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Looking for Suitable Responses - Andy Howie - 30-03-2022

Just received this from the PNG mob that tried unsuccessfully to remove us from FIDE at the last GA.  Mike Turan, Malcom Pein and myself contacted quite a few Federations to make sure it did not go through.

Any thoughts on how to respond to this (that are clean)

March 30th
Dear Federations
Best Wishes from Port Moresby Papua New Guinea
 
We are all happy that we have the Chess Olympiad and FIDE elections starting in less than four months. The Olympiad is when smallest federations get the most direct benefit from the international governing body.
 
Of course, in election campaigns, rival candidates try to gain support – by hollow promises along with winning, dining and gift-giving, even the blatant offering of bribes.
 
This year, the Olympiad has been moved from its originally intended location of Moscow, Russia, to Chennai, India.
 
But, sadly, Russia and Belarus have been banned from playing.
 
This is due to the insistence of a group of Western European nations that Russia and Belarus be punished
over the invasion of Ukraine.
 
We are, of course, against Russia’s terrible actions in Ukraine, but in many past conflicts invading countries have not been banned from playing chess in Olympiads.
This ban on the ordinary Russian players smacks of double standards. Punishment is acceptable if a European/Western allied nation gets invaded, but not demanded when the victim does not belong to this group.
 
Our federation, representing the Pacific islands nation of Papua New Guinea, has been involved in controversies at some past Olympiads. That was because we stood up for what we believed in. At the 2014 Olympiad in Tromso, Norway, the campaign team of then FIDE President Kirsan unfairly denied PNG its vote, something that comes only once every four years.
 
So, at the last, 2018, elections in Batumi, Georgia, we supported underdog Nigel Short, the only Grandmaster to ever visit PNG. Like us, he is fond of asking questions such as: 1. How does FIDE spend our money? 2. Why had FIDE not published its accounts?
 
These matters are highly relevant. If the money is being stolen, then there is less for the rest of us, including you.
 
Our country has a relatively small population and is somewhat geographically isolated, but we like to think things through in a down-to-earth way. We are not scared of the ‘big boys’ of chess politics.
 
One of our complaints is that Britain has five FIDE votes -- i.e for England, Scotland, Wales, Jersey and Guernsey -- even though they are all part of one nation. FIDE even let Britain’s ‘Isle of Man’ join as an associate member, yet our Pacific neighbour, New Caledonia, has not been allowed to do so.
 
At the last General Assembly, we put up motions to insist that FIDE follow International Olympic conventions and that Britain have just one vote. The new FIDE line-up played some ‘games’ to block that. We’ll be happy to explain over a drink in Chennai!
 
 
We are against any bans on federations, because it's not chess players who start wars.
 
If your federation agrees, please contact us by email to discuss putting up a FIDE presidential bid that will work to spread chess around the world. We will not be at the mercy of former colonial powers that became wealthy by invading Africa, Asia, South America, the Pacific and elsewhere.
 
And you can help us fight for a more democratic FIDE.
 
 
Authorized by PNG Chess Federation


RE: Looking for Suitable Responses - Alex McFarlane - 30-03-2022

On a first reading my thoughts were "Is this a spoof that Andy has fallen for?"
Having checked that we are not quite at 1st April yet I will answer.

Defending Russia and Belarus seems a strange strategy.  Supporting countries that will not have a vote, whilst attacking those with one is an odd way of promoting your cause.

Jersey and Guernsey are not part of Britain as claimed.  If you are combining all of these into one group then politically should you be ignoring the overseas territories?

If you do accept that Scotland, England and Wales should be combined into the United Kingdom for FIDE purposes is it fair to leave Northern Ireland as part of another country altogether?

Why do they mention the (alleged) sins of the previous administration as if it is the fault of the current one?

Nigel Short, who they seem to say is a good guy, is now part of the current administration.  Having praised him they seem to be looking for another candidate to stand for President.

They also don't say how combining the British Isles into one country with only one vote will make FIDE more democratic.  The named countries do not always vote in the same way.  FIDE has 201 members, at least 195 of which have a vote.  Taking away 4 votes will obviously make FIDE much more democratic as they would just need 95 countries to support them instead of a massive 97. 

