Here is my take regarding the World Blitz & Rapid in Saudi Arabia

I will continue to hope and dream that it will happen ... one day!

Here is my take regarding the World Blitz & Rapid Championships

1 It is wrong not to grant visas to the 7 Israeli players who were willing, ready, and able to compete in Saudi Arabia. We should all applaud those 7 players who were willing to battle on the chess board. At the end, they were NOT given the opportunity to do so.

2 It is wrong to condemn, insult, or attack those players who chose to go to Saudi Arabia to compete. Every player should have the right to make his / her own decision. For those who decided to compete, I wish them all the best.

3 It is equally wrong to condemn, insult, or attack those players who chose NOT to go to Saudi Arabia to compete in the World Rapid & Blitz Championships. Some did not go because of conflicts in schedule. Some did not go because they are just bad in rapid & blitz. But for those who chose not to go out of principle, kudos to them.

This problem is not isolated to chess. The United Nations repeatedly condemned Israel over the years (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_Nations_resolutions_concerning_Israel). This is a global situation. Therefore, it is not objective to say that this is solely a chess issue.

I am sorry to say that this problem will not go away no matter who will be the next President of FIDE. Let's not fool ourselves. I am always an optimist for peace. But I am not naive enough to believe that world peace will happen in my lifetime. But I will continue to hope and dream that it will happen ... one day!

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