Garry Kasparov discusses Russia-US relations | Yahoo Finance | October 15, 2021


The following is a transcript of Garry Kasparov’s interview with Yahoo Finance. You can watch the original interview above.


Garry Kasparov, author, speaker, 13th World Chess Champion joins Yahoo Finance to discuss his latest Chess venture and his opinion on Russia’s place in geopolitics.

Video Transcript

GARRY KASPAROV: I prefer to talk about Putin because Russia is a one-man dictatorship. So that’s why we’re not talking about Russian long-term strategic interests as a country, but about survival and blossoming of Putin’s dictatorship, Putin’s regime, and his cronies. And it’s very unfortunate that over 20 years of Putin’s reign, Europe did nothing to eliminate the dependence on Russian oil and gas.

And the latest devotion, let’s use the word of Biden administration, to a Green New Deal. And consequently, the elimination of some of the Big Oil projects in America like Keystone obviously played in Putin’s hands. And right now, Putin has been using it very effectively, to his advantage. I don’t understand why you say maybe. Russian diplomats aren’t even hiding the fact that they are planning to use the Nord Stream 2 and other projects, , energy project with Europe, for the political advantage of Putin’s regime.

It’s a direct message. You stop treating Russia as a pariah state, and then we may be helping you with your energy crisis, which is, by the way, self-made. Don’t forget that 10 years ago, Germany I think stupidly eliminated nuclear energy, which is the only affordable replacement of dependence on Russian gas and oil.

 Well Garry, I guess how would you then– what’s your assessment of how the Biden administration has handled its relationship with Vladimir Putin so far? Because earlier this week, Putin was saying that his relationship with Biden is, quote working and stable? What’s your take?

GARRY KASPAROV: Oh, absolutely. That’s– the Biden administration was a big disappointment. Yeah, I thought that after Trump’s games with Putin, that definitely played into Putin’s hands. So Biden administration could restore American leadership. Unfortunately, we saw almost the opposite and Biden’s meeting with Putin, the summit in Geneva, which I think was a big mistake added to Putin’s confidence and emboldened him for further aggressive actions.

Russian foreign policy and domestic policy is getting– every day is getting more aggressive and more dictatorial. And right now, this American prestige in the world is probably hitting new low after the debacle, or I would say disaster in Afghanistan. And of course, there’s no vacuum in the geopolitical relations. So America goes out, America is weak, and obviously every dictator, every thug, every authoritarian regime now gets an advantage. And Putin, of course, is on the top of this list.

 So Garry, if you were advising the president, or if you had some advice that you wanted to share with him just on how we should be handling this relationship, what would you say?

GARRY KASPAROV: First, fire John Kerry. That’s number one. As long as John Kerry, who is the big fan– for some reasons a big friend of autocrats in the world, and who is pushing his green agenda above everything else. So nothing is going to happen.

He you should restore normal relations within the administration. The State Department and Pentagon should have their say, and John Kerry and National Security Council, they should play a subordinate role. Actually, John Kerry should be fired. If it doesn’t happen, I don’t think we will see any improvement anytime soon.

 Well Garry, I want to do a hard pivot here because you’re very passionate obviously about that topic. But it’s something that you’re also very passionate about, and that of course, we’ve talked to you about in the past, and that’s chess. And I know you have some big news here.

But curious, just before we get to the news that you will be launching next week in terms of a new platform, what’s your assessment just on the popularity of chess? Because I know last time you were on Yahoo Finance, we talked to you about “The Queen’s Gambit,” how that’s playing into the popularity of chess, how that’s enticing many new people to try the game. Is that still the case?

 Oh, absolutely. And thank you so much for bringing me back home from this murky world of geopolitics into the crystal-clear world of chess. Because in chess, we have rules, and everybody must follow the rules. So there are no exceptions for dictators.

And I’m very, very pleased with the lasting effect of “The Queen’s Gambit.” And I can probably say that you know, that was one of my best job as a consultant in my life. Because it helped to create something that affected millions and millions, endless millions of people around the world. And we see just it’s in sheer numbers. More and more people playing chess.

They want to know more about the game of chess. There is the boom in sales of the chess sets, and chess computers, chess programs. And it’s natural place in the hands of any chess venture. And the Kasparov Chess couldn’t have a better moment to be launched. And in a few days, I will be launching my new masterclass, and this is something that I believe will attract hopefully hundreds of thousands of people that will get into this chess well full of excitement, and treats, and entertainment.

 And Garry, you’re looking to capitalize on the rising popularity. I know you’re launching a 55-part series masterclass next week. You’re doing this in partnership with Vivendi. What are you most excited about this venture and what can we expect?

GARRY KASPAROV: It’s actually 57 episodes. Yes, it’s nearly 10 hours of recording. So we spend almost a week in Paris recording it. It’s a part of the Kasparov Chess Platform that already has nearly 1,000 lessons from greatest chess players, chess coaches, the other members of chess elite. So it’s a great mixture of entertainment and education.

And my masterclass is the unique combination of some chess tips and very useful material to improve your mental skills, and your chess level. You know, whether you’re a beginner or you are an expert. And also, in never before told stories. So it’s my personal life within this 10 hours, plus advices that I’m sure will be helpful for you, even beyond the board of chess.

 Now, a lot of people are looking forward to this. Garry Kasparov, author, speaker, human rights activist, and 13th world chess champion. Thanks so much for taking the time to join us, and we look forward to having you back soon. Have a good weekend.


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