Friday, July 11, 2014
There's something of a kerfuffle been going on involving the difficulties some countries are experiencing in getting their competitors to Tromsø for the Olympiad.
In response the FIDE President has written an open letter to the Prime Minister of Norway. (Excerpt above.)
The Olympiad organisers have sent a response. (Excerpt below.)
As stated above, in spite (of) their goodwill, they are unable to solve the problem.
So in order to take part in a sporting event, competitors and officials have to travel to another country, in advance, to be fingerprinted.
This certainly puts into perspective the sort of things Western chess players complain about.
Now without throwing too much blame in any particular direction, perhaps some observations might be in order.
1. This is not the first time that federations, usually (though not exclusively) smaller ones in poorer countries, have had problems getting to the Olympiad.
2. Why is Norway hosting the Olympiad in the first place if it is not prepared to accept the bona fides of competitors? (I'm aware that the regulations were changed after the bid was accepted, but how come the potential effect on the Olympiad was overlooked in both organisational and governmental circles?)
3. Does anybody think such a thing would happen with a World Cup?
4. When some people complain that leading chess events need to be held in "advanced economies", might they usefully pay more attention to the views and needs of other people who those "advanced economies" treat with suspicion and contempt?
5. Why is it that some countries are not considered important enough to host an embassy, but when their citizens wish to travel to events to which they have been invited, they are suddenly important enough to be the subject of ludicrous security measures?