What do they hope to gain?


RE: Looking for Suitable Responses - Andy Howie - 31-03-2022

Well they mentioned the colonisation that the UK did. Do we consider then punishing France, Spain, Portugal, Denmark etc etc for similar crimes. We could go back as far as the Romans and ban Italy....

It is complete nonsense


RE: Looking for Suitable Responses - Willie Rutherford - 31-03-2022

There's certainly more than a hint of "look at me" attention seeking in their message.
 
Responding to them would just feed this and surely not change their minds on anything.
You'll know the politics of FIDE but as a layman I would recommend ignore. 
But please continue to be alert in case the UK/SCO nonsense looks like gaining legs with any others and nip it in the bud!

Whether individual RUS/BLR players, under whatever flag, should be universally banned is a thorny question which will get air-time in many spheres much more important than chess. I don't think any words from a PNG FIDE rep will have much bearing on what happens so I would also ignore this.


RE: Looking for Suitable Responses - davidlevy - 02-04-2022

(30-03-2022, 12:25 PM)Andy Howie Wrote: Just received this from the PNG mob that tried unsuccessfully to remove us from FIDE at the last GA.  Mike Turan, Malcom Pein and myself contacted quite a few Federations to make sure it did not go through.

Any thoughts on how to respond to this (that are clean)

March 30th
Dear Federations
Best Wishes from Port Moresby Papua New Guinea
 
We are all happy that we have the Chess Olympiad and FIDE elections starting in less than four months. The Olympiad is when smallest federations get the most direct benefit from the international governing body.
 
Of course, in election campaigns, rival candidates try to gain support – by hollow promises along with winning, dining and gift-giving, even the blatant offering of bribes.
 
This year, the Olympiad has been moved from its originally intended location of Moscow, Russia, to Chennai, India.
 
But, sadly, Russia and Belarus have been banned from playing.
 
This is due to the insistence of a group of Western European nations that Russia and Belarus be punished
over the invasion of Ukraine.
 
We are, of course, against Russia’s terrible actions in Ukraine, but in many past conflicts invading countries have not been banned from playing chess in Olympiads.
This ban on the ordinary Russian players smacks of double standards. Punishment is acceptable if a European/Western allied nation gets invaded, but not demanded when the victim does not belong to this group.
 
Our federation, representing the Pacific islands nation of Papua New Guinea, has been involved in controversies at some past Olympiads. That was because we stood up for what we believed in. At the 2014 Olympiad in Tromso, Norway, the campaign team of then FIDE President Kirsan unfairly denied PNG its vote, something that comes only once every four years.
 
So, at the last, 2018, elections in Batumi, Georgia, we supported underdog Nigel Short, the only Grandmaster to ever visit PNG. Like us, he is fond of asking questions such as: 1. How does FIDE spend our money? 2. Why had FIDE not published its accounts?
 
These matters are highly relevant. If the money is being stolen, then there is less for the rest of us, including you.
 
Our country has a relatively small population and is somewhat geographically isolated, but we like to think things through in a down-to-earth way. We are not scared of the ‘big boys’ of chess politics.
 
One of our complaints is that Britain has five FIDE votes -- i.e for England, Scotland, Wales, Jersey and Guernsey -- even though they are all part of one nation. FIDE even let Britain’s ‘Isle of Man’ join as an associate member, yet our Pacific neighbour, New Caledonia, has not been allowed to do so.
 
At the last General Assembly, we put up motions to insist that FIDE follow International Olympic conventions and that Britain have just one vote. The new FIDE line-up played some ‘games’ to block that. We’ll be happy to explain over a drink in Chennai!
 
 
We are against any bans on federations, because it's not chess players who start wars.
 
If your federation agrees, please contact us by email to discuss putting up a FIDE presidential bid that will work to spread chess around the world. We will not be at the mercy of former colonial powers that became wealthy by invading Africa, Asia, South America, the Pacific and elsewhere.
 
And you can help us fight for a more democratic FIDE.
 
 
Authorized by PNG Chess Federation

I would suggest we ignore this post. Any reply is almost certain to offend someone.