Kasparov Interviews

Edward Winter


Garry Kasparov

C.N. 1143 dealt with a remark by Larry Evans in the March 1986 Chess Life that Kasparov’s generous spirit towards Fischer was alien to Karpov. We disputed this, showing that Karpov had indeed praised Fischer. But journalists, particularly in the United States, continue to lump Kasparov and Fischer together to stigmatize Karpov. They would do well to ponder some declarations by Kasparov. For example, he was interviewed by Thierry Paunin in L’Equipe magazine of 24 January 1987. Here are the relevant exchanges:

T.P. Do you think Fischer will play again one day and would you like to meet him?

G.K. No, I don’t think there is the slightest chance that Fischer will ever play chess again. The return of Fischer is a myth; in any case, it provides good suspense for people who know nothing about chess. Fischer is the chess past. He left because he didn’t want to play any more. Endless talk about his return is just day-dreaming.

T.P. Haven’t you ever tried to make contact with him? It is said that some grandmasters keep in touch with him ...

G.K. I don’t believe a word of it. I want proof. It is also said that he still plays. Well, let him play, let him enter a tournament and let him play! For me, Fischer is no longer anything. He has gone into history. That is very interesting from the historical point of view, but Fischer means nothing more at all today!’

Truly a generous spirit, worthy of Sir George Thomas.


Kasparov comments on chess computers in an interview with Thierry Paunin on pages 4-5 of issue 55 of Jeux & Stratégie (published in 1989):

Question: ... Two top grandmasters have gone down to chess computers: Portisch against “Leonardo” and Larsen against “Deep Thought”. It is well known that you have strong views on this subject. Will a computer be world champion, one day ...?

Kasparov: Ridiculous! A machine will always remain a machine, that is to say a tool to help the player work and prepare. Never shall I be beaten by a machine! Never will a program be invented which surpasses human intelligence. And when I say intelligence, I also mean intuition and imagination. Can you see a machine writing a novel or poetry? Better still, can you imagine a machine conducting this interview instead of you? With me replying to its questions?’


From page 273 of Chess Explorations:

In an October 1989 interview published in the 1/1990 New in Chess Kasparov declared (page 49):

‘After the next world championship match I will dedicate myself to the rebuilding of the world of chess literature.’

He didn’t.

See also Kasparov’s Child of Change.

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Copyright: Edward Winter. All rights reserved.