By Alex Bregman
Garry Kasparov, world chess champion, human rights activist, and vocal critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, spoke to Yahoo News and Finance Anchor Bianna Golodryga on “Yahoo News Live” about his new book, “Winter Is Coming.” He gave his take on everything from Putin being named No. 1 on the Forbes magazine “Most Powerful People in the World” list for a third year in a row to which 2016 presidential candidate would be best suited to face the Russian leader.
On Putin being at the top of that list, Kasparov said, “‘Most influential man in the world’ doesn’t mean the most powerful man regarding the tools he or she can use. That should be Barack Obama.” He also told Golodryga that Putin is more dangerous than ISIS.
On the news today that the World Anti-Doping Agency found top Russian athletes have participated in a state-sponsored doping program for years, Kasparov was not surprised. He told Golodryga: “We know that all dictators wanted to generate a great success on the sport field … naturally, doping can reach this goal.”
When looking at the 2016 field of U.S. presidential candidates, Kasparov said Florida Sen. Marco Rubio would be the “most plausible and probably the most unpleasant for Putin.” He pointed to Rubio’s “Cuban roots” and called him a “fresh start.” He also noted that Hillary Clinton would be “very hawkish” toward Putin, but “there’s a history.”
Kasparov had harsh words for how President Obama has dealt with Putin. He said, “This administration basically did nothing and caused huge damage for the reputation of the United States in the world.”
Finally, Kasparov does not see Putin going anywhere anytime soon. He told Golodryga: “Anyone who could look like a successor would be dead very soon. We should accept as a fact … that chaos will follow Putin’s demise. Putin will stay in power for the rest of his life.”