Berlin where he died at 78 in 2003.

He noted: "I consider myself forced to leave the club and the town
and to settle down elsewhere. Players want to devote themselves to
their beautiful game and are entitled to their desire to have no
interference from the uproar of this world. I was no longer invited to
big matches. Others are not prepared to separate chess from politics.

"In my initial disillusionment I wanted to give up chess and look
for a different vocation, but I have decided against this. It is not
so easy to write off 30 years of one’s life and I am convinced that I
am still able to play well. Furthermore, it would only prove that
boycotts, blackmail, and arrogant despotism would emerge victorious.

"The day after tomorrow demands might be made that all masters
must acknowledge only one ideology or one religion. Freedom and
justice are usually destroyed in small steps.

"For this reason I turn to chess friends with a request: to prevent
situations like this one in Solingen in the future and to give me the
opportunity to be defeated at the board instead of being boycotted."

(Reprinted from EVANS ON CHESS, courtesy of the author.)






wrote:
THE WAY IT WAS


This, from a Soviet defector, supports the notion that

Botvinnik was, at least to some extent, controlling chess
information in Russia. -- Taylor Kingston

There was also force or its threat -- in one
form or another -- employed by both Botvinnik and
Karpov during their reigns. Those who refused to
contribute to the "collective" could be punished.

One handy weapon, which could lead to outright
starvation of one's family, was loss of ration cards.
Dogs and cats disappeared from the streets of Moscow
in the late 1940s. You did as Botvinnik wished or
your children might die from malnutrition. Times were
not quite so dire during Karpov's time, but Soviet
citizens did not eat well back then, either.

Concerning Bogatyrchuk, there was a nasty attack
on him by "Ludek Pachman" in the British Chess
Magazine when Pachman was still a dedicated
Stalinist. Interestingly, the English in the attack
was excellent; and from Pachman's anguished written
appeals after the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia,
we know that he wrote pidgin English. His book
CHECKMATE IN PRAGUE: THE MEMOIRS OF A
GRANDMASTER (1975) written after he was thrown
in prison for breaking with the party line still makes
for interesting reading. Pachman also was the target
of a Soviet boycott and spent his last days in Berlin.

So, then, Bogatyrchuk was a defector who
prompted the Soviet propaganda machine into action
in an attempt to discredit him. In fact, it was an
example of the kind of stuff offered here recently by
Juergen, our jerkin' gherkin, when attacking Korchnoi.
The very fact of the bogus attacks on Bogatyrchuk
lend his testimony considerable plausibility.

Yours, Larry Parr


wrote:
On May 7, 6:48?am, David Richerby
wrote:
wrote:
A particularly relevant quote from the Winter article is this,
written by Bohatirchuk in 1949:

"[Botvinnik's] trainer (now perhaps a whole retinue of trainers)
works out theoretical novelties for him and tests them in play with
other masters; publication of these trial games is forbidden until
Botvinnik uses that particular variation."

This, from a Soviet defector, supports the notion that Botvinnik
was, at least to some extent, controlling chess information in Russia.

Sure but that's standard stuff, surely? ?Doesn't every top-ten player
do that, except that these days, the trial games are probably against
the computer?


Well, it was not standard for most masters in Botvinnik's day,
whether Soviet or Western, to have "a retinue of trainers." So in that
sense he enjoyed a special privilege. As far as secret trial games are
concerned, yes, that was and is quite common. I cited the passage only
because, in saying "publication of these trial games is forbidden," it
provided some support, however minor, to the notion that Botvinnik was
controlling the flow of chess information.

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