Friday, July 16, 2004

checkmate, in 12 years of moves

Bobby Fischer might not be the sanest human around, but he was a goddam good chess player who was a grandmaster at age 15 and who became the first American world chess champion.

His last public chess game took place in Yugoslavia in 1992, a rematch of the epic 1972 match versus Boris Spassky. Fischer won that one too. He also won the attention of the US government, who claim he violated UN sanctions which had been imposed against Yugoslavia for 'provoking warfare' in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Fischer has been 'underground' ever since... until Tuesday, when he failed to notice that his passport had expired as he tried to board a plane in Japan. He's been taken into custody and plans to fight extradition to the US.

It would be easier to support his cause if he wasn't such a whackjob (he's rabid most of the time), but on the other hand I think of all of the evil shit this country does and think 'they want to imprison this 61-year-old genius for playing a fucking chess game?' Surely his violating of the Yugoslavian sanctions is of less import than, say, Reagan selling weapons to Iraq, or Bush defying UN resolutions to deal with Iraq diplomatically when Hussein started using those weapons in ways we didn't like.

Fischer has essentially been in a state of permanent nervous breakdown since the 70's... I say leave him alone. As if I had a voice in this country.