13th World Champion responds to Kramnik
Chess-News contacted Garry Kasparov asking him to comment on the recent statements by Kramnik, in which Kasparov's chess successor suggested that Kasparov might have organized the sanctions imposed on Kirsan Ilyumzhinov. Garry sent us the Russian text and also posted on his facebook the English translation which we reproduce here:
"The bizarre comments by Vladimir Kramnik attempting to blame me for FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov's corruption are, if little else, definitive proof that exceptional chess skill does not represent broader intelligence or moral character. The habit in Vladimir Putin's Russia of blaming outside influences for all of the regime's crimes, failures, and blunders appears to be contagious enough to have reached Kramnik at his home in Switzerland.
Like anyone who cares about chess, I was saddened when the United States Treasury Department sanctioned Ilyumzhinov in Nov 2015 for aiding and acting for the brutal Syrian regime of Bashar Assad. It was another blow to the reputation of the game I have devoted my life to, one of many Ilyumzhinov has inflicted. It was also concrete evidence of the long-apparent fact that Ilyumzhinov has turned FIDE into an agent and money-laundering operation for Putin's KGB state. Ilyumzhinov's fate doesn't concern me, but the negative attention he attracts so consistently does great harm to the interests of professional chessplayers as well as to the activities of non-profit foundations like my own that are trying to spread the joys and benefits of the great game of chess".